Alabama County Won't Lower Its Flags In Honor Of Orlando Victims

"It doesn’t meet the test of the reason for the flag to be lowered to half-staff.”

By Eric Shorey

Much of America is doing its best to honor the victims of the Orlando shooting -- from the Democrats powerful fillibuster to the vigils at Stonewall and more. But some of the country isn't so happy about having to mourn the lives of LGBT people of color. One county in Alabama is refusing to lower their flags to half-mast to honor those who were slain last weekend.

Refusing to follow suit with even the White House itself, Baldwin County remains obstinant in their disobedience. “I am of the opinion, by reading the flag code of the United States, that while my heart certainly goes out to the victims and their families ... it doesn’t meet the test of the reason for the flag to be lowered to half-staff,” Commissioner Tucker Dorsey told a local NBC affiliate, after both Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley and Obama ordered the flags lowered. But let's be real: that's a pretty bad excuse to cover up the very obvious homophobia inherent in the gesture.

“I realize that the President and Governor may make the order, but I believe and interpret their order inconsistent with the adopted flag code,” Dorsey said, following up in an e-mailed statement.

At the very least, Dorsey is consistent. After the San Bernadino shooting, Dorsey similarly refused to lower his flags: "When the flag is at half-staff, our country's head is figuratively held low, and quite frankly, I am not willing to hang my head down because of a terrorist attack against our people and our allies."

The county's decision drew quick criticism from locals and social media.

A similar situation also occurred in Missouri's Cole County. “I didn’t think it should be lowered, because I think these are just victims of a heinous crime, whether it was a terrorist attack or not,” said Eastern District Commissioner Jeff Hoelscher, who voted against lowering the flag. In this instance, however, sharp rebukes from citicizens led the officials to change their minds.

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