Kiss me, I'm Irish and open-minded.
For years, the ridiculousness that descended on Fifth Ave from NYC's annual St. Patrick's Day parade was dreaded by most New Yorkers. Aside from the awful cross-town traffic it creates, there's also all the lushes who take the day off just to get day-drunk on a Monday. But this year, we all may be able to enjoy it a little bit more.
According to the New York Daily News, Guinness becomes the third sponsor, along with Heineken and Sam Adams, to pull sponsorship from this year's parade due to the anti-gay legislation that prevents marchers from openly expressing their sexual orientation.
Guinness attempted to hold onto sponsorship as long as they could, but announced their withdrawal on Sunday. "We were hopeful that the policy of exclusion would be reversed for this year’s parade,” a spokesman for the brewery said in a statement to the press. “As this has not come to pass, Guinness has withdrawn its participation." This is a big step for the Irish-owned company as the gay civil rights movement in the very Catholic country still faces heavy opposition.
Along with NYC, the breweries have also pulled out of sponsoring Boston's parade, joining both cities' mayors in a boycott against the homophobic nature of the parade. The South Boston Allied War Veterans Council has said that participants who identify as LGBT can march in the parade, but cannot actively identify that they're gay. What, they can't have any rainbow flags for leprechauns to put their pots of gold at the end of? And didn't we already put a stop to "don't ask, don't tell?"
So, while you may have to step over piles of vomit and green sparkles, you can breathe a bit easier today knowing that at least some people have common sense on St. Patrick's Day in the city.
Image via yuki*