SAN FRANCISCO — The San Francisco Board of Supervisors has unanimously passed a declaration that the rainbow flag will fly above the American flag on all San Francisco city and county property during the administration of President Donald Trump. The flags will revert to normal once Trump leaves office.
The United States Flag Code establishes advisory rules for how to display the American flag when flown on U.S. soil. In San Francisco, the rainbow flag will be hoisted first, lowered last and placed in the most prominent position, rights previously reserved for the American flag.
The 11 person Board of Supervisors is the legislative body that represents both the city and county of San Francisco. San Francisco’s new rainbow flag policy is modeled off its “sanctuary city” status that ignores Federal law by barring city employees from cooperating with federal immigration officials in the deportation of residents who are in the country illegally.
“In these dark days of Trump’s America, let our high-flying flag serve as a beacon of hope to all who have been ravaged by capitalism, climate change, white privilege and the patriarchy,” said San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee.
The rainbow flag was designed by San Francisco artist Gilbert Baker in 1976. The flag is commonly known as the “Gay Pride” flag and its colors represent the diversity of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities. The flag is also considered a symbol of peace.
“Given America’s long history of social injustice, I welcome the rainbow flag flying above the American flag,” said Colin Kaepernick, a professional football player who once played for the San Francisco 49ers.
The Board of Supervisors also considered banning flying the American flag to protest Trump. As a progressive compromise, the Board of Supervisors will still let the American flag fly in San Francisco. However, if any Supervisor is “deeply offended” or “seriously outraged” by anything President Trump says or does, the Board of Supervisors may ban the American flag flying in San Francisco while Trump remains in office.
“I stand in solidarity with San Francisco,” said California Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newson (D-San Francisco) who is also a former mayor of San Francisco. “As the next governor of California, I will work hard to ensure the rainbow flag flies high state-wide too.”
San Francisco is not the first California city to use the American flag to make a political statement. In 2001, Glendale lowered the American flag to recognize the Armenian Day of Remembrance which observes the Armenian genocide. Glendale has the world’s largest concentration of Armenians outside of Armenia. Kim Kardashian has indicated her interest in running for mayor of Glendale.