David Lynch, the editor of the Dundalk Democrat, yesterday published an opinion piece discussing a homophobic email they had received regarding LGBT+ awareness in schools.
Lynch described how an email with the subject heading ‘Shocking’ arrived in the Dundalk Democrat inbox, the author of the piece ranting about an LGBT+ flag hanging outside a school. Lynch decided not to reveal either the author’s name (“even he deserves some understanding and compassion”) or the school (“I feel it my responsibility not to exacerbate the situation further by highlighting the school in question”).
The email, which also contained photographs of the school, read, [sic] “Dear sirs, I want to bring it to your attention that there is LGBT flag instead of the Irish flag in front of the school in *******. I went into the school and asked them what it is all about. She told me they have LGBT awareness week. Whey the heck are they so proud of it that they have to place a flag in front of their school. A flag means you are backing something up/ promoting it. This is madness. It is a topic we should discuss on your radio ASAP. I Ireland lost its values and Christianity. People of Ireland forgot where they are coming from. So shamefull.”
In response to the email, Lynch made some marvellous points in his opinion piece, saying, “Everyone is entitled to an opinion. And once an argument is structured, reasonable and debatably constructive in pursuit of an end goal, then it should be heard.
“There are those out there today who are using division and an ‘us against them’ approach to feather their own political nests…Symbolism is a powerful tool, and flags, as this country knows only too well, are among the most powerful of symbols… They create community and inclusion. They can also create the opposite.”
Lynch continued, “The above email seems to believe that by not having an Irish flag present at the same time as the LGBTQ+ one, that it is some sort of denigration of Ireland and Irish values.
“It is very likely that there are children in that school who may be members of the LGBTQ+ community at some stage in their lives. Surely for them to see such a flag of inclusion flying at their school, surely that is befitting of our Irish values. Surely that is the Ireland we should all be proud of and want to be a part of.”
Here, here, David.
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