Dem mayor refuses to raise LGBT flag, calls it symbol of ‘political movement’
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READING, Pennsylvania, July 19, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) — A Democrat mayor in the Pennsylvania town of Reading has bucked the party trend by blocking an LGBT “pride” flag from being raised at City Hall due to the symbol’s political nature.
The flag was originally slated to fly on Monday in recognition of Reading’s Pride Celebration and stay up through the following Sunday. However, the Reading Eagle reports that Mayor Wally Scott blocked it just minutes before it was set to go up. He objected not to the LGBT lobby’s causes, but to the prospect of flying anything representing a live political cause.
“The mayor’s position is that he does not support flags being up that support political movements and he views that as a political movement,” acting managing director Osmer Deming said in a statement. “The mayor stated he supports the group, the cause but had concerns about raising the flag,” added city council president Jeffrey Waltman, who said he tried to change Scott’s mind.
Pro-LGBT activists say they fully obtained permission to raise the flag. “I contacted the managing director and was told this flag would fly through the 21st,” Councilwoman Donna Reed said. Waltman added, “It was obviously an administrative breakdown that showed up at the last minute. It was approved by Osmer and I guess it didn’t get relayed.”
The group still went forward with their ceremony, holding the flag themselves rather than flying it. At Reed’s suggestion, they also marched to the corner of Ninth and Washington streets, where Scott was “known to hang out” but not present on Monday.
City resident Ernie Schlegel says he intends to file a complaint with the Reading human relations commission “and see if we have a stand for discrimination."
Scott is on his way out as mayor, having placed third out of five in May’s Democrat primary elections, and has said he looks forward to being a private citizen again. “I know I’m in the right place because I’m feeling good,” he said at the time. “I told everybody I’ll be where God wants me on May 21[.] ... It’s like a ton has been lifted off my chest. I never thought that politics was bad, but I felt the strain of things.”