News (USA)

Macy’s Parade refuses to cave to anti-LGBTQ+ group’s demands

NEW YORK CITY - NOVEMBER 28 2013: the 87th annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade attracted hundreds of thousands of spectators. Turkey with Pilgrim riders. Parade marchers are in the streets while large yellow star balloons with Macy's written on them appear next to the large turkey float with a pilgrim riding on top of the bird.
A shot from Macy's Thanksgiving Parade in New York City Photo: Shutterstock

The anti-LGBTQ+ One Million Moms “vastly overestimated their leverage” when it came to bullying Macy’s.

The organization, known for its boycotts of television shows and companies that show even slight support of LGBTQ+ rights, is an astroturf project of the anti-LGBTQ+ hate group American Family Association. It has one employee and no members.

Two nonbinary Broadway actors will participate in this year’s parade, causing the group’s leader, Monica Cole, to clutch her pearls. Cole’s frequent over-the-top petitions only gather a few thousand supporters at most.

Tony Award-winner Alex Newell, who stars as Lulu in Shucked, and Justin David Sullivan, who plays May in the musical & Juliet, will perform during the parade along with hundreds of others. Broadway shows have been included in the floats for more than 50 years.

Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade first occurred in 1924, making it the second-oldest Thanksgiving parade in the United States. The parade normally features giant balloons in the shape of pop-culture cartoon characters, performances by different artists and groups, and colorful festival floats.

“We look forward to celebrating this iconic Thanksgiving tradition again next week,” a corporate spokeswoman said in response.

But Scott Galloway, a professor of marketing at New York University Stern School of Business, said the group could have gone a little farther.

“If I were advising Macy’s,” he said, “this is an opportunity for them to say the following: Judge me by my enemies.”

Galloway says that the group has “vastly overreached” this time, noting that after recent loud boycotts of brands like Bud Light and Target, “a lot of these fringe groups are drunk with power.” The beer company caved to conservatives while Target was forced to pull some items off the shelves due to concern for employee’s safety after radicals kept entering stores, shouting threats.

The group’s past moral outrage has been directed at Parents magazine for featuring a same-sex couple, an anti-smoking ad that mentioned erectile dysfunction, a shampoo ad that showed a young boy in a skirtHighlights magazine for acknowledging gay people, Scholastic books for featuring LGBTQ-inclusive children’s books, the Roseanne reboot for featuring a nonbinary child, a Disney cartoon series for its brief scene of two men kissing, a Zales jewelry commercial for featuring a lesbian couple, a 30-second TV commercial for featuring a male same-sex couple, and the fairy tale drama series Once Upon a Time for showing a lesbian kiss.


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