Central PA's LGBT News Source
The contrast couldn’t have been more stark.
For two years in a row, the Trump White House declined to issue a Pride Month proclamation, nor has it held a Pride reception, as the Obama White House did during the prior eight years. President Donald Trump has never acknowledged Pride while in office, and he’s continuously pandered to anti-LGBTQ religious conservatives who have enjoyed direct access to the White House while watching with glee as his administration has moved to harm LGBTQ rights.
But in Germany, where I happened to be on vacation the Trump administration went all out for Pride during Berlin’s annual Christopher Street Day celebration, which marked its 40th anniversary on July 28.
The U.S. Embassy hung a rainbow flag outside the front entrance of the building, while a Lady Liberty statue at the back entrance was dressed in a rainbow skirt.
A contingent from the U.S. Embassy marched in the parade behind an official banner. Leading the way was U.S. Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell, an openly gay conservative Republican who fervently supported Trump during the 2016 race ― and who raised hackles among German leaders when he extended a lunch invitation to Austria’s right-wing nationalist leader.
Grenell proudly posed for photos with revelers. The embassy even posted them on its Facebook page, using one as the page’s primary background.
Germany isn’t the only place where the U.S. is participating in annual Pride celebrations while ignoring LGBTQ Pride at home.
In Luxembourg, which has an openly gay prime minister, Xavier Bettel, the U.S. Embassy celebrated raising the rainbow flag in June. Staffers posed with Luxembourg’s first husband, Gauthier Destenay, in front of the embassy.
The U.S. Embassy in Norway acknowledged Pride as well, offering some LGBTQ history on the embassy’s webpage, as did the embassy in Chile.
In South Korea, the U.S. Embassy joined the embassies of 12 other countries to participate in the 19th annual Seoul Queer Culture Festival in July. The embassy affixed a rainbow banner to the building and tweeted a picture of the ambassador visiting the festival to “support the #LGBTI community in Korea” and promote “human rights and tolerance.”