Gay Pride marchers turned out for parades across the country this weekend to celebrate the 45th anniversary of New York's Stonewall Inn riots, which is often credited with kicking off the modern gay rights movement.
CBS New York reported
that the city's parade drew hundreds of thousands to Fifth Avenue on Sunday, including Governor Andrew Cuomo, who announced a new initiative to combat HIV/AIDS, as well as Laverne Cox, the transgender "Orange Is the New Black" actress recently featured on the cover of Time magazine.
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One million people attended Chicago's pride parade, and were especially thrilled to celebrate the legalization of same-sex marriage Illinois ushered in last month.
"I think it is a huge thing, and everybody's over the moon that they can do it now," said Charlie Gurion, who recently married his partner David Wilk. They were the first couple in Cook County to get a same-sex marriage license.
San Francisco's 44th annual parade was led by the lesbian group Dykes on Bikes, whose motorcycles thundered loudly at the head of the parade. Apple CEO Tim Cook, who took the reins after founder Steve Jobs passed away in 2011, marched with 4,000 employees and their family members. The parade drew roughly 100,000 participants in total.
"Star Trek" actor George Takei acted as the celebrity grand marshal at Seattle's parade, the city's 40th.
The lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender movement has made huge strides since last year, with the U.S. Supreme Court striking down a statue that denied federal recognition of same-sex marriages.
In 17 consecutive court decisions, federal and state judges have upheld the right of same-sex couples to marry. Nineteen states plus Washington D.C. now recognize same-sex marriage.
Other U.S. cities, including Minneapolis, Houston, and Augusta, also held parades over the weekend along with cities in France, Spain, Mexico, and Peru.
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