At the end of the milelong route of Sunday’s Phoenix Pride Parade, just outside Steele Indian School Park, stood two small sets of protesters. One spouted anti-gay sentiments through a bullhorn; the other said the Pride festivities had become too corporate and had lost their activist roots.
In the park, though, the yells were inaudible during Day 2 of the Phoenix Pride Festival. Instead, attendees heard upbeat music, friendly chatter and chants for equality.
The grounds were peppered with corporate signs from banks, beer brands and insurance companies. But to Jordan Shew, 22, of San Tan Valley, the corporate presence served as a comfort. So, too, did the politicians who attended to shake hands and solicit votes.
“I think that with the public companies showing their support and the City Council showing support, hopefully the government will show its support,” Shew said.
Antonio Grimes, 17, of Laveen marched in the parade with more than 100 members of the Gay-Straight Alliance from his Millennium High School in Goodyear.
“To me, just to see that large group was very touching,” he said.
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