Text by Tinashe Wakapila
Photos by 2017 PhotoXP photographers
Durban Pride 2017 was a vibrant situation led by a statement making ideology. Gugu Dlamini Park located at Workshop Shopping Center was the venue chosen for this year. Pride started with prayers from my very own pastor, Apostle Zinzi Zungu of VMCI. There were memorials of powerful activists in the LGBTI sector who have passed away. This gave a feel of togetherness and underground depth of where we come from as a society and true meaning of the movement.
As I walked towards Pride gates following the beautiful and inspiring march, I saw a group of men and women making fun of this beautiful lady (I believe she is trans). At that moment it clicked to me that phobias of gender and sexuality are still there and many people have not embraced that are fluid.
This is why Pride march must happen in public spaces including townships, market places and populated places. Pride kicked off in style and all the stalls where lit. Motivational speakers were very deep and life healing. An interesting pair that I met was two queers from Pretoria who had their table of T-shirts in the stalls. They print themselves; they own the business. This showed that there is a lifeline of entrepreneurship in our society, which needs us to support each other. The next stall I attended was the Gay and Lesbian Network table which came all the way from Pietermaritzburg. They had assorted protection for sexual intercourse and the distributors were ready to share information regarding the how’s and when’s to use it. Health tables were filled up and it was brilliant knowing that healthcare matters in the society.
The next interesting show that had significance was the modeling session with the young people embracing their bodies and parading. Looking into this event I can proudly say Pride played its part and really made a statement in the different capabilities of how humanity reigns in our society.
Later there where different after parties. I attended the one at Urban Lounge, because the DJs that were taking the floor are from the LGBTI society.
My wrap up about Pride this year is an explosion of humanity. It showed how much lgbti people participate in each sector of the bigger society from arts to health, entrepreneurship to religion. Last but never the least, family from Faces and Phases series and 2017 PhotoXP project (Gauteng) came all the way to document Pride. We came together as an extended family with KwaZulu Natal participants. Taking over the space with cameras and capturing the moments through photography and me with my commentary writing. I say hats off Inkanyiso!
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