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McAleese refuses to marshall New York parade

September 22nd, 2010 · 8 Comments · Brendan Fay, LGBT, Queer

President Mary McAleese has turned down an invitation to act as grand marshall to the New York St. Patricks Day Parade. For nearly twenty years the organisers, the Anicent Order of Hibernians, have blocked the participation of lesbians and gay men in the parade and it seems that this is the reason for the President’s refusal to lead the parade in her final year in office. (Previous coverage of the issue on MP here.)

Irish Central report that attempts at a compromise were sought by officials in Aras an Uachtarain who sought to have the President participate in a march which is inclusive of Irish LGBT participation which takes place the previous week in Queens. However this parade will take place some time before the parade in Manhatten and the President could not remain in the city for that length of time.

So President McAleese is not to participate and it seems the bigots AOH are going to ask an Archbishop instead. (Interview with Niall O’Dowd on News at One here (realplayer) ).

(History Note – Lesbians and Gay men marched in parades throughout Ireland in the 1990’s and were welcomed by organisers and did so in solidarity with the Irish Lesbian and Gay Organisation in New York. )



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