The Temecula Valley Unified School District board voted Tuesday to ban all flags — except the US and California state flag — from flying at the California district’s campuses, ABC7 reported.
The controversial ban has angered many who see the move as an attack against the gay pride flag, according to ABC7. The board, who last month approved a plan to inform parents if their children identified as transgender, said they had not specifically singled out any flag.
Although many opposed the move, some supported it, ABC7 reported. (RELATED: ‘Pain And Sorrow’: California Students Stage A Walkout After School Board Won’t Fly The Pride Flag)
#UPDATE: A new controversial flag policy for the Temecula Valley Unified School District was passed with a 3-2 vote, banning most flags, including Pride flags, from being displayed on school campuses. https://t.co/z5mVNNPFAY
— KTLA (@KTLA) September 13, 2023
“It makes me so upset, and that is the reason why I’m up here,” one mother said at the meeting. “That I have to go to my child’s school and see a rainbow flag hung on a wall. We don’t need to know what your personal sexual preference is.”
“Do you know how children work?” another concerned parent asked. “When they see something, they become curious. When they become curious, they want to try it out.”
But plenty of parents spoke against the ban.
“Pride flags represent inclusivity — not sex, you weirdos,” a woman said during public comment.
“Taking down a pride flag is telling people they’re not wanted,” a Navy veteran said. “How un-American is that? You’re telling them, ‘Go into the closet. Be quiet. We don’t want to see you. We don’t want to acknowledge you.'”
A student representative offered similar sentiments at the beginning of the meeting, noting it was National Suicide Prevention Week, ABC7 reported. She cited the Trevor Project to claim that transgender youth are four times more likely to attempt suicide than their peers.
Despite such testimony, the ban passed by a vote of 3-2.
A military veteran who attended the meeting was “pretty happy” with the outcome, according to ABC7. Wearing a T-shirt that read “Families and Parents First,” the man said, “I think that the American flag does promote total inclusivity of everybody.”