Following the controversial "Straight Pride Parade" in Boston, the Democratic Congresswoman pointed out some of its major flaws.
A "Straight Pride Parade" took place a few weeks ago in Boston, Massachusetts, despite immense backlash from the LGTBQ+ community. The decision to hold such a parade was seen as futile and only indicative of the ways in which the gay community is disenfranchised from mainstream society. While the event drew criticism from many individuals, Democratic Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was astute in pointing out a major flaw: its lack of women. In a post uploaded to social media platform Twitter, the freshman Congresswoman called out the pride's problem with toxic masculinity and insecurity, The Hill reports.
She retweeted a video of the Straight Pride procession heading down a street in Boston. In her tweet, Ocasio-Cortez stated: For men who are allegedly so “proud” of being straight, they seem to show real incompetence at attracting women to their event. Seems more like [an] “I-Struggle-With-Masculinity” parade to me. Hope they grow enough over the next year to support [or] join [the] LGBTQ [family] next Pride!
Of course, her tweet was met with much retaliation. Scott_weger, for example, responded: I thought as a Congresswoman you should be trying to bring people together. All you do is try to piss people off. This is why you will only be serving one term! Hoosiers1986 added: It appears that you are intimidated by people you don’t agree with, AOC. This pathetic, and very hypocritical observation, once again shows someone who has no control of her feelings and emotions. #AOCisa2YrOld
Nonetheless, the Congresswoman's observation was not wrong. As one attendee, @amcnal, confirmed: I was there, dude, there was only a couple women and there is a 0% chance that anyone in that parade was nonbinary. Others pointed out how exclusionary and problematic the parade appeared. @AngelaBelcamino wrote: Looks like [a] neo-Nazi white supremacist MAGA parade disguised as a #StraightPrideParade to me... With some dudes that struggle with masculinity in there.
It is the latter observation that displayed just how problematic the event was. As The Hill reports, attendees carried signs that read, "Drain the swamp," "Secure America's borders" and "Trump 2020." In addition to this, some attendees held signs that proclaimed, "Make normalcy normal again," suggesting that being anything other than heterosexual was abnormal or other. The Straight Pride Parade was organized by three men as a response to the celebrations that took place during LGBTQ+ Pride Month in June earlier this year. While Pride Parades celebrate the beauty, diversity, and fluidity of gender and sexuality, these events have never been utilized to demarcate heterosexuality as less than, atypical, or wrong. It is in this distinction we find the true intentions of the Straight Pride Parade—to maintain the rigid and oppressive heteronormative standards of the status quo.
Though the Straight Pride Parade was allowed a permit, Boston Mayor Martin Walsh took to Twitter to reaffirm his office's commitment to inclusivity. He stated: If you want to see what Boston is all about, take a look at the events happening in our City this weekend that promote our values of inclusion, love of community, and acceptance of all. This weekend I'm celebrating what makes our city so great – our people – by attending neighborhood block parties, visiting farmer’s markets and BBQs, and celebrating safe neighborhoods. I invite all residents of Boston to join me in doing the same. As I've said, a "Straight Pride" Parade won't overshadow the tremendous role Boston plays in the national movement for equality. We will continue to be a leader in the fight for civil rights.