Huntington Beach City Council Public Comment Address

"Good evening, I'm Brooklyn Roberts. I'm.. obviously transgender and I feel like I'm about to split the room in a kinda weird way.


This has been an interesting night. I'm a carpenter. I'm an Orange County business owner and I'm here– from out of town, sorry.. because I've shed a lot of blood, sweat, and tears on Huntington Beach. I love working here, this is one of my favorite places to spend a work day. Believe it or not, I wear steel-toe boots for work and I swing a hammer for a living, so I'm here as a blue-collar American and I want it to be clear how American I am in where I'm coming from in this.


I'm an Eagle Scout and I grew up in a conservative Christian home. My ancestors helped settle the west in the 1800's. I have a grandfather who lied about his age to serve in World War II. He sailed in the Atlantic, the Pacific, and the Mediterranean and he's the one that gave me my first rifle. And that's going to have to be pried out of my hands from my cold dead fingers. I think a lot of people can relate with that.


I've been to numerous American heritage sites– Washington DC, Gettysburg, Philadelphia, Boston.. I've stood for a moment of silence at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and I retired the flag at Abraham Lincolns Tomb. I've seen the Declaration of Independence and the Liberty Bell in person and I've walked through the front door of the White House– I'm an American! So I hope you recognize a patriot, and I hope you know where I'm coming from that my heart's in the same place. I'm also a hopeful believer in the optimistic patriotism expressed by the reasoning behind the flag ordinance. My heart's in the same place in wanting to see the American flag be the only symbol of unity that we need– I feel the same way.




I think we all recognize that that's not how this ordinance would play out.

I think allowing flags to fly together is how the government shows unity– as an example. It sets an example to people, who need one. And until the community can follow that example I think the city should continue to set the right one. I think that true unity means standing together, not choosing which one stands.


But having said that: I've also experienced kind of a lot of interesting feelings, hearing very good points brought up by people that pricked my heart, even from the other side of this issue. And even as I tried to write notes, a pen was handed to me– literally from the other side of the aisle, by somebody I'm pretty sure knows I'm transgender and doesn't care what I have to write down, but still loaned me his pen. And I think thats a good show of decency. I think that we all– this is kind of my conclusive remark:

I think we all owe each other the benefit of the doubt, as people, as humans.


But in the meantime I hope that the City of Huntington Beach considers setting the right example of unity by showing what it looks like to stand together.


Thank you."


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