'Straight Pride' event application gets the go-ahead in Boston
Employees on the Philips float in support of the LGBTQ community during the Boston Pride Parade on Saturday, June 8, 2019. (Josh ReynoldsAP Images for Philips)
Published Monday, July 1, 2019 11:25AM EDT
Despite widespread outrage, Boston may soon see a “Straight Pride” parade march through its streets.
The city of Boston has approved a public event application for the parade, first proposed in early June by three men operating under the name “Super Happy Fun America.” With the city’s approval for a parade route, the group can move forward in the process of receiving a permit.
News of the so-called “Straight Pride” parade caused backlash on social media in June, especially within the LGBTQ community. Activists say such an event would mock the fight for LGBTQ equality.
Prominent celebrities including Whoopi Goldberg, Chris Evans, and Stephen Colbert publicly slammed the idea, as did U.S. politicians, including congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
“Will ‘Straight Pride’ be a Freaky Friday type situation where all of our history books, movies, stories, media, news, etc feature mostly LGBTQ+ people & perspectives?,” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted in June.
“Will people have to come out as straight?”
Organizers of the event claim it will give straight people a platform to “educate the public on the unique problems facing our community and to fight against heterophobia.”
“Ever since knowledge of the parade became public, there has been a barrage of hate directed against straight people,” organizers wrote on their website last week.
“While we are greatly appreciative of our gains, especially the parade, there is still a lot of work to be done in order to achieve full straight equality.”
However, the group still faces many hurdles before “Straight Pride” can be a reality.
Organizers must still receive the necessary approvals from police and the city’s licensing board to receive both a parade permit and an entertainment license.
In a statement to CTV News.ca, the city said “applications to host a public event are granted based on operational feasibility, not based on values or endorsements of beliefs.”
The city also noted that Mayor Marty Walsh would not attend the event.
Meanwhile, organizers have started a fundraising effort to pay for the costs associated with receiving a permit, with a goal of raising US$5,000.
According to the Daily Beast, Super Happy Fun America has ties to the far-right group Resist Marxism, prompting concerns that the “Straight Pride” event could turn violent.