Have you seen this word floating around on your LGBT+ news sites? A republican politician from Iowa was recently caught passing transphobic comments on the Transgender Remembrance Day. All because the transgender flag was flown!
Transgender Day of Remembrance
The 20th of November, every year, marks the Transgender Day of Remembrance. (TDOR) People across the world remember the transgender individuals who lost their lives due to violent acts of transphobia, and alike. It is an annual event that also honours their loss.
And like all other places across the world, Iowa also participated in the event. They hung flags and got together to pay their respects to the lives lost. They hung the transgender flag in the capital, Des Moines to mark the day.
Transphobia and transphobic violence are rampant even today. And the statement made by the politician in Iowa is a good example of why.
No More Pink, Blue, And White Flag
The Republicans in Iowa are now making the attempt to ban the flying of the transgender flags. And the senators consider it a serious issue to a point where they likened it to Jihad.
A state senator, Skyler Wheeler was upset that nobody called to inform him that the transgender flag would be flown on the Internation Transgender Remembrance day. He even told a local news channel. This senator representing district 4 also said,
“I found out the same time as most Iowans,”
“Nothing was sent to my legislative email, no phone call, absolutely nothing.”
Why is nobody keeping the senator informed about world news? How does he not know that it is “Internation” Transgender remembrance day? Whose job is it to keep him in the loop?
The Rainbow Jihad
The conservative lawmaker did not even think to check if what he is politically correct.
“It’s another way that the Rainbow Jihad continues to give those of us who don’t agree with them a finger in the eye and push their beliefs on us.”
Firstly, that is a staggering statement to make. Jihad is an Arabic word. The word means striving or struggling. Secondly, in the Western context, it is often understood as “War or Acts of Terrorism”
Thirdly, he made this berserk statement, “Flags flown at our state Capitol should not be flags that fuel division among Iowans”.
“How would the Rainbow Jihad react if we were trying to fly the Christian flag over the state Capitol? The Rainbow Jihad is not OK with simply living their lives. They are so hellbent on pushing their beliefs on us that they would go so far as to fly that flag over the state Capitol. It’s one of the most egregious acts of political aggression I’ve ever seen.”
All of this for a few minutes of flag flying? Really? Also, what in the world is Rainbow Jihad? Is it the people? Is the flag flying? Or is it the LGBT+ community? He seems to be the only who knows what he is talking about.
Local news even reported that the flag was flown “over the Capitol building for three-to-five minutes.”
Official Flag Poles
Since Republicans genuinely believe that Transgender flags been flown across the state is a serious concern. Even if it’s the remembrance day.
Another Republican, Dean Fisher has a whole other set of plans to keep from flags being flown. Pink News stated that he “plans to forward a bill next session to limit which flags can be flown at the Capitol – a move that will prevent the trans flag from being flown.”
Dean Fisher found similarities between a transgender flag and the Christian flag too. The Republicans at Iowa have become experts at connecting dots. Even if the whole picture makes no sense whatsoever. Here is his justification for plans of putting forth a bill.
“I’d sure like to know the history of who else has been able to fly their flag over the Capitol, but I think it’s kind of disappointing that we’re doing it,”
“I’m preparing a bill to specify that, as far as the official flag poles, it would only be the United States and Iowa flags, and we’ll see where that goes.”
“I don’t think it ought to be any group that wants to,” he added.
Fisher and Wheeler seem to have the same issues. Nobody keeps these Senators informed about the world news.
Fisher also thought that it was ridiculous to be flying the flags.
“My question is, why are we doing that? Why is it anything but the United States flag or the Iowa flag? We’ll head down the path and see where we can get. I guess the question is, can I fly the Christian flag over it? Do I think that’s right? Well, not necessarily. Yeah, I’m solidly a Christian, but should I be flying my flag over somebody else’s instead of the Iowa flag or the United States flag?”
Do you have an answer for Wheeler or Fisher?