Local residents host vigil/rally supporting Pride Month at tomorrow’s Susanville City Council meeting

The Progress Flag is flown outside the State Department in Washington, D.C., June 25, 2021. The Progress Pride Flag was developed in 2018 by non-binary American artist and designer Daniel Quasar (who uses xe/xyr pronouns). Based on the iconic Rainbow Flag from 1978, the redesign celebrates the diversity of the LGBTQ community and calls for a more inclusive society. The flag includes black and brown stripes to represent marginalized LGBTQ+ communities of color, along with the colors pink, light blue and white, which are used on the Transgender Pride Flag. The Progress Flag builds on the six-stripe rainbow of the Pride Flag by adding a chevron of white, pink, light blue, brown and black to symbolize transgender rights, people of color and those living with or lost to HIV/AIDS.

While many Lassen County residents enjoy our reputation as arguably the reddest county in the state of California, bluer, more progressive residents in the city of Susanville are trying to move the city council in a more liberal direction.

At its last meeting, the Susanville City Council made its first ever LGBTQ+ Pride Month declaration. In order to be delivered, that proclamation garnered support from three city council members — a majority of the five-member council.

But some local activists want more.

According to a statement from the Lassen County Democratic Party, residents are asked to “Show Pride, Not Prejudice!” Wednesday, June 1, by attending a March to Raise the Flag at 4 p.m. at The Lassen Historical Museum at 115 N. Weatherlow St., participate in a vigil “to honor those we lost” at 4:30 p.m. and then march to City Hall to ask the council to raise the Progress Flag at City Hall during the month of June.

According to the statement, “In a historic move, Susanville’s City Council made its first ever LGBTQ+ Pride Month declaration!

“On the heels of this win for our community, we will work in tandem with local businesses, advocates, LGBTQ2+ folks and the Rural Pride Network to hold a rally/vigil at the City Council’s first meeting of the month … There, we will ask the city of Susanville to raise the flag of pride (Progress Flag) for the month of June. We will meet at the Lassen Historical Museum on Weatherlow off of Main Street in Susanville, where attendees can show off their pride with signs, clothing items and more. We will rally the attendees, sharing our stories of pride and discrimination before heading toward Main Street. The procession will move from Weatherlow/Main, then north to 66 N, Lassen Street by way of Main Street. There, we will have an art installation created by local LGBTQ+ artists. These will be grave markers, detailing the deaths of LGBTQ+ Americans lost to suicide, and other frightening statistics about our community.”