March 3, 2008
The Honorable Nikitas Kaklamanis
Mayor, City of Athens
Athens City Hall
To The Honorable Mayor Kaklamanis,
It has come to the attention of our organization, Pride Alliance of Long Island, that the Festival Yperifaneias – Athens Pride Association has applied to your office for the Aegis of the City for their 2008 event, scheduled for 7 June 2008 in Klafthmonos Square.
We are aware that you rejected the organization’s application in 2007. We consider this rejection to be in conflict with the idea of Isopolitia, and with the respect that a modern, democratic European city must have for all its citizens, no matter their religion, race, age or sexual orientation.
In fact, our local politicians Legislator Jon Cooper, the Majority Leader of our Legislature and Frank Petrone, the Supervisor of Huntington Township and other officials of democratic cities around the world not only endorse but also participate in their cities’ Pride events.
We understand that the City of Athens gives its Aegis as an endorsement of a cultural event that has significance for the City’s population. 2008 is the fourth consecutive year of the Athens Pride Festival Yperifaneias, and the second year that the organization has applied for the City’s Aegis
We therefore strongly urge that you grant this endorsement this year, in a democratic display of respect and recognition for all Greek citizens and residents of Athens.
Athens is respected around the world for its civility, history and diversity. It would be a shame to have your city placed in the company of Moscow, Warsaw, Zagreb, Gomel and others where their Mayors have tried to suppress the basic rights all humans should be afforded.
Paul D. Sanders
Pride Alliance of Long Island
North Babylon, New York, USA
“Coming Out All Year Long”