Gay Rights Cross the Street

I’m in Vienna ā€” the city of high culture ā€” standing in front of the Opera, where the standard “walk-don’t walk” lights have been replaced by lights showing gay and lesbian couples patiently waiting when red and happily crossing when green. It’s done in a fun-loving way to make it clear that, in this city, people want to be tolerant and celebrate diversity. (As in the USA, in Austria there is a split society making political news ā€” basically city culture vs. country culture.)

This is Day 54 of my 100 Days in Europe series. As I research my guidebooks and make new TV shows, Iā€™m reporting on my experiences and lessons learned in Vienna, the Alps, the Low Countries, England, and beyond. Find more right here on my travel blog.


6 Replies to “Gay Rights Cross the Street”

  1. Guten Tag,

    I think of myself as a culturally aware, well educated guy from a conservative white middle-class family (with a passion for piano and travel).

    I’m uncomfortable having all this gay pride shoved in my face by the mass media. I know some gay people and appreciate it when they don’t flaunt it.

    Thanks for letting me express my feelings.


  2. I also think of myself as a culturally aware, well-educated guy from a conservative white middle-class family, and I am absolutely comfortable with gay pride anywhere and everywhere it manifests itself, because nothing will change the fact that I like women and most men do and always will, and there will always be a portion of men who like men, and it’s okay and doesn’t hurt me or society and I can be friends with them and we can all flaunt who we are and live together. Seriously. It’s not that hard, and we really can. It’s going to be okay.

  3. It is impossible for me to think that people just can’t be themselves and others basically mind there own business and take care of the life they choose. I haven’t been overly impressed with the success of hetrosexual marriage either in many years. The divorce rate is ridiculous and it breaks up families and their kids have to deal with it. So why the big shock that we have other sexuality, cultures, women in men’s jobs.

  4. All the more reason to be exposed to it Jeff from Tampa. Being uncomfortable by gay pride is probably a sign that there is more you can learn. I too was once uncomfortable with gay pride but have realized that being uncomfortable doesn’t mean that you’re right. Getting to know why gay pride is important should be the real mission for straight people. Love is love.

  5. There are similar signs near Trafalgar Square in London. We saw them last week while touring with Rick Steves.

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