Here at The Wild Reed it's become somewhat of a tradition, at this time of the year, to share images of Gay Pride celebrations from around the world.
I start this year with images from New York, where, as USA Today notes, the celebrations became a "jubilant, energetic celebration of Friday's passage by the state Legislature of a bill legalizing same-sex marriage." Enjoy!
Above: People cheer while standing in front of the Stonewall Inn on Christopher Street in Greenwich Village as the annual Gay Pride parade passes, Sunday, June 26, 2011 in New York.
One of the world's oldest and largest gay pride parades became a victory celebration Sunday after New York's historic decision to legalize same-sex marriage. The law signed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Friday takes effect in 30 days. (Associated Press/Mark Lennihan)
Above: From left: Mayor Michael Bloomberg, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, State Senator Tom Duane, Governor Andrew Cuomo, and Cuomo's girlfriend Sandra Lee walk in the annual Heritage of Pride March, one of the world's oldest and largest gay pride parades – Sunday June 26, 2011, in New York. (Associated Press/Diane Bondareff)
Above: Spectators react as New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg approach during the Gay Pride Parade, Sunday June 26, 2011 in New York. (Associated Press/Tina Fineberg)
Above: Richard Proust (left) and his partner of thirty years, Donald Corren, march during the Gay Pride Parade in New York – June 26, 2011. (Reuters/Jessica Rinaldi)
Above: Alba Maya (left) and Margarita Eiroa, who have been together for over thirty years, hold a sign in support of New York state's recent decision to legalize gay marriage during the Gay Pride Parade in New York – June 26, 2011. (Reuters/Jessica Rinaldi)
Above: Christopher Goeken, left, his partner Glenn Magpantay, and their son Malcolm Magpantay, 4, from the Queens borough of New York, smile before the start of New York's Gay Pride Parade – Sunday, June 26, 2011. Goeken and Magpantay have been together for 18 years. (Associated Press/Tina Fineberg)
Above: A reveller attends the Christopher Street Day parade in Berlin, June 25, 2011.
Several thousand people took part in the annual CSD parade in the German capital to demonstrate for the rights of all LGBT people and to commemorate the Stonewall Uprising in New York City's Christopher Street in June 1969. (Reuters/Pawel Kopczynski)
Above and below: Hot! Hot! Hot! A troupe of fire-breathers performs during the annual Gay Pride Parade in Sao Paulo, Brazil – Sunday June 26, 2011. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)
Above: Police protect participants in the Gay Pride march in Zagreb, Croatia – Saturday, June 18, 2011.
The United Nations issued its first condemnation of discrimination against gays, lesbians and transgender people on Friday in a cautiously worded declaration hailed by supporters, including the United States, as a historic moment. (Associated Press)
Above: A couple share a kiss during the annual Gay Pride Parade in Sao Paulo, Brazil – Sunday June 26, 2011. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)
Above: People carry a rainbow flag during the 15th Gay Pride Parade in Avenida Paulista in Sao Paulo – June 26, 2011.
More than 3 million people took part in the annual Sao Paulo Gay Pride Parade, making it the world's largest gay pride march, according to Brazilian tourism authorities. (Reuters/Nacho Doce)
Above: Take me to the pilot! Revellers take part in the annual Gay Pride Parade in Sao Paulo, Brazil – Sunday June 26, 2011. (Associated Press/Andre Penner)
Above: Dykes on bikes! A woman holds up rainbow flags from the back of a motorcycle during the 41st annual Gay Pride Parade in San Francisco – Sunday, June 26, 2011. (Associated Press/Jeff Chiu)
Above: Sorry, girls, but those tacky beer cans have just got to go! Transgenders Taita, left, and Yaila pose for a photo during the Gay Pride Parade in Guatemala City, Saturday June 25, 2011. (Associated Press/Rodrigo Abd)
Above: Transgender Melani, center, poses for a portrait during the annual Gay Pride Parade in Guatemala City – Saturday June 25, 2011. (Associated Press/Rodrigo Abd)
Above: No Gay Pride Parade would be complete without a bit of leather! A leather man attends the Christopher Street Day parade in Berlin – June 25, 2011. (Reuters/Pawel Kopczynski)
Above: Somewhere under the rainbow! People take part in the Gay Pride Parade on Istiklal Avenue in Istanbul. (AFP/Mustafa Ozer)
Above: The Peacock King! New York, June 26, 2011. (Reuters/Jessica Rinaldi)
Following are excerpts from an Associated Press article about various Gay Pride events around the world.
Tens of thousands of revelers turned out Saturday for a gay pride parade in Paris, many of them hailing the legalization of gay marriage in New York and demanding that France follow suit.
Marchers, dressed in drag, brassieres or striped sailor outfits, paraded under a sea of rainbow-colored flags and jigged to thumping techno beats on slow-moving truck beds that became moveable dance floors.
Elsewhere in Europe, however, Russian police detained 14 gay rights activists trying to hold an unsanctioned rally in St. Petersburg to demand equal rights for gays — a sign that resistance remains high in many places. An Associated Press photographer saw some unidentified attackers besiege the activists and try to seize their banners before police moved in. One suspected attacker was also detained.
. . . In Germany on Saturday, thousands packed downtown Berlin wearing colorful costumes for the 33rd annual CSD festival calling for acceptance of gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transsexuals.
"The support of many people from all walks of life send a strong sign against discrimination," said Berlin's gay mayor, Klaus Wowereit. He urged greater acceptance of diversity in the European Union, notably among newer and future EU members in the Balkans and Baltics that can be less tolerant of gays than the old member states.
Gays and lesbians face widespread hostility in some macho-dominated societies of eastern Europe — and opposition to their public events has been fierce, and even violent, at times.
Attempts to hold gay pride rallies almost always end in violence in Russia. Authorities habitually refuse gay rights activists their constitutional right to assemble, particularly in Moscow, on the grounds that other people find it offensive.
"I've seen a lot of things in six years of holding such events in Moscow, but I've never seen such cynicism in St. Petersburg," said Nikolai Alekseyev, Russia's highest profile gay rights activist, who was himself briefly detained Saturday.
The activists in St. Petersburg held their protest beside a monument to city founder Peter the Great, "because Peter the Great founded a city with European values," said Yuri Gavrikov, head of the Equality group.
President Dmitry Medvedev has insisted that Russians share European values today.
In Mexico City, thousands of people marched down Paseo de la Reforma for one of the largest gay pride events in Latin America. Winged angels waving rainbow flags from atop sound trucks filled the leafy boulevard on their way to the Zocalo, the capital's main square.
Hector Anaya, a member of a national group of gay cowboys who sported a cowboy hat, tight jeans and pointy ostrich-skin boots, said things have changed for the better for Mexican homosexuals the past 15 years.
"We used to not be able to go out together, to hold hands. Now, the more we express ourselves, the more people accept us," Anaya said.
Opening image: A man waves a rainbow flag during the annual Gay Pride Parade in Cali, Columbia – June 26, 2011. (Reuters/Jaime Saldarriaga)
See also the previous Wild Reed posts:
Worldwide Gay Pride – 2010
Worldwide Gay Pride – 2009
Worldwide Gay Pride – 2008
Worldwide Gay Pride – 2007
Dan Furmansky: Why We Have Pride
Gay Pride as a Christian Event
Gay Pride: A Celebration of True Humility
The Gay World Cup
A Simple Yet Radical Act