A contingent from the American Veterans For Equal Rights New York (AVERNY), the advocacy and support group for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered military veterans, marched in last Friday’s Veteran’s Day Parade in Manhattan.
This year’s group included Lower Manhattan City Councilman Alan Gerson (the tallest man pictured immediately in front of the Rainbow flag), who introduced a a resolution that passed the City Council in May calling on the federal government to repeal the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy that bars open service by gay and lesbian Americans.
The group also included three gay veterans of World War II.
According to Denny Meyer, a gay veteran active with the group (shown immediately to Gerson’s right as one looks at the picture), one official from the parade angrily interrupted the contingent as it first was lining up, demanding that the group “hide” its Rainbow colors. Gerson identified himself as a member of the City Council and a marcher with the AVERNY contingent and further confrontation was averted, so to speak.