Head to Head: Charlotte Pride denial of “Gays for Trump” float is justified

Leta McWilliams

Editor’s Note: All opinion section content reflects the views of the individual author only and does not represent a stance taken by the Collegian or its editorial board.

This is a “Head to Head” column. Read the opposing viewpoint here.

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Charlotte Pride, the organization running one of the biggest LGBT+ Pride Parades in the United States, recently denied the application for a “Gays for Trump” float to be featured in the parade. Charlotte Pride has been receiving a lot of negative feedback, stating that the organization is hypocritical because they aren’t being inclusive of everyone. Charlotte Pride shouldn’t be getting this feedback because they didn’t exclude the pro-Trump community from attending, and they chose the best choice for the majority of the people attending the parade.

Charlotte Pride denied a float from their parade in North Carolina because it promotes a man who has openly stated he is against marriage equality, has disrespected the LGBT+ community many times in the past, and chose a vice president who supported gay conversion shock therapy. As an organization, they didn’t want President Trump to be affiliated with the event that has their name on it.

The LGBT+ community has fought for years to be seen as equal in the eyes of the government. It would be insulting to its attendees to promote a man who has constantly put down their rights.

Not once did Charlotte Pride state that people in the LGBT+ community who support President Trump weren’t allowed at the parade. They never said that they couldn’t show their support for the president at the rally. People are making it sound like Charlotte Pride is checking people’s party status before they can enter the parade, when in reality they denied a float.

Charlotte Pride cannot predict their attendee’s response to a “Gays for Trump” float. Hypothetically, if Charlotte Pride accepted the float, a significant amount of the people attending the parade could be offended and it could lead to violence. The organization itself could have been for it, but the public is so unpredictable that they didn’t know how people would react. Denying the float may lead to protests and negative feedback, but having the float at the parade could lead to conflict at the event itself, and possibly violence.

I can see how people think denying the float was hypocritical. Pride celebrations are about being inclusive of everyone, and denying the float wasn’t being completely inclusive of Trump supporters. I can see how Trump supporters, or even conservatives as a whole might be discouraged from the parade.

However, taking into consideration the entirety of the audience, it’s more likely that more people would be offended if the float was in the parade than if it was denied. Charlotte Pride was put between a rock and a hard place when the application for the float was sent, and I believe they chose the lesser of the two evils, and chose what was good for the wellbeing of the people that have fought for so long for their right to love.

Leta McWilliams can be reached at letters@collegian and online at @LetaMcWilliams