June 27, 2017 1:36 am
Updated: June 27, 2017 1:40 am

‘We’ll keep raising it every day if we have to’: 3rd Pride flag raised in Taber in 2 weeks

The Taber Equality Alliance (T.E.A) held its third pride flag-raising ceremony in less than two weeks after a recent act of vandalism.

Joe Scarpelli/Global News

No Pride flag had ever been raised in Taber before this year.

Three had been as of this week.

Pride coverage on Globalnews.ca:

The Taber Equality Alliance (TEA) held its third Pride flag-raising ceremony in two weeks on Monday.

The inaugural one was allegedly stolen last Monday. This weekend, the replacement was found burned.

READ MORE: Taber Equality Alliance says pride flag was set on fire in a second act of vandalism

“I just started to cry,” Jayce Wilson said. “It was just disbelief and wondering why, why this happened. Why would somebody do this?”

Wilson was an assigned male at birth but identifies as a female. It took over 30 years before she had the courage to come out.

“It’s not a phase, it’s not a fad, it’s not a life choice, or a lifestyle choice or anything like that,” she said.

“This is fundamentally who I am.”

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Police say the burning of the Pride flag is being treated as an arson. Police believe an accelerant was used to light the pole on fire, which spread to the flag.

“If somebody were to say ‘oh, burn a Canadian flag,’ that’s horrible. You don’t burn a flag,” Taber resident Jane Deering said.

This incident struck a chord with Deering. She has three kids. Two of them are trans.

READ MORE: Pride flag cut down from flagpole at Edmonton school

“It’s personal,” she said. “I’ve watched these young people struggle for many years with friends and whatnot.”

The TEA believes these recent incidents are acts of “hate.”

“I hope it’s more somebody feels uncomfortable and makes a bad decision and does some petty crime rather than a deliberate attempt to project terror onto us,” co-chair Jillian Demontigny said.

Wilson said you can hide the rainbow flag, you can burn it, but you’ll never get rid of it for good.

“We’ll keep raising it every day if we have to.”

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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