More reason to be gay

Pride celebrations especially lively after Supreme Court decisions
Associated Press
Jun 30, 2013

Gay rights supporters crowded parade routes in San Francisco, New York and other major U.S. cities on Sunday — but this year's pride celebrations were especially lively after a week that saw the Supreme Court issue two major decisions on gay marriage.

Among the thousands at San Francisco's event, now in its 43rd year, were scores of teenage girls, opposite-sex couples and families with children.

"You can feel the smiles," Graham Linn, 42, of Oakland said as he stood on a three-foot-tall building ledge surveying the crowds standing 10-deep on the sidewalks. "All around you there is a release. There is a vindication, and you can feel it."

The biggest applause went up for the two newlywed couples whose legal challenge of Proposition 8 made it possible for Californians to wed.

The couples — Kris Perry and Sandy Stier of Berkeley, and Paul Katami and Jeff Zarrillo of Burbank — waved from convertibles as a group of people carrying cartoon-style signs that read, "Prop. 8-Kapow!"

Human Rights Campaign President Chad Griffin, who orchestrated the lawsuit, and screenwriter Dustin Lance Black, who won an Academy Award for the movie about the slain gay rights leader Harvey Milk, marched with them.

"It's so historic," Jeff Margolis, 58, said. "So many of us could never imagine this would happen, that people would be able to do what they want for the rest of their lives."

Loud cheers went to House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom and state Attorney General Kalama Harris — straight politicians who have been vocal advocates of same-sex marriage.

San Francisco's parade lineup illustrated how mainstream support for same-sex marriage has become. Companies such as Facebook and supermarket chain Safeway were represented. Police officers and sheriff's deputies marched while holding hands.

There was also a group that called itself "Mormons for Marriage" that drew enthusiastic applause. The Mormon Church was one of the main sponsors of Proposition 8, the 2008 voter initiative that outlawed same-sex marriage in California.

The Supreme Court on Wednesday struck down Proposition 8 and also invalidated part of a 1996 federal law that denied spousal benefits to gay couples. On Sunday morning, Justice Anthony Kennedy denied a last-ditch request from the sponsors of Proposition 8 to halt the issuance of same-sex marriage licenses in the nation's most populous state.

San Francisco City Hall remained open on Sunday so couples who wanted to marry could obtain their licenses. Every other clerk in California's 58 counties will be required to issue same-sex marriage licenses starting Monday.

Parade organizers planned to hold a VIP reception for the newlyweds following the parade.

The parade in New York City, where the first pride march was held 44 years ago to mark the one-year anniversary of the Stonewall Inn riots that kicked off the modern gay rights movement, also was a sort of victory lap for Edith Windsor, the 84-year-old widow who challenged the federal Defense of Marriage Act after she was forced to pay $363,053 on the estate of her late wife.

Windsor, who was picked as a grand marshal of New York's parade months before she won her case before the Supreme Court last week, walked up Fifth Avenue during the event and recalled watching it on television in past years with her wife, Thea Spyer, before Spyer died in 2009.

"I love it obviously," she said. "If someone had told me 50 years ago that I would be the marshal of New York City gay pride parade in 2013 at the age of 84, I never would have believed it."

In Seattle, the two women who were the first same-sex couple to be granted a marriage license in Washington state after same-sex marriage became legal there last year, Jane Abbot Lighty and Pete-e Petersen, helped raise a giant marriage equality sign featuring a red equal sign on top of the city's iconic Space Needle for the first time.

In another first, the Seattle Mariners flew a rainbow flag — the symbol of gay pride first unfurled during San Francisco's parade in 1978 — during their game Sunday against the Chicago Cubs.

The Supreme Court wins motivated many first-time pride parade spectators, including Michael Pence, 53, and John Moehnke, 46, a North Carolina couple who are engaged, attended Chicago's annual Pride Parade for the first time, saying they were thrilled about the Supreme Court's decisions.

The couple from North Carolina planned to marry in New York in the fall, but want to see gay marriage extended to other states including Illinois, where they attended the parade with a church group.

"We have such a long way to go but we're ready for the fight," Moehnke said.

Efforts to legalize gay marriage in Illinois have stalled. Advocates started the year with intense momentum and received backing from President Barack Obama and Illinois' top political leaders. The measure cleared the Illinois Senate on Valentine's Day, state Rep. Greg Harris, the bill's sponsor, decided not to call a vote in the House because he didn't have the needed support.

Harris was one of several politicians at the parade Sunday. He said he would bring back the issue in the fall, adding that the Supreme Court's rulings have resonated with his colleagues in the Illinois House.

"Illinois is in a truly second-class status until we pass marriage equality," Harris said.

 

Comments

JohnDorian12

AGREE!!!!! ^^^^

bondgirlM

Why do they have to dress and act so strange? They would be a lot more credible with their cause if they just behaved like adults and not try to command so much attention to their bizarre behaviors.

Tsu Dho Nimh

I will never understand it. I don't take issue with homosexuality but the behaviors of SOME of these folks would get a heterosexual arrested for public indecency. Also, the title of this article suggests that it is a choice. I didn't know that there were reasons to be gay.

thinkagain

Of course it is a choice, no one is born homosexual.

The Answer Person

Moderators have removed this comment because it contained Off-topic comments.

KnuckleDragger

Don't bother arguing with the libs nothing will change their mind. Their tolerance only extends to people who share their distorted worldview. They are the most intolerant group I know. Up until 1986 homosexual behavior was considered a mental disorder in the DSM. It wasn't until the adoption of Freud's theories that it was viewed differently. What people won't tell you is that even Freud believed that a person became homosexual due to environment. Freud believed humans were born bisexual and that their choice in sexual preference was the result of their experiences with their parents and others. It wasn't until the Kinsey studies that many in the psychiatric world became more inclined to believe that it was not a mental disorder. The problem is that Kinsey was almost universally thought of as a sexually obsessed kook. Despite that, the APA still used his studies as part of the basis for getting rid of the psychiatric diagnosis. What does that tell you, when a professional group backpedals due to a borderline crazy researchers work? Just sayin'

The Answer Person

Yep..."just sayin'"..nuthin.

JohnDorian12

To be born gay means being born with sin, it is a choice like it or not!!

The Answer Person

@JohnDorian. If it is a choice (which is is not), they probably choose to NOT be like you.

TakingCrap

I'm just curious. Did you, at one point in your life consciously choose between being sexually attracted to girls or boys? I never have. I just started to find girls attractive as I started to develop. Did you actually have those thoughts that you were actually tempted to fool around with other males? I never have. So are you making that statement based on personal experience - temptations you have had and have successfully rejected? Maybe by telling your story about how your overcame your temptations, you can help "save" some gay person from "eternal damnation" lol.

And while we are on the subject of born with sin.. What exactly is the purpose of "baptism"? Oh that's right, it's to wash away the sin you are born with. My bad, I forgot! lol

44846GWP

For a "straight" person you sure like to comment on every gay article in the paper. Trying to cover up something? Me thinks you protest too much! Sing out Mary.

The Hero Zone's picture
The Hero Zone

It's an excellent form of birth control, Tsu, haha that's a reason.

I agree with you here and to an extent the comment above. While the issue of what people do between themselves is none of my business, in front of others it speaks completely differently. One reason why homosexuals have such a stigma is because of the behaviors of some which create (or at least perpetuate) a stereotype.

I don't want to sound hypocritical as I certainly live "outside the norm" myself, but there are differences of social opinion/convention/perception when representatives of a community are seen in this light instead of the generally normal human beings they are.

From a pure business standpoint it is marketing brilliance to be seen riding this wave. Many companies will be hopping on board whether their board members, etc. like it personally or not. That said, I think that while it will build fanfare supporting the gay community in such a way will end up burning it out and commercializing it to a point where it is seen just as hollow as Christmas is; as for many it will no longer be special and after the struggle is over people will just...forget. Become lazy. Not care. Such is the cycle of things and what an odd position to be in as a witness or participant.

Hmmm...hope my thoughts came out correctly. I'm a bit burnt out after my weekly six hour D&D session but felt I should comment anyway.

Contango

Re: "It's an excellent form of birth control,"

In the SF novel, "The Forever War," homosexuality was encouraged in order to help control the Earth's population.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The...

KnuckleDragger

Which is why my family will not visit Cedar Point on Fathers Day. The kind of in your face, lude dressing, and extreme public displays among a number of gays that attend this event would get a hetero arrested on any other day of the year. I certainly don't want my family being witness to it. They have essentially ruined a holiday meant to honor fathers by taking over a place where families should be able to enjoy themselves together on that holiday. If they want to gather there on Fathers day, fine, but the park should enforce their rules just like they would any other day of the year so that non-homosexuals don't have to spend the day explain to their kids why two half naked men are jamming their tongues down each others throats and grinding on each other. I don't do those things in public with my wife, my God why can't they have the same decency instead of obviously trying to rub it in everyones faces?

happyfeet64

I agree with you. It's not necessary for ANYONE to behave like that-straight or gay.

happyfeet64

Really? Have you seen any pictures or listened to Edith Wilson? Her and her partner were so straight acting and looking no one suspected for years that they were gay.That was just a ridiculous comment,IMO.

KnuckleDragger

Which is how they should live. This flamboyant spectacle like what is pictured above is why many people don't support them.

JohnDorian12

Agree!! ^^^^^

JohnDorian12

Agree!! ^^^^^

deertracker

@ bondgirl
Why do people wear baggy pants? Nothing strange about it. Just expression.

Jmschmidt812

Their behaviors may be bizarre but they do not represent the majority of the cause. The media seems to focus in on the ones that play it up for the camera and act in such a way. If you look at the picture the only one that seems to be acting a complete fool is the one right up front. The rest seem to be marching in an orderly fashion. It just seems to me that the more outlandish your behavior is, the more likely you'll end up on the front page of the paper.

be for real

nasty that looks queer

Contango

The accompanying photo reminded me of a quote by noted philosopher Homer Simpson:

"I like my beer cold, my TV loud and my homosexuals flaming."

concernedtruth

Well, they took Prayer and GOD out of school, legalized the murdering of innocent babies and called them fetuses and allowed abortions to be legal and said what is good is "bad" and what is cool is "sick", distorted the truth of God for a lie. and now you allow homosexuals the right to marry thru the highest court in the land, pretty soon heterosexual will be illegal. Just wait for the judgement to come.

happyfeet64

Alright here we go- I choose to not be a perpetrator of hate and intolerance! I choose to make decisions for myself and my family on what I believe to be right and decent! I choose to follow a religion of my own moral code! And I choose to live my life with hope! I am very familiar with Christianity and all of it's teachings and for you to attempt to win over "unrepentant sinners" such as myself( in your eyes) by threats of hell and judgement is falling on deaf ears. You, sir, are not worthy of calling yourself a follower of Jesus' beliefs! Mother Teresa was a follower, Nelson Mandela was a follower and all of the people who struggle and help the homeless,destitute and starving are followers of His word. The difference- they are walking the walk not talking the talk. Witnessing consists of more than spouting the verses and condemnation of others actions- it consists of showing love, respect, honor and grace to others. If you are a true Christian then in your heart and soul you would have unconditional love for your fellow man and forgiveness,also. Do you? You may hate what's in the world, but you are not a part of the world. Your gift of everlasting life is given to you thru grace not works- you will not be judged on how many saved souls you take with you. And what is the only unforgivable sin? Blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, which includes hatred against others that God has created. Now try again.

deertracker

PREACH!!!!!!!!!!!!

KnuckleDragger

Intolerance is the hallmark of liberalism. Under the guise of tolerance liberals spew their hate and intolerance for anything that doesn't jive with their distorted worldview. Hypocrite much?

happyfeet64

If your comment was directed towards me? I'm not a hypocrite or a liberal, anyone can believe what they want- in my family, in my home ,in my community and in my country. But DO NOT disrespect or try to force me to believe the way you do! I have a daughter who is pro life and a Christian-I have no problem with her viewpoint, it's HERS! So please don't insinuate that I'm something I'm not. I just don't believe in hate. I've seen to much and experienced what people do because of hate, disguised as religion or politics or racism or love towards their fellow man. It's not right and it never will be right.

deertracker

Moderators have removed this comment because it contained Personal attacks (including: name calling, presumption of guilt or guilt by association, insensitivity, or picking fights).

KnuckleDragger

Pot meet kettle. Coming from a person whose nonsensical rants, and failure to use facts over emotion is actually a step below most liberals who at least do some research to advance their position...I will take that as compliment. Maybe you should consider meds to quell your need to stalk me.

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