UPDATE: Per the Birmingham News, Larry says he’ll deny a parade permit as well. Does he have the authority to do that? He says it’s not about discrimination, but if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck…
I hope he gets his ass sued off.
Birmingham mayor Larry Langford has denied a request from Central Alabama Pride for a proclamation recognizing Gay Pride Week in Birmingham. He has also refused to allow CAP to hang banners in Southside to commemorate the 20th annual Pride parade. Below is the text of the email sent in response to the CAP Board’s inquiry:
I have received your request for a proclamation celebrating Gay Pride Week. While I do not personally ascribe to any form of discrimination, I believe it is not the role of local governments to condone, endorse or support the personal lifestyle choices of its citizens.
Therefore, I respectfully deny your request for a city-issued proclamation as well as the posting of banners on city right-of-ways for such event.
Larry P. Langford
“While I do not personally ascribe to any form of discrimination, I believe it is not the role of local governments to condone, endorse or support the personal lifestyle choices of its citizens.”
Oh please. If the first part of that sentence were true, the Mayor would never have written the second part. Here’s a clue, Larry: sexual orientation and gender identity are NOT LIFESTYLE CHOICES. And refusing to allow Pride banners on city streets IS discrimination.
Funny how Larry thinks it’s just fine to force the local government to condone, endorse, and support his peculiar version of Christianity, as evidenced by his sackcloth and ashes event (to which he invited homophobic Bishop Eddie Long) and weekly Bible study for city employees.
Nephew Zach, who tipped me on this story, says this at Sweet Homo Alabama:
The proclamation has usually been issued by the mayor’s office each year to be printed in the guide handed out to pride participants. Each year the Pride Parade marches through the center of Five Points South, a commercial square in downtown. The parade route is usually decorated with gay pride flags and banners. Not so this year, according to the mayor. Langford also denied the pride board’s request to hang the banners this year. CAP board President Jonathan Quinn said that the organization is moving forward cautiously. “The pride board is meeting with the mayor and then moving forward,” Quinn said.
CAP is awaiting approval of its parade permit. The Birmingham News is expected to run this story tomorrow. Perhaps citizen outcry will have an effect on His Majesty Honor the Mayor, but I’m not holding my breath.