Central Texas LGBTQ holds fall pride rally

Posted at 12:08 AM, Oct 16, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-16 04:01:54-04

Saturday, the Stonewall Democrats took to the Bell County Courthouse steps for a pride rally to remind the LGTBQA community that they have something to cheer about. 

October is National Coming Out Month. With flags waving, music blasting, and some brief speeches by activists from the area, Bell County Stonewall Democrat President, Irene Andrews, is hoping the group's visibility will make an impact. 

"Now you know me, you know an LGBTQ person. People walk around saying [LGBT issues] don't touch my life, that doesn't affect me or anyone I know but in reality, there is someone you know," Andrews said.  

June is nationally recognized as Pride Month but this marked the second year that the Bell County Stonewall Democrats have held a pride event in the fall. The theme this year was Protecting Equality. 

Carmen Saenz of InterWaco, attended the event in part to remind people to exercise their civic duty to not just vote but contact their representatives.

"As far as we've come, it's great and we need to celebrate that but we've got a long way to go and the victories seem to have pulled a lot of those haters out of the woodwork," Saenz said. 

Saenz specifically referenced House Bill 2, passed in North Carolina earlier this year. The bill eliminated non-discrimination laws and bathrooms for transgender people. Ahead of Texas'  84th Legislature Session, Saenz worries that the same type of laws will be proposed or enacted. 

Not everyone attending the rally agreed with the message. Joe Goodson, President of Concerned Christian Citizens, cited his deep spiritual beliefs for his disapproval.

"When you begin to loose your identity as a person, the way God made you in His image as a male or a female, you have begun to loose your soul. That's why I'm here," Goodson said. 

While Andrews knows there will be those who disagree, the message Saturday was simple---"The four letter word is love and that's what we're all about, we're about love."

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