LGBTQ Pride Month

5 Kids Explain The Importance Of Pride Parades

“It allows everyone to be who they are.”

Rainbow flags hung in the windows of bars and restaurants, across the shoulders of revelers and even from the collars of some very prideful dogs up and down Fifth Avenue in Brooklyn last night for the borough's annual Twilight Pride Parade. This is the parade's 21st year celebrating and affirming the rights of the LGBTQ community. 

Held in the Park Slope neighborhood, the event brought out men, women and children of all ages, including many families who used the parade as a starting point to talk to their children about equal rights. We talked to five Brooklyn kids — who were there for more than the fairy wings — about what the parade means to them. 

Edgar, 8

Emily Becker / A Plus
Emily Becker / A Plus

Anyone standing on the corner with Edgar could tell that he loves this parade. Alternating between dancing to the music and running to give high fives to those walking in the parade, Edger was sporting huge grin and some impressive fairy wings. This was his second time attending the Pride Parade, which he told A Plus is his favorite all year. 

Don't get him wrong, he likes the others, but people are more willing to give him high fives at this one. His mom Michelle told A Plus that Edgar's been looking forward to tonight since he saw the parade on the calendar. 

Momo, 9, and Eva, 12

The procession itself included city officials such as Public Advocate Letitia James, Borough President Eric Adams and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, dance troupes and local organizations. Momo and Eva walked in this year's parade with a local theater group. It was their first time at the Pride Parade, but they were excited to be a part of it.

"I support the rights of gay people and I think it's a good thing to support," said Momo. "It allows everyone to be who they are."

"It's an amazing thing to support because in the country they've been oppressed and told they can't marry people of the same sex, which is wrong because we're supposed to be a country of freedom," said Eva.

4. Elia, 7

Emily Becker / A Plus
Emily Becker / A Plus

Up the street from her classmate Edgar, Elia watched the parade with her best friend Sami. Elia told A Plus that her favorite part about the event was the cheerleaders. But she also liked getting the fairy wings and plastic beads that she and Sami are now both wearing. "Rainbows mean happiness," she said.

5. Sami, 7

For Sami, her favorite part of the festival was the people who were dressed up in costumes. Although, she, like Elia, also liked getting the fairy wings.  

Sami's mom Mary Jo McBride told A Plus that she can see how much society has progressed in terms of LGBTQ rights since she was little even in how Sami and Elia play together. Recently, she and Sami discussed why it was still important to have a Pride Parade and support the LGBTQ community even though their family supports an individual's right to love anyone. 

Since the family lives on the parade route, it was a no-brainer for Mary Jo to use the event to continue having meaningful conversations about equal rights with her daughter.

"I just love that I can say let's open the door and we can have a lesson," Mary Jo said.

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