FACT CHECK: Image Showing Pride Flags In Florida Is Old

Elias Atienza | Senior Reporter
An image shared on Twitter claims to show pride flags in Key West, Florida protesting against Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis.

Verdict: False

The image is from 2003. DeSantis was not governor at the time.

Fact Check:

Social media users have been sharing an image of a pride flag banner lined up on a street and claim it shows Key West residents protesting against DeSantis. The tweet reads, “Key West says FUUUUUCK DeSantis.”

However, through a reverse image search, Check Your Fact found that the image is two decades old. The image was taken in 2003 by Andy Newman of the Florida Keys News Bureau and published in a 2017 article about the death of Gilbert Baker, the creator of the original rainbow flag.

“Volunteers reach the Atlantic Ocean June 15, 2003, carrying a 1.25-mile-long rainbow flag down Duval Street in Key West. The mammoth banner was constructed by Gilbert Baker, creator of the original rainbow flag, and unfurled during the island’s 2003 Pride festivities,” reads the image description. (RELATED: Is Disney World Replacing The American Flag With The LGBTQ+ Pride Flag In June 2023?)

The image was also shared in 2017 articles from The New York Times and Der Spiegel. DeSantis was sworn in as governor in 2019, according to his biography on the Florida Department of State website. Former Florida Republican Gov. Jeb Bush was the governor at the time the image was taken, as he served from 1999 to 2007.

DeSantis has been accused of signing anti-LGBT laws, such as the so-called “Don’t Say Gay” bill that prohibits instruction of sexual orientation and gender identity from grades K-8 and restricts transition-related transgender care for individuals under the age of 18, according to ABC News.

False claims regarding pride month have circulated rapidly on social media. Check Your Fact recently debunked a claim suggesting the progress pride flag represented an attraction to children.

Elias Atienza

Senior Reporter
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