‘No Cops at Pride,’ Explained

History still applies and Black Lives Still Matter.

Kristen Pizzo
3 min readJun 21, 2022


Photo by James A. Molnar on Unsplash

Gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, asexual, and intersex police officers exist. So why can’t they represent their place of employment at Pride in the same way that say, Apple or Cisco employees can?

Pride organizers deciding to ban uniformed cops from the parades is nothing new, but each June, it causes an uproar.

The organizers of San Francisco Pride 2022 have asked police officers not to march in the parade in their uniforms. Officers may be on duty at the event, but they cannot take part in the parade segment of the celebration while in their police uniforms.

Even before Pride month began, news organizations were stirring up shit with announcements about the ban.

NBC Bay Area loves to post provocative questions on Instagram, so of course they asked for readers’ thoughts about the San Francisco Pride issue with uniformed police. The comment section is very telling.

Several of their Instagram followers misinterpreted the announcement to mean none of the cops at the entire event will be in uniform.

“How will anyone know who is a cop and who isn’t?” people asked.

Others asserted that Pride participants should be punished for the decision by being denied access to safety services:

“Don’t ask for law enforcement help with the event, or any safety assistance, if they don’t want cops to be cops.”

“If you don’t want them to represent themselves, then don’t ask for their services.”

“Who will protect you?” another commenter asked.

As we’ve learned from the Uvalde massacre, cops do not protect us, nor are they ever obligated to put their lives on the line for civilians.

Some Instagram users thought the ban was hypocritical.

“If people can wear whatever they want at Pride, cops should be able to wear their uniforms in the parade.”

The police uniform is not just clothing. It establishes power, instills fear, and represents oppression.

“I thought Pride was all about inclusivity.”



Kristen Pizzo

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