Is there an easy solution to racial tension? If there was, we'd love to send it off to Philadelphia. The city is one of the best in the nation, but recently we've been introduced to one of the less favorable aspects of living there. Some may desire us to not air our dirty laundry, but if we don't know its soiled, how will we get it clean? Covering an issue like this a negative, but hopefully something positive can come out of it.
Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney issued a statement after the interrupted flag raising:
“As I have said previously, there is no denying that racism and discrimination is an issue within the LGBT community. The Gayborhood should be a sanctuary for all in the LGBT community, but sadly not everyone is welcome at some of its institutions, and until real steps are taken to address racist dress code policies or other instances of institutionalized discrimination, I will not go to those institutions.
Discrimination in the Gayborhood and across the city is not something that one person or one office can be expected to solve on its own – it’s on all of us – and I hope the hearing that the Philadelphia Commission on Human Relations is holding on racism in the Gayborhood will start to move that ball forward. I intend to be there to do my part in ensuring that it does, and I encourage all others that are invested in change to attend as well.” – nbcphiladelphia.com
Philadelphia is one of my favorite cities out there. Each one of my handful of visit makes me want to live there more and more. If the correct job came up, I would definitely move there without hesitation. But then again I am a white male originally from Maine. I haven't experienced what these protestors are saying exist in Philadelphia. It should not be dismissed and needs to be discussed.
The city's Office of LGBT Affairs also issued a statement Sept. 29 after receiving what it called "reports of discriminatory practices by businesses in the Gayborhood, and the use of racist and homophobic slurs against members of the LGBT community." The city plans to hold a public hearing Oct. 25 about racism and discrimination in the community and has subpoenaed a number of business owners to speak at that hearing.
The protesters at Sunday's flag raising argued that the Kenney administration and the Office of LGBT Affairs, helmed by former assistant district attorney Nellie Fitzpatrick, are in denial about racism in the city's LGBTQ community and called for more to be done to combat it, according to an NBC10 photographer who attended the event. City officials and Mayor Kenney left the room to the protesters when they overtook the event.