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Sao Paolo pride parade brings millions to city

June 4, 2013

Brazil is known the world over as a country with a diverse and fascinating culture. Cities such as Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paolo are often home to countless celebrations and cultural traditions, and citizens may well reach out to relatives in other countries using an international calling card, to persuade them to visit for the festivities. While Carnival may be the best-known of these to the average person, Sao Paolo recently made headlines with its gay pride parade, known as the largest in the world. According to The Telegraph, over three million people flocked to Sao Paolo's streets to take part in the celebration.

This city's parade is known as the largest of its kind in the world. While it has taken place for the past sixteen years, since 2003 it has received a great deal of attention, as that was the first year it brought in 1 million people. Since then, it has averaged around 3 million attendees, reaching its peak so far in 2011, when 4.1 million people attended, according to Gay Pride Brazil. 

The Telegraph reported that Everton Correia, a Brazilian gay rights activist, characterized the parade as an opportunity to take a stand against violence toward Brazil's lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) citizens. He also stated that the event was far from the only necessary action to face the issue of hate head-on.

"There are 190 million Brazilians and not all gay people have come out," Correia said, according to the news source. "This is a great parade and a great event, but there is still a lot we have to do to fight against homophobic violence. Fortunately, Sao Paolo is one of the few cities where people show us a little more respect."

Correia's statement regarding Sao Paolo is a fair one, as Brazil - like much of South and Central America - has a substantial Roman Catholic population, and the faith, which has often publicly decried homosexuality, maintains a strong presence in Brazil's overall culture. However, in 2012, the nation's Supreme Court afforded homosexual partnerships legal status, providing them pension, health and other legal benefits. The Telegraph stated that the Court's decision may lead to same-sex couples being permitted to adopt children.


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