Bowser made the announcement on Thursday, as corporations and government entities begin to focus on gender and sexual identity in recognition of Pride Month.
“I am proud to be the Mayor of the best city in the world, and the gayest city in the world,” Bowser said in a tweet that was accompanied by a video of her in a crowd waving a rainbow flag.
— Mayor Muriel Bowser (@MayorBowser) June 1, 2023
Some criticized her announcement, asking her to focus on countering rising crime rather than on celebrations of sexual identity. According to recent statistics in the city, violent crime, including robbery, assault with a dangerous weapon, homicide, and sex abuse, has increased by 13% and carjackings have increased by 49% so far in 2023.
“We literally just want you to do something about all the violent crime,” said Abigail Marone, communications director for Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO).
Bowser has been vocal about LGBTQ issues in the past, signing a bill that makes the state a sanctuary for women looking to abort an unborn child or individuals undergoing transgender procedures.
Her tweet comes as the D.C. Public Library system will hold a “Children’s Pride Parade” on Saturday that will be open to ages “0-18,” according to a flier from the event.
The parade will be a “celebration of diversity and inclusion, particularly the diversity of gender and sexuality,” according to a flier from the library first obtained by The Daily Signal. The event is being hosted by the Georgetown, Palisades, and Tenley branches of the D.C. Public Library.
“The parade is for LGBTQ kids and families, signaling that their community supports them,” said media relations manager George Williams. “The event does not require registration, so we do not have an estimate of how many people will attend. The program will not include any speakers.”
According to the flier, many kids are “coming out” at younger ages. “A Pride event especially for kids, many of whom are coming out at younger ages,” a section of the flier under “goals” reads.
It is also described as “an opportunity for local schools and community groups to show they support LGBTQ youth and families.”