Monday, May 9, 2011

Lebanese Laïque Pride 2011


On May 15, 2011 the Lebanese secular community is marching once again to demand their most basic right: a united nation ruled by unified civil laws, rights and duties that apply equally to all Lebanese citizens.

In a country like Lebanon, where differences seem larger than commonalities, where divisions seem easier than unity, where sectarian groups have at the very least one, sometimes more political parties (taking into account this tiny nation has officially acknowledged more religious and sectarian groups than an entire continent!) the concept of a unit gathering Lebanese citizens from all walks of life seems as improbable as  guilt-free chocolate (let's face it, sugar-free just isn't the same).

And yet, this group has managed to stay away from politicians' claws and remain true to their values and ethics. 

No politicians. No political parties. No sectarian groups. No affiliation whatsoever.

It's very simple; on May 15, all Lebanese will just be one thing: 
Nothing else.

2011 will witness the second Lebanese Laïque* Pride. 
*Laïque means "secular" in French

Looking back at last year's gathering and 2011's potential, it's hard to believe it all started with a simple debate on Facebook. What might have ended with a few posts between friends quickly snowballed into a massive event, mostly powered by social media and the will of those who have had enough with obsolete politicians and politics ruling their lives.

My parents' generation had been fighting for that same right for ages; fighting for a better Lebanon for them, and for us.

On May 15 we'll be marching side by side my parents and I.

My dad will proudly be carrying my five months old daughter Mia on his shoulders on that day. She can't march but she'll be there anyway, alongside her parents and grand-parents. For Lebanon. For herself. And for what this event represents to her generation and the future of her country.

And hopefully, this will be the last time she has to march for such a basic right. 

See you there, Lebanon!

Time: Sunday, May 15 · 3:00pm - 4:30pm
Location: From Aïn Mraïssé to Riad El-Solh - Beirut , LEBANON

For more details on the march in Lebanon and in other countries, check FacebookTwitter or subscribe to the Laïque Pride mail list.

Lebanese rapper Rayess Bek's contribution for the occasion:

You can download the ringtone by clicking here.

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