After eight years teaching in New York, I finally stayed for the month of June, rather than immediately going home to Istanbul and Tel Aviv once classes ended.
The highlight of the month was without a doubt the New York City Pride. In the past, I have participated numerous times at the Pride parades in Istanbul, and once in Tel Aviv (see my recent blog on Istanbul Pride). However, New York is where it started, with the Stonewall Inn raid, which led to the first Pride parade in 1970.
Luckily, a friend of mine asked me to join in with their group, since in New York to participate-and not to be stuck on the sidelines as a spectator-one needs to be affiliated with a group (see below). In other words, unfortunately, it is impossible just to jump in, which seriously limits the possibility of spontaneous fun!
Much to my dismay, NY Pride is not the protest I imagined, with Corporate America taking a major role, with numerous banks and companies sporting some of the greatest floats and crowds, such as Goldman Sachs and Google. Uber seemed the most gimmicky, sending a message such as "we love gays, use us, and you might even get one of these sexy guys as your driver." Completely insincere.
Whatever the case, I had a great day, and anyone who knows me knows that I love taking photos at protests and parades. So here are 10 of my favorite ones. Enjoy!
1. It was an honor to march with the American Civil Liberties Union, one of the US's oldest non-profit organizations fighting for civil rights!
3. This group of high school students did not need a float or a car, no loud music and dancing, just lots of energy!
4. And, then there were the ones that came all decked out!
5. And, then there were the tattoo lovers.....
6. Don't forget that some are Made in New York!
7. What about the Trojans? (OK, I suppose condoms do count as part of Corporate America, but I give them two thumbs up!)
8. For a second it seemed we were at the Rio Carnival.....
9. There were cheerleaders as well!
10. The finale: Stonewall! Where it all began! All who passed buty gave the legendary bar threw out a shout in solidarity!