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Pride Parade brings SF together in celebration of LGBT rights

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Lily Stobing, 11, Penelope Stobing 4, and the mother Christina Stobing cheer as floats go by during the Pride March down Market Street in San Francisco, Calif. on Sunday, June 24, 2018. (Brittany Hosea-Small/Special to The Examiner)

Thousands marched up Market Street on Sunday and thousands more gathered along the barricades in a display of rainbows and resistance for the 48th annual LGBT Pride Parade in San Francisco.

It was a sunny morning in The City when the parade began near the Embarcadero, with the Dykes of Bikes leading an hours-long procession of community organizations, corporations and elected officials from U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris to state Sen. Scott Wiener to City Hall.

“With everything happening in the country right now, the attack on basic American values and on the LGBT community, we need to come together, celebrate and recommit to the fight,” Wiener said from atop his car in the Financial District, waiting for the parade to begin.

Sunday marked the second Pride celebration since the election of President Donald Trump. While the official theme of the year was “Generations of Strength,” opposition to the presidency was the subtext.

District Attorney George Gascon said this year was different because of the Trump administration’s separation of families along the border between the U.S. and Mexico and the recent Supreme Court ruling in favor of a Colorado baker who refused to make a wedding cake for a same-sex couple.

“I think this is a great day to celebrate but it’s also a great day to send a message out there that the majority of Americans do not believe in hate,” Gascon said. “There’s so many things that are going on on the border, we’re having families that are being torn apart — so many things that are anti-American.”

As the parade marched toward Civic Center, Sunny Agha and Antionia Santiago were pressed up against the barrier near Taylor Street taking photographs and waving a rainbow flag.

“For me every Pride is special, but what’s special about this Pride is that I really feel like civil rights and human rights are under attack,” Santiago said. “This is really important to come out and be sure to put yourself out there so that people see that we are still here.”

This was the eighth Pride the couple had spent together, but the first in San Francisco since recently moving to San Jose from New York.

“What’s epic about the San Francisco Pride was yesterday in Dolores Park,” Agha said. “We don’t have that in New York. Just the amount of people that were there. It was just epic.”

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Francisco, a French Bulldog/Boston Terrier mix, stands on the back of the PG&E float before the Pride March down Market Street in San Francisco, Calif. on Sunday, June 24, 2018. (Brittany Hosea-Small/Special to The Examiner)


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