Watch: Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. Slams 'Petty and Unfortunate' Removal of Pride Flag From State Capitol Building

by Kilian Melloy

EDGE Staff Reporter

Monday June 7, 2021

Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman's Pride flag was taken down hours after being lifted at the state's Capitol building.
Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman's Pride flag was taken down hours after being lifted at the state's Capitol building.  (Source:Twitter/John Fetterman)

Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman spoke against the removal of a Pride flag from the state's Capitol building, calling it "petty and unfortunate," ABC News affiliate WTAE reported.

According to the outlet's June 2 news report, "State employees took down the flag in cooperation with a provision backed by state Republicans last year that bans flags that aren't approved by lawmakers from flying at the Capitol."

That provision "was slipped into the state's fiscal code in 2020," reads the report, adding that it also "prohibits flying any flag other than the American flag, Pennsylvania's state flag or a flag honoring missing American soldiers."

"This is the first day of Pride," Fetterman told WTAE, "and it only took a matter of a few hours for them to come and confiscate [the Pride flag]." Apparently, the Lt. Governor had hung the Pride flag from the balcony of his office before it was taken down.

TransYOUniting founder Dena Stanley weighed in on the issue, telling WTAE that the flag's removal was "disgusting," and said "the bigotry that's going on should not be happening at all here in Pennsylvania. We're all Pennsylvanians."

In the news clip, Fetterman said he believes the provision against flying unapproved flags was in response to his having displayed such flags before. Fetterman told ABC he's had "nine or ten confiscated so far."

Fetterman slammed state Republican lawmakers for what he characterized as misguided priorities, noting in a statement that "the Republicans in Pennsylvania can quickly come up with legislation to take down the flags, but not to ensure that Pennsylvania law explicitly protects the LGBTQIA+ community from discrimination," CBS Pittsburgh affiliate KDKA reported.

Fetterman took to Twitter to underscore his point:

"We're talking about being able to be fired, or being able to be denied housing, or fundamentally just being treated differently [than those who are not LGBTQ]," Fetterman told WTAE, "simply based on who you love or how you choose to identify."

Watch the WTAE news clip below:

Kilian Melloy serves as EDGE Media Network's Associate Arts Editor and Staff Contributor. His professional memberships include the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, the Boston Online Film Critics Association, The Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association, and the Boston Theater Critics Association's Elliot Norton Awards Committee.