Is it just a coincidence that the hurricane season and Gay Pride Month kick off at the same time? Some crazy conservatives say, “No!” Wayne Garcia with Creative Loafing points out some odd advertising by pastor Ron Sanders in the St. Petersburg Times not too far from the paper’s coverage of the St. Pete Pride.

The good reverend suggested in his missive that God sent Katrina to New Orleans to punish the city’s tolerance for gays, and that St. Pete is in for a similar disaster. Further, he suggested that gays are courting destruction: “There will come a day when they will answer to God for this… PAYDAY, SOMEDAY!”

Wayne asks whether the paper would have printed a Klan ad with a racist threat on the same page as coverage of an MLK parade. I’m not as bent out of shape over it. Mainly because it proves the point that pride events are needed more than ever.

Earlier this week, I spoke with Jeff Krohn, up at SRS Globe, a gay and lesbian advocacy group at the Savannah River Site. The group held a non-threatening, voluntary luncheon at the site on gays and lesbians in the workplace and they’ve gotten flak from conservatives who have threatened to write Sen. Jim DeMint to request that such events be barred in the future.

I told Jeff that I felt like people getting bent out of shape over it proved the point that discrimination is out there and that pride events are necessary. Five years ago, when the group was first forming, Jeff said some managers at SRS said they didn’t think the site had a problem with discrimination. Well, if they didn’t know then, they surely know now. It’s only after we show our hand that they show theirs.