Pro-Trump activists say they want to "defend heterosexuality" and counter-protesters call them homophobic and extremist: two rival parades were held Saturday in Boston under close police surveillance.
A march to "defend heterosexuality" was held this Saturday, August 31st in Boston, USA. To denounce the homophobic character of this march, a counter-demonstration was organized. While the marches, which gathered a few hundred people, ended in front of the town hall, demonstrators from both sides exchanged invectives, sometimes throwing cups of coffee and … land.
No serious incidents have been recorded. Police stood nearby to prevent possible clashes, armed with batons and gas masks. Some counter-demonstrators threw eggs at the police and one of them was arrested.
For several weeks, the "Straight Pride Parade"As opposed to Gay Pride, which has become an institution in many American metropolises, there is controversy.
Celebrate the "Straight Community"
Its president, 56-year-old John Hugo, an unfortunate candidate for a congressional seat in 2018 and a declared supporter of Donald Trump, assures that the parade is neither homophobic nor extremist.
"There is no racist in our group", he said. "You should come to our meetings, it's like the United Nations".
On his website, his organization, titled "Super Happy Fun America", says he wants "Celebrate the diversity and culture of the hetero community", which would constitute a "Oppressed majority" in a state of Massachusetts acquired from Democrats, the first US state to legalize same-sex marriage in 2004.
Hatred and far-right
But some of the speakers are figures of the"Alt-right" (the extreme right) American, as Milo Yannopoulos, guest of honor of the parade and former contributor of the news site Breitbart News.
"Homosexuals have been shaming me for decades", told AFP Milo Yannopoulos. "Frankly, as a gay man, I have been attacked by homosexuals for most of my life, and these people (the supporters of heterosexual pride, ed) make me feel good".
In the other camp, Rachel Domond, an organizer of the counter-demonstration, said she came "To oppose this hatred that exists here in Boston and in the country".
For her, the arrival of Donald Trump in power has made white supremacists feel now allowed to "To say these things and to say them more and more publicly".
Several anti-Trump organizations and supporters of the gay community had called to counter-protest and block the heterosexual walk, the course of about two kilometers, authorized by the town hall.
On August 20, 2017, local activist Monica Cannon-Grant held a counter-demonstration in Boston to denounce racism and the extreme right after the violent riots in Charlottesville, in front of a rally that claimed to want to defend " freedom of speech " but was suspected of defending the extremists.
Counter-demonstrators, numbering more than 40,000, were then by far the most numerous.
The day had given rise to some clashes and about thirty arrests, but no serious injuries.
The message of the Straight Pride is "Dangerous"said this week Monica Cannon-Grant at a Boston radio. "We have an obligation to fight".
Another Straight Pride last Saturday in the city of Modesto, California, had gathered a few dozen protesters and about 250 counter-protesters, according to the local newspaper The Modesto Bee.
United States. In Boston, tensions between a walk "for heterosexuality" and a counter-demonstrationOuest-France.fr