Today Tue Wed
It is forecast to be Rain at 11:00 PM EDT on July 28, 2014
Rain
20°/13°
It is forecast to be Thunderstorm at 11:00 PM EDT on July 29, 2014
Thunderstorm
22°/15°
It is forecast to be Chance of a Thunderstorm at 11:00 PM EDT on July 30, 2014
Chance of a Thunderstorm
21°/15°

11 Comments

news

QuAIA Withdraws from Pride Parade


In a move designed to rob Rob of a pretext to defund Pride, Queers Against Israeli Apartheid announced on their website this morning that they would not be marching in the Pride parade this year, thereby disarming critics on city council who had threatened to pull the City’s funding from Pride if QuAIA made an appearance. From their statement:

Rob Ford wants to use us as an excuse to cut Pride funding, even though he has always opposed funding the parade, long before we showed up…By holding our Pride events outside of the parade, we are forcing him to make a choice: fund Pride or have your real homophobic, right-wing agenda exposed.

Immediately after the announcement, Giorgio Mammoliti (Ward 7, York West) said that he will not, as he had previously stated, move a motion to defund Pride, though now he is reportedly backtracking, seeking further assurances that QuAIA will not take part in any way in the annual festival.
Last year Pride received approximately $120,000 in funding from the City. In response to the controversy surrounding QuAIA, they have created a new dispute resolution process “to provide an objective and transparent mechanism to resolve complaints about the participation of any individual(s) or group(s) in the Pride Parade or Marches.”

Comments

  • isyouhappy

    Wait so Mammoliti is going to have armed guards making sure no one wears a t-shirt that says anything remotely to do with QuAIA during Pride? What about outside of the Parade? What about events held during Pride week? Last time I checked, money from the city wasn't being given to QuAIA from Pride, so what's the big deal?

  • tyrannosaurus_rek

    Bravo QuAIA. Make your move Doug Rob Ford.

  • http://profiles.google.com/puppetvision Andrew Young

    No doubt the QuAIA issue provides a smokescreen for critics who are either uncomfortable with Pride or just outright homophobic, but in fairness to Ford (who I am not a fan of) I believe he's on the record as being very clear in his agenda is to eliminate funding for *all* parades, not just Pride.

    Ford seems like he's out to destroy culture in the city on an equal opportunity basis.

  • isyouhappy

    He' also on record making homophobic statements, and voting against LGBT issues that don't cost the city more money. Sure didn't see him trying to defund the Santa Clause parade that he participated in.

  • http://twitter.com/chriskayTO Chris Killam

    The City's money doesn't go towards the parade itself. In fact, the parade generates money, since commercial entrants have to pay — community groups are free.

    They money would be for the Pride festival itself, which includes entertainment, and is a big tourist draw. Studies have shown that the City reaps very real economic benefits mostly from increased tourist spending.

    The biggest problem would be the city services that are usually provided free, such as policing and garbage collection.

    I hear that Ford is now hiding under the smokescreen that he'll pony up the funds AFTER the festival.

  • rich1299

    QuAIA has already won a big victory anyways, thanks to those who did their best to ban/censor them they are now larger and have been able to spread their message to many millions more people than they ever could have hoped to reach on their own without the attempts to silence them for daring to criticize the state of Israel's policies. Those who started the smear campaign and efforts to censor QuAIA clearly have limited connection to or understanding of the LGBT communities which are among the least supportive of censorship of any segment of society in Canada since we have been the victims of censorship and attempts to silence for a very long time, something which still continues today in various ways. Why they thought people who have been victims of censorship would support censorship is beyond me, but in their efforts to censor all they managed to do was spread the message they were trying to censor. Perhaps the next time someone thinks censoring someone or some group is a good idea they'll think about how this attempt at censorship turned out.

    Its also a good time for QuAIA to bow out of the march since they have been officially proven not to use hate speech or be a hate group and not to violate the city's anti-discrimination policy. They've already achieved far more than any other group that marched in Pride protesting the policies of other countries, many weren't even aware such groups existed or marched during past Prides, but not QuAIA, thanks to those trying to censor them everyone now knows about QuAIA and their message.

  • tyrannosaurus_rek

    tl;dr – It's the Streisand effect in real life.

  • http://www.puppetvision.info Andrew

    As Chris already pointed out the city (to the best of my knowledge) doesn't fund the Santa Claus Parade directly. Even if they get free services like policing or trash collection, I don't believe any group involved with that parade is promoting any sort of political or social agenda that violates the city's policies. It's not a good comparison.

    Maybe Ford is homophobic; I try to pay as little attention to him as possible so I'm only familiar with his current policy platform (again, I'm not a fan) and I don't know much about his personal views or voting record. Most of us do know that Ford's current agenda of funding cuts is much, much bigger than just targeting Pride. I'm sure that this QuAIA debate is just round one in a much, much bigger fight that will play out over the next few years and affect just about everyone in this city, gay or straight.

  • http://profiles.google.com/mccormick.jeremy J McCormick

    Ford marching down the Santa Claus parade giving out candy to “traditional taxpaying families” is just as political as anything at Pride. We shouldn't need to go down the list of cultural festivals and parades and determine which fits into what was is political or has an agenda to determine if we need/afford it. This is how minority communities are repressed and silenced.

    Let's not forget that there are numerous different groups marching in the Pride parade representing numerous diverse ideas. QuAIA has stepped down now, and isn't part of the Parade. They've distanced themselves from Pride, so now what? Mammoliti is demanding that funding be cut if QuAIA holds any events during Pride week… what next?

    I won't hold my breath for Mammoliti's denouncements of the JDL protesting and screaming racist hate and homophobia at PrideTO headquarters this past week.

    “I'm sure that this QuAIA debate is just round one in a much, much bigger fight that will play out over the next few years and affect just about everyone in this city, gay or straight.”

    Well said.

  • http://www.puppetvision.info Andrew

    As Chris already pointed out the city (to the best of my knowledge) doesn't fund the Santa Claus Parade directly. Even if they get free services like policing or trash collection, I don't believe any group involved with that parade is promoting any sort of political or social agenda that violates the city's policies. It's not a good comparison.

    Maybe Ford is homophobic; I try to pay as little attention to him as possible so I'm only familiar with his current policy platform (again, I'm not a fan) and I don't know much about his personal views or voting record. Most of us do know that Ford's current agenda of funding cuts is much, much bigger than just targeting Pride. I'm sure that this QuAIA debate is just round one in a much, much bigger fight that will play out over the next few years and affect just about everyone in this city, gay or straight.

  • http://profiles.google.com/mccormick.jeremy J McCormick

    Ford marching down the Santa Claus parade giving out candy to “traditional taxpaying families” is just as political as anything at Pride. We shouldn't need to go down the list of cultural festivals and parades and determine which fits into what was is political or has an agenda to determine if we need/afford it. This is how minority communities are repressed and silenced.

    Let's not forget that there are numerous different groups marching in the Pride parade representing numerous diverse ideas. QuAIA has stepped down now, and isn't part of the Parade. They've distanced themselves from Pride, so now what? Mammoliti is demanding that funding be cut if QuAIA holds any events during Pride week… what next?

    I won't hold my breath for Mammoliti's denouncements of the JDL protesting and screaming racist hate and homophobia at PrideTO headquarters this past week.

    “I'm sure that this QuAIA debate is just round one in a much, much bigger fight that will play out over the next few years and affect just about everyone in this city, gay or straight.”

    Well said.