Open Letter to Pride Cymru and South Wales Police

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What a fantastic weekend in our city once again as Pride Cymru took to the streets of Cardiff with its colourful parade and entertainment outside City Hall. Everyone was made to feel welcome – whether they were LGBT, friends and families, or just wanted a good day out. But though the rain came on Sunday, it was sadly not the only thing to dampen the occasion. On Saturday, a man who claims to be a local journalist took to Twitter to vent his fury that Pride was allowed to take place on the Bank Holiday Weekend.

Marcus Stead, who says he works for broadcasters such as BBC and Made in Cardiff, seemed to be annoyed that the Council was backing Pride: –
Strangely, he seemed to be under the impression that Pride was only for Lesbian and Gay people and many people tweeted him in response to correct him on that. He chose to ignore their comments and instead took another angle, complaining that the police were, well, policing the event.Having moved on from complaining that the Police were overlooking the parade, he was now referring to a celebratory comment from South Wales Police to show how they were supporting the event by taking part in the parade. Of course, people were keen to educate him on the matter so he next decided to complain about the noise, though by this time his tweets were rather rambling and seemed confused. He just wanted to be angry about something.

Only a few weeks earlier, Mr Stead had similar complaints about the Eisteddfod and Welsh Speakers so perhaps he just doesn’t want people to have celebrations or events unless they are specifically aimed at him? However, there is a darker side to his anger.

We still live in a world where people suffer prejudice and violence because of their sexuality and Pride events are important to highlight the lengths that still need to be taken. I would be delighted if  Lu Thomas, chair of Pride Cymru and DCC Rich Lewis could respond. DCC Lewis made a moving address to the crowd on Saturday spoke of the need to report hate crime. I only wish they can help Mr Stead understand why Pride is important and why his comments were ill-informed and unnecessary.

Edward Russell
Media professional and Lecturer.

Update! Lu Thomas responded on Twitter with the following:-