Entertainment » Culture

Andrew Solomon Tells the World Why he is Proud to be Gay

Friday Sep 6, 2013

Award-winning and bestselling author, Andrew Solomon, has shown his support to UK-based Proud2Be Project, by contributing to their hugely successful LGBT campaign.

In his moving video he says "I wasn't always proud to be gay, as an adolescent I was ashamed...pride took its time finding me and I was slow to embrace it. I found true love with my husband, and more love with our kids... so how can I possibly feel less than proud to be gay?

Andrew's Proud2Be video is the first to include captions in both English and Russian, making it accessible to people who are deaf or hard of hearing and LGBT people in Russia who are currently being jailed, beaten and terrorized under President Putin's regime.

Andrew follows in the footsteps of some famous British names among the LGBT community including Stephen Fry, Human Rights Campaigner Peter Tatchell, Author of 'Tipping the Velvet', Sarah Waters, Sir Ian Mckellen, Christine Burns MBE and Michael Cashman MEP, who said, "I am happy to support such an inspiring LGBT organisation led by a dynamic duo!"

The campaign has been making waves recently when Stephen Fry's Proud2Be Video went viral, after receiving 120,000 YouTube hits in just a few days.

The campaign was launched two years when gay identical twin brothers, Mat and Jon Price sat in front of their web cam and recorded a short video. In the video they explained how they are both proud to be gay.

"In truth we had been ashamed to be gay before that moment," said Mat. "After years of messages from our school, church, the media and certain members of our family, that being gay was wrong, we had internalised those messages and started to believe them. When a friend asked us if we were proud to be gay we both said no. But that was the catalyst for our change in attitude and three years later the Proud2Be Project was born.

"Our mission is to encourage and support all lesbian, gay, bisexual & trans (LGBT) people to be proud of who they are."

Since its launch, Proud2Be has grown hugely and not only runs the campaign but also holds social groups and residential weekends and will be launching Totnes Pride on Saturday 14th September 2013. The twins host their own LGBT radio show which can be on http://www.soundartradio.org.uk/ and are even planning on opening the first rural LGBT community centre in Devon, UK, next year.

''We started the campaign nearly two years ago when we felt that LGBT people needed more positive and affirmative messages about who they are" said Jon "Although laws are changing, LGBT people, all over the world, still face oppression, misrepresentation and discrimination. Until that is no longer the case, the Proud2Be campaign will keep running. We would like to thank Andrew for his fantastic video, particularly as it is our first from the US! We would also like to thank Kathleen Seidel and Natalia Caryl for adding captions both in English and Russian, making the Proud2Be message accessible to even more people across the world."

The Proud2Be Project invites everyone to contribute to their campaign! Whether LGB or T or their friend, family member, co-worker or educator. Now contributors have the option of not only recording a Proud2Be video but also taking a Proud2Be photo!

For more details on how to get involved head to http://proud2beproject.org/ or email info@proud2beproject.org.


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