Before we go any further, it must be said that there is no such thing as a “straight flag”.
But that didn’t stop one New Brunswick village from creating one anyway and flying it un-proudly on the front lawn of a quaint white chapel.
The reason? Literally nothing, other than undermining the pride of those who weren’t afforded the privilege of experiencing history as a straight person.
What’s truly bizarre is that the village’s council approved the flag as a sign of support for all groups in the community. Of course, it didn’t take long for public backlash to put pressure on the town of Chipman’s local officials to remove the flag. In less than 24 hours, the black-and-white-striped symbol of …something… was taken down.
“The straight flag is being seen as a flag of privilege and anti-minorities which our community and our council does not support,” wrote Mayor Carson Atkinson. “This flag distraction is a lesson for us and for other rural communities such as our own.” The mayor added that no harm or hate was intended.
It remains truly baffling as to what positive message could have come from flying a flag dedicated to the most accepted and least oppressed sexual orientation in history. It’s careless at best, and blatantly disrespectful of the symbolism of the rainbow flag associated with gay pride at worst.
“When the LGBT community recognizes an event like pride or sees the pride flag flying, it is an indication that their community is potentially a safe space for them to be and to live,” said Helen Kennedy, executive director of human rights group Egale Canada, in an interview with the Huffington Post.
“I think it’s really unfortunate that the community has done this because it further marginalizes LGBTQ people and it makes them feel really unsafe in their communities.”