WESTMINSTER, Calif. (AP) – A Southern California city is gearing up for a heated debate over a Vietnamese new year’s parade that would exclude the community’s gay and lesbian residents.
The Westminster City Council on Wednesday will consider whether to grant a permit for the 2014 Tet parade to organizers who have said they won’t allow Viet Rainbow of Orange County to march.
Viet Rainbow co-chair Hieu Nguyen says he hopes a permit will be denied for the Vietnamese American Federation of Southern California, and if it is granted that council members will sit out the parade.
Assistant City Attorney Christian Bettenhausen has said councilmembers can’t deny a permit based on the parade’s message because a parade, like a demonstration, is protected free speech.
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