The Macy’s Day Thanksgiving Parade is not typically what we consider the queer highlight of the year (despite the iconic Spider-man/Uncle Sam rimming incident). But according to one right-wing group, this year’s parade is poised to be a “nonbinary and transgender extravaganza.”
Before you get your hopes up, the “extravaganza” is basically two Broadway performers who happen to be LGBTQ+.
Justin David Sullivan (who is nonbinary and performs in the show & Juliet) and Alex Newell (who is gender-nonconforming and performs in the musical Shucked) are two performers out of the many entertainment acts that will take place throughout the day. For right-wing group One Million Moms (a division of Christian fundamentalist org American Family Association), this alone constitutes the “liberal LGBTQ agenda.”
One Million Moms is no stranger to exaggeration. For one, their group does not have anywhere near one million members. Their X/Twitter account has just over 4,000 followers. Additionally, the petition (which permits repeat signatures) they have put together to boycott the Macy’s Day Parade has accrued just over 30,000 signatures at the time of writing.
In a statement (per The Advocate), GLAAD president and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis described the group’s actions as “desperate pleas for attention,” and pointed out that “LGBTQ performers in the Thanksgiving Day parade are nothing new.”
“Brands have long learned that these are not concerned moms, but dedicated anti-LGBTQ activists,” Ellis added.
A spokesperson with the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade signaled that there was no intention of changing the lineup (although they did not mention the ‘controversy’ directly).
“For nearly 100 years, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade has showcased the very best in entertainment, delighting Americans everywhere with the most popular music acts, the best of Broadway, our country’s finest marching bands and dance teams, and giant balloons and floats that capture your imagination,” the spokesperson said.
“Every performer and volunteer is there with one mission — to entertain millions of spectators and kick off the holiday season. We look forward to celebrating this iconic Thanksgiving tradition again next week.”
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