After my original post, local activist Hardy Haberman reached out with concerns about the Tavern Guild’s stance that the policy is nothing new. He attended a pre-parade meeting for those who are going to be a part of Sunday’s parade at the Rose Room.
He claims the first thing organizers said at the meeting was “there are ging to be some things different about the parade this year. We’re going to make it more family-friendly.”
“It’s like they’re trying to assimilate and I have a real problem with assimilationists,” said Haberman.
Haberman has written a full editorial with concerns over the policy, which will be published in Friday’s Dallas Voice.
“This was the first year it was verbalized but the rules have always been in the parade application. They were written into the application based on city code and policy on public dress codes and behavior. This was done at the city’s request and have been a part of the parade rules for many years. This was the first year that we found it necessary to verbally remind the parade entrants,” said Michael Doughman, Executive Director of the Dallas Tavern Guild, in response to Haberman’s concerns.
You can’t get naked in public in Texas. It’s against the law.
Sec. 21.08. INDECENT EXPOSURE. (a) A person commits an offense if he exposes his anus or any part of his genitals with intent to arouse or gratify the sexual desire of any person, and he is reckless about whether another is present who will be offended or alarmed by his act.
The thing is, at Dallas’ gay pride, organizers have been slightly lax in recent years, and allowed people to “push the envelope.” Well, no more, according to Michael Doughman, executive director of the Dallas Tavern Guild. He says organizers and police will be patrolling the staging area at Sunday’s Alan Ross Freedom Parade. Anyone who isn’t properly clothed could be removed and/or blacklisted from next year’s pride.
It’s gotten a few local activists incensed. Daniel Cates posted this on Facebook:
“No bare asses, no breasts (even with pasties) no tight underwear on dancers, nothing too political at all. The “queer” is effectively being erased from our pride celebration in favor of the most polished, heteronormative representation of our community as possible.”
Cates continued by asking parade attendees to “DEFY the Tavern Guild,” and coined the hashtag #Prideoutwithyourhideout
Doughman denies that the policy is anything new. He says he had to issue a reminder of the rules because of risque attire worn by some parade participants in recent years. He’s asking that dancers on floats wear swimwear instead of underwear.
“It is in the rules for all parade participants,” said Doughman in an email Wednesday. “The ‘dress code’ as they are calling it is simply the city ordinances regarding nudity and lewdness in public. Nothing is new this year.”
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