CHARLOTTE, NC (FOX 46) - A gay man denied a spot in Charlotte's Pride Festival because he supports President Donald Trump. It was an exclusive story on FOX 46 that's taken off on social media.
Brian Talbert said he marched in the first-ever Charlotte Pride Parade back in 1994. Now, instead of fearing LGBT opponents, he said he's fearful of the ones he's marched with for decades.
"The rainbow flag has got all many different stripes, it represents all sorts of different people and I'm a part of that color," Talbert said.
"I get flipped off and I get thumbs-up," he said.
Talbert is also a President Donald Trump supporter.
"I never thought we'd get to a day where you'd have to fear being a Republican," he said.
Talbert said his support for the president is why Charlotte Pride sent an email denying his request for a float in its parade.
"I've been told I can no longer be a part of the gay community, like they have some sort of power over that," Talbert said.
FOX 46 Charlotte first broke this story on Wednesday. The story, now viral, has people chiming in on Charlotte Pride's Facebook page. One writing, "As a gay man, I'm disgusted that you banned a group of LGBT because of their political differences. You are the epitome of intolerance."
"It's a proud thing. I am very proud of my vote for Donald Trump," Talbert said.
Charlotte Pride sent FOX 46 Charlotte a statement on Wednesday, reading, in part, "Charlotte Pride reserves the right to decline participation at our events to groups or organizations which do not reflect the mission, vision, and values of our organization."
When asked Thursday if plans have changed following the initial story, Charlotte Pride would not provide additional comment.
"I'm getting the hate from the gays," Talbert said.
Talbert said his conservative beliefs catch heat from fellow LGBT across the country.
"I had a girl from California tell me as soon as she got enough money she was coming here to cut my head off," he said.
Now, it's hitting close to home.
"It was fear of being gay based, fear of being gay but now it's fear of being a Republican," he said.
Talbert said he is pursuing legal action against Charlotte Pride.