(BCN) — The commemorative Pride flag will not be flown at the County Administration Building in Stockton after a motion to do so was denied by the San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday. Listed on the agenda for the meeting was Supervisor Paul Canepa’s recommendation to fly the Pride flag for five consecutive business days in support of Pride month.
The Pride flag is a multi-colored flag that symbolizes the LGBTQ+ community. The motion was denied in a 3-2 vote with Supervisors Tom Patti and Steven Ding voting in opposition. In order for the motion to pass, a four-fifths vote was required.
“I cannot support an alternate flag since our (American) flag represents freedom, liberty and opportunity for all,” Patti said. “I think our American flag flies high and proud as is.”
He suggested to the board a motion to table the discussion item and not have a yes or no vote. However, Canepa said that because Pride month is recognized across the nation, San Joaquin County should also do the same. During the meeting’s public comment Tuesday, there was a mixture of people who felt that the flag shouldn’t be flown while others fought to see the flag raised.
Last year in June, the same vote was taken by the county supervisors but passed in a 4-1 vote, leading to the Pride flag being flown for the first time in the county’s history. Although the majority of the board last year had voted in favor of the flag being raised, only Kathy Miller, the now former supervisor who had brought the agenda item to the board, was present for the ceremony.
“It has been kind of a long haul to get here, but it’s been a really positive effort,” Miller said at the ceremony in 2022. “It’s about the right of everyone to live free to be their own authentic unique selves, to love the people they love and to live safely in our cities, in our counties and our nation.”
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