GLEN ROCK - June 1, 2017 - "How proud are you right now?"
That was the question posed by Mayor Bruce Packer and the answer from the crowd of approximately 60 people who gathered to watch the raising of the multi-colored flag that represented the Lesbian-Gay-Bisexual-Transgender community.
"Some think this is a political issue, but not here," Packer said. "When we discussed this, it was not about politics but about the passion of neighbors and peers who believe this is the right thing to do."
In attendance were dignitaries such as Congressman Barney Frank and Bergen County Prosecutor Grubir Grewal.
According to online sources, Barnett "Barney" Frank, 77, who hails from Bayonne, NJ, is a former Democrat, Massachusetts U.S. House of Representative who served from 1981 to 2013. He served as chairman of the House Financial Services Committee and was a leading co-sponsor of the 2010 Dodd–Frank Act.
Frank told the crowd he was the first openly gay congressman, as well as the first congressman who "married his husband."
According to widely sourced reports, Frank's career ended amid scandals involving male prostitution and his support for relaxed housing lending practices while he had intimate ties to federal housing lending institutions, Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae.
(SEE: https://www.tapinto.net/towns/fair-lawn-slash-glen-rock/categories/letters-to-the-editor/articles )
Frank was a speaker at the raising of the LGBT "rainbow flag" on June 1, as well as others, as they marked LGBT month in the borough.
Prosecutor Grewal said it is a part of his department's efforts to promote tolerance in an "increasing environment of hate and intolerance where your patriotism is questioned based on what you believe, who you love and where you come from."
Father Mark Collins, an openly gay reverend at All Saints' Episcopal Church in Glen Rock, spoke at the event, as well.
Reverend Collins has been All Saints' Episcopal Church Rector since April 2017, after serving as the Interim Rector since September 2015.
"The [rainbow] flag represents the promise that Earth is the home for all children of God," he said to the crowd.
"Let the flag serve as not just a symbol for this month, but for always," he said.
Officer Matthew Stanislao said, "I've never been more proud to serve."
Stanislao helped to raise the American and rainbow flags together at the ceremony.
According to published reports, the borough settled a lawsuit with and reinstated Stanislao who sued the police department, claiming he was sexually harassed because he is gay.
The officer, who began working for the department in 2004, was terminated in October 2014. He then sued the borough and Police Department, alleging several officers sexually harassed him.
A similar ceremony will be held 6 p.m. Saturday, June 6.