Hands off our pole: Dublin City Council votes against flying Pride flag

With two Dublin councilmembers stating the Tri-Valley city is not a progressive city like San Francisco, description of the city’s flag pole as sacred, and a litany of anti-LGBT comments from a number of residents, the Dublin City Council on Tuesday voted against a proposal to raise the rainbow Pride flag over the city next month.

A separate item to proclaim June as LGBT month in Dublin, however, was unanimously approved. But the plan to fly the Pride flag at City Hall, introduced by Councilmember Shawn Kumagai, a gay man who was elected to the council last November, was met with discriminatory public comments rarely heard these days within the halls of East Bay government.

Kumagai Shawn

Dublin Councilmember Shawn Kumagai was elected last November. He previously served 17 years in the Navy.

A vast majority of the public registering a dissenting opinion on the flag issue said allowing one group to fly their banner over the city would mean all types of groups, ranging from sports teams to the confederate flag, would be able to do the same.

Joshua Rodriguez, donning the red Make America Great Again hat, favored by supporters of President Trump while he addressed the council, said flying LGBT at city hall is divisive and not supported by Dublin residents. “It is then assumed all of the town is proud and supports this choice,” he said. “There is no ‘S,’ which would stand for ‘straight.’ Therefore, it is not all-inclusive. It does bother me that this is being pushed on the people of this town.”

A Dublin resident who called himself Ketih B. equated the proposal to promoting “sexual decadence” and the “immoral destruction” of societies. The resident added, while addressing the council, that the Pride flag represents “the transgenders” and pedophiles.

Mike Grant, a 30-year resident of Dublin and local gun shop owner said he can identify with the LBGT community’s struggles with discrimination. Like LGBT groups, he said, “The Democrats have been after me for years. That’s 41 years that I’ve been putting up with the gun haters. So I kind of understand how he feels,” he said, referring to the discrimination Kumagai has faced as a gay man. But added, like a failed sanctuary city policy Kumagai had previously backed, “It’s about pushing a private agenda issue out in the Tri-Valley.” Grant later unfurled an NRA flag and asked the council if they would approve flying it at city hall.

Supporters of the Pride flag appeared distressed by the comments. A woman who described herself as a 69-year-old lesbian from San Ramon, appeared on the verge of tears. “I can’t tell you how painful it is for me to sit here and listen to this,” she said. “The rainbow flag stands for love. The freedom to choose who to love. That’s all it is.” She later addressed Kumagai from the lectern and said, “I didn’t think it was going to be like this, Shawn.”

Steve Wright, a Dublin resident, told the council, “People are born gay. It is not a choice. It’s not a cause. It’s not membership.” But three of the five Dublin councilmembers could not be swayed.

After praising “a lot of great speeches” offered during public comment, Councilmember Arun Goel worried about the precedent the city might be making by approving the raising of the LGBT flag, in addition, to the absence of a specific council policy on the issue.

“What type of city are we? We’re a city that cares. We’re a city that is inclusive,” said Goel, who unsuccessfully ran for mayor last fall. “But we’re also a small city that has values that chooses to want to identify itself in its own unique ways.”

“I heard today that pole was sacred,” Goel continued. “I heard people point to a flag that says, ‘This gives us integrity. This makes us proud,'” he said. “If we were to do something like this, I’m worried. What is the next step? What is the next ask?” Goel, Councilmember Melissa Hernandez, and Mayor David Haubert voted against the LGBT flag raising.

Kumagai, a 17-year Navy veteran who served a portion of his time under the military’s “Don’t Ask. Don’t Tell” policy created during the Clinton administration, offered measured words when responding to opposition for his proposal. “I will not speak to refute the opinions that others hold,” Kumagai said on two occasions. However, he rebutted a contention the issue might attract other groups, perhaps those that may make the city further uncomfortable, will want approval for flag raising in the future.

“In my opinion there is no such thing as a slippery slope,” he said. “That’s why we’re here. We’re here as a council to make judgments. Just because we make one call doesn’t mean we have to make a second, or third, or fourth.” Kumagai and Councilmember Jean Josey, also new to the council, voted for the proposal.

“As a gay man, I don’t want to be normalized as a straight person. I just want to be able to live my life and have the same freedoms that everyone else has,” said Kumagai.

He acknowledged many groups are also worthy of recognition by the city and urged for a flag policy later. But realizing the agenda item was unlikely to pass, Kumagai offered an amended proposal, limiting the flag raising to one day on June 1.

The compromise motion appeared to catch Haubert off guard. He paused to offer a substitute motion to avoid registering a roll call vote by council, but was unable to formulate one.

“Are we San Francisco? The answer is no,” said Haubert, who voted against the flag raising. “They’re more progressive and more demonstrative on the national scene and that’s maybe not Dublin.”

Haubert painstakingly assured the audience that Dublin is indeed, an inclusive community that does not condone bigotry or discrimination. “Not supporting flying the flag does not mean we don’t support the LGBT community,” said Haubert. “It means we may have other ways to do it.”

 



Categories: Dublin, Dublin City Council, Uncategorized

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

47 replies

  1. Dublin sounds like they want to be in Mississippi or Alabama. Progressive they are not. What say the electorate? Time has come today for Change Now.

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  2. More than likely, since they have to live in Dublin, it would be more of the same.

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  3. no one should be discriminated against because of his/her sexuality. But no one should get special preferential treatment just because some sexuality. Asking a city to fly a flag signaling selected types of sexuality is asking for special treatment. It is reverse discrimination. I am firmly against that. I applaud the city council’s courage to reject special treatment.

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    • Leo,

      So where do you stand on flying flags like for the Army, the Marine Corps, the Navy, the Air Force & the Coast Guard? Are you asking for special treatment for veterans. If so, I applaud your moxie, though as a Viet Nam War veteran I can assure you that you do not get much in the way of respect, especially on this Memorial Day. I think we are all equal and our Brothers and Sisters and Trans and Others ask for nothing more than to live their lives as Americans. The Rainbow Flag tells that at least as well as the California Republic Bear Flag and the Danville Flag. Get real. Join the World. Do not be a Hater. Embrace all of America. It is a great Nation. Fly the Flag!

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  4. Good deal, council!

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    • Looks like the council has changed its mind. They best figure it out soon as the electorate will not tolerate these intolerant folks. The vast majority of voters are Democrats or lean that way.

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  5. As a moderate Democrat–yes, we really do exist and vote–only want government related flags flown. United States, California, and Dublin. That’s it.

    Why don’t you take your hateful comments about non-hateful people and move to SF or somewhere else that you’ll feel more comfortable 10:36. You want a schism where there isn’t one. Really pathetic.

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    • Anonymous,

      Open your eyes, the schism came with the intolerance of the City Council when the did not support one of their own’s request to fly the Rainbow Flag in honor of Pride Month. This will be resolved by the voters. You get to vote one way and I the other. I suspect that this will not be a draw. We shall see. The first decision will come in a few days when the council reconsiders. Then will come the next election when the electorate will decide who continues.

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  6. Very sad day for democracy. The voters have definitely NOT spoken–yet. An activist, thug minority hijacked the democratic process and used intimidation and blackmail to subvert the will of the majority. Politicians who cower in fear, place their fingers to the wind, and then bend over backwards while simultaneously doing a full frontal, have no place representing the people. The Dublin Council’s days are numbered, and the people will triumph in the end. Special interests have no place in city hall or indeed anywhere. As Chief Justice Roberts stated so well, ‘You may have received what you wanted, but don’t thank the Constitution–in this case we’ll substitute democracy–for it had nothing to do with it.’ Clearly, an activist minority subverted the well reasoning of the majority. A growing sign of the tumultuous times in which we live. Intimidation rules the day.

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  7. Mrs. Sparkman and I agree. Very sad day for democracy. The voters have definitely NOT spoken–yet. An activist, thug minority hijacked the democratic process and used intimidation and blackmail to subvert the will of the majority. Politicians who cower in fear, place their fingers to the wind, and then bend over backwards while simultaneously doing a full frontal, have no place representing the people. The Dublin Council’s days are numbered, and the people will triumph in the end. Special interests have no place in city hall or indeed anywhere. As Chief Justice Roberts stated so well, ‘You may have received what you wanted, but don’t thank the Constitution–in this case we’ll substitute democracy–for it had nothing to do with it.’ Clearly, an activist minority subverted the well reasoning of the majority. A growing sign of the tumultuous times in which we live. Intimidation rules the day.

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    • Anonymous, are you sure Mrs. Sparkman feels the same sour, misogynist and dystopian malevolency? You lost. Now will you be an adult, embrace change and learn to love diversity or will you deny it, substituting hate, fear, ignorance and lies? I suspect that you share the same Big Lie that is the hallmark of the Communists, Fascists, and Trumpists. I hope not, but so far you sound so unpleasant.

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  8. As a very moderate Democrat, I also agree with the following statement. Whoever wrote it, you’ve got my vote for council! We need more honest democrats–small ‘d,’ who care about the people and don’t seek to divide. No special interest flags flying to divide us. Only municipal, state and federal. That’s it. Wantto fly a special interest flag–do it on your own flagpole.

    Very sad day for democracy. The voters have definitely NOT spoken–yet. An activist, thug minority hijacked the democratic process and used intimidation and blackmail to subvert the will of the majority. Politicians who cower in fear, place their fingers to the wind, and then bend over backwards while simultaneously doing a full frontal, have no place representing the people. The Dublin Council’s days are numbered, and the people will triumph in the end. Special interests have no place in city hall or indeed anywhere. As Chief Justice Roberts stated so well, ‘You may have received what you wanted, but don’t thank the Constitution–in this case we’ll substitute democracy–for it had nothing to do with it.’ Clearly, an activist minority subverted the well reasoning of the majority. A growing sign of the tumultuous times in which we live. Intimidation rules the day.

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    • Anonymous, an interesting quote from the Chief Justice. I cannot find it. Please post the attribution. Here is one that I can find by Chief Justice John Roberts,

      “If the Constitution says that the little guy should win, the little guy is going to win in court before me, … But if the Constitution says that the big guy should win, well, then the big guy is going to win because my obligation is to the Constitution.
      John Roberts

      By ensuring that no one in government has too much power, the Constitution helps protect ordinary Americans every day against abuse of power by those in authority.
      John Roberts

      So far the people are winning. Now on to the next election when we shall see how well you do when submitting to democracy.

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  9. Anonymous,

    Try these three John Roberts quotes on for size in reference to flying the Pride Flag to support all in Dublin. You will not find much support from him I suspect for your views.

    “There is no better gift a society can give children than the opportunity to grow up safe and free – the chance to pursue whatever dreams they may have.”

    “I will be vigilant to protect the independence and integrity of the Supreme Court, and I will work to ensure that it upholds the rule of law and safeguards those liberties that make this land one of endless possibilities for all Americans.”

    “You can’t fight for your rights if you don’t know what they are.”

    These came from https://www.brainyquote.com/authors/john_roberts

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  10. As a very moderate Democrat, I also agree with the following statement. Whoever wrote it, you’ve got my vote for council! We need more honest democrats–small ‘d,’ who care about the people and don’t seek to divide. No special interest flags flying to divide us. Only municipal, state and federal. That’s it. Wantto fly a special interest flag–do it on your own flagpole.

    Very sad day for democracy. The voters have definitely NOT spoken–yet. An activist, thug minority hijacked the democratic process and used intimidation and blackmail to subvert the will of the majority. Politicians who cower in fear, place their fingers to the wind, and then bend over backwards while simultaneously doing a full frontal, have no place representing the people. The Dublin Council’s days are numbered, and the people will triumph in the end. Special interests have no place in city hall or indeed anywhere. As Chief Justice Roberts stated so well, ‘You may have received what you wanted, but don’t thank the Constitution–in this case we’ll substitute democracy–for it had nothing to do with it.’ Clearly, an activist minority subverted the well reasoning of the majority. A growing sign of the tumultuous times in which we live. Intimidation rules the day.

    Like

  11. Like a good book, a cogent and concise argument is always worth a repeat–or 40!

    Mr. Chief Justice Roberts: https://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/06/26/417720924/roberts-celebrate-todays-decision-but-do-not-celebrate-the-constitution

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    • Anonymous,

      Thank you for the citation. When read in context it means something entirely different than how you quoted it. Chief Justice Roberts was commenting on his dissent in Obergefell v Hodges which legitimized Gay Marriage in the United States. He is talking about celebrating the rule of law and victory which in his opinion was unconstitutional. He lost, as did Alito, Lewis, Scalise and you. Gay Pride won along with the majority of Americans.

      You are certainly entitled to your opinions. Just do not foist them off on the rest of us.

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  12. As usual, the troll from Ashland doesn’t want to accept when he has lost, and lost big. His interpretation of interpretation rings as hollow as a three dollar bill.

    The Constitution, and indeed democracy, had nothing to do with his hollow victory, which remains unsettled.

    So again, in the interest of clarification and non-fake news, we state the obvious:

    Like a good book, a cogent and concise argument is always worth a repeat–or 40!

    Mr. Chief Justice Roberts: https://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/06/26/417720924/roberts-celebrate-todays-decision-but-do-not-celebrate-the-constitution

    And we do agree with the last statement, which needs further clarification: “don’t foist your propagandist agenda off on the rest of us.”

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    • Anonymous, likely Russian Troll. We are celebrating the Rule of Law & the Rule of Democracy, as well as the Rule of the Constitution. Gay Marriage, like the Right to Abortion are the Rule of the Land. You are merely inciting division and not following the desires of Americans.

      When the law changes and the voters approve it then speak, otherwise mess around with other countries. You are not welcome.

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  13. Let the flags fly! Fed., State, and Municipal. The, the, the, that’s it, folks!

    A big shout out of the above for our not so favorite Ashland troll!!!

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    • Anonymous, Thanks for the memories. Remember, that Rainbow Flag is flying throughout Pride Month. As a moderate Democrat you will have to change parties to find any support for your point of view. Say Hello to the Russians when you get there.

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  14. Score one half of one percent for special interests. People will prevail.

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    • Anonymous, sounds like you and Mrs. Sparkman yearn for the Good Old Days.

      Women knew their place, did not vote, could not be raped by their husbands, had no control over their own bodies and little economic power.
      Ethnic Minorities knew their place, did not vote, had no economic power, were not allowed an education, were regularly harassed by the legal system and could not live outside their designated living places.

      Special Interests were the Churches who hid behind their tax walls and officials who did nothing to curb abuse and discrimination. All of those have been identified and isolated and have far less control over the people.

      So yes, your influence has become the fifteen per cent of the lunatic fringe of prejudice, disinformation, the Big Lie and the balance of the hate sputum of your posts. That is why the Rainbow Flag flies proudly this month in our communities, including Dublin. It signifies that all of us are united together in this new world of hope and love.

      Your message of divisiveness, ignorance, cruelty and discrimination no longer is the rule. You lost then. The upcoming elections will settle again that your time is gone. As a moderate Democrat you may join your historical predecessors in the South, yearning for the Confederacy to rise again. You may even be planting yeast to rise again.

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  15. What is well worth repeating to keep on point:

    Let the flags fly! Fed., State, and Municipal. The, the, the, that’s all, folks!

    A big shout out of the above for our not so favorite Ashland troll!!!

    Courtesy of People Against Special Interests via Dublin!

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    • Anonymous, You and Mrs Sparkman continue to stutter the same comments about keeping your pole free swinging. The city council has decided the course. Keep up the self abuse and continue to harangue those who you think care. The voters will decide what the courts have already protected. You lost.

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  16. Good thing the Ashland Troll is the only audience here. He is his own special interest.

    Courts don’t have anything to do with municipalities caving to special interests thuggery and then cowering. Not to worry, AT, we’ll continue to wage the good fight, protect the citizenry from the likes of you and your thugs, and win the war.

    Yours will never be the last word. We’ll see to that!

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    • I look forward to seeing your efforts at the good fight at the polls. As to thuggery, I suspect it is closer to your side of the world than mine. So who is greasing your poles? Mrs. Sparkman perhaps? I think you are in fact a Russian Troll dedicated to influencing American elections. See you at the polls. You lost this one.

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  17. Intimidation rules the day–not the year. Mothra, the Ashland Troll, and his ilk will definitely get theirs in the end. Power of the People is not for sale, now or ever. The voters will remember the spineless bastards on the Dublin City Council and most definitely hold them accountable, one by one.

    Special interests always lose in the end, and just as our embassies, White House and other government buildings stay out of this pseudo, jacked up melodrama, so too will city hall in the very near term.

    Stars and Stripes, CA Bear, and Dublin City Seal, that’s it.

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    • Anonymous, so good to hear your Russian cowardly cries in the wilderness of the Internet. The Lord has a special place reserved for you and Mrs. Sparkman when your time comes to be joined in Purgatory with the rest of the haters like you. Ask Mrs. Sparkman not to bite too hard on your Pole. See you at the polls.

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  18. Oh, you dirty little cunt. Your true colors are shown, anonymous mothra. Such dirty and hateful language from a self-hating deviant. If I gave a shit I would say that I’d pray for you. I don’t. You and your ilk will come up short every time, and back into the shadows we’ll send you. You and your type are never welcome here. Remember, you have no value or worth and are a pox on our community.

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    • Anonymous, you must have a tenuous relationship with Mrs. Sparkman if in fact Mrs. Sparkman is a female. Referring to a woman with the C-Word is degrading and just plain vile. In no way is it appropriate for public posting. You are just showing your Russian troll characteristics. You have added misogyny to your list passes to Purgatory. Your language shows your complete lack of social graces. Whatever god you are praying to is a demon and is listening to you, but all that god is doing is making it easy to burn forever. You fortunately are only in charge of your own life along with Mrs. Sparkman. If you have friends, they either are as sick as you are or they are rapidly distancing themselves from you. Dublin is a fine city and you do not reflect its best parts. Hopefully all of your kind will soon pass on to another plane. Oh and you lost again.

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  19. Looks like we’ve called out the deviant Ashland Troll and have really gotten to him. As for ‘losing,’ seems you just can’t keep it together. You continue to live in your imaginary world of ‘Russians.’ While they say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, please do keep your potty mouth to yourself. Remember, those with no self-worth, anonymous mothra Ashland Troll, have no place in our society. Do revert under the rock from whence you came. Our city of Dublin and entire east bay community are much finer without the worthless like of you and your limited ilk. Losers for sure.

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    • Anonymous, I guess that Mrs. Sparkman has your pole well in hand and mouth while you spread spread your hate like as though Dublin actually believes you. You will get your reckoning at the next election if your god does not call you to Purgatory before then,.

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  20. The Ashland Troll deviant continues to show his true colors. Not to worry, little cunt. Your potty mouth and you will return to under the rock from whence you came. The People will never be with you. Good thing I’m the only viewer of your worthless screed. I will continue to clean house each and every time you ramble with your worthless tirades. Praise the White House, embassies, and more that don’t submit to special interest tyranny! Patriot days forever!!

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  21. Mrs. Sparkman and I have talked it over and we feel, given your fixation with the male genitalia, that it is best for you to move to the SF Castro to be with your ilk–unless you’re already there and pretending to be a resident of Ashland. To that end, we will be very glad to do our Christian duty and talk to a priest on your behalf to get you some help. Perhaps there is a way for you no longer be a deviant. You may share your address here and we will get it to the priest.

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    • Anonymous, so you and Mrs Sparkman should talk to your to your local priest as soon as you can pry him away from his fixation with youth and explain your depraved language for description of Mrs. Sparkman’s genitalia as well as your own hateful and divisive language. To mix up Christian with your speech is akin to linking Pope’s with Pius and Nazi’s. So march your jackboots down to you local priory, gather as many patriots as you can find with your hateful speech and wonder if there are actual many voters as depraved as you in Dublin. Again, you lost. So long sucker.

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  22. Praying for the Ashland Troll deviant.

    Mrs. Sparkman and I have talked it over and we feel, given your fixation with the male genitalia, that it is best for you to move to the SF Castro to be with your ilk–unless you’re already there and pretending to be a resident of Ashland. To that end, we will be very glad to do our Christian duty and talk to a priest on your behalf to get you some help. Perhaps there is a way for you no longer be a deviant. You may share your address here and we will get it to the priest.

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    • Anonymous, so you and Mrs Sparkman should talk to your to your local priest as soon as you can pry him away from his fixation with youth and explain your depraved language for description of Mrs. Sparkman’s genitalia as well as your own hateful and divisive language. To mix up Christian with your speech is akin to linking Pope’s with Pius and Nazi’s. So march your jackboots down to you local priory, gather as many patriots as you can find with your hateful speech and wonder if there are actual many voters as depraved as you in Dublin. Again, you lost. So long sucker.

      Like

  23. Conversion therapy needed here, big time. Priest can help with deviants.

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  24. As long as you engage, mothra, we’ll continue to help get you to the priest. You really do need help.

    Like

Trackbacks

  1. Emeryville to raise LGBTQ flag for itself, another for Dublin, as backlash begins
  2. 2019 YEAR-IN-REVIEW: Top 10 East Bay political stories

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