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Conservative Group Tells City to Move “Pride” Parade from Public Property

The Florida Legislature recently passed the Protection of Children Act to stop children from being exposed to “adult” performances. One group says this means the parade shouldn’t be held on public property.

FERNANDINA BEACH, FLORIDA — Another LGBTQ “Pride” parade in Florida could be impacted by a new law prohibiting private businesses and local governments from allowing children to attend “adult live performances.”

Jack Knocke, executive director for Citizens Defending Freedom-Nassau, has warned the Fernandina Beach city commissioners that the annual LGBTQ “Pride” parade needs to change this year or risk violating the Protection of Children Act. The parade is scheduled for June 10.

The Florida Legislature passed HB 1423 – known as the Protection of Children Act – on April 19. Those who violate the law could be charged with a first-degree misdemeanor and businesses may have their license revoked.

The proposal will become a law and go into immediate effect upon receiving the governor’s signature. More than 300 LGBTQ activists protested the bill at the Florida Capitol last week. Governor Ron DeSantis has not yet signed the bill, but is expected to do so.


“It is time that the citizens of Nassau County who support protecting our children, support the rule of law and support traditional Christian values speak up to stop the misuse of city assets to expose children to sexual material that are inappropriate,” Knocke wrote in an email published by the Fernandina Observer.

“It is against the law,” Knocke asserted. “Rescind the permits for the pride parade and pride festival immediately because they are in the park violating City Ordinances and State Ordinances CS/HB 1423 restricting adult content and performances from public parks, churches and schools.”

The Observer reported that none of the commissioners responded to Knocke’s email via public communication channels.

One local man told the paper that he has worn women’s clothing to past parades and intends to do the same this year. Despite his comments, Fernandina Beach Pride President Genece Minshew claims there have not been “drag shows” at the parade.


At least two other LGBTQ events in Florida have been impacted by the new law.

Days after the Legislature passed the bill, Port St. Lucie “Pride” added a 21+ age restriction to its annual LGBTQ festival and canceled the parade in anticipation of the governor signing the bill.

Last week, an LGBTQ youth event scheduled for May 5 in Riverview cancelled performances from cross-dressing men due to the Protection of Children Act.