Marchers in a “Straight Pride” parade descended upon downtown Boston on Saturday afternoon, but dueling demonstrators assembled to greet them.
“They’re not even from Boston,” local Kim Goldstein, 62, told The Boston Globe. “This is not our town.”
Parade marchers held cards and posters with slogans like “Straight Lives Matter” and “Make Normalcy Normal Again.” Many waved American flags. A “Trump 2020” sign featured prominently on one truck.
The parade’s path wound its way from Copley Square to City Hall, where many counterprotesters gathered. The demonstration officially ran from noon to 4 p.m., and it drew a heavy police presence.
The Boston Police Department had not released reports on arrests as of Saturday evening.
Several dozen marchers gathered in the parade, organized by a group called Super Happy Fun America. Far-right political commentator Milo Yiannopoulos served as the parade’s grand marshal.
Organizers claimed that straight people are oppressed.
“They’ve got gay everything, every place and it’s about time they did something for straight pride,” parade participant Ralph Ancker, 71, told the Globe. “We’re people, too.”
Protesters called the march hurtful to the LGBTQ community, and marchers were met with chants of “Nazi scum.”
Boston Mayor Martin Walsh said the spectacle was not a “representation of who we are as a city.”
Emerson College president Lee Pelton, whose school’s campus sat along the parade’s route, described it as a “perversion” in a written message to students and faculty Wednesday. “It is a desecration of beauty, truth, and generosity, and that is why we must call it out, call it what is, with a loud, clear, unambiguous and unified voice,” Pelton said.