Monday, June 25, 2007

New York City Celebrates Gay Pride

More than half a million New Yorkers -- and visitors -- lined Fifth Avenue, West 8th and Christopher Streets in the Village to celebrate the city's pink heritage. Congregation Beth Simchat Torah Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum and Metropolitan Community Church Founder Dr. Troy Perry served as grand marshals as parade organizers sought to highlight LGBT-affirming faith leaders. Organizers and attendees also celebrated the New York State Assembly's passage of a bill which would extend marriage to same-sex couples.

This blogger marched along with the New York Blade in cowboy boots and a wide grin. The weather was perfect. The music was good. Pride was great aside from a former boss who very publicly disappeared into a group of people after he saw this blogger talking with his current employees. New York remains a relatively easy place to live as a gay man aside from personal politics and egos. The throngs of New Yorkers who lined Fifth Avenue yesterday to celebrate the city's pink history seemed to confirm this reality as they celebrated the community or simply came out to have a good time on a beautiful early summer day. The parade itself seemed more low key than in past years. Perhaps this evolution is a positive development. Perhaps it's a signal the parade will return to its roots of celebrating gay pride and LGBT New York's collective accomplishments -- and pride in itself. New York has certainly evolved since the Stonewall Riots of 1969 and most LGBT New Yorkers can certainly agree upon that fact. Happy pride!

Young and old thanked those lawmakers who supported the marriage for same-sex couples bill last week in Albany

Parade goers, such as this man along Fifth Avenue in the Flatiron District, cling to light poles to celebrate their pride

From above: Venezolanos against President Hugo Chavez and bisexuals against U.S. President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney were among those who showed other forms of activism along the Fifth Avenue during Pride

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