The Pentagon Has Banned the Flying of Rainbow Pride Flags at All Military Sites

While attempting to make all branches of the U.S. military consistent in their banning of Confederate flags, Defense Secretary Mark Esper has also banned all rainbow Pride flags too.

“The flags we fly must accord with the military imperatives of good order and discipline, treating all our people with dignity and respect, and rejecting divisive symbols,” Esper wrote in a Department of Defense memo released Friday.

“Military installations are allowed to fly the American flag; the flags of the U.S. states, territories and the District of Columbia; military flags and those of allies,” writes the Washington Blade. “However, by not enumerating them, the memo effectively bans Confederate flags and LGBTQ Pride flags.”

Banning rainbow flags seems particularly notable seeing as the Pentagon has held an annual Pride event in June each year since 2011, when the military’s ban on gay people (“Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”) was repealed. The new memo basically says that rainbow flags can’t be displayed at such events in the future.

According to the memo, the ban applies to “public displays or depictions of flags by service members and civilian employees in all Department of Defense workplaces, common access areas, and public areas.” This includes stickers.

Jennifer Dane, interim executive director for the Modern Military Association of America, told the Washington Blade,

“It’s absolutely outrageous that Defense Secretary Mark Esper would ban the Pride flag — the very symbol of inclusion and diversity. In what universe is it OK to turn an opportunity to ban a racist symbol like the Confederate flag into an opportunity to ban the symbol of diversity?” Dane said. “This decision sends an alarming message to LGBTQ service members, their families and future recruits.”

The post The Pentagon Has Banned the Flying of Rainbow Pride Flags at All Military Sites appeared first on The New Civil Rights Movement.

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