Violence At Greek Pride Parade

AnthimosYesterday's Pride Parade in the Greek city of Thessaloniki was violently disrupted by a group of 50 or so thugs who pelted the approximately 400 revelers with eggs and water bottles. Police intervened quickly, and no one was injured. From the AP:

In recent days, Anthimos, the senior Greek Orthodox cleric in Thessaloniki, had publicly criticized the planned gay pride parade. Anthimos, who only uses one name, is known for outspoken speeches on social and political issues.

The AP doesn't report whether the egg-throwers were Anthimos fans. They might have just been fascists

Comments

  1. My2cents says

    Gay Greeks have struggled for years to get legal protections, and have been successfully prevented. One of the most vocal opponents to civil rights and marriage equality has been the Greek Orthodox Church. Unlike the U.S., there is no separation of church and state in Greece. Greek priests are directly paid by the government of Greece and are de facto government employees. A constant and pernicious influence on Greek society, the church has successfully opposed progressive changes that are counter to its doctrines and beliefs.

    To see video of the first-ever Thessalonika (Greece’s second largest city) Gay Pride:

    http://translate.googleusercontent.com/translate_c?act=url&hl=en&ie=UTF8&prev=_t&rurl=translate.google.com&sl=el&tl=en&u=http://www.gayhellas.gr/&usg=ALkJrhjSveGGE7CkwZ90gsaKjincxiBx5w

  2. john patrick says

    So many of these old religious leaders, no matter the country, are thugs themselves dressed up in pretty robes.

  3. Michael says

    I live in Thessaloniki and was there yesterday. The entire main street was packed full of people and there were, in fact, over two thousand people in the Parade (not the incorrect 400 I’ve seen in the English-language media). Everyone was dancing and cheering, there were some steel drums at the front, loads of balloons, flags and young Greeks in the crowd.

    The protestors, despite the local bishopric’s blatant and loud incitement to protest or even violence, mustered up around 40-50 religious crazies in comparison, isolated on one street corner where they screamed for a bit. The parade went round almost the entire centre with most people either smiling and taking pictures or looked bemused at worst!

    One of the best moments of the parade – seeing a yiayia (granny) turn around and smile, and start clapping along with the parade. Brilliant.

  4. says

    The land freed by the lovers (and symbols of democracy)Harmodius and Aristogeiton from tyranny has now been reduced to common Christian homophobia. No wonder Greece is on its way out of the European Union.

  5. Pete N SFO says

    Srsly…

    He uses one name. 😉

    Who do you think you are; CHER, Liza, Madonna, Liz… Yanni??? lol

  6. Sarina says

    How can the country of Socrates and Sapho have this kind of homophobia? I don’t get it.

  7. jamal49 says

    christianity = hate
    christiantiy = violence
    christianity = homophobia
    christianity = death

  8. UFFDA says

    MANNY- Great to be reminded that handsome Harmodius and his rugged boyfriend Aristogeiton (from the sculptures) freed ancient Greece from tyranny. Early heroes in the gay rights movement (LOL), well, something like that. We need a dignified in-love pair like them to wither the likes of Anthimos and all the Christian right. All we have so far are clowns like NPH and Burtka, not bad, better than nothing, and I love them, but so far only Zach Whals (all alone and not even gay) has the gravity of a real hero. There out there I’m sure.

  9. Jerry says

    Having visited Greece, I can attest to the ever-growing & expanding gay Greek scene. Gay Greeks have been stymied by a brain-dead government which has been caught in a lie on several occasions in promises made and broken to the gay community, and has repeatedly refused to take advantage of the multi-billion gay tourist industry as one means of alleviating their economic debt. The Greek church is steadfastly homophobic and wields significant influence in setting government social policies. The church has done everything it can to see to it that Greek family life remains the cornerstone of Greek society. Young Greeks are expected to remain at home until they marry, and especially in these perilous times, rarely have the ability or means to find separate lodging. Young gays are also expected to marry and often willingly do so, to maintain family harmony. The gay scene in Greece is reminiscent of the early ’80s scene in New York and Los Angeles. There is a budding gay-friendly community in the Gazi section of Athens. For video on this year’s Athens Gay Pride, see http://gitv.gr (use Google language tools for translation).

  10. rob says

    The victims should go to that bigot’s church and throw stuff at him and his bigoted supporters.

  11. anon says

    As part of the EU, Greece is under treaty obligations to protect minority rights, so it’s probably not as bad as they make it seem. The GOC makes the Vatican look progressive though.

  12. CHRISTOPHER ALLEN HORTON says

    OH, MAN! THIS STORY HURTS MY HEART. UNFORTUNATELY, MODERN GREEKS ARE TRYING TO DISTANCE THEMSELVES FROM THE “HAPPY DAYS” OF GREEK ANTIQUITY WHEN “boy/man” LOVE WAS THE NORM. VIOLENCE OF THIS TYPE WOULD BE FINE ELSEWHERE – BUT NOT, MY BELOVED GREECE. DEPRESSING.

    CHRISTOPHER ALLEN HORTON

  13. Kevin Thor says

    I am shortly, traveling on a gay tour to Thessoloniki and Mt Athos.
    In light of this information it should be an interesting journey.

  14. Wavin' Dave says

    It’s so hard to find a hat to go with that dress, but he managed! The Greek Orthodox church is implicated big-time in the country’s economic crisis. The notion that old fools like this guy can offer any critique of any aspect of the bankrupt culture is really just morally bankrupt. What’s a Greek equivalent for “Nero fiddles, Rome burns?”

  15. Jerry says

    @Christopher: The canard about so-called man/boy love has been used repeatedly to characterize and stigmatize (even by Greeks) an entire complex ancient culture. The fact is that ancient Greeks recognized a wide variety of same-sex bonds, and youth were seen by Athenians, for example, as a kind of protected class to be looked after and mentored. You can thank several uptight Victorian period historians for all the misinformation that set the stage in this area of inquiry. For a really good discussion see James Davidson’s, “The Greeks and Greek Love”.

    The Greek Orthodox Church should be ashamed of itself, because for several hundred years (up until the late Middle Ages) it supported same-sex unions and celebrated them before the altar in the church in a religious confirmation ceremony. Regrettably, Greek society is a shame-based society, like Russia and other countries where the Eastern Orthodox Church exerts influence. Almost equal parts of guilt and shame make it difficult for LGBT Greek youth to successfully make the transition to adulthood. Gay Pride celebrations may alleviate some of that, but Greek gays also need help from their government. The latest coalition government headed by New Democracy would seem to make that a distant outcome, as their representatives were among the first to condemn the Thessaloniki Gay Pride.

  16. CHRISTOPHER ALLEN HORTON says

    “JERRY,”

    I KNEW THAT. THE POINT IS, IN THE CURRENT CLIMATE OF HATRED TOWARDS SO-CALLED, “pedophiles,” IT IS THE “ART-OF-BOY/MAN-LOVE-” TAG WHICH CAUSES MODERN GREEKS TO BE ASHAMED OF THEIR PAST. SINCE MANY FAMOUS GREEKS FROM ANTIQUITY – WHO ARE CHERISHED IN THE AMERICAN-EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM – ENGAGED IN “BOY/MAN-” LOVE, I WANTED TO HIGHLIGHT THE HYPOCRISY.

    CHRISTOPHER ALLEN HORTON