Pride Parade was part celebration, part protest

Photos by Maria Rocha-Buschel

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

The annual Pride Parade marched down Fifth Avenue from 36th Street down to the West Village at the end of last month, with the event doubling as a protest against the Trump administration.

Although the organization also had its usual presence as a group later in the parade, the American Civil Liberties Union’s appearance as one of the grand marshals at the very beginning set the tone early as representatives carried “Resist” signs, which appeared throughout the march from various other participants and groups.

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Pride celebrated, Orlando remembered

Photos by Maria Rocha-Buschel

Photos by Maria Rocha-Buschel

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

New York celebrated Pride this past Sunday with the annual parade on Fifth Avenue from 36th Street to the West Village. Police presence was increased at the event because of the mass shooting in Orlando two weeks ago and protesters at the Dyke March on Saturday noticed that community affairs officers for the NYPD were more vigilant than in previous years about keeping anti-gay protesters separated from participants at the march. The parade included solemn tributes to the victims of the massacre but participants were high-energy and as usual, didn’t hold back with their costumes. Some particularly timely outfits paid homage to the upcoming election with Donald Trump masks and signs about the candidates.

The float for Netflix series Orange Is The New Black was popular with the crowd, especially when cast members Natasha Lyonne and Lea DeLaria jumped off after 23rd Street to take selfies with fans for a few blocks.

Other participants included State Senator Brad Hoylman, Councilmember Corey Johnson, the NBA, the New York Civil Liberties Union, Facebook, the FDNY, Quakers of New York, Buzzfeed and Planned Parenthood. Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton also made a surprise visit at the parade for four blocks in the Village, joining Governor Andrew Cuomo, Reverend Al Sharpton and Mayor Bill de Blasio.

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Supreme Court ruling celebrated at pride parade

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By Maria Rocha-Buschel

New York’s gay and LGBT pride march, held last Sunday, came at a particularly appropriate time this year as it was scheduled just two days after the Supreme Court’s landmark ruling on same-sex marriage.

State Senator Brad Hoylman, the state’s only openly-gay senator and a participant in the parade last weekend, cheered the ruling.

“As a gay husband and father, I’m extremely proud to be an American today,” Hoylman said. “LGBT couples everywhere will now enjoy the same basic civil right that New York State granted back in 2011. It’s exciting to think that one day my four-year old daughter will read about Obergefell v. Hodges in school and understand the transformative effect the case is bound to have on LGBT families in our country.”

In recognition of the decision and in honor of Pride Week, Governor Andrew Cuomo directed that the spire of One World Trade Center be lit up in rainbow hues on Sunday night. Cuomo, who signed same-sex marriage legislation in 2011, also marched in the parade and having recently been granted the authority to officiate marriages, conducted a ceremony at the Stonewall Inn on the morning before the march.

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