Editor: As an ally, I try very hard to not speak for anyone but with and alongside.
A week and one day ago, I attended a gathering hosted by our mayor, Nate Fontaine , and council members Chris Hornbaker and Renee Edmonston. This gathering was in direct response to vandalism to several neighbors in our town of LGBTQ+ flags and was and is being investigated as a hate crime. The mayor had this gathering to specifically ask how the town leadership could do better. The meeting was over an hour and a half and one of the items mentioned was a proclamation.
This proclamation stated that the town would celebrate June 28 as Pride Day. This would happen at the next council meeting. I made sure to ask whether legally they could do this and was told yes. And honestly, I left under the impression that this would be done.
I am beyond disappointed and disgusted that all of that was a lie because I sat in a Town Council meeting last night and listed to each member read statements, many laced with “all” statements and clearly using that political stance and hot button words.
A proclamation was not made.
It’s deplorable that the town leadership chose that moment to make statements, but not actually support the people in their town. The children of this town see you. The teens of this town see you. The adults of this town see you and we are ashamed. They let bigots and their own political ideals enter an arena that is supposed to be nonpartisan. It would have cost them nothing to make a proclamation for Pride Da. Instead, they lost my respect and trust.
I know I am not anyone to the council and that’s fine but they should be ashamed.
I’m sorry to the local LGBTQ+ members of this community. I’m sorry that again this town leadership chose hate instead of love. I’m sorry that they listened to bigots and naysayers instead of following their hearts. I’m sorry they lied when they told me to my face, they would write up a proclamation and make it last night. I’m sorry that again, you have to fight for your place in this town. I will continue to stand with and for you in every way I can.
I’m devastated to be a part of a town whose leadership cannot see past their own property line and choose to live inside a bubble of hate. Shame on them.
Deanna Plebuch, Lovettsville