Straight people don’t deserve straight pride because they have never been discriminated against for their sexual orientation. It really is that simple.
Pride originated as a commemoration of the Stonewall riots, where members of the LGBTQ community defended themselves against a police raid in 1969. It was illegal to be gay in 1969 and “sodomy” was still considered a crime. It has never been illegal to be straight in the U.S. or to show physical love to a heterosexual partner.
Men could be arrested for wearing drag and women had to be wearing at least three items of “feminine clothing.” It wasn’t until 2003 when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 6-3 in the Lawrence v. Texas case, which officially overruled the sodomy law in Texas that criminalized same-sex relations.
Members of the LGBTQ community are discriminated against every day. Just three years ago, the Pulse Nightclub shooting in Orlando ended with 49 people dead and another 53 wounded. Straight and cisgender people have never been shot at just because they are straight and cisgender.
The people who want straight pride don’t understand the suffering, discrimination and oppression that comes with being a part of the LGBTQ community. Walking down the street holding your partner’s hand feeling safe is straight privilege. Comfortably kissing your partner is public is straight privilege. Seeing straight couples accurately depicted in the media is straight privilege. No one asking you to be their “straight friend” is straight privilege.
The list doesn’t end there: in case anyone has forgotten, never having to come out to your parents as straight is straight privilege. This one event could change someone’s life if their family doesn’t accept them, and no one will ever disown you for your sexuality if you are straight.
There isn’t a need to feel proud about being straight because no one says it’s not OK for them love who they want. There are still churches that refuse to marry gay couples. People who use their religion to spread hate are just homophobic people trying to make themselves feel better. It is a sin to lie, steal and cheat because those are things people choose to do. It is not a choice who you love. No one ever tells a straight person that it’s a sin to love who they love.
People wanting there to be a straight pride are the same type of people who want a white history month. White people, just like straight people, have never been systematically oppressed and therefore don’t need a month to celebrate their history. White people’s history of enslaving black people is similar to straight people’s history of oppressing gay people in that neither should be celebrated and neither should be a source of pride.
Ashlon Lusk is a 20-year-old mass communication sophomore from Houston, Texas.