MARSHALL (KMHL)  – An issue of flags at the Marshall Middle School brought out a large crowd last night.

Nearly 20 people addressed the board about flags that were put up in the Marshall Middle School to show inclusion of all students. Those flags included the LGBTQ flag in addition to several that represented different countries and nationalities in the cafeteria.

The majority of those who spoke at the meeting were in support of the flag. Several said the flag signaled the school was a safe place for those students.

Pastor Grant Blomberg of the Open Door Assembly Church wasn’t so sure. He said the flags have now alienated the majority of students.

“We need to include all,” said Blomberg. “If we’re going to include some, let’s include all, let’s not exclude. Let’s be inclusive to everybody.”

Blomberg questioned the board about showing support for other groups – like military families.

However, Christ United Presbyterian Church Pastor Anne Veldheizen says the gay rights movement wasn’t created to celebrate the lifestyle.

“Gay pride was not born out of a need to celebrate being gay,” said Veldheizen. “It was born out of a right to exist. So instead of wondering why there isn’t a Straight Pride flag, be thankful that you don’t need one.”

The issue was not on the school board agenda at last night’s meeting. The comments were made during an open public forum held during school board meetings.

The board did not take any action after the hearing and at this time there is no timeline set for the school board to discuss the issue.