San Francisco Pride! Here are the DOS & DON’TS for first-time visitors

Posted on June 28, 2015


by Rick JT, editing by Adam MS

Even a bacchanalia has rules, and SF Weekly offers a helpful guide – aimed especially at attendees seeking ‘to be the best heterosexual you can be’

To the uninitiated, San Francisco’s Pride parade appears a wild extravaganza where a million people do whatever they want. It turns out the bacchanalia has rules, or at least etiquette, especially for those “straight allies” who join the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender revelers.

SF Weekly, the city’s free, alternative weekly paper, has compiled a list of dos and don’ts to follow in order “to be the best heterosexual you can possibly be” at Sunday’s parade, the 45th annual celebration in the “gayest city in the galaxy”.


Here is a summary.

  • Don’t do anything awful, an injunction prompted by an assault last year on several Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence: “Please, don’t get shooty, stabby, or punchy.”
  • Don’t lose all inhibition. In acknowledgment of continued intolerance, oppression and HIV/Aids, respect Pride’s solemn, mournful side.
  • If you run into someone you didn’t know was LGBT, don’t pretend you didn’t see them: “It takes two to make it awkward, so always err on the side of saying hi to Bob from Accounting when he’s got boobs now.”
  • If a party is getting out of control, don’t make it worse by tweeting indiscriminate invitations.
  • Don’t assume all gay men wish to be touched, Instagrammed and screamed at: “Just because some people got up before dawn to look like an exotic species of bird doesn’t mean they’re communal property. And honey, you’re going to get polyps on your vocal cords if you shout ‘Woo!’ for five straight hours.”
  • Go to the Frameline film festival to learn about the diversity and complexity of the LGBT community.
  • Take care with terminology. “Queer” and “dyke” are OK if that’s what people call themselves. “Tranny” is more problematic: “And remember, it’s ‘transgender’, not ‘transgendered’.”
  • Enjoy! “Wear bright colors. Smile at ugly naked people. Graciously accept fliers for parties you’d never, ever go to. Hug and be hugged.”

Happy PRIDE, Folks! xoxo

(image: Getty)

Posted in: LGBT, NEWS