StarTrib: Politics at Basilica Block Party

The Basilica lit up in lavender to oppose
the 2012 MN Marriage Amendment
A higher purpose. The block party is a fundraiser for the Basilica of St. Mary. Over the years, the event has raised $5.8 million to help with the restoration of the basilica and its outreach projects.

No issue. Some years, the Basilica Block Party has been entwined with what's going on in the world. For instance, last year's event took place right after Philando Castile was shot. In 2011, there were protests aimed at the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis' support for banning same-sex marriage.

This year there was no overarching topic. But Carlile, a married lesbian, spoke about being proud to be in a state that supports same-sex marriage. And Jaedyn James, a Minneapolis soul singer, delivered a protest song about Castile's killing. Afterward she said, "I wish I never had to write that song." [One of these things is not like the other]

Something about mammon.

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