Dropping a QueerBomb on Austin Gay Pride

Many North Texans will undoubtedly be heading south to Austin this weekend for our capital city’s Pride celebration. But before you head out, you may just want to read up on some major drama that’s apparently going on behind the scenes.

In fact, things are so bad that it looks like a group called QueerBomb! is staging an alternative to Pride. An alternative to Pride? Blasphemy!

QueerBomb! calls itself “a flash force assembly of LGBTQIA individuals.” And the group alleges that “the strategy and structure of Austin Pride” is “non-inclusive, capitalist, heteronormative, safe and unchallenging.” (Seriously, though, since when would we have our Pride any other way?)

The Austin Chronicle reports that the controversy all started after the Austin Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce  took over sole responsibility for Pride last year, setting up the Austin Gay and Lesbian Pride Foundation. Despite a successful event in 2009, the chamber abruptly ousted its president and replaced him with Chad Peevy. Peevy, who now serves as both president of the chamber and chairman of the Pride Foundation board, also happens to own the company that is promoting pride. Conflict of interest? You decide.

But it doesn’t end there. According to the Chronicle, the Pride Foundation revoked an invitation to local performer Nakia after Nakia also booked a separate gig at a QueerBomb!-affiliated event on Saturday night. The Pride Foundation also turned down Sandra Bernhard because, according to Peavy, she’s “too vulgar for a family-friendly event.”

Finally, and this is by far the most shocking allegation of all, the HIV/AIDS charity Project Transitions wanted to bring one of its long-running galas under the Austin Pride umbrella. But Austin Pride allegedly told Project Transitions no because the charity couldn’t pay enough. What???

Needless to say, none of this exactly makes us proud — unless you mean proud to live in Dallas.

—  John Wright