More than 150,000 people attended
Buenos Aires' 22nd annual Gay Pride Parade on Saturday.
Argentina's capital and largest city
kicked off its annual parade with a group kiss. The event ended with
fireworks and a cultural festival held in Plaza de Mayo, Buenos
Aires' main square.
In July, Argentina celebrated three
years of legal marriage for gay and lesbian couples.
Maria, a teacher at Mocha Celis, the
world's first high school devoted to transsexuals, told the AFP:
“Pride is what identifies us all. It is the last step to be
recognized as a person, to be proud of yourself and know what you
are. It's the best feeling you can have in your life.”
In signs and speeches, the parade made
many references to Pope Francis, who in his former role as bishop of
Buenos Aires opposed passage of the nation's law allowing gay couples
pope Jorge Bergoglio once called gay marriage devil's handiwork.)
“From the pope's point of view there
is no official line on the gay community,” said Norberto Lorenzo,
another participant. “And we aren't very optimistic. The church
doesn't recognize the status of gay people, nor gay couples, gay
marriage, nor lesbians, not divorce. We knew quite well the Catholic
Church wouldn't accept us. So we will continue to be Catholic and we
do not deny our Catholicism or to be gay.”