A Florida Republican politician suggested that Pride images are “anti-Christian” hate symbols and called for the government to immediately “crush” Pride Month.
Anthony Sabatini, who currently serves as the chair of the Lake County Republican Party, slammed Pride Month as “anti-American” and proposed ways the state government could effectively end LGBTQ pride celebrations.
“There’s a great reset going on. And I say, well, if you look around, really, I think the great reset is a gay reset. I mean, if you look at Pride Month, that’s pretty much, like, the whole program,” Sabatini, who is running for Congress, said at an event. It is not clear when the event took place, but video of his speech was posted to Twitter on Friday by liberal activist Lauren Windsor.
“We have to end Pride Month, okay?” Sabatini continued to applause from the audience. “We have to crush Pride Month. It has to go away.”
“It’s time to crush Pride Month and the businesses that promote that toxic anti-American garbage.”
Sabatini suggested the Florida government should pass a law banning all counties, school boards, city commissions, and even businesses from promoting Pride Month in any way. He pointed to the city of Mount Dora, which marked Pride by hanging rainbow banners along the streets.
“First we need to crush Pride Month” by banning people from spending state or local funds on it, Sabatini said. “We need to bend our civil rights laws to make it actionable legally for when they do do that because it’s an anti-Christian hate symbol.”
Republicans across the country are steadily making the U.S. more hostile to LGBTQ people, and Florida is leading the charge. State lawmakers have passed laws expanding “Don’t Say Gay,” banning discussions of personal pronouns in schools, and prohibiting transgender people from using the bathroom that aligns with their gender on any public property. Meanwhile, Governor Ron DeSantis earlier this month shared what is possibly the most bigoted ad ever for his presidential campaign.
And it’s not just at the state level. The Supreme Court ruled in June that businesses can refuse to serve LGBTQ people, which has already spurred more discrimination. And on Friday, the House of Representatives passed a defense budget that bans the Department of Defense from flying Pride flags or reimbursing travel costs for service members who seek gender-affirming care.