San Francisco Pride Parade 2023: A Resilient Celebration of Love and Equality Amidst Rising Challenges


( ENSPIRE News ) This Year’s Pride Parade in San Francisco Takes on a Deeper Meaning Among Recent Surge of LGBT Hate

ENSPIRE Contributor: Margaux Jubin

Known for its large and lively gay community, San Francisco celebrates pride month like no other. Annually, the city of San Francisco hosts one of the biggest and longest-running Pride parades worldwide. This year’s theme was “Looking back and moving forward.” Celebrating 53 year years of Pride, this year’s parade had over 250,000 attendees made up of the LGBTQ+ community, allies, and watchers. With over 200 contingents, this parade was one of the largest events of the summer. Companies such as Ikea, Apple, and Google marched in the parade to show their support for the LGBTQ community.

Paraders began their march on Sunday morning at 10:30 on Beale Street, then continued up Market Street, entering a huge spread of Pride activities, including music, food, drinks, and lots of partying at the Civic Center Plaza. This plaza had several stages, with the main stage featuring performances from LGBT icon Hayley Kiyoko and others. Known as “Lesbian Jesus” by her fans, Kiyoko has long been an advocate for self-expression and equality. Big names both hit the stage and marched last weekend. Among marchers, was Nancy Pelosi, former speaker of the house, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), the first transgender Miss San Francisco Monroe Lace, and Apple CEO Tim Cook, to name a few.

Representing a deeper meaning to this year, the Pride parade chanted against the influx of anti-LGBT legislation that has been issued in the past year. This year’s Pride parade is taking place only weeks after the Human Rights Campaign declared a state of emergency for LGBTQ individuals. As threats multiply against the LGBT community, allies, and community members refuse to be silenced. 

Photo by Justin Katigbak for The Standard

As the San Francisco Public Library, schools, council members, and Girl Scouts paraded across town their chants called for the unbanning of queer and trans books, and equality and care of transgender children. Honoring the Stonewall riots and LGBT trailblazers of the past, this year’s parade represented the unity and resilience of the LGBT community. Despite the hate, threats, and discrimination in recent years, the LGBT community continues to gather and celebrate love in all its forms.

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