Hi everyone! I thought I'd make my first post a conversation starter.
So last week wraps up some of the LGBT Pride events in Cape Town, South Africa, an opportunity for some queer Capetonians to unveil their new South African LGBT flag. The new flag takes the well-known rainbow design and adds the diagonal lines of the South African flag. Designer Hugh Brockman said last year, "I truly believe we put the dazzle into our Rainbow nation and this flag is a symbol of just that...look at all these costumes, this event, even Cape Town at large. It is a testimony that we as the Gay community have a lot to offer in skills, talent, inspiration, business and life."
Going through my blog roll, I came across a blog entry posted by my friend Keletso Makofane, a South African activist currently studying at Columbia University in New York. Keletso writes,
This flag represents to me, a single story of gayness. Gayness is white, affluent, young, male, attractive, fun, liberated, talented, worldly, classy. Gayness is "dazzling" with "skills, talent, inspiration, business". As pointed out by the website of Cape Town Pride, "It is an international fact that the LGBTI market is both affluent and influential. On the whole, South African LGBTI individuals are high-yield, trend-setting, brand-conscious, loyal and have ample disposable income." This is not possible with our high poverty and unemployment rates. Obviously CTPride is not talking about all of us.
Keletso got me thinking more critically about the rainbow flag as a symbol for the LGBT community: who can claim it, and cannot?