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Do Fetishes Have a Place In Our Pride Parades?

The “Yes” ones

I think they do. Pride is all about celebrating our sexual orientation, and sexuality. For many, a huge part of their sexuality centres around fetishes. So, why wouldn’t you want to include it? People probably say that pride shouldn’t be sexualised; it should be more about equality and fighting for freedoms. But freedom to express your sexuality without judgement on your own terms is one of the very freedoms that the LGBT community has fought for. — Quench.ie / @quench_IE

Being LGBT is already sexually non-normative, and fetishes are, too. Being part of a fetish community is also an important part for many LGBT people (I think it comes from: once you’ve already realised you don’t have to live a vanilla, monogamous straight life because you’re LBGT, you feel freer to try other things, too), so why not celebrate those subcommunities? — Philip

I see fetishes in pride parades as a form of expressing liberation. It opposes oppression and social manipulation. If this self-expression is a way to show to the world who you are, then let it be. — Andres R.

Yes, they’re part of the gay culture stemming from a time when gay sex was forced underground — Howya

Yes! We are celebrating our queerness and the fact that we are not heteronormative. Brian McBabe. — Organiser of Explicit in Zürich

They are a huge part of the LGBTQ community. Everyone has at least one fetish and it’s good that some participants are not afraid to show them. Fetishes are still a big stigma.— Ridick

Yes, I think people free themselves in that time. Everyone has a more open mind, so that’s why people sometimes talk about it, show it and experience it a bit more since they feel freer. — Leandro G

Fetishes represent a fantasy projection of people's personalities. This way they offer an insight into the LGBT full spectrum beyond unnecessary moral judgments setting the basis for an honest observation of human nature. It’s an ironic and liberating approach that shouldn’t be taken literally but more as an extra layer in the storytelling of our community. — Giuseppe

Of course, let us educate and liberate heterosexuals. Pride is about love, equality and justice. And we all have to have it… unless your fetish is illegal of course and that’s beyond anyone’s sexuality. — konstantinosl@gmail.com

Pride is about self-expression and the multifaceted forms of identity. It’s complex but we cannot be limited. — Dave.flynn0101@gmail.com

Yes. Leather pride bears pride fetish pride. — Rob

Yes, tonnes of it — cm.pang93@gmail.com

Yes! It’s an expression of what makes sex, sex. — Anonymous

Yes. It‘s part of the queer identity. And because it‘s always evolving and getting new people into the fetish scene (for example puppy play) it should have a visible place at pride too. In that way, it can be a connection and meeting point for people who already love fetishes or are interested in them. Also, it‘s a great way to meet friends from all over the world, for example at Folsom Berlin. — Anonymous

Yes, because it could encourage people to enjoy their fetishes with more people if they want to. — Anonymous

Yes. LGBTQIA have always been open. We spearhead not only the sexual revolution in the 70s but also today. We don’t allow society to restrain our interests. It’s something we are proud of. — Anonymous

Yes, Pride is meant to represent and include all of those from the LGBT community and accept all people regardless of their sexual preference and/or orientation. Fetish is one part of this and everyone has some form of their own fetish, some may just seem more extreme than others — Anonymous

Yes, why not?! — Anonymous

Because I feel prouder and it’s normal and funny — Anonymous

Yes. They’re a part of queer culture — Anonymous

Yes, because people should be proud of them. More exposure = more acceptance — Anonymous

Absolutely. Pride is all about being unashamed and open, celebratory. If you can’t celebrate the weird and wonderful or sexuality and sexual orientation at Pride, then Pride has lost something crucial of itself. Pride needs to be all-embracing, to make everyone feel welcome and to give people the opportunity to meet others who are like them. — Anonymous

Yes. Enjoy exploring other guys' fetishes .— Anonymous

Yes, because people are entitled to express themselves .— Anonymous

Yes, because no one should be ashamed .— Anonymous

Definitely, it’s the one day we can express ourselves in the open proudly — Anonymous

For men to meet and explore their fetishes with like-minded men. — Anonymous

Of course, they do. Everyone needs to be represented and fetishes are a major representation of expression that people still find taboo. Having a place in a parade lets others know about fetishes, shows those that have them they aren’t alone and that it’s okay to have them, as well as possible opening up underlying feelings of others. — Anonymous

Yes, it’s part of who we are. — Anonymous

Yes, sexual liberation is something to celebrate. — Anonymous

I think they should be at pride, but I don’t see them enough. — Anonymous

Sure. Straight people consider anything queer to be taboo or fetishistic, and things like the hankey code are part of queer history. — Anonymous

Yes, it’s an expression of us. — Anonymous

I don’t see why not. It shouldn’t be a thing to hide from. — Anonymous

I think so. It’s not just about sexual orientation but about acceptance and accepting people for who they are as a whole. It’s time to celebrate everything and everyone. — Anonymous

Freedom of expression — Anonymous


Yes, but… or “some of them”

I think as long as they are not overtly sexual, then fetish stuff is fine. Pride is increasingly becoming a more family-friendly event, so this should be taken into consideration as far as fetish gear is concerned. — Wayne

Yes! Fetishes have a place everywhere... more importantly to show the diversity in our community to meet other like-minded people (except sock fetishes, that’s too weird!) — Baz 🙂

I think it depends a lot on whether the people displaying their fetish mix with the rest of the event (except maybe during the parade since they might have their own float) or if they stay separated and are just there to get “hot & bothered” publicly. Pride for me is about inclusion and acceptance, not about getting laid and having the world watch. If the fetishist’s goal is to proudly present their sexual preference and educate people about it, please do so. If the goal is to bust a nut, then maybe a sex club or the privacy of one’s home should be considered as a more appropriate place for it. — Kris Bo

I think it depends. Nothing should be too explicit, I mean there is no need for stuff such as dildos, etc… we all should be sensible and remember that it happens in day time and people of all ages could be watching it. Some stuff, we keep in the bedroom. — Anonymous.

Certainty as long as they are not offensive to the public (children, racism, etc) — Peri_kalas

Depends on the fetish. Considering pride has become so family friendly I don’t see the need to be naked on the street. Save that for the parties. — Alan

Depends on the fetish, the more widespread ones like BDSM yeah but the more niche ones like scat… not so much 🤢 — Anonymous

Yes, to an extent. However, I do find Pride has been orientated towards more sexual ways recently which isn’t appropriate for younger queers in our community, not their families. — Anonymous

Some of them probably, most don’t — Anonymous

Yes, but it depends on the fetish some are just weird. — Anonymous

Yes some do — Anonymous

Totally. It’s an expression of identity that defies the heteronormative society. — Anonymous

Yes cause having a fetish is normal — Anonymous

To an extent. As we struggle for equality, it may not be wise to flaunt all that takes place in the bedroom — Anonymous

Some of them… the very sexual ones better if private — Anonymous


The “maybe” ones (?)

Maybe. I haven’t thought about it before reading this question :) — Filipe_carvalho2007@hotmail.com

I’m not strictly against it, but everyone has fetishes. It isn’t something that makes LGBTQ unique. I’d also like the focus to be shifted to equality or improving self-image instead of sex-focused. — Anonymous

Yes and no — the parade is for everyone, but not all fetishes are. — Anonymous


The “no-way-Jose” ones

Pride should be political only. — Anonymous

No, it’s private .— Anonymous

No, still too much shame. — Anonymous

No. Fetishes are not restricted to LGBT. Pride shout remains a more protest parade and about visibility! — Anonymous

No, it’s no wonder the world sees gays as over the top because sex is what makes us different but our sexual desire does not need to be on Main St. or any street.


The “it’s all Greek to me”

Don’t know if they should, they’re an intimate construct. — Anonymous

Not sure 🤔. — Anonymous


Bonus

I’ve seen some. And some of them were not very pleasant. — eugene.kazaev@gmail.com

I don’t know. I’m not interested in pride parades. — Anonymous

I feel like some fetishes, like feet, are so common it’s hardly taboo anymore, so maybe (?) but I’d hate to make it harder for gay people to find equal rights because we’re perceived as sex deviants. — Anonymous

Hmmm. Pride is about celebrating identity and unifying the diverse range of orientations and gender identities. Sexual acts and fetishes are to be perceived as more like behaviours and less than identities. — Anonymous

I don’t think it should be only related to the gay world, straight people have fetishes, too. — Anonymous

There are people wearing leather, kinky gadgets, etc. — Anonymous