Here’s more proof that your local elections, even in a town of 25,500, can make a difference: On February 20, the Board of Aldermen in Starkville, Mississippi, rejected a request to hold its first-ever gay Pride parade with a 4-3 vote.
Starkville Pride successfully filed the paperwork and scheduled the parade in March as a “community event,” WTVA reports, until Ward 6 Alderman Roy Perkins specifically requested a motion to deny the group permission. City officials told the Starkville Daily News that the board has not denied requests “for any applications that have been properly filed since 2014.”
Before the board’s vote, 16 residents of Starkville, home to Mississippi State University, spoke in favor the event. Local business owner Rosa Dalomba said, “This shocks me that we’re having this conversation in 2018.” Mayor Lynn Spruill also criticized the vote. “I think it is one of those things that shows an inclusiveness in our community that is something I have long said we are,” she said. “We are diverse, we are not divided in my opinion and I don’t want to start having that view of us now.”
However, just like with our own federal government, it seems that the voice of the bigoted minority overpowered the voice of the many, the voice of the sane. Two residents at the hearing—a resident who argued “God created Adam and Eve” and a pastor—opposed it.
“Do not turn our city into a sin city,” said resident Dorothy Isaac. “It should not be this.”