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Activists Outraged Over New Dress Code For Dallas Pride Barring Public Nudity


Controversy has erupted over a new dress code being enforced at this year's Dallas Pride, The Dallas Voice reports. The move towards a dress code is intended to prevent "lewdness" and public nudity. Though Michael Doughman, executive director of the Dallas Tavern Guild, the group that puts on the pride parade, has attempted to downplay the controversy, insisting the dress code was not being imposed by the Guild but rather the city and reflects existing laws and ordinances governing lewdness and public nudity, others remain concerned. In a Facebook post rebuking the "new rules," activist Daniel Cates addressed head on why such restrictive regulations are troublesome in the context of a pride parade:

“The ‘queer’ is effectively being erased from our Pride celebration in favor of the most polished, heteronormative representation of our community as possible,” Cates wrote. “It should be noted that the rioters at the Stonewall Inn fought to break OUT of the damn closet! Our movement was built of sex positivity and our desire to BE WHO WE ARE! I urge you ALL to openly DEFY the Tavern Guild!”

The police for their part are taking the dress code seriously:

Jeremy Liebbe, a detective sergeant at Dallas Independent School District, will oversee 95 officers from DPD and DISD as co-commander of security for the parade and festival. Liebbe, who’s gay, said any floats in violation of indecency standards will be warned in the lineup on Wycliff Avenue prior to the parade. If they fail to comply before reaching the parade route, they will be removed from the parade and individuals may be charged with class-B misdemeanor indecent exposure. But Liebbe added: “If there’s an erection and a child is present that could see it, it is a felony, and we don’t want to see that happen.”

“My goal at all of these events is to have zero enforcement action taken,” Liebbe said. “But there are some people over the years who’ve tried to push that line to see just how far we could go.”

Dallas Pride will be celebrating its 30th anniversary this year.

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  1. Part of pride parade is to show how you look and be proud showing yourself in the middle of the city dressing (or not dressing) whichever way you will, just be proud of yourself.

    Posted by: Matt27 | Sep 12, 2013 10:08:47 AM

  2. So being gay (or "queer") means being naked and lewd? I missed that memo when I came out. How ridiculous and ridiculous are people who will try to defend lewdness by saying it is stopping gays from being themselves.

    Posted by: Zack | Sep 12, 2013 10:11:03 AM

  3. It is the most contemptible feature of Pride parades that, because of lewd behaviour, they are nothing to be proud of. I fully support police in the forcefull removal of those incomprehensible people who make a public mockery of common decency thereby sabotaging the hardwon - and far from complete - respectability of LGBT people in the larger public eye.
    Gay should not be made to mean repellant.

    Posted by: UFFDA | Sep 12, 2013 10:12:12 AM

  4. If the dress code applies to everyone and every parade then that is fine. Besides a pride parade is no excuse to walk around nude if public nudity is not allowed.

    Posted by: FernLaPlante | Sep 12, 2013 10:12:33 AM

  5. Welcome to Russia - right here in the USA.

    Posted by: Mitch | Sep 12, 2013 10:13:08 AM

  6. Can these queens have their separate "queen parade". I in no way want to be associated with these naked, lewd freaks.

    Posted by: litper | Sep 12, 2013 10:13:13 AM

  7. Yes. It is Russia to say public nudity should not be allowed. Show up to work naked, tell your boss you are just showing your pride, and see how long you will have that job. Public nudity is either legal or illegal. How retarded are people to say it shows pride? It shows nothing but a contempt for decency.

    Posted by: Connor | Sep 12, 2013 10:17:14 AM

  8. @Mitch most of russian gay men do not want your naked parades! We want civil rights protests and not running around naked with dildos!

    Posted by: litper | Sep 12, 2013 10:18:19 AM

  9. Yeah you guys are so quick to be lame and boring. A pride parade is not the macy's day parade, it is a celebration of gays getting all up in your face with their gayness! We were and in some ways still are an OPPRESSED PEOPLE. Every single person in this country has at some point added to the oppression of gays (buying something, saying something stupid, allowing something bad to happen) and we are reminding the world that you don't get to do that to us.

    Yes the parade doesn't NEED nudity, but it at it's core is a parade celebrating freedom from rules and laws. I think little billy and suzy everytown can see some saggy, giant, electric tape covered boobs just like the rest of us!

    Posted by: Fenrox | Sep 12, 2013 10:18:30 AM

  10. Sorry, there is no reason to be nude in public. As long as it is banned in all parades, there is nothing discriminatory. I have never understood what being nude in public has to do with being gay. If you want to see nude guys, go to a strip club.

    Posted by: Jack | Sep 12, 2013 10:19:09 AM

  11. This is a reasonable request. I think that anyone who has issue with this dress code should move the parade to the privacy of their own bedroom.

    Posted by: MBT | Sep 12, 2013 10:19:14 AM

  12. Public nudity is illegal plain and simple. Until it is legal to be naked in public then pride parades of any kind (be it a gay or ethnic pride parade) are not exempt from the law.

    Only asshats think it is appropriate to be naked in public and use lame reason like "we have been oppressed so I am going to be naked."

    Posted by: James | Sep 12, 2013 10:22:25 AM

  13. Its not about NUDITY. Its about what they will consider "decency". Yes, sure...some people have some shockng outfits, but will Dallas police pull boys off floats cause they find their "underwear" indecent? Or will they object to leather? Will Dykes on Bikes be stopped for having tape on their nipples?
    Connor shrills like a prude calling people retarded when he himself is the one being short sighted.

    Posted by: Spike | Sep 12, 2013 10:22:42 AM

  14. Am I missing something or are those gots in the photo NOT NUDE? As a gay Dad, I am not comfortable with the overt, sometimes aggressive sexuality that accompanies many public Pride celebrations (there are plenty of venues for a little light hearted raunch). IMO, we should not confirm the notion that we are all ALL about sex acts. At the same time, the US is so anal about skin ... clarify pls. are those guys in the photo banned or are we talking out and out nudity?

    Posted by: JoelD | Sep 12, 2013 10:24:11 AM

  15. The bar floats with strippers and guys in underwear, the ladies with tape on their nipples, the "pony fetish" and guys on leashes - leave that for Folsom or your local gay bar. It has been a sad spectacle for years produced by immature young people with "issues". This is not what Pride needs to be about. Keep your pants on folks. Follow local rules.

    Posted by: rjp3 | Sep 12, 2013 10:28:46 AM

  16. As an organizer of a Pride festival in Canada, (Nelson BC) I have always made it clear overt nudity or lewdly sexual displays will not be acceptable to the organizers or the City Police. I live in an area with nude beaches. There are appropriate places to bear your sword, but not in a parade being watched by the whole community. Keep it in mind that when we march we represent ourselves and our gay community to the whole LGBT positive community of allies, and we don't need to turn allies into enemies.

    Posted by: Jason | Sep 12, 2013 10:29:16 AM

  17. If Daniel Cates thinks that walking down a parade route wearing a jock strap is the Norma Rae moment in the gay community, I'm going to turn in my 30-year old gay membership card.

    Posted by: David in the O.C. | Sep 12, 2013 10:30:21 AM

  18. I think this is junk, We wonder why people can't see us as normal people that should be allowed to marry and adopt. Its discouraging to see that this even made it into the news its embarrassing I feel like people that walk around naked or half naked acting like horn dogs just make it harder for the normal everyday gay american to be taken seriously. These types of actions only fuel the hate toward us and are used as examples to keep us as second class citizens.

    Posted by: Paul | Sep 12, 2013 10:30:59 AM

  19. Zack, Uffda, and Litper, for your own health please do not attend Dallas Pride. 95° with humidity makes Dallas no place for your burkas.

    Posted by: Roger | Sep 12, 2013 10:31:19 AM

  20. Those guys in the photo are so tame and lame that they actually misrepresent the worst offenders.

    Posted by: UFFDA | Sep 12, 2013 10:32:55 AM

  21. It's been a long time since I went to Pride in Dallas, but I recall it being VERY conservatively dressed, unlike any other parade I've ever attended. This enforcement smells homophobic to me.

    Posted by: Steve M | Sep 12, 2013 10:33:02 AM

  22. @litper, I made no comment about nudity and dildos.

    Posted by: Mitch | Sep 12, 2013 10:34:09 AM

  23. Jason, I agree and totally support your decision. We must remember that young gay people are watching this too.

    Posted by: litper | Sep 12, 2013 10:36:38 AM

  24. To all of the people exclaiming horror at perceived nudity or sexuality, when they ban you from attending a pride event for just being gay, will you be so shocked? When did so many gay men become anti-gay fundamentalists?

    Posted by: homer | Sep 12, 2013 10:38:50 AM

  25. lol Yeah it is prude to act like a person with DECENCY. FYI, I rock in my speedos in APPROPRIATE settings. Nudity has NO place in public (unless where it is allowed such as designated nude beaches).

    When you act like you have no respect for yourself and others, then you will be treated with no respect. Want to be respected, then act like it you want to be respected and taken serious.

    As someone previously said, show up to work naked and see if anyone will take you serious.

    Posted by: Connor | Sep 12, 2013 10:44:43 AM

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