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San Diego Gay Activist Objects To Honoring Bradley Manning At Pride Parade

Sean Sala
Sean Sala

San Diego resident Sean Sala, a Navy veteran and gay rights activist, lead the protest when word was leaked that the San Francisco Pride Parade named Army Pvt. Bradley Manning as its Grand Marshal.

Manning is currently on trial for allegedly leaking sensitive military documents to WikiLeaks.

Sala immediately responded to the parade announcement by creating an online petition to protest the move. That petition reads, in part:

Bradley Manning is a traitor to the United States... He is a shame to the LGBT Military community and he stands for everything the LGBT Military community stands against. He turned Secret United States information over to our enemies. He DOES NOT REPRESENT THE GAY MILITARY COMMUNITY! SHAME ON SAN FRANCISCO!

Later, SF Pride Board President Lisa L. Williams released a statement via Facebook to calm the outrage:

Bradley Manning will not be a grand marshal in this year's San Francisco Pride celebration. His nomination was a mistake and should never have been allowed to happen. A staff person at SF Pride, acting under his own initiative, prematurely contacted Bradley Manning based on internal conversations within the SF Pride organization. That was an error and that person has been disciplined. He does not now, nor did he at that time, speak for SF Pride.

Still, the matter caught the attention of editors at the national online magazine Salon, who invited Sala to participate in a debate about whether Manning is a hero to the LGBT community. Click here to check out the debate.