BOULDER, Colo. — Boulder is typically thought of as one of the most progressive cities in the entire state, but a college student said his Pride flag was vandalized overnight Tuesday, and it's not the first time it's happened.
Glacius, 20, said he moved to Boulder to attend the University of Colorado at Boulder, and also because it is such an accepting community.
“I can really be myself out here. I can really just show to the world who I really am," Glacius said. "I'm queer, and I'm here. And I'm here to just show that it's okay to be who you are."
The student chose not to use his given name in this story.
“Especially with the climate out there right now toward the LGBTQIA+ community, it's just kind of scary to throw myself out there when people are doing very violent things like this right now, such as burning my flag," Glacius said from his porch. "I've never experienced this before. It's all new to me.”
What's new for him is what happened to the Pride flag that hangs on the fence outside his front door. In August, Glacius said his cameras caught someone ripping down the flag.
Glacius installed more cameras after that and replaced the flag. But overnight Tuesday, his cameras caught the flag once again being removed.
“When I went out to go look, that's when I found the burnt flag there," Glacius said while showing the melted flag, which was tossed back onto his front porch. "You get that weird, like, adrenaline anxiety, like, wow, some people really don't want me here.”
Glacius said he even noticed a bullet on his porch.
“Even though it's just a little bullet, it's a threat. I view it as a threat. And the second violence gets involved with that, that's when it becomes a very serious matter to me. I don't want any of that here," Glacius said. “It does still show that there's hatred out there, and it really is a punch in the gut to some of us.”
Still, what happened to the Pride flag has only strengthened Glacius' resolve.
"In the end, I'm still me. I'm still going to do what I do, no matter what people think about me. And I hope my friends feel that way too," he said.
According to a statewide survey from Hate Free Colorado, Coloradans who identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual, or queer are more than 1.5 times as likely as straight Coloradans to have experienced a hate crime or incident.
Glacius filed a report with the Boulder Police Department, which is investigating the incident. Police ask anyone with information that could help identify who burned the Pride flag to call their detective on the case at (303)433-4322.
Queer Asterisk provided Denver7 with a list of resources if you or someone you know needs help:
- National Victims of Violent Crimes: 1-202-467-8700
- Colorado Crisis Services: 1-844-493-TALK (8225)
- Crisis Text Line: Text HOME to 741741
- The Trevor Project: Text START to 678-678, or call 1-866-488-7386
- LGBTQ+ National Hotline: 1-888-843-4564
Click here for a list of local LGBTQ+ counselors and allies offering free therapy sessions at this time. Their free support group takes place on Tuesdays at 6 p.m.