Spanish village brightens the streets with hundreds of rainbow flags out of protest

The Spanish town of Villanueva de Algaidas decorated the streets in all the colours of the rainbow out of protest against the removal of the large rainbow flag at the town hall. In front of their windows, over balconies: residents have hung hundreds of rainbow flags.
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Since 2018, the rainbow flag has been hoisted in the Spanish town during "Pride Month". This year was no exception, despite a recent ruling from the Spanish Supreme Court banning authorities from hanging unofficial flags on government buildings. Following that ruling, three residents went to the local police to demand that the flag be taken down. The flag was eventually removed after less than 48 hours.

When Antonio Carlos Alcántara, who grew up in Villanueva de Algaidas and had just moved to Torremolinos, heard the news, he immediately wanted to do something. "It bothered me that they had to take down a flag that didn't hurt or bother anyone," Alcántara told the Guardian.

In the run-up to Pride, Alcántara ordered hundreds of rainbow flags to sell in his shop on the Costa del Sol. Now that the local Pride had been cancelled due to the coronavirus, the flags were collecting dust in his storage room. "So I left a comment on the city's Facebook page telling residents that I would bring them a free flag if they wanted to."

When more than 100 responses came in, Alcántara decided to load all 400 flags in his car and drive to Villanueva de Algaidas. Once arrived, the story had spread like wildfire and the whole village seemed to want to hoist a rainbow flag. When Alcántara's 400 flags were out of stock after hours of distribution, the entire supply of the local store also went over the counter in no time. A second shipment that was ordered with rush sold out just as quickly.

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