An LGBTQ-affirming church’s sign proclaiming “All Are Welcome” was broken in two over the weekend after the church erected a line of different colored banners, in the six colors of the original LGBTQ Pride flag, plus a seventh utilizing the colors of the transgender flag, on its front walkway.
The sign, which stands off to the side of the walkway leading up to the church’s main entrance, welcomes all people — gay and straight, liberal and conservative, transgender, and those of all racial backgrounds — to attend services at the church.
Rev. Cynthia Black, the rector of the Episcopal Church of the Redeemer, in Morristown, New Jersey, told the local news site Morristown Greenabout the vandalism. However, she could not definitively say that the rainbow banners incited it.
“If, in fact, someone did this intentionally, then obviously, it’s a sad day for our community,” Black said. “But it’s not going to deter us from doing what we do. Love is stronger than hate. That’s a principle Redeemer has lived by for a very long time.”
This is not the first time the church has flown Pride-themed banners.
Typically, the rainbow-colored banners are erected in June to mark LGBTQ Pride Month. But the Church of the Redeemer erected theirs earlier, in commemoration of a lesbian parishioner who died from COVID-19.
Black notes that, in past years, passersby have stopped to photograph the colorful flags, even posing in front of them. They then see the church’s welcome sign and, regardless of whether they enter, understand its message.
Black said everything seemed fine when she left the church around 9 p.m. last Friday. But by Saturday morning, a person walking their dog saw the vandalized sign and informed officials of it.
Target is removing some Pride-themed merchandise from its stores after outrage from conservatives over items marketed explicitly to the LGBTQ community.
The outrage from conservatives over the Pride line has been ramped up by videos on social media with customers ranting over Pride-themed merchandise, confronting store employees, or destroying displays. They claim the company is seeking to indoctrinate people -- particularly children -- into either being LGBTQ or accepting LGBTQ people as normal.
On Tuesday, May 23, the big box retailer said portions of its "Pride collection" will be removed from stores "amid threats impacting our team members' sense of safety and wellbeing while at work," Target spokesperson Kayla Castaneda said in a statement to Newsweek.
A Florida Republican appeared to embrace the idea that his political party hates LGBTQ people during a debate on a right-wing "virtue-signaling" resolution that targets LGBTQ military members.
State Rep. Jeff Holcomb (R-Spring Hill) spoke on the House floor on Monday, May 1, in support of a resolution urging Congress to end so-called "woke" practices in the U.S. military, including efforts to recruit a more diverse fighting force, provide unconscious bias training, and allowing the use of gender-neutral language.
The bill is one of several "messaging" measures pushed by Florida Republicans in recent years to troll left-leaning colleagues and pander to the conservative Republican base by appealing to culture-war issues.
A man has been arrested on hate crime charges for allegedly stabbing a victim while hurling anti-gay slurs at him in Paterson, New Jersey.
Damian Padilla, 42, of Paterson, faces charges of first-degree bias intimidation, second-degree aggravated assault, third-degree possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose, and fourth-degree unlawful possession of a weapon, reports the Paterson Times.
On Tuesday, May 16, at 3:48 a.m., police officers were flagged down on Fair Street, near the Fair Street Projects, by a 35-year-old male suffering from non-fatal stab wounds.
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