Riding the back of the parade

The dyke march has never been as immense as Sunday’s pride parade, but the edgier Saturday evening stomp through town has always been noticed as well as giving visibility to any and all “ladies” and creating a great opportunity to hand out all the Saturday night event flyers. But whether its through our own negligence, a desire to thwart the system, or being snubbed by it, we seem to have lost our spot. Instead of getting our own space and time, there’s only a sneaky 11 AM rondezvous at O’Bryant part with partners in crime Queer Revolution, who will parade concurrently.

On one hand this is fabulous. There’s always been considerable overlap between Dyke Marchers and Alterna-pride/Gay Shame marchers and my pride certainly embraces both. They’re open too all genders and sexualities. And Dyke March organizers have said:

“We honor the role of all queers, especially working-class queers and trans people who have made major contributions to queer rights but who have to fight twice as hard for visibility and voice in the GLBTQ community…We will set the terms for our own visibility. We do not need a city permit for this. We will not pay an insurance company $300 to insure our march (as most marches in Portland that go awry are due to police brutality/intimidation in the first place). We will not use a corporate sponsor to pay for our visibility.”

On the other, the Dyke March is bound to lose some women to the general parade who would probably have done well to be exposed to some of the more radical among us, not to mention those who just have several places to be at once.

Secondly, I see the contingent easily lost in the throng. The numbers will clearly be smaller, the route unpredictable, and what queer is really able to roust themselves out of bed before 11 AM the Sunday of Pride weekend?

On the whole I feel the lack of desire to drink a $3 mini-can of Gay Fuel and refusal to wear a rainbow muscle T have relegated us to a corner behind an invisible fence. Let’s hope this year’s theme of “The Second coming” amounts to a moan that can be heard from the Park Blocks to the waterfront.

Meeting 11 AM at O’Bryant Park, SUnday June 19th. Fore more info contact or

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