Some LGBTQ members upset with ‘progress’ banner replacing rainbow

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Some LGBTQ members upset with 'progress' banner replacing rainbow

A growing rift has emerged among some in the LGBTQ+ community over the upstart “Progress Flag” — ripping it as “ugly,” “dumb” and a “monstrosity.”

The traditional “Rainbow Pride” banner incorporates red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and violet displayed along six horizontal bars.

The 2018 “Progress Flag,” — a creation of artist Daniel Quasar, added a curious mosaic of new colors — black, brown, pink, light blue and white, plastered into a triangle overlapping the original pride design.

The black and brown bars are said to reflect “marginalized LBGT communities of color, community members lost to HIV/AIDS, and those currently living with AIDS,” according to an info page from Northwestern University’s office of equity.

The flag also includes white, pink and light blue stripes to reflect the transgender community.

“It’s an aesthetic and design monstrosity that no gay man should approve of. It’s a disgrace to our sexual orientation,” thundered Andrew Sullivan, a longtime gay cultural critic who now runs a popular substack.

“The designers of this flag do not seem to understand that the rainbow symbol was always a METAPHOR,” he told the Post. “A rainbow already contains every color! We were not previously fighting for green gays and purple gays and yellow gays, and forgot to include brown gays and black gays. So it’s dumb as well as ugly.”

The Progress Flag was created in 2018 by artist Daniel Quasar.
The Progress Flag was created in 2018 by artist Daniel Quasar.
Helayne Seidman for NY Post

Sullivan is a longtime supporter of the Democratic party and his old personal blog “The Dish” was a favorite of President Obama.

“Who voted for this flag? Did anyone ask gays and lesbians and trans people before it was imposed on all of us? Was there a poll? Nope – just far-left activists corralling all of us into their ideological bubble,” Sullivan, 58, groused.

“When I see it, I cringe first and wince second. I see it as a flag of the intersectional left — not of gay people in all our diversity of opinion.”

Quasar's banner added the colors of the transgender flag and black and brown bars for "marginalized LBGT communities of color."
Quasar’s banner added the colors of the transgender flag and black and brown bars for “marginalized LBGT communities of color.”
Jan Scheunert/ZUMA

Both flags have been flying in NYC in June, which is Gay Pride Month, and battle lines have been drawn, with the decision to fly one or the other increasingly taken as a political statement by those in the community.

Sotheby’s New York offices on 71st and York on the Upper East Side proudly display one of Quasar’s Progress Flags. The skating rink at Rockefeller Center, however, has opted for a rink of traditional pride flags. Some places like the historic gay bar The Stonewall Inn on Christopher Street in Greenwich Village simply split the difference and display both. President Biden’s official website sells merch featuring both designs.

Several prominent members of the LGBT community contacted by The Post were reticent about speaking publicly for fear of backlash.

Gay cultural critic Andrew Sullivan called the new flag a "monstrosity."
Gay cultural critic Andrew Sullivan called the new flag a “monstrosity.”
Helayne Seidman for NY Post

One man, a longtime Hollywood art director, said the new flag is “disgusting” but he would be “blacklisted” in his industry if he ever aired his concerns.

“I hate it,” he said. ‘It’s definitely distanced me from the traditional gay culture that we’re used to. It’s been hijacked by people looking to satisfy these minority groups.”

The traditional rainbow gay pride flag was first designed by artist and activist Gilbert Baker in 1978. After dropping a hot pink bar in 1979, the flag has remained unchanged for decades and became the standard of the gay-rights movement around the world.

“Everyone should wave whatever flag they believe represents them during Pride,” said GOP City Councilman David Carr, the first openly gay Republican to sit in the chamber — who added the choice for him was clear.

“The traditional flag is the one I identified with over the years, and it’s the one I’ll continue to display proudly,” he said.

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