It’s PRIDE Month across the globe, and at The Deep Creek Wedding we celebrate love of all forms! We aim for inclusivity and encourage our local community to do the same! Love knows no bounds, and we believe in the pairing of souls which doesn’t dictate gender, orientation, race or any label mankind has placed upon itself. Because love is love, we wanted to share with you a bit of the background of Pride and the struggles the LGBT+ community have endured. We commend this community for their continued efforts in fighting for equality and as allies and members of the LGBT+ community. We at The Deep Creek Wedding support same-sex marriage and want you to choose Deep Creek Lake for your wedding or elopement! Happy Pride Month, friends!
We welcome new contributor Jeremy Gosnell for the history behind the rainbow flag and information on our region’s inaugural Pride.
During June and throughout summer, it’s not uncommon to see rainbow flags flying proudly in the wind. All over the United States, monuments and buildings are lit up, displaying all the diverse colors of the rainbow. Most of us know, the rainbow flag is a symbol of the LGBTQ community and throughout history, the flag has been a representation of diversity and solidarity as if to say we are in this together! Both the International Cooperative Alliance and Indian spiritual master Meher Baba used rainbow flags to symbolize togetherness and the latter also used it to represent an ascension of spiritual mastery. Usually, no matter who is flying a rainbow flag, its presence indicates connection and focuses on what brings us together and not what tears us apart.
Photography by Gingham Photography
The LGBTQ community sees the rainbow flag as a symbol of harmony among groups of their community. Today, we know that there isn’t just a mix of homosexual and heterosexual people. Some individuals are bi-sexual, drawn to either gender while others are pan-sexual, meaning they are sexually attracted to a person’s personality traits, not their gender or physique. There are LGBTQ citizens whom androgynous, meaning they don’t identify with either gender and some are gender fluid, meaning the gender they feel closest to changes. Despite commentary that may suggest otherwise, all forms of human sexuality are natural. Homosexuality alone appears in over 450 species within the animal kingdom. From female lions on the Savanna growing manes and acting like males to pre-adolescent human children, homosexuality is a natural occurrence, a stratagem of evolution and natural selection. The rainbow flag is a flag for every member of the LGBTQ community and focuses on what ties all of us together!
Many people don’t know that the specific colors of the rainbow flag carry significant meaning. First, the colors are represented as they appear in a natural rainbow which is a pleasing and happy symbol. The red stripe that often tops the rainbow flag symbolizes life. Orange signifies healing. Yellow denotes sunlight, and green characterizes the balance and force of nature. Blue on the flag suggests harmony and peace while purple stands for the human spirit. The rainbow flag is something that all people, regardless of sexuality can connect with and appreciate. Our environment and its attributes are something we all share, no matter where we’re from or who we love.
Photography by Shannon Gray
Even pride celebrations specifically embody the acceptance of the LGBTQ community and a resistance of hate crimes and violence toward members of the community at large. Perhaps more important, pride festivities promote and celebrate diversity. Throughout history, diversity has been a tool of nature, evolution and the human experience which not only strengthens communities but also bolsters economies and opens the talent pool. Economically, diverse corporations, governments and institutions are statistically more apt to succeed and generate a higher quality of life index. We see it all over the globe, as the most openly diverse societies are often both the happiest and economically sound. Communities that shun diversity often stagnate and fall into a state of economic gridlock. Innovation slows because the talent pool is limited and without individuals that have a different perspective on progress and change, overall production and ingenuity planes off.
For the first time ever, Western Maryland will be holding its own pride celebration, which will kick off a tradition that throws a beacon up signaling that even here, in the mountains of Maryland, we promote, accept and celebrate diversity. Events surrounding Cumberland Pride will begin on July 6th and culminate on July 9th with a Pride Festival in downtown Cumberland running from 11 AM to 5 PM. The events on Sunday are family-friendly and all members of the community are encouraged to bring their families and support what hopes to be the first chapter in progressing our communities support of diversity.
Photography by Gingham Photography
However, perhaps the best way that the LGBTQ community can embrace equality is with a wedding. For many young millennials, oppression of the gay community is either a distant memory or lost to the pages of 20th century history. Throughout the 80s and 90s, not only could LGBTQ people not marry, they were deprived of normal rights and civil protections. When members of the LGBTQ community began openly living their lives, societies’ reaction was unkind. Gay people were fired from careers they had spent decades building, barred from certain areas within towns and cities and hate crimes (including murder) were not uncommon. Due to the progress of political parties and activists, communities today embrace the LGBTQ community as valuable members of society and the push for equality continues.
For the LGBTQ community, a wedding is symbol of progress and equality. Now, for the first time ever, they too can take part in a tradition that has helped define humanity, commitment and love. Maryland followed the lead of other progressive states in legalizing gay marriage and the entire nation was blanketed with open acceptance of love when the Supreme Court ruled to legalize gay marriage nationwide. LGBTQ couples come here, to Deep Creek Lake, to take in the natural beauty of an area and to commit their lives to one another, for what will be a lifetime of happiness. How could anything be more beautiful? Love is a word that represents a variety of deep principles. Respect, admiration, loyalty and sheer kindness are all parts of what makes love the epitome of human existence. Thomas Jones, the famous British-born American publisher said, “Love doesn’t make the world go round. Love is what makes the ride worthwhile.”
Coming together to support love, diversity and open acceptance isn’t un-usual or out of touch, but in fact, one of the very things that makes us human.
Photography by Jacqie Q Photography
Author Jeremy Gosnell is a science fiction author and magazine writer. His work explores ancient civilizations, futuristic technology, and the long-term social impact of a high-tech world. His modern-day interests lie in compassion for living beings and promoting equal rights for all of humanity through the eyes of the natural state of diversity in the living world.