Less than a month after the organizers of Boston's proposed "Straight Pride Parade" said they were moving forward with their application to the city — a similar event is under consideration on the other side of the country. The city of Modesto, California, is weighing the decision to award a permit for a straight pride event in a local park, CBS Sacramento reports.
Images of a flyer posted to the "California Straight Pride Coalition," Facebook group on July 18 by user Mylinda Mason detailed the event and encouraged others to, "share with your family, friends and Church." The event is billed as Stanislaus County's straight pride "parade/event." The flyer lists the afternoon of Aug. 24. as the proposed date.
The proposed event no longer includes a parade, confirmed the Office of the City manager's Community and Media Relations Officer Thomas W. Reeves. He said the organizers informed the city of the change, and "are in the process for asking for confirmation with new flyers." The permit for the "Straight Pride" event is, however, still being considered by the city.
"Join us to celebrate," the flyer reads. "Heterosexuality, masculinity — femininity, babies — born and unborn, Western civilization, our wonderful country and Christianity." The flyer also includes a link to a website for the "National Straight Pride Coalition" and a GoFundMe page, both of which appear to be shut down. The Facebook page has 39 members, with Mason listed as the group's moderator. It was created on June 15.
The permit application was submitted on June 10, per a copy of the request provided by Reeves. The organization requesting the permit is listed as "Stanislaus County Straight Pride Coalition," with Mason and organizer Don Grundmann indicated as the contact for the day of the event. The event title was written as "Modesto Straight Pride Picnic/Event" and described as a "cultural celebration," with an estimated attendance of 500.
If the decision was up to her, Ah You said the permit wouldn't be considered, as the message behind the event constitutes hate speech in her eyes. "I don't think we need to give a permit for anything that when you go to the page it talks about whiteness, it talks about western civilization, it talks about being Caucasian. That's all hate crime stuff to me, that's not okay," said Ah You.
Grundmann told CBS Sacramento it is the group's cultural response to their opponents, who he characterized as "anyone that supports the LGBTQ lifestyle."
"Essentially it boils down to two religious views of the world," Grundmann said. "One is Christianity, which is represented by heterosexuality, a culture of life, and its opponent is the LGBT movement, which is represented by an opposing religion and an opposing view of life."
Grundmann told CBS Sacramento he would like to see straight pride marches around the country, prior to the change of events, — and claimed he already has a core group of supporters in Modesto prepared to take part in the event if the group is awarded the permit.
Reeves told CBS News Wednesday that while, "the city may not share in the beliefs of some groups who choose to hold events here, the city of Modesto cannot deny a permit based on an organization's values, the content of speeches, or the views of speakers." He added that if the event's permit was to be approved, it would not be an "endorsement or sponsorship of any particular message by the city," but a recognition of the First Amendment.
The city was not "aware" of the group prior to receiving the application, according to Reeves. He explained that the "the hope" is for the city to either deny or approve the permit by Friday.
During June's LGBTQ Pride month, the proposed "Boston Straight Pride Parade" garnered national attention. A group dubbed Super Happy Fun America which claims to advocate "on behalf of the straight community in order to build respect...and alliances with people from all walks of life," is planning the event. The parade appeared to be a reaction to the city's rejection of the group's application to raise its "straight pride flag" at Boston's City Hall earlier this spring.
The organizers of the parade announced their CBS Boston. And the organization claims there is already a date set — Aug. 31. Conservative commentator Milo Yiannopoulos will be the grand marshal — and mascot for the parade, according to the group's website.by the city in late June, reports
However, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh's office said in June that it is. The public event application's approval is a "step in the process toward receiving a permit," Walsh's press office emailed in a statement late last month. "As a next step, the organizers will need to receive necessary approvals from the police department and the licensing board to receive both a parade permit and an entertainment license."
Ah Yu, Grundmann and the Boston Mayor's office have yet to respond to CBS News' request for comment.