News & Politics

St Patrick's Parade: Gays, KKK, and Neo Nazis Need Not Apply

Nothings says Happy St. Patrick's Day like telling Gays and Lesbians to step aside.

Nothings says Happy St. Patrick's Day like telling Gays and Lesbians to step aside, which is why, since 1991, the New York City Saint Patrick's Day Parade has excluded "the gays" from the festivities. But before people get their shamrock-pattern panties all up in bunch, you should find out why having gay-free Gaelic activitiesis so important.  John T. Dunleavy, Chairman of the New York City Saint Patrick's Day Parade, explained "If an Israeli group wants to march in New York, do you allow neo-Nazis into their parade? If African-Americans are marching in Harlem*, do they have to let the Ku Klux Klan into their parade?"

Now, whatever you think about the gays, you have to admit, Dunleavy is on to something. Because, of course, long before the Nazis eliminated 6 million Israelis**, and the KKK  terrorized thousands of blacks in Jim Crow South, the gays starved one million Irish to death, during the great potato famine, stealing the staple crop, in a sinister plot to make the most fabulous rosemary-infused potato shallot souffle ever.

* Do the African-Americans have to keep their parade within the confines of Harlem? Or do they forfeight their right to a KKK-free rally once they step below 125th street? 

** I'm using the Dunleavian interpretation of "Israelis" in which Israelis signifies Jews. 
Katie Halper is a co-founder of Laughing Liberally, a political comedy group, with whom she performs regularly. Katie is also an Artistic Director and Comedy Curator at The Tank, a non-profit performing arts space for emerging artists.
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