I'll march my band out, I will beat my drum,
And if I'm fanned out, your turn at bat, sir,
At least I didn't fake it, hat, sir,
I guess I didn't make it.
Get ready for me, love, 'cause I'm a " comer,"
I simply gotta march,
My heart's a drummer.
Nobody, no, nobody
is gonna rain on my parade!
Fanny Brice isn't the only one to like a good parade. And one of the grandest of them all is the New York City St. Patrick's Day Parade. However this parade has a new route: it will now march down that one way street called "tolerance and inclusivity" more commonly known as Make it Gay Way.
The St. Patrick's Day Parade was started to honor, you guessed it, St. Patrick and all things Irish and Irish-American. For some years now a group that represents gays has asked to march in the parade as a separate marching unit under their own banner. Likewise a Pro Life Catholic group has asked to march as well. The parade organizers have refused both requests since the parade is not about gays or abortion or anything other than St. Patrick.
Well, over the years the gay group stomped it's foot, had a temper tantrum, like children who did not get their way and cried: intolerance! Bill Donahue of the Catholic League who has supported the parade for many years pointed out repeatedly that gays as well as Pro Life supporters are not banned from the parade as they can march with other marching units just not under their own banners. Then last year some of the parade sponsors (the beer giant, Guinness for one) said they would not sponsor the parade in 2014 unless the gays marched under their own banner. Bill Donahue said he would support a change in the parade rules to permit a gay marching unit only if a Pro Life Catholic marching unit was permitted as well.
Many sponsors did indeed pull out of last year's parade and took their money with them. That was enough to have the parade organizers change their marching orders and permit the gays to march under their own banner in the next parade. But the Pro Life Group is still not allowed to march in the parade.
Ironically when Bill Donahue submitted a request to march in the NYC Gay Pride Parade under a banner of Traditional Marriage he was flatly refused since such a group was not consistent with the purpose of the Gay Pride Parade. How tolerant is that? So once again we see that those who beat us over the head with "tolerance" are often the least tolerant themselves.
This is just one example of various groups inserting themselves into places just for the sake of promoting an agenda. Another issue that comes to mind (since we are having a Blood Drive this weekend) is that some gay groups are insisting that the Red Cross and others change their criteria for who should donate blood. Currently IV Drug users and men who have sex with men, among many other categories, are asked not to donate because of the risk of HIV and Hepatitis contamination. The reason for this is to protect the integrity of the blood supply yet gay rights groups insist it makes them feel second class to be excluded from donating blood. So we should put everyone at risk so that MSM don't have to think about their risky behavior? It's probably just a matter of time before the Red Cross capitulates.
It looks as if the parade has passed us by. Maybe it is time to rethink why we do these things anyway. I am sure we can find other ways to honor a great hero of Christianity and Western civilization like St. Patrick.
Looks like it did rain on this parade.
Love, Fr. John B.