In the city of Boston, rainbow flags are allowed to wave over city hall while Christian flags are not.
59-year-old Harold Shurtleff, director of Camp Constitution, wanted to fly the Christian flag over the building last year; the city has denied permission, prompting Shurtleff to sue.
According to LifeSiteNews, Shurtleff wanted to” fly a Christian flag with a red cross on a blue background, with white on three sides, at city hall to commemorate Christianity’s contribution to the city’s history. He had been acting on behalf of Camp Constitution, a charitable organization that promotes Christian heritage in concert with the American constitution.
“This policy and practice is consistent with well-established First Amendment jurisprudence prohibiting a local government ‘respecting an establishment of religion,’” Boston property management commissioner Gregory Rooney told Shurtleff in an email. “This policy and practice is also consistent with City’s legal authority to choose how a limited government resource, like the City Hall flagpoles, is used.”
In Shurtleff’s lawsuit, he alleges that Boston’s policy discriminates against religious groups while treating secular flags differently. It also alleges the city does not apply restrictions to city symbols, such as the city seal, which has the Latin inscription meaning “God be with us as he was with our fathers.”
As noted by LifeSiteNews, English Puritans founded Boston and created their flagship institution: Harvard. The Massachusetts Constitution references God multiple times and extols the “right as well as the duty of all men in society, publicly, and at stated seasons to worship the Supreme Being, the great Creator and Preserver of the universe.”
When it comes to the rainbow flag, however, Boston officials have no qualms about that. In fact, the City of Boston’s official Twitter account boasted about it during LGBT pride month:
The city has also flown the blue, pink, and white transgender flag.