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Hägglund turns down Stockholm Pride invite

TT/The Local · 15 Jul 2010, 11:45

Published: 15 Jul 2010 08:02 GMT+02:00
Updated: 15 Jul 2010 11:45 GMT+02:00

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Furthermore Stockholm Pride is in two weeks set to be the scene of the first party leader debate since the summer recess and the Christian Democrats and Hägglund will not be represented.

According to Hägglund's press secretary, Petra Kjellarson, Hägglund will instead be holding his traditional speech on Öland the day after the debate and is thus unable to attend.

An explanation which did not appease debate organisers, RFSL.

"Of course he would have time, it is not a direct clash with the summer speech, but he obviously does not prioritise this," said RFSL head Ulrika Westerlund to the newspaper.

The last time the Swedish Federation for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Rights (RFSL) hosted a party leader debate, during the 2006 election year, Hägglund was in attendance but not then prime minister Göran Persson.

Persson was widely criticised for his absence, while Hägglund was roundly booed by the Pride crowd and SvD asked Westerlund if this could have had an impact on his decision.

"It would be a shame if that was the case. They forward policies that many LGBT people are critical of. While KD argue that they are a party for all this debate is a prime opportunity to show that," she told the newspaper.

Story continues below…

RFSL stood out an empty chair in Göran Persson's place at the 2006 debate and plans to do the same for Göran Hägglund.

Due to its rapid growth in popularity in recent years, the Pride festival will this year be located at the Maritime Museum with the Pride House located in Kulturhuset on Sergels Torg. The event will take place from July 26th to August 1st.

TT/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

10:30 July 15, 2010 by Renfeh Hguh
"while Hägglund was roundly booed by the Pride crowd" and the RFSL is not happy he is not attending this year. Idiots!
10:34 July 15, 2010 by Luckystrike
Think we need a pride march for straight people these days. I think it's getting to be the "norm" these days if you gay, lesbian or Bi.

"while Hägglund was roundly booed by the Pride crowd"

lol'ed at this too
11:01 July 15, 2010 by Nemesis
The RFSL people booed him. Why the hell should he go back?

Also who does RFSL think they are, demanding that a political leader attends there events?

Why are the journalists not calling out RFSL for demanding that politicans attend there events?

This is nothing to do with gay rights.

If a politican chooses not to attend, that is there decision which should be respected.
11:03 July 15, 2010 by calebian22
He was there once, showing tolerance even though his religion is opposed to the Pride lifestyle, and he was booed. Why would he go back? Tolerate us, but we won't tolerate you. You gotta love the pink mafia.
11:27 July 15, 2010 by Vitas
My swedish friends told: 9 of 10 swedish males - gays!!!
11:54 July 15, 2010 by shame, shame
It is established practice for political leaders to attend the event, which is the largest festival held in Sweden each year.

KD are under no obligation to attend but it is interesting that they decide not to so close to an election - do they stand for tolerance as they claim, or do they stand for old conservative and backward values with regards to homosexuality. Pride is a demonstration for freedom of expression and they miss an opportunity to show support for this universal right.

Pride, as some here seem to imply, presents no challenge to heterosexuality. The festival lasts for five days in a corner of Stockholm, the pride parade takes up one afternoon - the rest of the year is one long hetero demonstration.

Objection to Pride can only be based on ignorance, fear and insecurity, there is no other explanation. Religion is no excuse - Jesus hardly represented the presumed "ideal" of the nuclear family.
12:24 July 15, 2010 by calebian22
Shame shame,

Where in the Bible is Jesus held up as an example of the ideal nuclear family? I would be interested in reading that passage.
12:37 July 15, 2010 by Nemesis
@ shame, shame

Regarding Jesus. Are you talking about the guy who went into a desert with 12 men for a while?

A few facts about gay pride.

It is supposed to celebrate an event in which a bunch of drag queens, transsexuals, camp queens and butch lesbians got in a fight with the police. No white middle class or more accurately acceptable LGBT people were at Stonewall, regardless of recent attempts to whitewash it.

Most of the people there that night were mixed race, transsexuals and drag queens. The very people that most people at pride would run a mile from if they sat down at the same table as them in a resturant outside the pride event. The people who are at pride, who are mostly homosexual and white, tend to avoid the actual type of people who were in the Stonewall night of the riot.

Also, if a politican has something better to do, such as watch paint dry, prepare legislation or go home to the kids, then that is his choice.

RFSL has no right to even think, it can dictate to a democratically elected public representative who he should be with, when or how. Sweden is a democracy and hopefully someone will tell RFSL that.

RFSL is also no bastion of purity. Check out its history and what it used to campaign for in the 70's.
13:28 July 15, 2010 by shame, shame
@Nemesis.... and Nelson Mandela was classified as an armed terrorist, so what?

Stonewall was radical because it was radical to express pride in homosexuality. Stockholm Pride 2010 remains radical but not for the same reasons. That just shows the success of the gay rights movement.

The attendance of all of the (other) party leaders (whose parties represent 94% of the electorate) at the event illustrates just how mainstream and accepted homosexual rights are in Sweden. Hägglund's non-attendance raises the question as to where he stands, that's all.

The assured success of Pride does not hinge on Hägglund's appearance and no one is dictating to him, they are criticising him - also a democratic right. Most people couldn't care less what KD think, the loss is only Hägglund's own.
14:02 July 15, 2010 by Nemesis
@ shame, shame

If people going to pride have the same attitude as yourself, then I can full well understand Hägglund not going to it.
14:18 July 15, 2010 by Kevin Harris
RFSL, of all organisations, should sympathise with people who have been victimised for no good reason. Respect and tolerance are a two-way street.

Mr Hägglund was loudly booed by RFSL supporters at the event in 2006, and I am not in the least suprised he doesn't feel like honouring them with his attendance this year. Perhaps if RFSL had shown their guest more respect then, Mr Hägglund might feel more postive towards them now.

How about RFSL offering Mr Hägglund some kind of reassurance (if they can) that he will be treated courteously this year?
14:42 July 15, 2010 by cogito
Gay pride is nice and safe and applauded by middle class whites who wish to demonstrate their open-mindeded politically correct views.

Pride is boring.

It has, as #8 above points out, far removed from the daring Stonewall storming.

#11. Victimized? That was a long time ago. Now these "victims" hold well paid and influential positions in the press, TV, radio, advertising, the public sector, ministerial posts.

14:45 July 15, 2010 by superturbo
so the gays will be taking over the town this year again with their gay-exclusive fest.... how sad. :(
16:21 July 15, 2010 by Jes
Freedom to associate allows you not to associate . Gay people are sick bastards if they don´t think that there are people who do not have to hit the street to celebrate sex , like they were hooligans .

I used not to mind anybody´s sexual orientation . But now that its rubbed in our faces , I am beginning to hate the stink .
16:40 July 15, 2010 by Nemesis
@ Jes, cogito & superturbo,

I personally fully support gay rights and support the right of gays to get married. I think they should be allowed to pay divorce lawyers like the rest of us and screwed over by the lawyers bill.

However pride is something that is starting to annoy me the last few years.

I have attended two pride events with friends a few years back and had a really good time. My friends however no longer go, as the LGBT community is starting to whitewash the entire pride event into something it was not and has lost its sense of humour. They are actually erasing history and rewriting it. Goebels and Stalin would have been proud.

When things like this start to happen, I question what the gay pride event is about now and what it has become.


Tel Aviv is the only city in the Middle East that gay arabs can live in peace without fear of being killed by the authorities.

A lot of the gay groups are starting to become as bigoted as a lot of the groups that used to discriminate aginat them years ago.

At this link RFSL actually accussed researchers who were trying to help and defned transsexual patients from bigoted psychiatrists of being nazi's.


The gay community has got most of its rights, but also seems determined to attack the rights of some others.

I will continue to support the rights of gay people. I will not however support or give any time whatsoever to the bigots running the gay organisations. I have no time for anti-semitism and transphobia.
19:24 July 15, 2010 by Jes
You got it @ Nemesis !

Gay people are only nice if they need support. Once they have it , they become intolerant bitches .

Like you , I fail to understand the connection between sexuality and all this wierdo street frenzy . Those who have always claimed that to be gay is to be emotionally unbalanced may have a point afterall . Is it not possible for one to be "PROUD" of what they are without all this uncouth dramatization ?

When are we going to see a parade of "proud impotents " Proud sex addicts " Proud bigots" etc etc ???
01:06 July 16, 2010 by DAVID T
i'm in the rubber fist business so we always do well at this time of year :-)
09:11 July 16, 2010 by Nemesis
@ Jes

I am up for any street party. They are usually good fun.

The reason I am wary of gay pride is not the event itself, but the underlying politics that is creeping in behind it, which has nothing to do with the original event in Stonewall in New York that started it.

I used to go to the gay pride event with my two gay friends, who now no longer go to it either, for the same reaons as me.

They have removed everyone of colour from the original event, in effect whitewashing it and then the camp gays, the butch lesbians, transsexuals and drag queens. Now they put forward that only white middle class gay people were involved in the riot, when in actual fact they were not, as they would not have frequented that bar.

They have rewritten history, removing anyone found to be inconvenient, removing anyone who is not masculine, white and middle class. ie everyone who was there. The fact that antisemitism is creeping into the pride events as is transphobia, makes me look at it in a very different light. Pride has went that way in Madrid and Toronoto and looks like doing the same in other places.
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