• June 26, 2010

The U.S. Supreme Court has held that the organization that puts on the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Massachusetts can exclude gay and lesbian participation consistent with the First Amendment (Hurley v. Irish-American Gay, Lesbian, & Bisexual Group of Boston, Inc., 515 U.S. 557 (1995)), so can GLBT Pride exclude an anti-gay participant in its Pride Day Celebration in Minneapolis’ Loring Park?  No.

GLBT’s suit before U.S. District Court Judge John R. Tunheim (D. Minn.) has invoked this reciprocal application of the Hurley rule but Judge Tunheim distinguished Hurley and Pride’s motion for a temporary restraining order was denied.  The key distinction:  in this case, the anti-gay activist was not to be “an official participant – a sponsor, a vendor, or an exhibitor – at the Pride Festival.”  Rather, he merely hopes and plans to be present in Loring Park during the festival espousing his point of view, which happens to be antagonistic to the GLBT Pride organization.

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