After Conservative candidate withdraws from parade, Vancouver Pride claps back with Ariana Grande quote

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      Watch out, Conservatives—the Vancouver Pride Society is firing back with the words of one fierce diva.

      The federal Conservative candidate for Vancouver Centre, David Cavey, issued a news release today (July 29) to announce that he would be withdrawing his participation in the Vancouver Pride parade to be held on Sunday (August 4).

      Cavey said that his decision not to participate was because the Vancouver Pride Society (VPS) had rejected applications from UBC and the Vancouver Public Library (VPL) to participate in the parade this year.

      The VPS is not allowing both UBC and the VPL to participate in the parade because both institutions allowed controversial speakers to hold events at their venues on the basis of free speech.

      However, the VPS deems both speakers—anti–SOGI activist Jenn Smith and Feminist Current founder Meghan Murphy—as discriminatory and transphobic.

      In response, the VPS issued a statement as well.

      The VPS stated that it wasn't contacted directly about his decision to withdraw from the parade, but found out through his press release.

      The society points out that his party’s leader, Andrew Scheer, already announced in June that he would not to participate in any Pride parade.

      “Both UBC and the VPL have acknowledged their room booking policies have had a negative impact on trans, non-binary and non-gender confirming communities,” the VPS stated. “Both organizations are now vowing to review their policies.”

      The VPS went on to state that as they are preoccupied with preparing “Western Canada’s largest parade and festival”, they “don’t have time to be dealing with political candidates trying to score points off the back of our work”.

      The society signed off with a quote from Ariana Grande “thank u, next”. Bang bang, indeed.

      You can follow Craig Takeuchi on Twitter at @cinecraig or on Facebook. You can also follow the Straight's LGBT coverage on Twitter at @StraightLGBT or on Facebook.