Rainbow flag over blue sky.

There are mixed views among citizens in The Bahamas a day after the Bahamas Christian Council slammed the raising of what it calls the ‘Gay Pride Flag’ at the US Embassy in Nassau.

June marks the beginning of Pride month.

The Council in a statement says it supports the right of each Bahamian to determine their own sexual preference and their own destiny as The Bahamas does not believe in the mistreatment of citizens regardless of their sexual or other orientation.

However, the Christian Council says it does not believe that foreign governments, who it says are guests in the country, should leverage their influence to promote lifestyles that are inconsistent with the ideology of The Bahamas.

The Council says The Bahamas is a sovereign democratic nation that determines its own ideals, norms and laws.

It states: “We see the position of the United States Embassy as over-reaching and insensitive to the moral and ideological position of this country regarding the lifestyle of homosexuality. The Bahamas believes in traditional family structure of one man and one woman. Hence the decision to hoist and fly the pride flag in a country whose moral and Judeo-Christian position is not only evident but prominent is deeply concerning and could easily be perceived offensive to many of our citizens.”

The Bahamas Christian Council believes that if this is allowed to occur without challenging it, it opens the door for the United States and other foreign nations to influence the country’s social structure today and then the political structure tomorrow by bullying.

The Council believes that all foreign diplomats should appreciate how offensive it is to attempt to impose their ideology unto other nations ‘as they will never stand for us to do the same in their country.’

It describes the act as a diplomatic assault upon the consciousness of the Bahamian society.

The US Embassy in Nassau has not responded to the Council’s statement but today did post a video with a caption on social media in support of Pride Month:

“The United States believes that all human beings, regardless of who they are or who they love, deserve dignity and respect, and to be free of fear, stigma, and discrimination.”

The subject has drawn mixed views from The Bahamian public on social media, most directed at the statement from the Bahamian Christian Council.

One commenter on social media said: “In “God we Trust and have our being!” The Minister of Foreign or Bahamas Christian Council could have dealt with this diplomatically by sending a Letter directly to the Officials stating their views. Everyone has to answer to God for him/herself and I am certainly not being “bullied” by no Flag! I am quite sure they know what is allowed/not allowed and if not, then now is the time to advise accordingly, but it is American soil that the Embassy occupies for the time being. Continue to be safe everyone now more than ever!”

Another commenter saw no problem with the flag: “US Embassy thank you for raising the flag. Pay no attention to this.”

Other commenters on social media took swings at the Bahamas Christian Council: “The US embassy is technically considered US territory, nothing the Christian council can do or say means anything to them. Focus on fixing the issues at home first.”

Another person said: “People in the Bahamas are wondering how to feed their families. In Abaco and Grand Bahama people have no safe place to lay their head in a thunderstorm much less a hurricane. And those who supposedly represent the “values” of the Bahamas are worried about a piece of cloth on a pole.”

Meanwhile, The Bahamas Organisation of LGBTQI Affairs thanked the US Embassy and the Biden Administration for their vital, visible and tangible support for LGBTQIA+ community in The Bahamas.

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