cautious optimism

Is ‘Not Getting Blown Up’ a Reason to Celebrate Budapest’s Gay Pride?


Yes, if you remember what happened at last year’s gay pride march in Budapest (and other attacks there), where explosives were thrown at marchers leaving 10 people injured and 45 arrested.

Except during this year’s celebration yesterday, with a crowd increase from 450 to 2,000, the neo-Nazis were kept at bay with the help of the police. Last year, they marched alongside LGBTs in a brilliant spectacle of idiotic planning. But to keep things secure, on-lookers were also banned from the “Gay Dignity” path within a 1-block permiter, leaving spectators forced to tune in on TV rather than gather alongside the route. Perhaps a decent temporary trade-off, helped by “considerable” news coverage.

Not that things went down without incident:

Hungarian riot police deployed tear gas and baton charges Saturday against the vociferously xenophobic crowd as it tried to disrupt Hungary’s annual Gay Pride parade.

More than 30 arrests were made on charges including possession of offensive weapons and riotous behavior. Heightened surveillance was enforced throughout the day to prevent a recurrence of the mayhem that ended last year‘s parade, in which there were more than a dozen serious injuries, according to Éva Tafferner, press officer at Budapest police headquarters.

The rioters invaded the heart of the traditional Jewish Ghetto District, started a small fire, tore down signs and shouted threatening anti-Semitic vitriol. The attacks were witnessed by families of foreign Jews visiting the district for the current Budapest Jewish Cultural Festival.

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  • Disgusted American

    I Blame religion for perpetuating Bigotry and hate.

  • Jeff K.

    Ugh, why are Nazis and Fascists still so prevalent in Europe? You’d think that it would be the last place you’d find them, what with the war they started and all. If I were them, I wouldn’t even show my face.

  • Elena Gordon

    The Police in Budapest were absolutely FANTASTIC… I cant understand whay anyone would “diss” them, anyone who actually saw what they did to protect us. Even the right wing Fidesz Party backed off once the 16 embassies issued their joint embassy statement.

    Hungary was a fascist state during the WW2 and delivered Hungarian Jews to the Nazi Death Camps at a speed with which even the Nazi Germans and Austrians couldn’t compete.

    They were occupied by the Soviets and told they were “victims” like East Germany and there has been absolutely no formal processing …

    and we have plenty of “neo-Nazis” and anti-Semites in the UK so why wouldnt they be in the rest of Europe?

    You can’t blame “religion” you might blame the perversion of it largely by men who are more interested in exercising power than they are in practising religion.

    hehe mind you we mixed with the bigots who were hurling abuse (and the odd bottle) at the club hosting the afterparty…it actually only had about 12 “faggots” in but there were easily 60 riot police protecting the police, very very professionally… howver the lesbian camera crew and I were circulating with the bigots who because we looked “normal” couldnt conceive of the possibility we were actually lesbians… I did feel like saying “They’re behind you.”

    “Budapest police might leave gays alone for Pride” what a stupid statement…they have never acted against us in fact they not only risked injury but were the ones getting injured this year, they did a fabulous job, like all of the police forces around C&E Europe. They are in fact the unsung heros of Pride and some of them are even known to hold highly right wing views but have learnt the difference between their personal views and their professional duty. A Hungarian fascist state and a Soviet occupation will do quite a lot to rob people of democratic instincts… that is why PRIDE is not just important for LGBT in Hungary but also in the development of healthy democracies.

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