A couple from Florida was told to remove the pride flag, stating that residents were only allowed to fly the US flag and military flags.
A gay couple from Florida has been ordered to take down their rainbow flag from their front yard or risk getting fined. A Florida homeowners association told the couple to take down the flag by June 15 or pay a daily fine of $50. Bob Plominski and Mike Ferrari of Oakland Park, Florida, were issued a citation for putting up the rainbow flag for violating the rule that bans residents from flying flags other than the U.S. or military flags in the neighborhood, reported NBC News. The gay couple was confused by the notice from the homeowners association, considering the pair had flown the flag before and also posted political signs in the neighborhood. The couple is adamant about not taking down the flag and said it's just a case of someone raising a complaint because they are offended by it.
“I got upset," said Plominski. "We’ve done this before and it’s a simple showing of our pride to the community and it’s up for 30 days. We were in shock they were going to do that,” he added. Bob Brusseau, president of the Eastland Cove Homeowners Association, said the five-person board of the homeowners association received a complaint, stating that it violated the rules. "It's in the document, and you can be sued," said Brusseau. He added that the fines wouldn't be enforced until around 30 to 40 days from the issuing date of the citation, according to Brusseau.
Brusseau said that he would vote against the fine, before adding that he, like one other board member, didn't even wish to pursue it. The other three board members pressed were for enforcing the HOA laws. Plominski and Ferrari still have a right to appeal the association's decision before a grievance committee. Ferrari made it clear that this is just the result of someone being offended by the flag. “I really think the citation is because it’s a gay pride flag and someone in the neighborhood is offended, simple as that," Ferrari told NBC Miami. The couple confirmed they wouldn't take down the pride flag until the end of the month. “It’s going to stay up until June 30," said Plominski. "We as a community worked really hard to earn and get to where we are today. We’re not going to back down on this one.”
In a similar case earlier this month, a resident was asked by their Homeowner's association to take down the pride flag displayed on their porch. As we reported, the resident had taken to Reddit to share the story. After perusing through the rulebook, they realized a better way to express their support and solidarity for the LGBTQIA+ community. They took down the flag, as requested, but lit up their entire home and porch in rainbow pride colors. "Looking through our new rules, we noticed that removable lights are permitted without restriction so... we bought 6 colored floodlights, and we washed our house in pride colors. A little less subtle than our simple flag," wrote the original poster, before adding, "A lot more fun for anyone complaining about the flag itself and what it represents," they added.
President Joe Biden has shown considerable support for the LGBTQIA+ community since taking office, and his administration recently granted a blanket authorization to all American embassies and consulates around the world, to fly the LGBTQIA+ Pride flag on their official flagpoles on May 17— the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia— and to continue their display through the month of June, which in the United States and many other countries is Pride month. As we reported, this is a reversal of the Trump administration's decision to only allow American embassies and consulates to fly the American flag on the official flagpoles.