City officials in Modesto, California say they are considering granting a permit for a “Straight Pride” event scheduled for next month.
Organizer Don Grundmann from the National Straight Pride Coalition tells his local news station that the event is his group’s “cultural answer” to “anyone that supports the LGBTQ lifestyle.”
“Essentially it boils down to two religious views of the world,” Grundmann says. “One is Christianity, which is represented by heterosexuality, a culture of life, and its opponent is the LGBT movement, which is represented by an opposing religion and an opposing view of life.”
Grundmann, who calls drag queen story hours “mutilation of children,” has been circulating flyers around town that say: “Join us to celebrate heterosexuality, masculinity, femininity, babies–born and unborn–western civilization, our wonderful country, Christianity–Celebrate Life!”
The event is scheduled for August 24, one week before the “Straight Pride” event in Boston.
City officials say their phones have been “ringing off the hook” with people opposing the event.
“We’ve been getting letters, emails, comments, and phone calls all day about it,” says city council member Kristi Ah You.
Ah You adds that, while she supports free speech and first amendment rights, but doesn’t support the idea of a “Straight Pride” event.
“I think if we ignored it and let the people do whatever they’re going to do, I think maybe four or five people would show up.”
Meanwhile, city spokesman Thomas Reeves says it may be required by law to grant the permit even though they disagree with the event.
“So although the city does not share in the beliefs of some groups that choose to hold their events here, we may not be able to deny a permit based on an organization’s values,” Reeves said.