Letter to the Editor: What’s Happened to Our Pride Parade?

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As is usually the case at the Wilton Manors Gay Pride Parade, the majority of large Gay businesses that rake in the most money off of the members of the Gay community here couldn't be bothered to put a float in the parade, which makes the parade a very short one and not really worthy of Wilton Manors and the Fort Lauderdale area when one takes into consideration how large the Gay community is in this area, along with the thousands of Gay tourists who stay in the area while on vacation.

Many of those thousands of people who attended the parade ate and drank at the Gay businesses along the parade route were attracted to come to the parade because of the large amount of advertising done by the organizers of the parade in local Gay publications. Many of those businesses most likely saw an increase in their revenue because of the parade, although they didn't make any visible contribution in the form of a float in the parade to really make them worthy of the increase in business they received from the parade while they benefitted from the advertising done by the organizers of the parade which came at no cost to the Gay businesses along the parade route.

It's rather sad to see area Gay owners of large established businesses not put out any funding to celebrate and commemorate the Stonewall riots by being represented with a float in our area parade when one takes into consideration that the Stonewall riots brought the Gay rights movement into the national spotlight and made it possible for Gay business owners to openly operate Gay businesses without having to engage in regularly paying off members of city police departments and buying protection from members of organized crimes so that they could stay in business.

Richard Claycomb
Fort Lauderdale


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