Homophobes target LGBT+ community with vile graffiti for third time in a month. So the town turned it into something positive
Homophobic vandals in Alberta, Canada have put up anti-LGBT graffiti three times in just weeks, local community leaders say.
According to Global News, the term “LGBT virus” was daubed on a shed visible from the highway at the entrance to the city of Airdrie, home to 68,000 people, on Saturday.
Third instance of anti-LGBT graffiti in three weeks rocks Airdrie community.
It marks the third incident in just weeks, after a rainbow sidewalk installed in the city to mark Pride month was vandalised twice in June.
In the first incident, on 20 June, the rainbow was defaced with graffiti, the outlet reports, before being “tarred and feathered” one week later on 27 June.
Airdrie Pride Society’s Jordana Baker told the outlet of the latest incident: “It’s right off the highway as you’re entering. It’s right by the ‘Welcome to Airdrie’ sign. So the person chose that spot for a clear reason, and it’s hard not to let those messages really affect you personally.”
Baker added: “Our community basically saw [the graffiti] and took a deep sigh, ‘Here we go again.’ But their response also was, ‘Hey, let’s do the same thing we’ve always done,’ which is reflect what we actually experience in Airdrie.
“I know the community, the experience and this doesn’t reflect that. So let’s cover it up and move on.”
Locals turned hateful message into a symbol of support for LGBT+ rights.
With permission from the property owner, the shed was promptly repainted by members of the local community, depicting the letters LGBT+ alongside a heart and a raised fist symbolising the Black Lives Matter movement.
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The local police department is investigating the incident, and it is not currently known whether the three instances of vandalism are connected.
Airdrie mayor Peter Brown said: “We’re not certain who’s doing this or whether it’s the same people or the same person or if they even live in Airdrie.
“It’s really pathetic and I just hope this person or these people are caught and they are held accountable for their actions.”
Airdrie Pride Society wrote: “While we work on repainting the shed, it looks like someone decided to update the graffiti! It looks so much better!
“Love over hate. In the face of discrimination we choose to love ourselves. In the face of hate we remember those who love us.
“In the face of yet another anti-LGBTQIA+ act we choose to take actions of love and support for our community. Love wins.”