Pride parade

Pride parade
13th annual São Paulo Gay Pride Parade, 2009, Brazil. In 2006, it was considered the biggest pride parade of the world by the Guinness Book of World Records with an estimated 2.5 million participants, In 2009, 3.2 million people attended.

Pride parades for the LGBT community (also known as gay pride parades, pride events and pride festivals) are events celebrating lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) culture. The events also at times serve as demonstrations for legal rights such as same-sex marriage. Most pride events occur annually and many take place around June to commemorate the Stonewall riots, a pivotal moment in the modern LGBT rights movement.



Italian lesbian organisation Arcilesbica at the National Italian Gay Pride march in Grosseto, Italy, in 2004

Early on the morning of Saturday, 28 June 1969, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning persons rioted following a police raid on the Stonewall Inn in the Greenwich Village neighborhood of New York City.[1] The Stonewall Inn was a gay bar which catered to an assortment of patrons, but which was popular with the most marginalized people in the gay community: transvestites, transgender people, effeminate young men, hustlers, and homeless youth. The Stonewall riots are generally considered to be the beginning of the modern gay rights movement, as it was the first time in modern history that a significant body of LGBT people resisted arrest.

First Pride march

On November 2, 1969, Craig Rodwell proposed the first gay pride parade to be held in New York City by way of a resolution at the Eastern Regional Conference of Homophile Organizations (ERCHO) meeting in Philadelphia, along with his partner, Fred Sargeant, Ellen Broidy and Linda Rhodes. [2]

"That the Annual Reminder, in order to be more relevant, reach a greater number of people, and encompass the ideas and ideals of the larger struggle in which we are engaged-that of our fundamental human rights-be moved both in time and location.
We propose that a demonstration be held annually on the last Saturday in June in New York City to commemorate the 1969 spontaneous demonstrations on Christopher Street and this demonstration be called CHRISTOPHER STREET LIBERATION DAY. No dress or age regulations shall be made for this demonstration.
We also propose that we contact Homophile organizations throughout the country and suggest that they hold parallel demonstrations on that day. We propose a nationwide show of support.[3][4][5][6]

All attendees to the ERCHO meeting in Philadelphia voted for the march except for Mattachine Society of New York, which abstained.[3] Members of the Gay Liberation Front (GLF) attended the meeting and were seated as guests of Rodwell's group, Homophile Youth Movement in Neighborhoods (HYMN).[7]

Meetings to organize the march began in early January at Rodwell's apartment in 350 Bleecker Street.[8] At first there was difficulty getting some of the major New York organizations like Gay Activists Alliance (GAA) to send representatives. Rodwell and his partner Sargeant, Broidy, Michael Brown, Marty Nixon, and Foster Gunnison of Mattachine made up the core group of the CSLD Umbrella Committee (CSLDUC). For initial funding, Gunnison served as treasurer and sought donations from the national homophile organizations and sponsors, while Sargeant solicited donations via the Oscar Wilde Memorial Bookshop customer mailing list and Nixon worked to gain financial support from GLF in his position as treasurer for that organization.[9][10] Other mainstays of the organizing committee were Judy Miller, Jack Waluska, Steve Gerrie and Brenda Howard of GLF.[11] Believing that more people would turn out for the march on a Sunday, and so as to mark the date of the start of the Stonewall uprising, the CSLDUC scheduled the date for the first march for Sunday, June 28, 1970.[12] With Dick Leitsch's replacement as president of Mattachine NY by "Michael Kotis" in April, 1970, opposition to the march by Mattachine ended.[13]

On the same weekend gay activist groups on the West Coast of the United States held a march in Los Angeles and a march and 'Gay-in' in San Francisco.[14][15]

One day earlier, on Saturday, 27 June 1970, Chicago Gay Liberation organized a march[16] from Washington Square Park ("Bughouse Square") to the Water Tower at the intersection of Michigan and Chicago avenues, which was the route originally planned, and then many of the participants extemporaneously marched on to the Civic Center (now Richard J. Daley) Plaza.[17] The date was chosen because the Stonewall events began on the last Saturday of June and because organizers wanted to reach the maximum number of Michigan Avenue shoppers. Subsequent Chicago parades have been held on the last Sunday of June, coinciding with the date of many similar parades elsewhere.

The first marches were both serious and fun, and served to inspire the widening activist movement; they were repeated in the following years, and more and more annual marches started up in other cities throughout the world. In New York and Atlanta the marches were called Gay Liberation Marches, and the day of celebration was called "Gay Liberation Day"; in San Francisco and Los Angeles they became known as 'Gay Freedom Marches' and the day was called "Gay Freedom Day". As more towns and cities began holding their own celebrations, these names spread.

In the 1980s there was a cultural shift in the gay movement. Activists of a less radical nature began taking over the march committees in different cities, and they dropped "Gay Liberation" and "Gay Freedom" from the names, replacing them with "Gay Pride".


Gay Pride Parade in New York City 2008

Many parades still have at least some of the original political or activist character, especially in less accepting settings. However, in more accepting cities, the parades take on a festive or even Mardi Gras-like character. Large parades often involve floats, dancers, drag queens, and amplified music; but even such celebratory parades usually include political and educational contingents, such as local politicians and marching groups from LGBT institutions of various kinds. Other typical parade participants include local LGBT-friendly churches such as Metropolitan Community Churches, United Church of Christ, and Unitarian Universalist Churches, Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG), and LGBT employee associations from large businesses.

Even the most festive parades usually offer some aspect dedicated to remembering victims of AIDS and anti-LGBT violence. Some particularly important pride parades are funded by governments and corporate sponsors, and promoted as major tourist attractions for the cities that host them. In some countries, some pride parades are now also called Pride Festivals. Some of these festivals provide a carnival-like atmosphere in a nearby park or city-provided closed-off street, with information booths, music concerts, barbecues, beer stands, contests, sports, and games.

Though the reality was that the Stonewall riots themselves, as well as the immediate and the ongoing political organizing that occurred following them, were events fully participated in by lesbian women, bisexual people and transgender people as well as by gay men of all races and backgrounds, historically these events were first named Gay, the word at that time being used in a more generic sense to cover the entire spectrum of what is now variously called the 'queer' or LGBT community.[18][19][20]

By the late 1970s and early 1980s, as many of the actual participants had grown older, moved on to other issues or died, this led to misunderstandings as to who had actually participated in the Stonewall riots, who had actually organized the subsequent demonstrations, marches and memorials, and who had been members of early activist organizations such as Gay Liberation Front and Gay Activists Alliance. The language has become more accurate and inclusive, though these changes met with initial resistance from some in their own communities who were unaware of the historical events.[21] Changing first to Lesbian and Gay, today most are called Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) or simply "Pride".

Notable pride events


South Africa

South Africa is home to the only gay pride marches on the African continent. Joburg Pride is held in Johannesburg usually the 1st Saturday in October annually. The inaugural Joburg Pride parade was held in 1990 with fewer than one thousand participants and it has grown considerably throughout the years, with over 20,000 participants in 2009. There is also a gay pride march annually (usually in February) in Cape Town. Soweto Pride takes place in Meadowlands, Soweto every year one week before Joburg Pride, and East Rand Pride a week before that in KwaThema, Gauteng, a township on Johannesburg's East Rand. Soweto Pride began in 2008 and East Rand Pride in 2009.



On 29 June 2008, four Indian cities (Delhi, Bangalore, Pondicherry and Kolkata) saw coordinated pride events. A rainbow parade was held at Chennai the next day. About 2,200 people turned up overall. These were also the first pride events of all these cities except Kolkata, which had seen its first such event in 1999. The pride parades were successful, given that no right-wing group attacked or protested against the pride parade, although the opposition party BJP expressed its disagreement with the concept of gay pride parade. The next day, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh appealed for greater social tolerance towards homosexuals at an AIDS event. On 16 August 2008 (one day after the Independence Day of India), the gay community in Mumbai held its first ever formal pride parade (although informal pride parades had been held many times earlier), to demand that India's anti-gay laws be amended.[22] A high court in the Indian capital, Delhi ruled on 2 July 2009, that homosexual intercourse between consenting adults was not a criminal act.[23] Pride parades have also been held in smaller Indian cities such as Bhubaneshwar and Thrissur (Kerala). Attendance at the pride parades has been increasing significantly since 2008, with an estimated participation of 3,500 people in Delhi and 1,500 people in Bangalore in 2010.


There are Pride events in both Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. The Jerusalem parades are met with resistance due to the high presence of religious bodies in the city. Three Pride parades took place in Tel Aviv on the week of 11 June 2010. The main parade, which is also partly funded by the city's municipality, was one of the largest ever to take place in Israel, with approximately 100,000 participants. The first Pride parade in Tel Aviv took place in 1993.

On 30 June 2005, the fourth annual Pride march of Jerusalem took place. It had originally been prohibited by a municipal ban which was cancelled by the court. Many of the religious leaders of Jerusalem's Muslim, Jewish and Christian communities had arrived to a rare consensus asking the municipal government to cancel the permit of the paraders. During the parade, a Haredi Jewish man attacked three people with a kitchen knife.

Another parade, this time billed as an international event, was scheduled to take place in the summer of 2005, but was postponed to 2006 due to the stress on police forces during in the summer of Israel's unilateral disengagement plan. In 2006, it was again postponed due to the Israel-Hezbollah war. It was scheduled to take place in Jerusalem on 10 November 2006, and caused a wave of protests by Haredi Jews around central Israel.[24] The Israel National Police had filed a petition to cancel the parade due to foreseen strong opposition. Later, an agreement was reached to convert the parade into an assembly inside the Hebrew University stadium in Jerusalem. 21 June 2007, the Jerusalem Open House organization succeeded in staging a parade in central Jerusalem after police allocated thousands of personnel to secure the general area. The rally planned afterwards was cancelled due to an unrelated national fire brigade strike which prevented proper permits from being issued.


On 26 June 1994, on the 25th Anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, Progressive Organization of Gays in the Philippines (ProGay Philippines) and Metropolitan Community Church (MCC) Manila organized the First LGBT Pride March in Asia, marching from EDSA to Quezon Avenue (Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines) and highlighting broad social issues. At Quezon City Memorial Circle, a program was held with a Queer Pride Mass and solidarity remarks from various organizations and individuals.

In 1995 MCC, ProGay Philippines and other organizations held internal celebrations. In 1996, 1997 and 1998 large and significant marches were organized and produced by Reachout AIDS Foundation, all of which were held in Malate, Manila, Philippines. In 1998, the year of the centennial commemoration of the Republic of the Philippines, a Gay and Lesbian Pride March was incorporated in the mammoth "citizens' parade" which was part of the official centennial celebration. That parade culminated in "marching by" the President of the Philippines, His Excellency Joseph Estrada, at the Quirino Grandstand in Luneta Park in Manila.

In 1999, Task Force Pride Philippines (TFP), a network of LGBT and LGBT-friendly groups and individuals seeking to promote positive visibility for the LGBT community was born. Since then TFP has been organizing the annual Metro Manila Pride March. In 2003, decided to move the Pride March from June to the December Human Rights Week to coincide with related human rights activities such as World AIDS Day (December 1), Philippine National Lesbian Day (December 8), and International Human Rights Day (December 10).

On 10 December 2005, the First LGBT Freedom March, with the theme "CPR: Celebrating Pride and Rights" was held along the streets of España and Quiapo in Manila, Philippines. Concerned that the prevailing economic and political crisis in the country at the time presented threats to freedoms and liberties of all Filipinos, including sexual and gender minorities, LGBT individuals and groups, non-government organizations and members of various communities and sectors organized the LGBT Freedom March calling for systemic and structural change. At historic Plaza Miranda, in front of Quiapo Church, despite the pouring rain, a program with performances and speeches depicting LGBT pride was held soon after the march.


Workers of Taiwan Tongzhi Hotline Association participating in Taiwan Pride in Taipei in 2005.

On 1 November 2003 the first LGBT pride parade in Taiwan, Taiwan Pride, was held in Taipei with over 1,000 people attending, and the mayor of Taipei, later president, Ma Ying-jeou. Homosexuality remains taboo in Taiwan, and many participants wore masks to hide their identities. The most recent parade, held in September 2008, attracted between approximately 18,000 participants, making it one of the largest gay pride events in Asia,[25] second only to Tel Aviv gay parade.[26]

After 2008, the number grows rapidly. In 2009 25,000 people participated in the gay parade under the topic "Love out loud". And in 2010, despite bad weather conditions, the Taiwan gay parade "Out and Vote" attracted more than 30,000 people, making it the largest such event in Asia.


Pride parade as part of the 2005 GayFest in Bucharest, Romania

The very first Eastern European Pride, called The Internationale Pride, was assumed to be a promotion of the human right to freedom of assembly in Croatia and other Eastern European states, where such rights of the LGBT population are not respected, and a support for organising the very first Prides in that communities. Out of all ex-Yugoslav states, at that time only Slovenia and Croatia had a tradition of organising Pride events, whereas the attempt to organize such an event in Belgrade, Serbia in 2001, ended in a bloody showdown between the police and the counter-protesters, with the participants heavily beaten up. This manifestation was held in Zagreb, Croatia from 22–25 June 2006 and brought together representatives of those Eastern European and Southeastern European countries where the sociopolitical climate is not ripe for the organization of Prides, or where such a manifestation is expressly forbidden by the authorities. From 13 countries that participated, only Poland, Slovenia, Croatia, Romania and Latvia have been organizing Prides. Slovakia also hosted the pride, but encountered many problems with Slovak extremists from Slovenska pospolitost (the pride did not cross the centre of the city). Bosnia and Herzegovina, Republic of Macedonia, Albania and Lithuania have never had Prides before. There were also representatives from Kosovo, that participated apart from Serbia. It was the very first Pride organized jointly with other states and nations, which only ten years ago have been at war with each other. Weak cultural, political and social cooperation exists among these states, with an obvious lack of public encouragement for solidarity, which organizers hoped to initiate through that regional Pride event. The host and the initiator of The Internationale LGBT Pride was Zagreb Pride, which has been held since 2002.


Like the other countries from the Balkans, Bulgaria's population is very conservative when it comes to issues like sexuality. Although homosexuality was decriminalized back in 1968 people with different sexual orientations and identities are still not well accepted in society. In 2003 the country enacted several laws protecting the LGBT community and individuals from discrimination. In 2008, Bulgaria organized its first ever pride parade. The almost 200 people who had gathered were attacked by skinheads, but police managed to prevent any injuries. The 2009 pride parade, with the motto "Rainbow Friendship" attracted more than 300 participants from Bulgaria and tourists from Greece and Great Britain. There were no disruptions and the parade continued as planned. A third Pride parade took place successfully in 2010, with close to 800 participants and an outdoor concert event.


Paris hosts annual Gay Pride Parades on June 27th, with attendances of over half a million.[27] Sixteen other parades take place at cities throughout France in: Angers, Biarritz, Bayonne,Bordeaux, Caen, Le Mans, Lille, Lyon, Marseille, Montpellier, Nancy, Nantes, Paris, Rennes, Rouen, Strassbourg, Toulouse and Tours.[28]


In Greece, endeavours were made during the 1980s and 1990s to organise such an event, but it was not until 2005 that Athens Pride established itself. The Athens Pride is held every June in the center of Athens city.


On 22 July 2005, the first Latvian gay pride march took place in Riga, surrounded by protesters. It had previously been banned by the city council, and the Prime Minister of Latvia, Aigars Kalvītis, opposed the event, stating Riga should "not promote things like that", however a court decision allowed the march to go ahead.[29] In 2006, LGBT people in Latvia attempted a Parade but were assaulted by "No Pride" protesters, an incident sparking a storm of international media pressure and protests from the European Parliament at the failure of the Latvian authorities to adequately protect the Parade so that it could proceed.

In 2007, following international pressure, a Pride Parade was held once again in Riga with 4,500 people parading around Vermanes Park, protected physically from "No Pride" protesters by 1,500 Latvian police, ringing the inside and the outside of the iron railings of the park. Two fire crackers were exploded with one being thrown from outside at the end of the festival as participants were moving off to the buses. This caused some alarm but no injury but participants did have to run the gauntlet of "No Pride" abuse as they ran to the buses. They were driven to a railway station on the outskirts of Riga, from where they went to a post Pride "relax" at the seaside resort of Jurmala. Participants included MEPs, Amnesty International observers and random individuals who travelled from abroad to support LGBT Latvians and their friends and families. In 2008, Riga Pride was held in the historically potent 11 November Krestmalu (Square) beneath the presidential castle. The participants heard speeches from MEPs and a message of support from the Latvian President. The square was not open and was isolated from the public with some participants having trouble getting past police cordons. About 300 No Pride protesters gathered on the bridges behind barricades erected by the police who kept Pride participants and the "No Pride" protesters separated. Participants were once more "bused" out but this time a 5 minute journey to central Riga.


In 2010 first pride parade was held in Vilnius. About 300 foreign guests marched through the streets along several local supporters. Law was enforced with nearly a thousand policemen.

The Netherlands

Amsterdam's pride parade is held in the canals that surround the city

The Amsterdam, in the Netherlands, Gay Pride has been held since 1996 and can be seen as one of the most successful in acquiring social acceptance. The weekend-long event involves concerts, sports tournaments, street parties and most importantly the Canal Pride, a parade on boats on the canals of Amsterdam. In 2008 three government ministers joined on their own boat, representing the whole cabinet. Mayor of Amsterdam Job Cohen also joined. About 500,000 visitors were reported. 2008 was also the first year large Dutch international corporations ING Group and TNT NV sponsored the event.


In 2005, a gay pride observance in Warsaw was forbidden by local authorities (including then-Mayor Lech Kaczyński) but occurred nevertheless. The ban was later declared a violation of the European Convention on Human Rights (Bączkowski and Others v. Poland). In 2008, more than 1,800 people joined the march. In 2010 EuroPride took place in Warsaw with approximately 8,000 participants.


In Oporto, Portuguese LGBT community performs Porto Pride in every July since 2001. Also in Oporto, a march named Marcha do Orgulho do Porto, is held, since 2006.[30] Lisbon, the capital of the country, performs a march Marcha do Orgulho and, since 1997, the oldest big LGBT event, the Arrail Pride.


Prides in Russia are generally banned by city authorities in St. Petersburg and Moscow, due to opposition from politicians, religious leaders and right-wing organisations. Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov has described the proposed Moscow Pride as the "work of Satan". Attempted parades have led to clashes between protesters and counter-protesters, with the police acting to keep the two apart and disperse participants. In 2007 British activist Peter Tatchell was physically assaulted.[31] This was not the case in the high profile attempted march in May 2009, during the Eurovision singing contest. In this instance the police played an active role in arresting pride marchers. The European Court of Human Rights has ruled that Russia has until January 20, 2010 to respond to cases of pride parades being banned in 2006, 2007 and 2008.[32]


On 30 June 2001, several Serbian LGBTQ groups attempted to hold the country's first Pride march, in Belgrade. When the participants started to gather in one of the city's principal squares, a huge crowd of opponents attacked the event, injuring several participants and stopping the march. The police were not equipped to suppress riots or protect the Pride marchers. Some of the victims of the attack took refuge in a student cultural centre, where a discussion was to follow the Pride march. Opponents surrounded the building and stopped the forum from happening. There were further clashes between police and opponents of the Pride march, and several police officers were injured.

Non-governmental organizations and a number of public personalities criticised the assailants, the government and security officials. Government officials did not particularly comment on the event, nor were there any consequences for the approximately 30 young men arrested in the riots. Serbia remains a hostile environment for the LGBTQ population, and all attempts to organize subsequent Pride marches have failed.

On 21 July 2009, a group of human rights activists announced their plans to organize second Belgrade Pride on 20 September 2009. However, due to the heavy public threats of violence made by extreme right organisations, Ministry of Internal Affairs in the morning of September 19 moved the location of the march from the city centre to a space near the Palace of Serbia therefore effectively banning the original 2009 Belgrade Pride.[33]

Belgrade Pride parade was held on October 10, 2010 with about 1000 participants[34] and while the parade itself went smoothly, police clashed with six thousand anti-gay protesters at Serbia's second ever Gay Pride march, with nearly 147 policemen and around 20 civilians reported wounded in the violence.[35]


Although first LGBTQ festival in Slovenia dates in 1984, namely the Ljubljana Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, the first pride parade was only organized in 2001 as a result of an incident in a Ljubljana cafe where a gay couple was asked to leave for being homosexual. Ljubljana pride is traditionally supported by the mayor of Ljubljana and left-wing politicians, most notably the minister of inner afairs Katarina Kresal who joined both the 2009 and 2010 parade. Some individual attacks on activists have occurred.


Thousands of people in Europride 2007 pride parade in Madrid

Madrid Pride Parade, known as "Orgullo Gay", is held the first Saturday after June 28 since 1979. The event is organised by COGAM (Madrid GLTB Collective) and FELGTB (Spanish Federation of Lesbians, Gays, Transsexuals and Bisexuals) and supported by other national and international LGTB groups. The first Gay Parade in Madrid was held after the death of Franco, with the arrival of democracy, in 1979. Since then, dozens of companies like Microsoft, Google and Schweppes and several political parties and trade unions, including Spanish Socialist Workers' Party, United Left, Union, Progress and Democracy, CCOO and UGT have been supporting the parade. Madrid Pride Parade is actually the biggest gay demonstration in Europe, with more than 1.5 million attendees in 2009 according to the Spanish government.

In 2007, Europride, the European Pride Parade, took place in Madrid. About 2.5 million people attended more than 300 events over a week in the Spanish capital to celebrate Spain as the country with the most developed LGBT rights in the world. Independent media estimated that more than 200,000 visitors came from foreign countries to join in the festivities. Madrid gay district Chueca, the biggest gay district in Europe, was the centre of the celebrations. The event was supported by the city, regional and national government and private sector which also ensured that the event was financially successful. Barcelona, Valencia and Seville hold also local Pride Parades. In 2008 Barcelona hosted the Eurogames.


Istanbul LGBT pride parade in 2010, İstiklal Avenue, Istanbul.

Turkey is the first Muslim majority country in which gay pride march is held.[36] In Istanbul (since 2003) and in Ankara (since 2008) gay marches are being held each year with a small but increasing participation. Gay pride march in Istanbul started with 30 people in 2003 and in 2010 the participation became 5,000. The Istanbul pride of 2011 is considered as the biggest until now, with more than 10.000 participants. Politicians of the biggest opposition parties, CHP and BDP also lent their support to the demonstration.[37] The pride march in Istanbul does not receive any support of the municipality or the government.[38]

North America


Toronto Leather Pride takes place the second weekend in August. During the weekend festivities Leather Ball, the Church Street Fetish Fair and the Mr. Leatherman Toronto and Bootblack Toronto Competitions are held. The weekend is sponsored by Heart of the Flag Federation Inc. , which is a not-for-profit club for sexual minorities in Toronto Leather/BDSM/Fetish and Kink Community. Open to all genders and orientations this event has become wildly popular. [39]

Baton twirlers perform in the 2002 Divers/Cité pride parade in downtown Montreal

In recent decades Toronto has emerged as a leader on progressive gay and lesbian policy in North America. Its activists scored a major victory in 2003 when the Ontario Court of Appeals upheld a lower court ruling which made same-sex marriage legal in Ontario, the first jurisdiction in North America to do so.[40] By this time the Toronto Pride Week Festival had been running for twenty-three years, making it one of the world's longest running organized Pride celebrations. It is also one of the largest, attracting around 1.3 million people in 2009.[41] Toronto will host WorldPride in 2014.

United States

New York City's Gay Pride March began in 1970. The 2011 parade was held just two days after the legalization of gay marriage in the state of New York.


In 2011, Nuuk celebrated its first pride parade. Over 1,000 people attended and it was entirely peaceful.[42]

South America


São Paulo Gay Pride Parade happens in Paulista Avenue, in the city of São Paulo, since 1997. In the year of 2006, it was named the biggest pride parade of the world by the Guinness Book of World Records. In 2010, the city hall of São Paulo invested R$ 1 million in the parade.

The Pride Parade is heavily supported by the federal government as well as by the Governor of São Paulo, the event counts with a solid security plan, many politicians show up to open the main event and the government not rarely parades with a float with politicians on top of it. In the Pride the city usually receives about 400,000 tourists and moves between R$ 180 million and R$ 190 million.

The Pride and its associated events are organized by the Associação da Parada do Orgulho de Gays, Lesbicas, Bissexuais e Travestis e Transexuais, since its foundation in 1999. The march is the event's main activity and the one that draws the biggest attention to the press, the Brazilian authorities as well as to the hundreds of thousands of curious people that line themselves along the parade's route. In 2009, 3.2 million people attended the 13th annual Gay Pride Parade.



Sydney's pride parade, Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras, is one of the world's largest and is held at night

The Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras is the largest Australian pride event and one of the largest in the world.[43] The celebrations emerged during the early 1980s after arrests were made during pro-gay rights protests that began in 1978. The parade is held at night with nearly 10,000 participants on and around elaborate floats representing topical themes as well as political messages.[43][44]


A festive float with costumed dancers at San Francisco Pride 2005.

There is opposition to pride events both within LGBT and mainstream populations. Critics[who?] charge the parades with an undue emphasis on sex and fetish-related interests which they see as counter-productive to LGBT interests, and exposing the "gay community" to ridicule. LGBT activists[who?] counter that traditional media have played a role in emphasizing the most outlandish and therefore non-representative aspects of the community. This in turn has prompted participants to engage in more flamboyant costumes to gain media coverage. Parody newspaper The Onion satirized this perceived result of gay pride marches in a fake news piece in 2001.[45]

Social conservatives are sometimes opposed to such events because they view them to be contrary to public morality. This belief is partly based on certain things often found in the parades, such as public nudity, BDSM paraphernalia, and other sexualized features.


In March, 2011, Toronto Mayor Rob Ford has said that he will not allow city funding for the 2011 Toronto Pride Parade if organizers allow the controversial anti-Israel group Queers Against Israeli Apartheid (QuAIA) march again this year. “Taxpayers dollars should not go toward funding hate speech,” Ford said.[46] In April 2011, QuAIA has announced that it will not participate in the Toronto Pride Parade.[47]

See also


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  2. ^ Sargeant, Fred. "1970: A First-Person Account of the First Gay Pride March." The Village Voice. June 22, 2010. retrieved January 3, 2011.
  3. ^ a b Carter, p. 230
  4. ^ Marotta, pp. 164–165
  5. ^ Teal, pp. 322–323
  6. ^ Duberman, pp. 255, 262, 270–280
  7. ^ Duberman, p. 227
  8. ^ Nagourney, Adam. "For Gays, a Party In Search of a Purpose; At 30, Parade Has Gone Mainstream As Movement's Goals Have Drifte." New York Times. June 25, 2000. retrieved January 3, 2011.
  9. ^ Carter, p. 247
  10. ^ Teal, p. 323
  11. ^ Duberman, p. 271
  12. ^ Duberman, p. 272
  13. ^ Duberman, p. 314 n93
  14. ^ "The San Francisco Chronicle", June 29, 1970
  15. ^ "As of early 1970, Neil Briggs became the vice-chairman of the LGBTQ Association", CanPress, February 28, 1970. [1]
  16. ^ "Chicago Tribune", June 28, 1970, p. A3
  17. ^ "Outspoken: Chicago's Free Speech Tradition". Newberry Library. Retrieved 2008-09-07. 
  18. ^ [2][dead link]
  19. ^ [3][dead link]
  20. ^ Marsha P. Johnson. (1992-07-06). Retrieved on 2011-07-10.
  21. ^ New York Area Bisexual Network: A Brief History of NYC's Bisexual Community. (2001-07-12). Retrieved on 2011-07-10.
  22. ^ "Reverse swing: It may be an open affair for gays, lesbians". The Times Of India. July 2, 2008. 
  23. ^ "Gay sex decriminalised in India". BBC News. 2009-07-02. Retrieved 2010-05-22. 
  24. ^ "9 Protesters Detained at Anti-Gay Pride Demonstration". Arutz 7. 2006-11-01. 
  25. ^ Taipei LGBTs march proud and loud in Asia's largest gay parade, Fridae
  26. ^ Tel Aviv Gay Pride parade draws thousands, AFP
  27. ^ Paris Gay Pride 2011 – Gay Pride Paris 2011 – Marche des Fiertes LGBT 2011 – Gay Marais – Gay Paris Events – France Gay Pride. (2011-06-13). Retrieved on 2011-07-10.
  28. ^ Google Translate. Retrieved on 2011-07-10.
  29. ^ "Latvia gay pride given go-ahead". BBC News. 2005-07-22. Retrieved 2010-05-22. 
  30. ^ (Portuguese) Retrieved on 2011-07-10.
  31. ^ Sidney Morning Herald. (2007-05-28). Retrieved on 2011-07-10.
  32. ^ European Court of Human Rights Gives Russia Four Months to Answer Moscow Gay Prides Bans: Strasbourg Court decision could be announced before fifth Moscow Pride next year October 7, 2009 UK Gay News via
  33. ^ Pride March 2009 Is Banned Majda, 19 September 2009.
  34. ^ "1,000 participants at Pride Parade". B92. October 10, 2010. 
  35. ^ "Police clash with anti-gay protesters in Belgrade". B92. October 10, 2010. 
  36. ^ Yahoo! Celebrates Pride in 2010. Retrieved on 2011-07-10.
  37. ^ İstiklal Caddesi 10 bin renk! – Genel. (1970-01-01). Retrieved on 2011-07-10.
  38. ^ Istanbul becoming proud of Pride Week. Hurriyet Daily News. Retrieved on 2011-07-10.
  39. ^ . 
  40. ^ "Ontario men wed following court ruling". CBC News. June 13, 2003. 
  41. ^ "World Pride celebration coming to town in 2014". The Globe and Mail (Toronto). October 19, 2009. 
  42. ^ WorldWatch: Greenland’s First Gay Pride | Trip Out Travel. Retrieved on 2011-07-10.
  43. ^ a b "Economic woes fail to rain on Mardi Gras parade". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 2009-03-09. Retrieved 2009-06-17. 
  44. ^ "Mardi Gras 2009 Parade". New Mardi Gras. Retrieved 2009-01-17. 
  45. ^ Gay-Pride Parade Sets Mainstream Acceptance Of Gays Back 50 Years, The Onion, April 25, 2001 Issue 37•15.
  46. ^ Toronto mayor lays down Pride parade law. (2011-03-10). Retrieved on 2011-07-10.
  47. ^ Queers Against Israel Apartheid quits Toronto parade. (2011-04-18). Retrieved on 2011-07-10.


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  • Duberman, Martin (1993). Stonewall New York, Dutton. ISBN 0-452-27206-8.
  • Loughery, John (1998). The Other Side of Silence – Men's Lives and Gay Identities: A Twentieth-Century History. New York, Henry Holt and Company. ISBN 0-8050-3896-5.
  • Marotta, Toby (1981). The Politics of Homosexuality. Boston, Houghton Mifflin Company. ISBN 0-395-31338-4.
  • Teal, Donn (1971). The Gay Militants. New York, Stein and Day. ISBN 0-8128-1373-1.

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