A proposal for a "Straight Pride Parade" in Boston has prompted "an uproar on social media" and some notable quotes from a few high-profile figures, including Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, FOX Nation host Tomi Lahren, and progressive actor Chris Evans.
"Days before Boston’s Pride parade fills city streets, celebrating the LGBTQ community, another parade proposal is causing an uproar on social media," CBS Boston reports.
The proposed parade presents itself as an alternative to the annual Gay Pride Parade, describing itself as an opportunity to "celebrate heterosexuality." The group behind the event, Super Happy Fun America, hopes to conduct the parade on the last Saturday of August and to use the same path as the pro-LGBT event.
The group's vice president, Mark Sahady, said online that their proposal was initially rejected by the city, but after filing a discrimination complaint, the city is now reluctantly working with them. "We filed a discrimination complaint and it appears the City of Boston understands they would lose in litigation. The city is now working with us on the parade," he wrote in a Facebook post noted by CNN.
The group's president, John Hugo, offered an explanation of the reason for the proposed march. "We want people to be aware that there is not only one side of things," said Hugo, CBS reports. "There’s a lot of people that are uncomfortable with a lot of things that are going on in our country and they’re afraid to speak up."
"This is our chance to have a patriotic parade in Boston as we celebrate straight pride," Sahady declared online.
Asked about the proposed event, Mayor Walsh was clearly not eager to talk about it, quickly shrugging it off before pivoting to promoting the Gay Pride event. "Come on, I don’t know what this straight pride parade is all about," he said, CBS reports. "I know that we have a pride parade on Saturday and that’s what I’m going to march in."
While the mayor wasn't willing to offer much of a comment on the proposed straight pride event, progressive actor Chris Evans, who frequently weighs in on political issues, posted a couple of tweets mocking the would-be organizers and questioning their sexuality in the process.
"Wow! Cool initiative, fellas!! Just a thought, instead of 'Straight Pride' parade, how about this: The 'desperately trying to bury our own gay thoughts by being homophobic because no one taught us how to access our emotions as children' parade? Whatta ya think? Too on the nose??" Evans tweeted Thursday.
The "Captain America" star's follow-up tweet took his criticism in a darker direction, suggesting those who would participate in such an event are motivated by "anger" and a lack of empathy. "Wow, the number gay/straight pride parade false equivalencies are disappointing. ... Instead of going immediately to anger (which is actually just fear of what you don't understand) take a moment to search for empathy and growth," he wrote.
The right-leaning Lahren had a far different take, calling Boston's pushback on the event more evidence that it's "open season" on straight white males. "You can be proud of about anything these days, so long as it's not straight white male or, God forbid, conservative," she said on FOX Nation Thursday, as reported by The Hill.
Super Happy Fun America has noted both Evans' and Lahren's response on social media, expressing "disappointment" in the former and appreciation for the latter.