Sao Paulo Council Calls for Heterosexual Pride Day
The city council of South America's biggest city has adopted legislation calling for a Heterosexual Pride Day to be celebrated on the third Sunday of each December.
Sao Paulo Mayor Gilberto Kassab must sign the legislation for it to become law and has said only that he is studying it. His office declined Wednesday to say whether he supports the proposal.
The legislation's author, Carlos Apolinario, said the idea for a Heterosexual Pride Day is "not anti-gay but a protest against the privileges the gay community enjoys."
As an example, he mentioned how Sao Paulo's huge gay pride day parade is held every year on Paulista Avenue, one of the main thoroughfares in this city of 20 million people, while the March for Jesus organized by evangelical groups is not allowed on the same avenue.
"I respect gays and I am against any kind of aggression made against them," Apolinario said. "I have no trouble coexisting with gays as long as their behavior is normal."
The Brazilian Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Association criticized the legislation, saying it could provoke homophobic violence.
"How many LGBTs will be attacked because of the message that only heterosexuality makes someone a moral person and a good citizen," the association said in a statement.
"The celebration of heterosexual pride is inappropriate because it belittles the just cause of the LGBT community," the statement added. "Unlike homosexuals, heterosexuals are not discriminated against simply for being heterosexuals."
In a recent report, the gay rights group Grupo Gay da Bahia said 260 gays were murdered last year in Brazil, up 113 percent from five years earlier.