The point of departure of the Gay Pride parade on Place de la Concorde in Paris © 2017 CHANT WAGNER
There were so many good moments at the Gay Pride 2017, called La Marche des Fiertés in French. Here are a couple of photographs to let you taste some of its local flavor...
A group of men © 2017 CHANT WAGNER
Mostly, the big change this year was that the parade gathered in front of the National Assembly on Place de la Concorde coming from the Madeleine. This was meant to convey the import of the need for more favorable legislation for LGBTQA people as the Marche fetes its 40th anniversary. In particular, they want medically assisted procreation to become more liberal as French law allows PMA only for a woman who is in a couple with a man. Even straight single women can't have PMA in France.
AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power (ACT UP) participated in the parade © 2017 CHANT WAGNER
But back to the event. The atmosphere is that of a carnival - and it feels really celebratory. You can however sense a certain sadness too. All the upbeat atmosphere cannot completely cover the hurts and sufferings of LGBTQA persons in daily life. Some gazes are more than subdued.
It can get very moving too. When all sat down on the street and remained silent for three minutes to honor the memory of gay people who died because of AIDS, I may or may not have teared up.
LGBT Democrats Abroad carrying the American Flag © 2017 CHANT WAGNER
It's furthermore a political event and the time to remind citizens that in 11 countries in the world, homosexuality is legally punished by death. In Europe, it's only recently that apologies have been extended by the British and German states to unjustly persecuted homosexuals after WWII.