Fitting an event with a president some view as the most progressive ever, President Obama's Jan. 21 inauguration (the same day as Martin Luther King Jr. Day) will have several LGBT aspects to it.
Out of the five people selected to read an original poem at a presidential inauguration, Richard Blanco, 44, will be the first Latino, first gay man and youngest person to serve the role when he participates at Obama's event Jan. 21, according to ABC News. "Here I am, first-generation Cuban-American, and this great honor that has just come to me, and just feeling that sense of just incredible gratitude and love," he said in an interview with NPR. Robert Frost and Maya Angelou are among those who have previously served the role.
In addition, nine members of Chicago LGBT Lakeside Pride Music Ensembles will march in the inauguration parade: Erin Campbell, Mellophone; Andrew Favreau, Clarinet; Denise Montiel, Percussion; Jessie Reuteler, Mellophone; Dale Spaulding, Euphonium; Brandon Strawn, Trombone; Melissa Terrell, Trumpet and Assistant Brass Captain; Kent Watkins, Flute; Mark Wienand, Euphonium and Brass Captain. They will march as part of the Lesbian and Gay Band Association (LGBA), a musical organization composed of marching and concert bands from across the United States and around the world. LGBA was selected from more than 2,800 bands to perform and is the only LGBT group in history to be invited to march in a presidential inaugural parade, according to SouthFloridaGayNews.com .
Also, a minister with an anti-gay past is out of the inauguration. Rev. Louie Giglio, an Atlanta minister and founder of the Passion Conferences, has been dropped because of some past comments he made, according to MSNBC.com . ThinkProgress discovered anti-gay remarks Giglio made in a mid-1990s sermon entitled "In Search of a StandardChristian Response to Homosexuality."