While most of us here in the US would not raise an eyebrow when a gay pride parade to takes place in the streets, in many parts of the world, such a thing would be unthinkable. This has long been the case in Bosnia, the last Balkan country to hold a pride parade.
Homophobia is, unfortunately, still widespread in Bosnia, and conservative religious groups still hold much sway over the public. This weekend, however, there was a breakthrough in Bosnia, as several thousand people marched in Bosnia’s first Gay Pride. Seeing that it was the first time Bosnia and its capital, Sarajevo, hosted such as an event, there was a heavy police presence guarding the event.
Fortunately, the parade happened without any incident, as people from all country carried rainbow flags and banners with slogans such as “Ima Izac” or ‘I Want Out’ in both Latin and Cyrillic scripts. Considering that Bosnia is seeking to join the European Union, this was a big test that showed, at the very least, more tolerance towards basic human rights.