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Editor’s Note: WARNING – Some content in this article is graphic.

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Participant in 2006 San Diego Pride Festival

Four San Diego firefighters who were ordered by their supervisor to participate in a homosexual pride parade – during which the city “temporarily suspended” decency laws and allowed “debauched and decadent conduct” – are fighting back and suing the city.

The Thomas More Law Center said its West Coast Director, San Diego area attorney Charles LiMandri, has filed the sexual harassment and freedom of speech complaint in California state court against the city.

“These men were sexually harassed in clear violation of San Diego’s sexual harassment code,” he said. “Further, the California Constitution’s freedom of speech provision prohibits compelled speech. What the firefighters were ordered to do was endorse what goes on at this parade through their participation in it.”

As WND reported, it was in July when the firefighters, all Christian and two Catholic, were ordered to participate in uniform on their city fire engine in San Diego’s annual “Gay Pride” parade.

They were subjected to “vile sexual taunts and gestures” on the three-hour parade route, the law firm said.

“You could not even look at the crowd without getting some type of sexual gesture,” one firefighter said, adding, “If any crew member were to hang up pictures at the station of what we saw, we would be disciplined.”

They reported hearing statements such as, “show me your hose,” “you can put out my fire,” “you’re making me hot,” “give me mouth-to-mouth,” and “blow my hose.” When they refused to respond to the crowd, some in the crowd turned hostile and started shouting, “F— you firemen” and others began “flipping them off.”

“In one regard, forcing these firefighters to participate in this parade has removed the artificial veneer of legitimacy from this event to expose it for what it truly is – a temporary suspension of decency laws in the name of inclusion and diversity,” said Brian Rooney, a spokesman for the center. “The debauched and decadent conduct at this parade clearly violates municipal codes that prohibit public nudity and obscenity. The city has played make believe long enough.”


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San Diego Fire Chief Tracy Jarman is an open lesbian

San Diego’s fire chief, Tracy Jarman, is an open lesbian who called the July 21 parade a “fun event” in which “all employees are encouraged to participate.” After getting their orders, all four firefighters repeatedly protested that they did not wish to participate, to no avail, the law firm said.

“There is a transvestite group dressed up as nuns that marches in this parade every year in crude mockery of the Catholic faith,” said Richard Thompson, president of the center. “No other religion would be treated this way.

“And for the city of San Diego to sponsor such an event and for its political leaders to endorse such behavior by their presence is outrageous. Two of the firefighters who are Catholic were forced to endorse such mockery of their faith by being forced to participate in the parade.”

LiMandri said it was not the first time the city has coerced such parade support.

“One of the main reasons for this complaint is so that no firefighter will again be forced to participate in a parade that is so sexually charged that it creates a hostile work environment,” he said. “The city should be concentrating the fire department’s efforts on working the parade and responding to emergencies, not putting these brave firefighters on parade to be sexually harassed.”

As WND reported, prior to the parade, the San Diego City Council unanimously adopted a resolution introduced by Mayor Jerry Sanders to designate July as “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Pride Month.”



Previous stories:

Tough-guy firefighters forced into ‘Gay Pride’ parade

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