Despite the flotillas of festive drag queens, pumped up gym boys and scantily clad pansexual young women, it seems the main attraction at New York City's gay pride parade was Gov. David A. Paterson because of his decision to recognize gay marriages performed in other states. The New York Times profiles the gay community's hero's welcome at Sunday's parade.
The drag queen dressed in a green Afro wig, a red miniskirt and candy-cane-striped stockings, had the duty of announcing the notables marching down Fifth Avenue in the gay pride march. She introduced Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and City Council Speaker Christine C. Quinn, and the onlookers who had gathered along the parade route politely applauded.
But when she bellowed, “Let’s hear it for the governor of New York, David Paterson!” the crowd roared.
Quinn, who is openly gay, says, "I predicted a hero’s welcome for him. And I think my expectations have been blown out of the water. Gov. Paterson is going to get a hero's welcome down Fifth Avenue. I think people feel a tremendous sense of hope because of what he did."
The Times describes Paterson as one of the "few governors [who] have made advancing gay rights as central to their policy making" and reports he "becomes the state's first serving governor to march in a gay pride parade." The governor says "he attended his first parade in 1976 at the urging of a gay friend and had walked in them on and off ever since. 'But then we learned that wasn’t cool because you couldn’t hear the music in the back. So we moved up.' "
The Daily News also profiles the governor's hero's welcome in the parade but with more gay-on-the street testimonials "He's starting a whole new movement here," says Rebecca Goodman, a 17-year-old student from Brooklyn who is "straight and came to the parade to support her gay friends." Another man, 27-year-old Xavier Rojas of New Jersey, hopes Paterson's decision will influence other states to follow his lead. "It should be recognized in Idaho, in Utah, everywhere," he said. "We all want to be treated equally."
Some Background ...
Paterson A "Celebrity" After Marriage Directive [R20]
Poll: NY Support Paterson's Gay Marriage Directive [R20]
Paterson Orders NY to Recognize SSM [R20]
Harlem Reacts to Paterson's Marriage Directive [R20]
Opposition Grows to Marriage Recognition in NYS [R20]
Paterson Promises Support for Same Sex Marriage [R20]
Paterson and Wife Admit Extramarital Affairs [R20]
Paterson Sworn In as NYs First Black Governor [R20]
Spitzer Implicated in Prostitution Ring [R20]
Spitzer Keeps Promise: Gay Marriage Bill Introduced [R20]
Spitzer Will Introduce Gay Marriage Bill [R20]
News: Same-Sex Marriage in New York [R20]
Court: No Gay Marriage in New York [R20]
News: Meet New York's Lt. Governor [R20]
Slim Majority in CA Want to Ban Gay Marriage [R20]
CA Supreme Court Overturns Marriage Ban [R20]
Schwarzengger: Gay Marriage Good for Economy [R20]
Clinton, Obama's Bland Statements on CA Marriage [R20]
Pope Reiterates Opposition to Same Sex Marriage [R20]
CA Poll: Majority Back Gay Marriage [R20]