Gay Trump supporters denied entry into Charlotte Pride Parade
CHARLOTTE, NC (FOX 46) - A group says ‘Charlotte Pride’ is pushing them out of the Gay Pride Parade because they support President Trump.
"I’m very proud of my country, proud of my president, and was once proud of my community," said Brian Talbert, who said he’s proud to be gay and proud to be a Trump supporter.
His truck has a Trump-Pence bumper sticker and 'Not a liberal' sign on the back window.
"I’m very proud of my vote. I don't regret my vote. I will vote for Donald Trump again. I'm proud of my president. I don't think I should be vilified because I’m proud of a U.S. president as an American."
Talbert, a member of "Deplorable Pride," which is not affiliated with the "Gays for Trump" based in Greensboro, NC, said he and a fellow gay Trump supporter sent in an application to Charlotte Pride so they could have a float in this year's Charlotte Pride Parade.
"It was going to be fun. We wanted to be energetic. We wanted to show that we weren't the racist, bigot, misogynistic…We wanted to show that we are Americans, love our country and our president. We wanted to be there to celebrate gay pride. Everything fell into place except being able to celebrate who I am," he said.
Talbert said Charlotte Pride sent him an email denying his application for a float.
"For a group of people to claim to want tolerance, acceptance, and give it to every single person you can imagine to give it to, for them to sit back and judge me for exercising my right as an American to choose my leader without judgment is hypocritical," Talbert said.
A spokesperson for the organization said in written statement, "Charlotte Pride reserves the right to decline participation at our events to groups or organizations which do not reflect the mission, vision and values of our organization, as is acknowledged in our parade rules and regulations by all groups at the time of their parade application. In the past, we have made similar decisions to decline participation from other organizations espousing anti-LGBTQ religious or public policy stances.
Charlotte Pride envisions a world in which LGBTQ people are affirmed, respected and included in the full social and civic life of their local communities, free from fear of any discrimination, rejection, and prejudice.
Charlotte Pride invites all individuals, groups, organizations and causes which share our values to join our community's celebration of the LGBTQ community, history, arts and culture during the Charlotte Pride Festival and Parade, Aug. 26-27, 2017.”
Talbert said, "I don't judge them for how they vote. I believe men and women died to give us that right to choose our own leader. They don't extend the same courtesy to me being a gay Republican."
Talbert said he plans to file a lawsuit against Charlotte Pride for discrimination. Here’s the link to his ‘Deplorable Pride’ website: deplorablepride.org where he’s raising money for lawyer’s fees.
Since this article was posted online, Talbert has received almost $3,000 over the last 24 hours for legal fees.
This story has been updated to reflect the name change of the organization.