Timing is everything, and Wednesday’s double rainbow victory at the U.S. Supreme Court will give San Francisco’s Gay Pride Parade an extra jolt of excitement Sunday. KQED has learned that the two same-sex couples whose federal lawsuit led to Proposition 8 being struck down will ride in the Pride parade.
Details are still for their parade contingent are still being worked out, according to a spokesman for the American Foundation for Equal Rights (AFER), which spearheaded the legal challenge to Prop. 8. But plaintiffs Kris Perry, Sandy Stier, Paul Katami and Jeff Zarrillo are expected to be joined by long-time gay rights advocate Cleve Jones and Dustin Lance Black, whose screenplay for “Milk” won him an Academy Award. Also marching with them will be San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera and his legal team, which joined the case against California’s gay marriage ban.
Parade organizers must be thrilled at this week’s developments and the celebrity contingent. It will no doubt will overshadow a heated community controversy involving an on-again, off-again plan to have Wiki-leaker Bradley Manning serve as the parade’s honorary grand marshal. Manning is undergoing court martial for revealing thousands of secret diplomatic cables and other government information related to the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars.
A rogue contingent of Pride Committee members announced a few weeks ago that Manning, who is gay, would be honored. But that was quickly retracted when Pride’s Board of Directors said Manning’s nomination as grand marshal had not been properly vetted.
The SF Pride Parade typically draws about a million people from throughout the Bay Area and throughout the world.