As a drum major, Kim Boyd is often marching tall. But the Oakland resident said there's a little something extra in his step since he marched in the Inaugural Parade in Washington, D.C. on Monday.
"I don't know how to explain it to you. I step prouder," Boyd, 51, said. "You already hold your head high, but you step prouder."
That pride comes not just from Boyd's participation in the parade, but also from what President Obama said during his inaugural address. Boyd is a member of the San Francisco Lesbian/Gay Freedom Band who marched in the parade with the Lesbian and Gay Band Association; in his address, the president expressed support for gay rights and same-sex marriage. He also referenced the Stonewall riot, a seminal event in the gay rights movement.
We, the people, declare today that the most evident of truths –- that all of us are created equal –- is the star that guides us still; just as it guided our forebears through Seneca Falls, and Selma, and Stonewall; just as it guided all those men and women, sung and unsung, who left footprints along this great Mall, to hear a preacher say that we cannot walk alone; to hear a King proclaim that our individual freedom is inextricably bound to the freedom of every soul on Earth.
It is now our generation’s task to carry on what those pioneers began. For our journey is not complete until our wives, our mothers and daughters can earn a living equal to their efforts. Our journey is not complete until our gay brothers and sisters are treated like anyone else under the law –- for if we are truly created equal, then surely the love we commit to one another must be equal as well.
The musicians marching with the Lesbian and Gay Band Association listened to the address on a bus, where they were waiting for parade preparations to begin
"At the first moment, when he said Stonewall, just that alone, the whole bus cheered," Jason LeBrun said. The 33-year-old San Francisco resident played cowbell in the parade. "People had tears in their eyes."