Pentagon maintains ban on flags of pleasure and different flags on installations: NPR

Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm and Energy Department Chief of Staff Tarak Shah help raise the pride of progress flag in front of the Department of Energy in Washington. The Pentagon decided not to fly the flag on military installations for Pride Month. Andrew Harnik / AP Hide caption

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Andrew Harnik / AP

Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm and Energy Department Chief of Staff Tarak Shah help raise the pride of progress flag in front of the Department of Energy in Washington. The Pentagon decided not to fly the flag on military installations for Pride Month.

Andrew Harnik / AP

The Pentagon confirmed Friday that in celebration of Pride month it will not allow rainbow Pride flags to fly in military installations. This was in line with the Pentagon’s 2020 decision to allow only certain flags on Defense Department facilities.

Pentagon spokesman John Kirby told reporters that after careful consideration, the DOD decided not to make an exception to existing flag policy.

Along with the American flag, current policies implemented under the Trump administration allow flags to represent states and U.S. territories, military services, prisoners of war and missing persons in action, national flags of U.S. allies, and a handful of others.

“This in no way reflects a lack of respect or admiration for people in the LGBTQ + community, uniformed and uniformed staff, serving in this department,” said Kirby. “We are proud of them.”

The flag policy was introduced last July to prevent the Confederate flag from being displayed without specifically referring to it, as previously reported by NPR.

Kirby said an exemption for the Rainbow Pride flag could open the Pentagon to more political challenges. “This was really more about the potential – an exception in this case, the potential for other challenges that might arise from that exception,” he said.

President Biden recognized Pride Month with an official proclamation earlier this week. Almost 14% of his federal agency officers identify as LGBTQ +, he announced.

In 2018, the Rand Corporation estimated that 6.3% of active service members identified themselves as gay, lesbian, or bisexual, including 4.1% of men and 17.6% of women.

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