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May
23

Birmingham Mayor Denies Gay Pride Proclamation Request

langfordBirmingham, Ala. Mayor Larry Langford has denied a request by the board of Central Alabama Pride to issue a city wide proclamation marking the city’s annual gay pride celebration.
Organizers of the event sent an Email to the mayor’s office requesting the proclamation and received a reply on Wednesday. The response from the mayor is as follows:

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.

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.
A bulletin posted on MySpace on Friday night alleged that Saturday’s Birmingham News will quote the mayor as saying that the parade itself will not be allowed to happen. The parade, scheduled for June 7 will be the organizations 20th annual gay pride parade.

**UPDATE**
The mayor says he will deny a parade permit to Central Alabama Pride in Saturday’s Birmingham News.
From the article:

Langford said he turned down the requests this week from Central Alabama Pride because it is inappropriate for government to endorse a lifestyle. Pride Week is next month and often includes a parade on Southside and other events.

“My policy is don’t ask because it’s not my business, and don’t put me in the position to make it my business,” Langford said Friday. “I don’t condone it, but I also am not sitting in judgment on anyone.”

  • http://www.queervoice.net/kmcmullen/2008/05/23/langford-no-pride-proclamation-or-banners/ Birmingham Blues » Blog Archive » Langford: No Pride Proclamation or Banners

    [...] 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 [...]

  • josh

    well that’s just crap wtf? next does he want to ban any rainbow colored necklaces, bumperstickers, etc. from birmingham?

  • http://cranialhyperossification.com GDad

    Jackass.

    Sounds like a good time for a march rather than a parade.

  • http://myspace.com/CentralAlabamaPride DJ_Derek

    Please add
    myspace.com/CentralAlabamaPride
    as a friend to stay updated on what they are
    going to have us do. They will be working with Equality Alabama, several lawyers and churches
    to make this right, but they will need help (bodies, in droves).

  • http://www.bessemeropinions.com Joe

    From Bessemer Opinions:

    Langford said “I just don’t condone the lifestyle”.

    Mayor, we might not condone your lifestyle either (and apparently the SEC and the justice department also doesn’t), but this is not about how one leads their life, it is about who one is, about one’s very being.
    Read the rest at Bessemer Opinions

  • http://birminghamblues.com Kathy

    next does he want to ban any rainbow colored necklaces, bumperstickers, etc. from birmingham?

    He just may find out that he’s “banned” a whole lot of tax-paying citizens who will choose to go elsewhere.

  • Eric

    This/He is ridiculous.

    What he is doing is illegal–point blank!

    More people need to speak out against his illegal actions, and with more GLBTQA(allied) support we need to confront this ILLGEGAL issue.

    In adresseing his statement, “…I believe it is not the role of local governments to condone, endorse or support the personal lifestyle choices of its citizens,” I can only say that his justification (for lack of a better word) is crap; ludicrous. A city has the legal obligation to protect and uphold its citizens right to assemble, in doing so, the city is not promotiong, endorsing, or supporting the citizen’s cause; the city is only enforcing the government’s legal obligation to protect her citizens legal rights.

    I encourage all GLBTQA citizens to take action. Simply, forward this bulliten to friends, family and co-workers; write a letter to the Birmingham Mayor and state officials; speak out! (If we won’t, no one will.)

  • http://www.queersunited.blogspot.com queerunity

    thanks for the story i blogged about it and gave you credit
    http://www.queersunited.blogspot.com

  • http://dresramblings.com/2008/05/24/bloggings-power/ The Ramble: The power of the blog (sometimes a little too powerful)

    [...] that the mayor had decided to not only not issue the proclamation requested by event organizers, as first shared by Sweet Homo Alabama and Birmingham Blues on Friday (complete with the text from the email sent from Langford’s [...]

  • http://www.myspace.com/mejared313 Jared

    Do I have to come to Birmingham and slap some sense into him? How ridiculous

  • Mountie66

    He is in the Federal pen, just where he always belonged. What a loser and a damn crook!

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