Is It Time for a Rainbow Crosswalk in Ellsworth?
The Ellsworth City Council will face a couple of thorny issues tonight, Monday March 21st, when they meet in the Council Chambers at 6 p.m.
Under new business is item 23
- Discussion and action regarding painting of a rainbow crosswalk on Main Street- Sponsored by Hanson
For the 2nd time (1st in 2020) the Ellsworth City Council will be discussing a request to paint a crosswalk on Franklin Street (summer parklet), rainbow colored.
This request comes in the wake of Florida's "Don't Say Gay" Bill which was signed into law, which prohibits “classroom discussion about sexual orientation or gender identity” in the state’s primary schools.. The Request has been made by the Ellsworth High School Gender Sexuality Diversity Alliance
Most of the issues have been addressed in the 2 years leading up to tonight's discussion. There will be no cost to the City of Ellsworth, as Healthy Acadia has said they will fund the cost of the paint and reimburse the City for the time spent painting the crosswalk. By moving it to Franklin Street, it would not impact traffic, for the majority of the summer, as that road is closed down for the summer parklet, and the crosswalk would not cross Main Street as suggested in the past.
There are rainbow crosswalks in Ellsworth, on school property at Ellsworth High School and Ellsworth Elementary-Middle School. Northern Light has a rainbow crosswalk at their Ellsworth and Blue Hill campus. Bangor, Bar Harbor, Rockland, Brunswic, Hallowell, Eastport and Orono have rainbow crosswalks on their municipal streets.
So what's the issue? Apparently the "slippery slope". If the Council allows this, then what's to stop other groups from requesting colored sidewalks to coincide with their "causes". Would this approval signify an "endorsement" of the "LGBTQ lifestyle" and community? Those in favor of the rainbow crosswalk point to the Council's allowing of the beautiful Christmas decorations and huge Christmas tree in the City Hall parking lot this past winter and Christmas Parade. Not all Ellsworth residents celebrate Christmas.
If you have an opinion, I would encourage you to make your voice known. Attend the meeting tonight. Send an email to the City Council.
Ellsworth residents should also be interested in items 27 and 28 on the agenda under new business.
Item 27 -Discussion and action to request all City departments remain open, regardless of weather- sponsored by O’Halloran - This would effectively not allow City Hall and other departments to close in the event of inclement weather (major snowstorms)
Item 28 - Discussion and action to allow non Ellsworth residents, that utilize Ellsworth schools be allowed to participate in the municipal school board elections- sponsored by Kaplan. This would allow voters of tuitioned Ellsworth students to vote in Ellsworth's elections. In other words if you lived in Lamoine, and your child attends Ellsworth High School, you would be able to vote in the Ellsworth School Board elections, in addition to Lamoine's School Board elections, giving you votes in both communities.