Mayor Marcy Reaffirms Marikina's Love for LGBTQIA at Pride March
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In Marikina, there is no prejudice. Only pride.
Mayor Marcy Teodoro once again showed Marikina City’s love and respect for every human being, regardless of their gender and sexual preference, at Saturday’s Metro Manila Pride March and Festival attended by more than 20,000 people.
Held at the famed Marikina Sports Center, participants started trooping to the sports complex even if the skies were grey and there were threats of rain at around noon. There were a number of booths selling gay-inspired merchandise from T-shirts affirming gay love and gay rights printed on them such as “Love Wins, Always,” rainbow colored tote bags, books, stickers, and a lot more.
The atmosphere was jovial and friendly, even if outside of the complex, a handful of anti-gay protesters voiced out their opposition to the event; some of them carrying placards with anti-gay messages, even quoting bible passages that said gays would burn in hell. The revelers, gays and straights, generally ignored these protesters. Nothing could spoil their fun.
In contrast, Mayor Marcy was welcoming and full of love. He even greeted everyone "Happy Pride," which was repeated thousands of times as the afternoon rolled into evening.
“Why is Marikina hosting the Pride March again this year? Dahil sa Marikina anuman ang iyong kasarian, sino man ang minamahal mo, paano mo man gustong ipakita ang iyong sarili, kinikilala ka bilang ikaw. Bilang tao. Sa Marikina, lahat welcome,” Mayor Marcy said in a rousing speech that was met with wild cheers and applause from the crowd, mostly wearing rainbow-colored shirts and mardi gras-inspired costumes.
“Walang puwang dito ang diskriminasyon. Sa selebrasyong ito, namamayani ang pag-ibig, pagmamahal sa sarili, kaya nagpapakatotoo. Pagmamahal sa kapwa dahil hindi tinitingnan ang tao ayon sa kaniyang identidad. Pagmamahal sa pagkatao dahil hindi kailan man masama ang maging totoo at ang maging ikaw,” the Mayor added.
This is the second time in a row that Marikina City under the leadership of Mayor Marcy has hosted the event. Organizers estimated that more than 25,000 attended this year’s celebration, more than three times larger than last year’s 7,700 participants. Some of the world’s biggest financial companies and corporations joined the event such as HSBC, ING, IBM, ANZ, AIG, Teletech, Lazada, their employees proudly wearing LGBTQIA shirts and costumes.
"Kung Wala Kayo, Walang Ganda ang Mundo"
Celebrities like award-winning actress Iza Calzado was also spotted at the Pride March, which has for its theme” Rise Up Together,” summing up the collective effort of the LBTQIA (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, asexual) community to fight discrimination and for their rights to be recognized by laws through the passage of an anti-discrimination bill and allowing same-sex marriage.
"Kung wala kayo, walang ganda ang mundo. Kung wala kayo, walang kulay ang mundo. Kung wala kayo, walang tunay na pag-ibig sa mundo,” Mayor Marcy added, which was the most applauded part of his speech.
Mayor Marcy concluded his short talk by shouting this year’s Pride March theme: “Again, welcome to Marikina City. Walk with pride and let’s rise up together!”
At exactly 4 in the afternoon, the crowd swelled as the parade started from the gate of the sports center. Minutes after the participants began parading or in the case of others, doing the catwalk in their high heels using the streets as a runway -- some in colorful costumes, carrying rainbow-colored flags, banners, make-ups, shirts, outfits – heavy rains poured.
But the rains and the anti-gay protesters did not dampen their spirits as the parade continued on the streets of Marikina.
At around 7 in the evening, after the march, the program started with inspirational messages, poetry reading, and song and dance performances from local artists and bands. By this time, the crowd grew even thicker and the sports complex became a huge party ground. The rains too stopped and the cool wind soothed the partygoers.
By midnight, the crowd started to thin out and the fireworks display heralded the end of the colorful and meaningful affair.
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