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CSD Berlin 2018: Festive, unforgettable, claiming and thundery

(Blogmensgo, gay blog August 5, 2018) The 40th edition of CSD Berlin (Gay Pride) was surprised by a strong wind of force 10 towards the end of the event on Saturday, July 28, 2018. 600,000 people took part in the parade, and there were still 75,000 to 80,000 at the time of the final rally, until the fire brigade interrupted the concert at the Brandenburg Gate at 7:50 pm because of the danger of accidents or fallen trees. Despite the dangerous weather, nobody was hurt in the end.

The following video (approx. 4 hours) gives an idea of the event and the great heat. Interviews, comments and pictures of the parade are presented in good sound quality…

“My body, my identity, my life!”

Under the acronym CSD or Christopher Street Day (in memory of New Yorker Street, where the Stonewall uprisings took place in 1969), this year's “Berlin Pride” had the slogan “My body, my identity, my life!”

CSD Berlin was founded in June 1979, ten years after the Stonewall uprisings. Around 400 or 500 people took part in the first edition, a thousand times fewer than today. In the meantime, the event has become a genuine national and international institution, and personalities of all political affiliations participated officially, unofficially or in complete discretion. This year, Klaus Lederer, the Berlin Senator of Culture, officially opened the parade.

For the first time in its history, the CSD Berlin took place under the era of gay marriage, which has been in force in Germany since 1 October 2017. Although this is a significant step forward, homophobia still exists in Germany and equality is far from being achieved. The difference in the treatment of homosexuals and heterosexuals is still very clear in terms of family rights and gender identity, especially on issues such as civil status documents or gender reassignments.

Thus the CSD Berlin still made 11 important social and political claims. It remains the task of politics, administration, the judiciary and the media to fulfill these tasks, so that sooner or later, equal rights will be achieved for everyone in Germany.

A parade like no other

Around 45 groups on foot and 70 floats passed through the streets of old West Berlin. The parade consisted of about 100,000 people and 500,000 spectators.

This live video of almost two hours and a good picture quality allows us to immerse ourselves in the atmosphere of the move:

One of the most prominent personalities this year was Syrian refugee and trans-woman Katia al-Shehaby, who was there with her twin brother Nour. They represented two problematic issues at the same time, that of refugees and that of trans-persons. Katia, however, who has not yet finished her hormone treatment, admits that Germany is much more welcoming towards people like her than Syria, which is why she only came out of the closet in 2015 after her arrival in Germany.

Due to the heavy storm, DJ Felix Jaehn, Israeli singer Netta (winner of the ESC 2018) and rapper Sookee unfortunately had to cancel their concert.

In contrast to most other Gay Prides, the Berlin Pride (CSD) is financed exclusively by private funds. However, the public authorities continue to provide the security forces free of charge for this event, for which a high price is usually charged in other countries (such as France).

For all those who are in a hurry but still want to get an impression of CSD Berlin 2018, here is an overview in less than eight minutes:

The event was broadcast live and streamed on csd-berlin.de and Facebook. A text and picture message in blog version can be found here.

Frank-S / MensGo

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