During the time that Barack Obama was president, the government granted blanket permission to embassies overseas to fly the pride flag during June, LGBTQ Pride Month.
But there’s someone new in the White House and times have changed.
According to NBC News, U.S. diplomats were told they can display the pride flag inside embassies and on exterior walls. But all requests to fly it on the flagpole must be specifically approved — no approvals have been granted.
The U.S. embassies in Israel, Germany, Brazil, and Latvia have all requested permission from Trump’s State Department to fly the pride flag on their flagpoles and have all been denied.
The requests are being denied by the office of the State Department’s undersecretary for management, Brian Bulatao, a longtime associate of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
Denying the pride flag to be flown on the flagpoles outside of embassies is in sharp contrast to President Donald Trump’s claims and policy decisions to be a leader in supporting LGBTQ rights in the U.S. and overseas.
Trump’s administration announced a campaign to decriminalize homosexuality overseas and this month issued a tweet and formal statement to “celebrate LGBT Pride Month and recognize the outstanding contributions LGBT people have made.”
Most people aren’t having it.
Tomorrow is the start of Pride Month. This tweet by @realdonaldtrump is cynical propaganda. Since day one, this White House has viciously attacked the rights and livelihoods of LGBTQ people, and I am now going to lay out all the ways they’ve done that. (thread) pic.twitter.com/H9DpoaaLbK
— Charlotte Clymer?️? (@cmclymer) May 31, 2019
Denying the embassy’s request to fly the pride flag in Berlin, Germany came as a particular surprise because the ambassador to Germany, Richard Grenell, is the most senior openly gay person in Trump’s administration.
But Grenell didn’t specifically comment on the administration’s denial to fly the pride flag at the Berlin embassy. But he did clap-back in his own way.
“The pride flag will be on as many places as it can at the Embassy,” Grenell said.