They waited on a call that never came.
“We feel ostracized from our own community,” said Vince Foster, President of the Miami Log Cabin Republicans. “It’s like you are abandoned if you stray from the herd.”
The LGBT Republican group said it was not invited to participate in last weekend’s Fort Lauderdale Pride festivities and has heard nothing from the organizers of Miami Beach’s Pride either. That’s just fine with Foster.
“We’re focused on securing LGBT rights in the workplace and housing and working with our allies in the House and Senate to make sure that happens,” Foster said.
Andy Eddy, spokesman for the Broward Log Cabin Republicans, told SFGN no one from Pride Fort Lauderdale’s board reached out to his chapter to be a part of last Sunday’s event.
Tens of thousands of people attended Pride Fort Lauderdale’s beach event as organizers declared this year’s event to be a smashing success.
Pride Fort Lauderdale President Miik Martorell said politics was the last thing on his mind.
“It was not a political event,” Martorell said. “We didn’t ask for it. That divides people.”
However, in interviews leading up to Fort Lauderdale Pride, Martorell did note it was the first Pride event in America since the inauguration of President Donald Trump.
In an article published by SFGN on Feb. 15, Martorell said: “This is the first time to send a signal out and say: ‘We’re here. We’re not going anywhere. We’re not afraid. We’re not going to crawl into a corner. It’s very tricky because as a non-profit we have to walk a fine line. Obviously, we’re celebrating the freedoms we have. You don’t have to be a democrat or republican or independent to say we deserve the same rights as everyone else.”
While Log Cabin chapters passed on Pride festivities, the Dolphin Democrats, Florida’s oldest LGBT political club, did have a presence on the beach Sunday.
Dolphins board member Tim Ross said his organization made the first move in purchasing booth and vending space.
“We pay attention to our community,” Ross said. “They (Pride FTL) didn’t reach out to us, we reached out to them. Maybe if the Log Cabin Republicans had their finger on the pulse of the community like they say they do then they would have been there too.”
Foster said outreach on Pride’s part would have been helpful to know the organization was accepting of all.
“Had we been invited we would have jumped at the opportunity to cultivate relationships,” Foster said.
But that’s not how it works, said Martorell.
“We didn’t send out engraved invitations to the community,” Martorell said. “We advertised it. All they had to do was go to the website and sign-up. If they are not paying attention, we can’t be blamed for that.”
Ultimately, Foster said skipping Pride is probably the safest route for Log Cabin Republicans.
“We’re all sick and tired of being called self-loathing,” Foster said.