Millions attend São Paulo gay pride despite heavy rain and cold weather

São Paulo's 17th pride parade, the world's largest, kicks off with a more political message

Millions attend São Paulo gay pride despite heavy rain and cold weather
02 June 2013

Despite heavy rain showers and cold temperatures millions participate in São Paulo’s gay parade, the world’s largest.

The march started today (2 June) at 1pm local time next to São Paulo’s Museum of Arts (MASP) winding its way through the city’s main avenue, Avinda Paulista.

The weather in São Paulo, Brazil and South America’s largest city, was unusually cold with temperatures barely reaching 16c (61F) and heavy rain.

Participants, however turned the weather into an object of fun by sporting multi-colored and rainbow umbrellas accompanied, costumes and 17 floats, among them starring out celebrity singer Daniela Mercury, who has been singing to the crowds.

The march is currently winding itself towards one of the city’s main squares Praca da Republica, where a celebrity starred show will be lasting for over six hours.

Participant Denilson Oliveira told Gay Star News: ‘This year the cold and rain deterred a little the public from the parade. There were not as many people as last year and it was slightly less animated.

‘But with less people it gave the parade a more clear political and forceful message, about criminlizing homophobia, gay marriage and that Evangelical political leaders are trying to “demonize” our movement.’

Organizers say they hope 4 million people will participate, half a million less than last year.

Fernando Quaresma, president of the Association of LGBT Pride Parade in São Paulo (APOGLBT), said the event should not be seen only as an off-season carnival.

‘The parade is not an off-season carnival. It is a movement of massive visibility on part of a community which suffers daily prejudice and discrimination, violence, hatred and intolerance,’ he said in a press conference earlier this morning.

Quaresma also criticized Brazil’s Congress, saying that ‘the legislature has not been fulfilling its role to pass a law to guarantee the end of social injustice.’

Without naming names, he said some lawmakers – whom he referred to as ‘religious fundamentalists’ – are ‘attacking the secular state and the civil rights of LGBT people.’

Although he did later signal out evangelical anti-gay pastor, Marco Feliciano, the head of Brazil’s Congress Commission of Human Rights, as a fundamentalist who is failing in his role.

The event was attended by Brazil’s minister of Culture, Marta Suplicy, who also expressed criticism of Feliciano.

HAVE YOUR SAY

MORE TOP STORIES

No thumbnail available

The rewards and risks for a NBA player to be out of the closet

Is coming out even worth the risk for a player in the National Basketball League?
No thumbnail available

Couple that overturned Alabama's same-sex marriage law denied adoption petition

A judge has refused to grant the adoption until the Supreme Court makes a decision on same-sex marriage
No thumbnail available

Birmingham Pride reveals record ticket sales

Huge crowds expected to see Jess Glynne headline this weekend
No thumbnail available

Chick-Fil-A donated nearly $2 million to anti-gay groups in 2010

Fast food restaurant chain denies it supports an anti-gay agenda
No thumbnail available

Sigourney Weaver: Gorillas are more evolved than anti-gay humans

US actress says Russian president Vladimir Putin is becoming a real 'dictator' over his gay propaganda laws
No thumbnail available

Nepal govt shoves gays out of crucial HIV meet

Rife corruption in interim government sees WHO funds misused to turn Bangkok meet into junket for officials
No thumbnail available

Anti-gay activist creates fake group to march at Vancouver Pride, hand out 'gospel condoms'

The Christian activist admitted to creating a fake organization and website to dupe parade organizers and Trojan condoms to get condom sponsorship
No thumbnail available

Reporter: Russian TV told taxi to throw me out on highway after my pro-gay rant

US journalist James Kirchick spoke out against Putin’s anti-gay laws during a Chelsea Manning section while wearing 'gay pride' suspenders
No thumbnail available

Cher meets The Golden Girls in amazing mash-up video

YouTube user has created a video combining two of the most well loved gay icons
No thumbnail available

Turkey progress report slammed - no progress for gay rights

Turkish activists claim: Turkey's own progress report to the European Union ignores repeated critique of the country's failure to protect LGBT people