Remember the first time you heard that they should ship us all to a deserted island? We were appalled, but then we realized, living on a deserted island with all the other gays? Would that be so bad? Well before they could do it to us, it seems that someone had the great idea of doing it themselves. Soon the world's only Gay Kingdom will have its 11th anniversary. On June 14th, 2004, The Gay and Lesbian Kingdom of the Coral Sea Islands declared independence from Australia.
We've had many parts of the United States try and break away from the nation. Maine considered being part of Canada even to this day and Key West broke away from the United States for a minute. But for a piece of a nation to break away and become its own LGBT nation, what would it take? How did this new kingdom form? Why would Australia allow this to happen?
They chose this territory "because of a twist in international law that states, 'Oppressed people of overseas territories have a right to self government and self determination.'" Since the islands are recognized as an external overseas territory of Australia, the Gay Kingdom's founders believe that the international law applies, particularly since gays and lesbians are oppressed by Australia's homophobic laws. – HOMOTASTIC.COM
After realizing one loophole in the law, another one had to be found in order to form a government. And what kind of government should there be on a gay island nation? Something with a crown of course.
After declaring independence, gay rights activist Dale Parker Anderson was elected emperor and sovereign of the Gay Kingdom. Anderson claims to be a direct descendant (19x great grandson) of King Edward II of England, who reigned England in the early 14th century and who some historians believe was homosexual or had a homosexual relationship. The founders chose to establish a monarchy due to a quirk in the law which would have resulted in their being tried for treason if they had established a republican form of government. – HOMOTASTIC.COM
SO a nation was formed on a deserted island and an emperor was crowned. What left was there to do?
The founders of the Gay and Lesbian Kingdom appropriated many of the elements of LGBT culture for their national culture. According to their website, the Gay Kingdom's official flag is (of course) the rainbow pride flag while the pink triangle is the nation's coat of arms. The national anthem? Gloria Gaynor’s “I am what I am." The song was written by Jerry Herman, an out gay man, who was subsequently made a Lord of the Gay Kingdom. – HOMOTASTIC.COM
As we start to plan our summer vacations, maybe a trip to not just a gay accepting destination spot, but to a gay nation would be in order. Happy Eleventh Anniversary (a little early). Maybe we can celebrate it together in person this June. Is there a ferry to the island?
So is all of this real? Or just an ideal, a thought, a response to laws that pushed the Australian LGBT community down and led their government to discriminate against our causes? Same-sex marriage is still illegal in Australia. The founders of the Gay & Lesbian Kingdom took to the fight against discrimination in 2004 and showed what legal extremes could be taken in order to gain LGBT rights, using the government's own laws to make a safe haven for our community.
So there may no longer be an G&LK. It still can be found on many updated lists of existing Micronations. Some sources do label it as now defunct. I wish it never had to exist, but if it still exists, I'd like to visit.