The Sexist

Dupont High Heel Race Gets Political

Tomorrow, as per tradition, hundreds of drag queens will race down 17th Street between R and Church Streets NW. According to Metro Weekly, the 24th annual Dupont High Heel Race will see a couple of changes this year: One, you won't be able to drink beer outside anymore. And two, it's political this time.

Metro Weekly delivers the bad news: This go-around, the "traditional beer garden adjacent JR.'s" will be closed due to inclement weather. In place of beer, however, this year's High Heel Race will provide racers and on-lookers with a sense of purpose! Will O'Bryan reports:

the event is now being run under a First Amendment permit rather than a parade permit, reflective of the event's gay identity. That distinction clears the way for street closures and a police presence. Loosely speaking, it's the difference between a political rally and a block party.

"Until we have complete equality and people want to show up at gay events, they need to realize we don't have the same rights," says [Dave]  Perruzza [vice president of JR.'s]. "The [volunteers'] shirts will probably say, 'Equality for Everyone.' It's the High Heel March for Equality. It's a gay event, put on by gay people."

It's unclear why the permit switcheroo was necessary—the parade has run for years with street closures and a police presence. Whatever the rationale, the designation may help drum up support for a pending bill that would recognize same-sex marriages in the District of Columbia. So, who's running for domestic partnerships?

Photo by Darrow Montgomery

  • Former Staffer

    How is this advancing the cause of gay equality? Isn't this just further promulgating stereotypes? Not all gay men are drag queens (obviously) so what exactly does this accomplish? Community building...maybe?

  • suicide_blond

    i can only think of one word...

  • jules

    Political or not, its always a fun opp to watch some of the most creative cross-dressing/drag queen action in DC. Last year my favorite costumes were the "ladies" that dressed up as their favorite make-up icons: L'oreal, Mary Kay, CoCo Chanel...

    Who wants to pre-drink at my apartment? I live near 17th and O.

  • Comrade Al Gonzales

    Stupidest "political" event ever. These events set the cause back twenty years each time they happen.

    Did black people try to emphasize negative stereotypes in their civil rights marches? No. They wore suits & good clothes, & acted like the responsible citizens they were.

    Gay rights advance when people act like the responsible citizens they are. Otherwise, it's just fodder for the bigots.

    Finally, these "races" are just stupid. Seeing a bunch of idiots running in high heels? Only a moron would be entertained.

    If you want to have fun, make it a big Halloween costume event. The "racing" is just dumb.

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