Los Angeles Police Department reports that a rainbow Pride flag has been burned at a California Elementary School, which was set to host a LGBT Pride event on Friday.
Police said that the burned Pride Flag, found in a pot of plants on May 22, is being investigated for a hate crime. Police said there are no suspects at this time.
The investigation is still ongoing. This is a hate crime of vandalism. “The hate crime is still serious, but is only a misdemeanor,” stated Deputy Chief Alan Hamilton from the Valley Bureau.
Saticoy Elementary has been the target of criticism over recent weeks, ahead of the Pride event scheduled for June 2nd. Saticoy Elementary Parents Instagram page reports that the Pride event will include a student assembly where a video stating “some kids have a mommy, and some have Daddy” will be shown.
The Saticoy Elementary Parent group encouraged all parents to keep their kids out of school on Friday. The group plans to protest the assembly on that day. The group claims to have 500 signatures in its Instagram posts against the assembly. It said that parents did not need to sign a permission form.
George Dzhabroyan told KTLA that while “we respect everyone,” some things were inappropriate for children of this age. “I hope the message gets through and people realize that parents are the first contact for what their children can and cannot be exposed too.”
Parents who are against the assembly deny responsibility for the flag burning and condemn the action.
The protest flyers are in English, Spanish, and Armenian.
Roberto Salcedo is a teacher from Monlux Elementary in the area. He told KTLA that he was “bone-chilling” when he first read it. If you read it as it really is, the intent is to incite hate against people who differ. “I want parents to understand that we’re all different and we need to respect each other.”
In response to criticisms, the Los Angeles Unified Schools District (LAUSD), released a press release that focused on the importance promoting diversity.
LAUSD released a statement saying that “As part our engagement with schools communities, our school regularly discuss the diversity and importance of inclusion.” This is still a topic of discussion in our school communities, and we are committed to engaging with families on this important issue.