San Francisco’s Gay Pride Parade began with so many amazing noises such as the roar of motorcycles and the cheering of family, supporters, and onlookers. Walking the streets of San Francisco the city was bleeding rainbows and a superfluous amount of spirit as it became blaringly obvious that the Gay Pride Parade was happening. The streets were lined with rainbow flags and the thousands of people who have migrated to the city for a day of happiness and equality. As the Gay Pride Parade turns ‘Forty and Fabulous’ people gathered on the Market Street to spread love and equality to everyone around them regardless of race, gender, age, or sexual orientation. Following the time honored tradition the ‘Dykes on Bikes’ lead the way. As a beacon for citizens around the world San Francisco certainly has lead the way in the LGBT movement, the city not only supports their citizens but fights for their rights.
While the main focus of the event is to support and celebrate this amazing community it is evident that many politicians take this opportunity to kiss babies and shake hands. However, we should not ignore the purpose of this parade and how it empowers the LGBT community and San Francisco itself. While San Francisco has certainly materialized as a front-runner in acceptance and equality there is still inequality everywhere and this was exhibited across the parade. Multiple people were seen sporting the American Apparel’s “Legalize Gay, Repeal Prop 8 Now” shirts bringing our thoughts back to the issue at hand, marriage equality for all.
Participants were dressed head to toe in a wide array of fashions ranging from stockings, rainbows, leather, t-shirts (vocalizing their beliefs), and so many other options that expressed and celebrated their individuality and personality. The streets were crowded with all different people ranging from 14 year olds cheering on their parents to drag queens strutting their stuff.
The parade had over 200 parade contingents, over 300 exhibitors, and 19 stages and venues celebrating LGBT pride. The Pride celebration was infused with a variety of artists, musicians, and performers from across the country. Amongst these the LGBT community was supported by the following Grand Marshals THE Backstreet boys, Andy Bell (Erasure), Don’t Ask Don’t Tell Repeal Activist Lieutenant Zoe Dunning, and Pulitzer Prize winning Author of The Color Purple Alice Walker. Many of the other participants included a wide array of individuals such as Cheer SF, numerous SF politicians, AIDS Lifecycle Bicyclists, free loving dogs, and so many other wonderful participants. The event was truly astounding and bringing together a diverse group of people spanning many ages, races, and sexes.
Photos: Rachel Carr
Images by Indie
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