Image credit: Sacramento365.com
Thousands of area residents converged downtown for the Sacramento’s pride parade and festival. The parade featured a variety of participants – including folks in elaborate costumes, rainbow tutus, and next to nothing.
Protesters, including a woman that handed out religious pamphlets, were small in number. The loudest of the protesters who gathered at the start of the parade route at Third and N streets, were shouted down by parade attendees.
The Sacramento Pride Parade is a big tradition in the Pride movement, dating back to the original concept over 40 years ago. Many parades still have at least some of the original political or activist character, especially in less accepting settings. The variation is largely dependent on the political, economic, and religious settings of the area. However, in more accepting cities like in Sacramento, the parades take on a festive like character whereby the political stage is built on notions of celebration. Large parades often involve floats, dancers, drag queens, and amplified music, but even such celebratory parades usually include political and educational contingents, such as local politicians and marching groups from LGBT institutions of various kinds.
“What we have to keep our mind on is that most trans people are not like Caitlyn Jenner. Most trans people live in abject poverty, and struggle from day to day to get the health care that they need. Those are really the voices we need to center on in this struggle,” said Ben Hudson, parade grand marshal.
Even the most festive parades usually offer some aspect dedicated to remembering victims of AIDS and anti-LGBT violence. Some particularly important pride parades are funded by governments and corporate sponsors and promoted as major tourist attractions for the cities that host them. In fact, participants in past Sacramento Pride Parades included the Wells Fargo Bank Stagecoach, PG&E, Regional Transit, SMUD, Sacramento Police and Fire, and dozens of other entries.