Shiny happy people do not hold hands. Not in Lithuania. At least not in public. Not even in the Lithuanian capital Vilnius, which currently has hosted more anti-gay demonstration than tolerant ones. Previous Gay Prides in the region have been marred by counter-demonstrations and acts of violence against the participants, struggling to see the march carried out peacefully. Providentially, the times are about change and 2010 will be the year where the Baltic gay population once again will march though the streets of Vilnius, proudly sporting the rainbow flag as well as their true selves.
Pursuing solidarity and support in fight against discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation throughout the week May 5-9, numerous events will take place. Main focus will be held on the awareness-raising regarding discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation, the causes and consequences of homophobia. Therefore, a photograph exhibition and a film festival will be some of the core events.
During May 7 and 8, the festival will centre on political discussions, cultural events, social programs and evidently also the march for equality. An International Human Rights Conference will be held on May 7 and is expected to draw around 100 participants from all over Europe. The topic of the discussion will be “Human Rights Combating Fear and Prejudice”. The march of equality in central Vilnius is planned to take place May 8.
The culmination of the Baltic Pride 2010 will be reached as the biggest rainbow flag, measuring 30 metres in lengths, will be displayed in the central Vilnius. This public act will seek to highlight the importance of solidarity, communal spirit and support. The rainbow flag itself has a very old tradition in symbolizing diversity and hope. With an aim to emphasize the importance of diversity and hope for the social change, the Baltic LGBT movement has chosen the rainbow flag as its symbol.