LIa Bishop woke up Tuesday to find her Pride flag had been destroyed and left on her front porch.

B.C. woman’s pride flag cut up, left on doorstep

Lia Bishop says vandalism illustrates the need for displays of pride and inclusivity

An Abbotsford woman woke Tuesday to find the Pride flag hanging on her porch had been torn down and left at her front door in tatters.

Lia Bishop has hung the flag from her porch for the last several years during the spring and summer to build visibility and show support and inclusivity for the LGBTQ community, of which she is a member. She found her flag Tuesday morning up on the floor of her deck. It had been ripped or cut up, and a hose and other deck materials had been used to prevent the flag from flying away in the wind.

Bishop, who reported the incident to police and will be replacing the flag, said it was clear that the perpetrators wanted to send a message.

But Bishop, a sociology instructor at the University of the Fraser Valley, didn’t find the act of vandalism surprising, and said it illustrates the need for displays of pride in the first place.

“It is deeply disturbing that someone or some people took the effort to come onto my property in the middle of the night with the sole aim of destroying a symbol of acceptance,” Bishop wrote in an email.

“For me, it’s not about the mere vandalism of property, it’s about what specifically was targeted and the manner in which it was destroyed and left. More importantly, it’s about addressing why this specific symbol was attacked and what this says about the presence of intolerance and homophobia in our community today.”

Bishop said the incident shouldn’t be considered a single malicious act, but one that reflects lingering homophobia.

“I hope Abbotsford wholeheartedly rejects this form of hate, or any other for that matter, and takes a proactive approach to building a more inclusive community for every human being and social identity,” she said. “There’s so many people doing that great work already.”

Bishop is correct that vandalism of Pride symbols isn’t rare.

Last month, three Pride flags were stolen from the home of a Langley woman. The Township of Langley had previously removed a Pride flag from the woman’s house.

In Ladner, vandals defaced a Pride flag flown by the local United Church twice in 12 days.

And rainbow crosswalks across the province have been deliberately defaced, often shortly after being painted.

Mayor Henry Braun said Thursday that he was “saddened” to hear of the vandalism and that it didn’t have a place in the community.

“This is a form of bullying,” he said. “It’s unfortunate that there are people who they they have the freedom to do this to demonstrate that they don’t agree [with a person].

“We have an obligation to love our neighbour. My neighbour isn’t the person who lives next door to me. My neighbour is the person who crosses my path on a daily basis, from morning to evening.”

RELATED: Two more Pride flags have been stolen from Langley woman

RELATED: Church’s Pride flag defaced for second time in 12 days

RELATED: Crosswalk vandalism leaves black mark for Cowichan as B.C. Games begin


@ty_olsen
tolsen@abbynews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Welcome to Victoria, where a street can have four names

From Oak Bay to View Royal, street names change as the roadways twist and turn

Garbage piles up at Mount Doug Park in Saanich

Local resident blames the design of the garbage bins

VicPD arrest reportedly armed man wanted on Canada-wide warrant

The man was found near Centennial Square on Tuesday afternoon

Port Renfrew man charged with animal cruelty

Hot coffee poured on dog’s face, say police

Pacific FC looks for first win of the fall season in Toronto Wednesday

The Island team is currently 0-2-0 this season

VIDEO: Black bear caught climbing tree in Langford neighbourhood

Triangle Mountain residents on alert following bear sighting

Report of dead body in B.C. park actually headless sex doll

This discovery, made at Manning Park on July 10, led police to uncovering two other sex mannequins

Grand Forks fire chief found to have bullied, harassed volunteer firefighter: report

WorkSafeBC, third-party human resources investigation looking into allegations complete

Taekwondo instructor, 21, identified as B.C. bat rabies victim

Nick Major, 21, an instructor at Cascadia Martial Arts in Parksville

15-year-old with imitation gun caused ‘dynamic’ scene at Nanaimo mall

No one was harmed in Monday’s incident, say Nanaimo RCMP

B.C. on right road with tougher ride-hailing driver rules, says expert

The provincial government is holding firm that ride-hailing drivers have a Class 4 licence

RCMP investigating alleged ‘sexual misconduct’ by cyclist on BCIT campus

BCIT said they were reviewing video evidence of the incident

New home cost dips in B.C.’s large urban centres

Victoria, Kelowna, Vancouver prices decline from last year

Graphic suicide scene edited out of ‘13 Reasons Why’ finale

Suicide prevention groups support the decision

Most Read