Special to The Interim

Homosexuals gathered to commemorate the world’s first gay pride parade, held in Philadelphia in 1965, and to present awards to activists and others who have advanced their cause. Among them was former Canadian prime minister Jean Chretien, who was recognized for his part in championing same-sex “marriage” in Canada.

Chretien, accompanied by two Royal Canadian Mounted Police, accepted the International Role Model Award at the gala hosted by Equality Forum, as part of a week-long gay “pride” event. The Mounties also accompanied Canadian homosexual activists Kevin Bourassa and Joe Varnell, as they received an award for becoming the first same-sex couple to challenge the law and legally “marry” in Canada.

Chretien announced in 2003 he would not fight challenges to federal marriage legislation in provincial courts, and later brought in same-sex “marriage” legislation of his own.

Conservative party House Leader John Reynolds said the decision by the Canadian Tourism Commission to send the RCMP to accompany Chretien was a disgrace. “I have no problems with Chretien receiving any award they want to give him,” he said. “But I do have a problem when the government of Canada, through taxpayers’ dollars, funds RCMP to go along with him in the guise of tourism or whatever.”

Liberal Pat O’Brien said the decision on the part of Chretien to accept the award “saddened” him. “The award is being granted because … he didn’t, as prime minister, use all the powers available to him to preserve, protect and defend marriage and the family as we have known it throughout our history.”