Newly-wed couple David Colligan and Alonzo Rivas received a notice from their property management to take down their Pride flag.
The couple lives in the Town Court Condominium, a small neighborhood in south Austin Texas. Apparently the rules of the neighborhood’s Home Owner’s Association says that it only allows American, armed forces and State of Texas flags to be hung. Period.
“Being told that this flag doesn’t reflect integrity, and it’s something that diminishes the value of the community — is just ridiculous.”
The notice they received did state property management isn’t questioning the worthiness of the flag, or the message –writing it respectfully asks them to take it down. The association says this is the second notice but the couple never received the first one.
The couple feels the language of the notice was offensive and that the HOA specifically, doesn’t understand the meaning behind the flag. Rivas said,
“It was compared to sports memorabilia, holiday flags and there’s a lot more resemblance behind the flag, than just a sports team.
There’s been a lot of sweat, tears and even lives lost, to develop these rights.”
The husbands told KXAN they’ve rented their home for over five years, and decided this year, they wanted to teach their daughters about Pride. They hung the flag as a family
Now the couple plans on asking neighbors to sign a petition, with hopes of being able to change the rules to be more supportive and inclusive. Colligan said,
“We don’t have any interest in breaking the rules, but we do have interest in changing the rules.
“We’ve been nothing but great residents — we shoveled snow and ice for elders during the winter storm, we’ve baked treats for our daughters to hand out during the holidays and we are always kind during dog walks. Seems very un-Austin of a neighborhood that upholds or enforces rules that discriminate.”
Per the property management’s notice, they have until June 25 to take the flag down, or face fines. But they plan to keep their flag brightly flying, regardless of the consequences.
“C’mon, it’s 2021, we need to move in the right direction.”
(Photos, David Colligan & Alonzo Rivas; via KXAN)