After Elizabeth Taylor died last month, many folks in the LGBT community mourned the loss of the screen goddess not only for her body of work and her many dalliances with leading men, but also for her work with HIV/AIDS during the disease's nascent stages. It would only make sense for the Castro to lower their iconic rainbow flag, right? Not so. According to Michael Petrelis, who attended a Castro Benefit District meeting last night, the Merchants of Upper Market & Castro, who magically control the flag, refused the request.

Someone mentioned that a request went to Steve Adams, the grand pooh bah of MUMC, to lower the rainbow flag in honor of Liz Taylor. It took Steve all of 15-minutes to summarily reject the request to fly our community's shining colors out of respect for an icon who opened her mouth for gays, people with AIDS and raised millions of dollars that have directly benefited many in our community.

This leads us to an important question, who's in charge of the rainbow flag, exactly. From the looks of it, MUMC does. But that can't be the case, right? MUMC is a private organization. That would be crazy. Shouldn't the Department of Public Works control the rainbow flag? Or at the very least, the people in the community who have to look at the thing every day?

Anyway, the flag did fly halfmast when Prop 8 passed, after the brutal murder of Ugandan gay leader David Kato, and when Del Martin passed away in 2008, but only after groups "heavily pressured the merchants group."