In a show of support for marriage equality in the wake of the Supreme Court’s Decision to rule portions of the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional, the Seattle Mariners hoisted a rainbow flag June 30. The act makes the Mariners the first Major League team to fly a gay pride flag at a game this weekend.
The historical event at Safeco Field not-so-coincidentally falls on the same day as Seattle’s Pride parade.
According to Seattle Out and Proud, the team pledged to publicly display the flag during the game because the owners “thought this was an appropriate gesture on a day that is very meaningful to the LGBT community,” said Rebecca Hale, spokesperson for the group.
“We’re a part of this community,” Hale said. “Our fans are a reflection of our community.”
Flying the rainbow Pride flag in Seattle’s public and private spaces has been a point of contention in years past. City Hall made the decision to fly the flag for the first time this year, raising it on June 1, while the Space Needle has drawn some criticism for its decision not to raise the flag during Pride weekend.
Seattle Out & Proud spokesperson Adam McRoberts said that the organization is “thrilled to have so much community support in Seattle,” and that they “greatly appreciate the leadership from the Mariners in promoting equality and acceptance in professional sports.”
The Mariners’ decision was announced just one day before the Supreme Court struck down a provision of a federal law denying federal benefits to married gay couples and cleared the way for the resumption of same-sex marriage in California.
Washington voters approved marriage equality last fall.