LGBTI community boycotts New York St Patrick’s Day parade
Gays and lesbians boycotting the St Patrick’s Day Parade in New York is no new thing, the now defunct Irish Gay and Lesbian Organisation has been staging protests against the parade since 1992 but this year’s Parade has a received a boost for the gay cause with many LGBTI allies throwing their weight behind the boycott to pressure parade organisers to allow the LGBTI community to march in the parade.
An LGBTI advocacy group Irish Queers called on the mayor to forbid the city’s uniformed personnel to march in the ‘anti gay’ parade and a number of public officials have thrown their weight behind the group publishing an open letter also calling on the banning of firefighters and NYC police from marching.
NYC mayor Bill De Blasio also refused to participate in the parade. Popular beer brand Guinees has pulled sponsorship from the event.
So could this be the death knell for the annual celebration of Irish culture?
Whilst the parade does not explicitly ban gay people from participating in the parade, the parade does not allow anyone who marches to turn the parade into a canvas for their political beliefs – hence any celebration of gay pride is prohibited.