Alabama LGBT Group Upset By Erased Pride Art

Photo by Tristan Billet on Unsplash

LGBTQ people in Florence, Alabama are mad after a Pride crosswalk was washed away by city workers.

This past Thursday, LGBTQ rights group Equality Shoals and allies appeared at the crosswalk on Mobile Street to paint a rainbow in honor of Pride Month. Unfortunately, City of Florence crews then washed it away almost immediately afterward.

City mayor Steve Holt says the washing was within the city’s rights, as the rainbow painting was applied without permission. According to him, a city ordinance prevents anyone from painting on streets or sidewalks without legal permission from the city.

“The police department called the fire department and they came and washed it off, but there are still some remnants there,” said Holt to WAAY 31.

Image via WAAY 31

As for Equality Shoals, they state that they applied for a permit to paint the sidewalk. While Holt and City officials say the permit was denied, Equality Shoals says they thought it was approved.

“We don’t sense that there was any miscommunication on our part. We made it pretty clear that it was denied,” said Holt.

Meanwhile, Mathew Pereda, the president of Equality Shoals, said, “We thought we were following the law as we were led to believe by Florence City Council members. As we learn more, we will let everyone know.”

Despite this violation of the law, the City of Florence says they don’t plan to seek criminal charges. They’d rather leave the incident at the removal of the Pride painting. Equality Shoals, however, is not so satisfied.

“We would like to request a meeting to address the community’s concerns and to have our permit request honored and issued in a timely manner. Regardless of who is at fault in this situation, we firmly believe you shouldn’t have to be an expert to petition your local government. The city had many opportunities to help these organizers who were trying to follow the law and instead were publically shamed,” wrote the organization and the Shoals Diversity Center.

We emailed Mayor Steve Holt and Police Chief Ron Tyler today. Let’s make things right. 🌈❤️W/ Shoals Diversity Center

Posted by Equality Shoals on Friday, June 14, 2019

Despite this conflict, a Pride March has been approved to take part in the city on June 29.

3 thoughts on “Alabama LGBT Group Upset By Erased Pride Art”

  1. There lies a problem, you cannot give a well defined and empirical definition for what “queer” stands for. There is an exact definition for homosexuality (same-sex attraction), no confusion or ambiguity around it.

    No anger, but apprehensions to ideologically charged labels/identities being forcefully attached to GLB, erasing and redefining who we are (same-sex attracted people). Even if sites like this don’t report it I think you know what is going on, the unavoidable division between GLB and the other letters due to irrenconcilable differences where biological reality cannot be ignored. Lesbians have been kicked out of EuroPride for stating what former GLB fought for, that lesbians are attracted to female bodies and they don’t have a choice over it; no matter what identity someone claims.

    No one should be harrassed or be the object of aggression but that doesn’t GLB should add whatever letters at the expense of others whose nature is unchangeable.

    • My own personal definition of the Q is for Queer or Questioning. I use it as a sort of umbrella term for any person not included in the LGBT. LGBTQ, however, is a valid term and substitute for LGBT, LGBT+, etc. that’s used by many others and not just me. Its point is to be more inclusive, so why be angry at it?

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