Ron DeSantis is trying to ruin Pride Month but the Tampa Bay Rays are fighting back

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis banned rainbow lights on bridges but the Tampa Bay Rays are lighting up their stadium
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis banned rainbow lights on bridges but the Tampa Bay Rays are lighting up their stadium

While Key West has long been considered a gay Mecca and Fort Lauderdale is home to the famous gayborhood Wilton Manors, the state of Florida has been becoming less and less welcoming to the queer community since Governor Ron DeSantis started his reign of terror, which is why visible Pride Month celebrations are more crucial than ever — even on the baseball field.

The Tampa Bay Rays have been showing their support for Pride for years. Despite DeSantis’ attempt to quell Pride celebrations this year by banning rainbow lights on the state’s bridges, the team is lighting up their stadium instead, Out Sports reports.

After a truly disastrous attempt at showing the LGBTQ+ community some love back in 2022 when five Tampa Bay Rays players ripped rainbow logos off of their uniforms on Pride Night, the Rays stepped up their game.

Last year, the team displayed a huge “Baseball is for EVERYONE” sign where each letter was a color from the rainbow and trans flag.

But for 2024, every night during Pride Month, the Rays will light up the roof of Tropicana Field in rainbow colors. This is especially meaningful because DeSantis started the “Freedom Summer” initiative, which, in part, bans all bridges across the state from being lit up with any colors other than red, white, and blue, USA Today reports.

This means that St. Petersburg’s Sunshine Skyway Bridge will be forced to forgo rainbow lights for the first time in years. The ban seems like a thinly veiled attempt to try to wipe out visible signs of Pride Month while claiming to just love America. Puh-lease.

Considering DeSantis authored Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” bill, signed bills that keep teachers from talking about sexual orientation or gender identity, and banned most gender-affirming care and LGBTQ+ books in schools, and passed an anti-trans bathroom bill — and that’s just scratching the surface — it’s not a stretch to think he’d be that petty.

Which is why it’s all the more meaningful that Florida’s baseball team isn’t being intimidated by DeSantis, who seems to be applying for the job of a fascist leader, and is lighting up their piece of the city in rainbow colors!