Skip to comments.Firefighters forced to participate in ‘gay pride’ parade win lawsuit
Posted on 02/20/2009 10:43:36 AM PST by NYer
.- A California jury found on Tuesday that four firefighters, who were ordered by their superiors to participate in the citys gay pride parade were sexually harassed, and awarded them monetary damages from the city.
The case dates back to July 2007 when four San Diego firefighters were informed by their superiors that they would be participating in San Diegos annual Gay Pride parade. Though the four men protested, they were ordered to dress up in full uniform and ride on the fire engine along the parade route.
During the event, explains a statement from the Thomas More Law Center, the firefighters were subjected to vile sexual taunts and gestures.
Some of the comments hurled at the firefighters along the parade route included: you can put out my fire; youre making me hot; give me mouth-to-mouth. When the firefighters did not respond, some people in the crowd turned hostile and started yelling obscenities at them.
Other bystanders directed lewd acts at the firefighters, such as exposing their genitals, grabbing their crotch, and blowing kisses.
Shortly after the parade, the four firefighters filed a lawsuit against the City of San Diego. The first trial ended in a hung jury. However, the jurors of the retrial, which ended yesterday, found in favor of the four firefighters on all nine questions in the verdict form, reports the Thomas More Law Center.
The four men were awarded a combined total of $34,300 for emotional distress. In addition, Fire Chief Tracy Jarman has stated that participation in future parades will be voluntary.
Charles S. LiMandri, West Coast Director of the Thomas More Law Center, reacted to the ruling, saying, This is a victory for all people who are willing to stand up for what is right when it comes to defending our basic freedoms of speech and religion. No one should be forced to be subjected to sexual harassment on the job not even male heterosexual firefighters who are being harassed by homosexual men at a Gay Pride Parade. All city officials should now think twice before ever making such a wrongheaded decision to violate their employees rights in such an improper manner again.
Co-counsel in the case, Alliance Defense Fund Senior Counsel Joe Infranco added in a statement, Many people may mistakenly think the gay pride parade is merely a fun event. They never would have imagined the crude sexual harassment these firefighters were forced to endure.
Deputy City Attorney Don Shanahan stated that the city will appeal the verdict.
Good guys finally win one!!!!
That's it??!!! Had the situation been reversed, that number would have soared into the millions!
It’s almost insulting but at least they won.
I would think the Firefighters have a case - its one thing to be ordered to provide safety at an event you don’t approve of - police and firefighters have to do that all the time - quite another to be ordered to participate.
The pervert fire chief should be fired. And fined.
“The first trial ended in a hung jury.”
This story just writes itself!
I read that wrong - they have already won. Good.
In view of the subject matter of this lawsuit, this is information I could do without.
Wow, straight people actually one something in the courts. Amazing.
[The four men were awarded a combined total of $34,300 for emotional distress]
That’s all. The TX rancher was ordered to pay more than that to those illegal aliens.
Even though the damages awarded is essentially $0 for each firefighter (especially after lawyers and the tax man take their cut) this is a victory for the good guys.
No longer will departments ORDER their staff to appear in these gay-pride parades. And that’s a good thing.
Now that there’s a precedent, you can bet most departments will think twice before pulling this stunt.
As for the people who attend these so-called-parades, they prove that a stereotype is not always inaccurate.
The first trial ended in a hung jury.
They said they was hung—and they was right!
My thoughts exactly. On the O'Reilly Factor last night, Megyn Kelly criticized the firefighters for asking for a million dollars apiece.
I say they should've asked for the highest amount possible. That's what the other side would do.
they were straight dudes...how emotionally distressed can they get?! Duh!
Ping! The good guys win!
As someone who used to work at a restaurant that happened to be on Baltimore’s Gay Pride Parade route, I can attest to the fact that the firefighters were not exaggerating what they endured.
I’m generally of the opinion that what one does in their own home between consenting adults is their business. I’m also fine with them having a parade and acting ridiculous, as long as public decency and private property (and the right to dissent) is respected.
What I can tell you from experience is how unavoidable and over-the-top sexual harassment is when you are a straight male in a homosexual environment. While working, I’d often be grabbed and lewdly propositioned by customers. When I forcefully but professionally stated that it was inappropriate, the response was always ‘Sorry, I didn’t know you were straight.” That’s not the point! I would pull them aside and ask if they had a sister or (in the case of several well-known customers who were in the closet) a daughter, and if they would like me to place my hands on them and/or say similar things to them. With some that registered, but only some. I decided to work elsewhere because everyone just accepted such behavior as par for the course. I liked the restaurant owner and didn’t want to ruin his business by decking someone. But I couldn’t accept tolerating behavior at the workplace that, if I did it at elsewhere, would land me in jail or in the hospital.
My experiences in that realm opened my eyes to the hyper-sexualization and absolute lack of self-respect that was rampant in the ‘community.’
Wonder how much money the city wasted fighting this with two trials.
My firefighter husband had to be on haz-mat duty when the Breck Girl was in town. As silent protest, the guys wore their Firefighters Support Bush t-shirts under their duty shirts. Well, they could be seen underneath in the sun light. The secret service agents started laughing about it. When asked, the secret service started spewing about how much they hated the Kerry-Edwards detail. When the event was over, the firefighters got in line for sandwiches. The Kerry-Edwards people turned them down and said it was only for volunteers. My husband said isn’t this the party of free handouts for everyone? They were not amused.
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