One Equal World

Boston St Patrick’s Day Parade May Allow Gays to March

Posted on: March 13, 2014

gay-pride-paradeAfter two decades in which gay groups were barred from participating in Boston’s famous St. Patrick’s Day parade, it was announced the organizers might let MassEquality, one of Boston’s most prominent gay advocacy groups, march. This came after several fierce negotiations, one of which Mayor Martin Walsh threatened to boycott the event. But there is one caveat: the group will not be able to wear shirts or bear signs that include the word “gay” or make references to their sexuality.

“The fact that Parade organizers are willing to have a conversation with MassEquality is an important part of ongoing public dialogue about LGBT people and the Parade,” Kara Coredini, the group’s executive director, said in a statement on Saturday.

Now that Boston’s parade is making progress, the focus is turning to America’s largest St. Patrick’s Day march in New York City. The New York parade’s decades-long ban against participation by LGBT groups has led to public outcry from advocacy groups and elected officials. The parade in New York is older than America itself. According to the event’s website, the first celebration took place March 17th, 1762.

Members of the New York City government have declined to attend the St Patrick’s Day parade in the past – the former speaker Christine Quinn, who is openly gay, did not march – but the annual celebration of all things Irish usually draws some of the state’s biggest names in politics.

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