I am pleased about releasing my new documentary, “To Stride with Pride: A Human Rights Movement in Thailand.”

This video ­­informs about brave people who are diligently striving toward attaining civic equity and societal equality. This is in a country where social activism is predominantly taboo, and can be quite dangerous.

With a blending of seriousness and light-heartedness, this documentary brings you to the lively streets of Chiang Mai, Thailand. There, you stride with pride in the 2020 Chiang Mai Pride parade, with hundreds of others who are standing up for human rights.

Big-hearted folks from and supporting of the LGBTQI community, plus those from other marginalized societal groups such as sex workers, those who are disabled (other-abled), and indigenous peoples, conjoin in solidarity.

Chiang Mai LGBT Pride: Striving for Social Equality and Civic Equity

This peaceful protest-parade was organized in 2009. However, that gathering ended tragically before even getting started. A mob of culturally traditional locals, who vehemently disapproved of LGBT people and their civil rights movement, blockaded, threatened, and forcefully stopped them from continuing with that event. Parade-goers were even asked by these protesters to crawl on the ground and apologize for their perceived transgression.

Mirroring prior social movements in more democratic countries where human rights related ideals have become evolved, for those pioneering this in Thailand that oppressive experience cultivated a cauldron of rejection-pain. However, they refuse to give up. For this is about dignity!

Steadfast in their mission, after a ten-year respite this re-energized LGBTQI community in 2019 stood tall and courageously parade-walked — this time, safely and successfully. In 2020, they again organized more boldly than ever before. People from near and afar, including businesses as well as government and non-government organizations, generously contributed to this boisterous and uplifting event. … It is true that time can change (and heal) things, even greater society.

In this bi-lingual (subtitled) video, Thailand’s iconic LGBT and human rights activist, Sirisak “Ton” Chaited, movingly shares about some challenges this demographic community faces. Ton details what happened in 2009 and why, how that had impacted them, what has changed, and where this movement is headed. …

We are also offered a society-unifying message to heed.

* For excellent additional detail about this socially important protest parade and overall human rights movement, read Chiang Mai Citylife Publisher Pim Kemasingki’s March 2020 article, “Pride and Prejudices: The Ongoing LGBT Fight.”