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Parliament member to ride in Windsor Pride parade despite controversy

By | 2018-01-15T19:34:52-05:00 July 27th, 2006|Entertainment|

Despite Joe Comartin’s conflict with the Catholic Church over its stance on homosexuality, the member of parliament will still ride on a float through the Windsor Pride Parade as the official marshal on July 30.
“I think it’s my responsibility to advocate on behalf of minority groups and certainly the gay and lesbian community has historically been discriminated against,” Comartin said.
Last July, Bishop Ronald Fabbro of the London diocese shunned Comartin for supporting gay marriage. In addition, a letter from Fabbro went to all 145 churches in the jurisdiction and was read aloud in Comartin’s church, according to the Windsor Press. But this won’t stop the Catholic gay activist from waving to Pride participants.
“I think the parade itself and the events around it are important because they’re an opportunity for the gay and lesbian community to educate the rest of the community of the role they play (and) of the people that they are, that they’re just regular citizens,” Comartin said.
This year’s Windsor Pride, with the help of big name sponsors like Casino Windsor and Bacardi, is expected to draw a record crowd (last year 2,100 attended).
“I think people who tend not go to Toronto Pride because it’s too big tend to come to the smaller prides,” said Jason Patterson, public relations chair of Windsor Pride. “There’s a good amount of people that travel around to all the different festivals.”
The Windsor Pride committee has booked several acts, including Ann Arbor’s Cyon Flare (a.k.a. Robert Mitchell). “We saw him at Motor City Pride and thought he was excellent,” Patterson said.
Detroit Together Men’s Chorus, which is entering its 25th season, will also perform a 45-minute set. The multi-genre chorus will perform material from the musical “Ain’t Misbehavin’,” which they recently wrapped up. “We’ll be singing in the outdoor venue so it will work out,” said Brian Londrow, artistic director.
The Windsor Pride Festival will run from noon to 7 p.m. on July 30. For more information on Windsor Pride visit http://www.gaywindsor.com/pride. For a list of the entertainment scheduled to appear, Click here.

About the Author:

Chris Azzopardi
As editor of Q Syndicate, the international LGBTQ wire service, Chris Azzopardi has interviewed a multitude of superstars, including Cher, Meryl Streep, Mariah Carey and Beyoncé. His work has also appeared in GQ, Vanity Fair and Billboard. Reach him via Twitter @chrisazzopardi.