In the end, it was much ado about nothing. The gay activists who had spent all week complaining about not being able to participate in the 2013 Tet Parade, which is held in Little Saigon every year and celebrates the Chinese Lunar New Year, did not march in the parade, which the Orange Juice blog reported that they would.
However they did show up to the parade. They set up west of the parade grandstand – I was standing east of the grandstand and never saw them – which means the 90% of the parade attendees who were east of the grandstand also did not see them.
But there were plenty of other politicians there, as seen in our picture slideshow above, including:
- State Assemblymembers Allan Mansoor, Tom Daly and Travis Allen (who represents the Little Saigon area in the 72nd Assembly District)
- Westminster Mayor Tri Ta and Council Member Diana Carey (who did not wear a black armband, as was reported by the Orange Juice blog – but she did carry a little rainbow flag)
- Garden Grove Mayor Bruce Broadwater and Council Members Dina Nguyen (who was one of two lawyers who defended the parade organizers and defeated an attempt by gay activists to hijack the event); and Christopher Phan
- Jeff Ferguson, a candidate for O.C. Judge in 2014
- Ken Khanh Nguyen, who rode in RSCCD Trustee Jose Solorio’s car (Solorio was M.I.A.)
- Matt Harper, Huntington Beach Mayor Pro Tem
- Michael Vo, Fountain Valley Mayor Pro Tem
- Midway City Sanitary District Trustees
- The Westminster Unified School District
- Robert Hammond, O.C. Dept. of Education Trustee
- Westminster CRA (California Republican Assembly)
The parade was very well attended – families lined the parade route, which stretched along Bolsa Ave., from Magnolia to Bushard St. The parade started at 9 am and ended past 11 am.
Some of the O.C. politicians who boycotted the parade included:
- State Senator Lou Correa
- The entire Santa Ana City Council
- The entire Garden Grove Unified School District Board of Education
- Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez
- Congressman Alan Lowenthal
- Apparently Supervisor Janet Nguyen was not there either – I heard her name mentioned by the announces but did not see her or her usual entourage
These politicians erred by blowing off the Vietnamese American residents of Orange County. They chose apparently to side with a vocal minority instead of standing with the families who worked so hard to pay for the Tet Parade, after the City of Westminster demurred due to their fiscal problems.