Crowds gathered to celebrate LGBT History Month at the National Assembly of Wales.
Although it’s easier than ever for LGBT people to come out we still need to make it easier for people to talk about their sexuality, according to a leading gay rights activist.
Jeffrey Weeks was speaking at the event of Outing The Past at the National Assembly of Wales last Saturday when he presented a talk on the topic titled “My history and your history”.
“There is no doubt that parents are much more willing to accept that sexuality isn’t one thing. The more we can do to encourage knowledge of that, the quicker people will come out with who they are and what they want to be.”
Jeffrey born in the poor valley of Rhondda in Wales, who became a Gay Liberation Front activist, LGBT historian professor and writer later.
The event focused on raising awareness of the past attitudes towards sex and gender.
“Equality is about following a path to similarity, but also the road to glorious varieties. Each one of us has our own story, each one of us is different. Today, our story, our history forms part of modern Wales,” said Jeremy Miles AM, the host of the event.
Jeffrey introduced his experience to the audience, “I began writing in the 1970s, and all I wanted to do is to trace the past. In the 1980s, I wanted to write a research on health issues that shaped LGBT life. In the 1990s, I became occupied with wider political social changes. Today I write about myself, I want to capture my own memory, the roots in myself. I need a reflection.”
When talking about support from the government, Jeffrey said, “There’s never enough support from them. In the 1970s, when the movements got started, the government on hold was hostile. My generation realized this was a long-term shift. Governments only began to change the law when they realized there was a large consistency there.”
For young people who found themselves are LGBT, Jeffrey advised that they should search the Internet and social media to communicate the others who are also LGBT, which can let them feel warm.
“There is no doubt that parents are much more willing to accept that sexuality isn’t one thing.” Concluding the speech he added, “The more we can do to encourage knowledge of that, the quicker people will come to turns with who they are and what they want to be.”
LGBT history month runs throughout February and more activities will be held in Cardiff.