NEW YORK, April 28, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Gay adult film producer, Advocate columnist and Israel supporter Michael Lucas is calling for Israeli delegates to the upcoming Berlin pride festival to change the shameful decision not to march with Israeli flags or other symbols of their national identity.
"Just as it takes courage to be an out gay person in this world, so it takes strength of character to proclaim an Israeli identity," says Lucas. "In the case of both gays and Israelis, not everyone is self-confident enough to stand up to ignorance, stereotypes, and hatred. But, astonishingly, this coming June in Berlin, we will see an example of self-loathing literally on parade."
"I'm truly baffled by this situation. I've traveled to Israel many times and have always marveled at the don't-mess-with-me attitude of gay men and women there. This is a country with a thriving gay community of brave, patriotic people — the vast majority of whom have defended their nation in the Israeli Defense Force. Most gay Israelis would sooner die than betray their identity and deny their flag," said Lucas.
Though some have attributed the decision to march without national symbols to the Tourism Ministry, Lucas insists that the Israeli group that is marching must openly make a statement that they will be carrying the flag no matter who made this choice.
In a recent article on Advocate.com, Lucas states, "When it comes to what pride is all about, there's no better symbol than Israel. It's the Middle East's one safe nation for LGBT people — a place where Christian, Muslim, and Jewish gay people are able to live with rights and dignity. On the other side of its borders and throughout the rest of the region, homosexuality is illegal and punished with humiliation, imprisonment, and death."
"If this group marches in Berlin — and it's not too late to stop them — it will be a complete misrepresentation of both the strength and spirit of a people who have fought to defend both their country and their place in society. Israel must send to Berlin individuals who've got the courage to hold their heads — and their flags — up high."
For further inquiries, please contact Michael Lucas at [email protected].
SOURCE Michael Lucas