Catholic League’s ‘Straight Is Great’ Banner Gets Approval From NYC Pride Parade Organizers

equality

The march director for NYC Pride – the organization behind New York City’s gay pride parade, is proud to welcome the Catholic League and their “Straight is Great” banner for this year’s parade. David Studinski, the march director, issued a statement saying:

“[Bill] Donohue and his group are free to participate in the 2014 March. His group’s presence affirms the need for this year’s Pride theme, ‘We Have Won When We’re One.’ Straight is great – as long as there’s no hate.”

NYC Pride’s managing director, Chris Frederick added his opinion on Bill Donohue’s application:

“Straight allies are great. We have thousands of straight people participating in the Pride March, including Catholic groups, who support LGBT youth, families and married couples.”

If Bill Donohue was trying to trap NYC Pride, he failed.

It looks like Bill Donohue tried to trap them, and they didn’t fall for it. NYC Pride is actually setting a fantastic example of inclusion and tolerance with this. This is especially important as people on the religious right insist on calling the gay community “intolerant.”

Bill Donohue has spoken out many times against marriage equality, and called it one of the most bizarre ideas in history. According to his thinking, the biggest reason marriage equality is wrong is because there aren’t any religions in the world that support it. He said that they’re either against marriage equality, or they’re silent on it. Not one of them supports it, which makes it wrong.

Or perhaps it just makes them intolerant.

Who’s really being intolerant here?

Some have gone so far as to call the LGBT movement intolerant. John Stewart had a discussion with Samantha Bee, who said that there are too few places for evangelical Christians to safely get together. She said, “Be proud of who you are and who you want to condemn to eternal damnation.”

That first part is great, and seems to be what NYC Pride is all about with Bill Donohue. Be proud of who you are. Whether you’re gay, straight, male, female, rich, poor, or whatever, be proud of who you are. Including the Catholic League and their banner reaffirms that message.

The rest of it, though, is worse than intolerant: It’s hateful.

Then there’s Jim Bopp of Indiana, who earned a round of loud laughter in Indiana’s chamber when he called those who oppose a constitutional ban on marriage equality “intolerant.”

Here’s why people like Bill Donohue are considered intolerant.

The religious right is considered intolerant for refusing to accept LGBT rights is for two reasons. The first is that they think the LGBT community is all sinners. The problem with this view is that not everybody in this country is Christian. The idea of what’s sinful, then, is highly subjective. Even Christians don’t all agree and whether homosexuality is sinful or not, based on what’s in the Bible.

The second reason they’re considered intolerant is because they’re using their position as the dominant religion in the U.S. to try and pass laws relegating the LGBT community to second-class status. Look at all the religious freedom bills that states are trying to pass. They say they’re merely protecting religious freedom. However, they’re targeting a specific group of people for discrimination with these laws. That takes it out of the realm of religious freedom, and puts it squarely in the camp of hateful and intolerant.

NYC Pride is taking a huge step here for LGBT rights. They’re showing that it’s not about gay vs. straight, even though Bill Donohue is one who would make them second-class citizens if he could. They’re saying, “Hey, Mr. Donohue, you’re entitled to your beliefs.” Would Bill Donohue say the same? Probably not. If this was a ploy to expose intolerance on the part of the LGBT community, it backfired badly.