CCTV footage captured the moment homophobic vandals tore down LGBT Pride flags that had just been put up hours earlier.
The clip recorded at Olympia Shopping Arcade in Kirkcaldy, Scotland, shows the two men helping each other to rip down the flags while drinking a can of beer, even using a crutch to do so at one point.
Jumping up in the air in an effort to reach the flags, the vandals then throw them on the ground before walking away. A spokesperson for the shopping centre later said the flags had been burned.
The flags had been put up by staff last Thursday (June 6) in celebration of LGBT Pride Month, but were torn down less than one day later.
Footage was posted to the shopping centre’s Facebook page in an attempt to identify the culprits
Alongside the video, a member of staff at the Olympia Shopping Arcade said:
So here we are trying to brighten up the arcade as it’s pride month! Yesterday we put up 5 pride flags… More are coming but it’s all we could reach with the small ladder we had….
Anyway today during broad daylight some people took exception to our flags and not only took them down… But burned them too! It’s pathetic!
You can watch the disturbing footage below:
So here we are trying to brighten up the arcade as it's pride month!Everyone works together as a wee team and tries to do our bit to help make the arcade more inviting.Yesterday we put up 5 pride flags… More are coming but it's all we could reach with the small ladder we had…. Anyway today during broad daylight some people took exception to our flags and not only took them down… But burned them too!Now firstly is pathetic! It OUR arcade, we pay our rent, we look after our businesses and we help each other out… So if we want to put flags up… THAT'S OUR BUSINESS TO!Secondly, so many people had already commented on how nice the flags were and how much more colourful the arcade was looking!And lastly… Don't damage people's private property when you are on CCTV!So the police are being contacted with not only the details, but obviously the video too!So to help us out… If you recognise the people in the video… Please tell us who they are and where they live, as it'll make the polices job so much easier! Oh and since drinking alcohol in the street is not allowed in Fife… That's another hit against the vandals!We don't deserve this, every one of us is a small business, trying to do our bit to offer the community things that they can't get elsewhere! So more flags will go up and we will battle through!Look out for our special Pride offers this month, as even after the damage done today, we won't be put down!
Posted by Olympia Shopping Arcade Kirkcaldy on Friday, 7 June 2019
The post continued:
We don’t deserve this, every one of us is a small business, trying to do our bit to offer the community things that they can’t get elsewhere! So more flags will go up and we will battle through!
Look out for our special Pride offers this month, as even after the damage done today, we won’t be put down!
It’s not known whether the vandals have been apprehended, however the shopping centre urged anyone who recognised the two men to get in touch so they could pass their details over to police.
One of the men could also be seen drinking beer in the video, which according to the post is not allowed and so would be ‘another hit against the vandals’.
It’s things like this – and the shallow thinking which leads to calls for a ‘straight pride’ parades, and Bishops telling their congregation LGBT events are ‘harmful to children’ – which highlight just how necessary Pride Month is.
It exists to celebrate communities that have fought adversity and marginalisation all their lives, and continue to do so.
It’s such a shame a select few see only their differences, and act to divide societies which are trying to grow and overcome hate.
If you’ve been affected by any of these issues, and want to speak to someone in confidence contact the LGBT Foundation on 0345 3 30 30 30, 9am until 9pm Monday to Friday, and 10am until 6pm Saturday, Or email [email protected]
If you have a story you want to tell send it to UNILAD via [email protected]
A Broadcast Journalism Masters graduate who went on to achieve an NCTJ level 3 Diploma in Journalism, Lucy has done stints at ITV, BBC Inside Out and Key 103. While working as a journalist for UNILAD, Lucy has reported on breaking news stories while also writing features about mental health, cervical screening awareness, and Little Mix (who she is unapologetically obsessed with).