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LGBTQ rights have come a long way in the United States, but the community still faces threats in the form of legalization, discrimination, and even violence.

USA TODAY

A hairdresser specializing in rainbow colors wanted to add color nuances to another canvas with the disapproval of some of his neighbors, his home.

Mikey O’Halloran bought a beach house on the Australian island of Phillips after saving enough money, the Washington Post reported. When it came time to add the finishing touches to the beige home, rainbow colors were the idea that remained.

The impudent idea received some resistance from neighbors.

In a March 16 Facebook post, O’Halloran, who is gay, said he heard someone knocking on his door. Five men turned to him for his plan to paint his house a rainbow.

O’Halloran reported that he heard men shouting homophobic insults and heard a man say he would kill O’Halloran if he continued with his idea.

A police report was filed and a 23-year-old man was later charged with illegal assault and threatening to kill, the Star Observer reported.

Without planning to stop his painting project, O’Halloran’s viral publication gathered volunteers to help him.

“I am a good person in society and I bring joy with rainbows and no confident homophobe who opposes the decision of how I want to live my life will take it away from me. This house will be a rainbow and it will be a rainbow with pride,” he said. O’Halloran in the publication.

With an army of 100 volunteers, O’Halloran’s siding, deck and fence were painted on April 18. The group includes police officers, home restorers and children, according to the Washington Post.

It took seven hours to paint the stripes orange, pink, purple, blue, green and yellow. Dulux, Australia’s largest paint supplier, donated the project, according to Out Traveler.

“The positive response filled my heart with love and made me feel supported and not alone,” O’Halloran told the Washington Post. “People stopped by to shake my hand, greet me, and greet me in the neighborhood.”

Hundreds also raised about $ 7,750 through a fundraiser for O’Halloran, organized for the Phillip Island Community and Learning Center, a nonprofit organization providing entertainment, education and social services to meet the needs of all ages.

With colorful hair to match, O’Halloran told the Washington Post he “couldn’t hold back his joy when the last bright coat of paint dries.”

“My message now is not to let anyone else dull your brilliance and always stay true to yourself.”

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Follow reporter Asha Gilbert @Coastalasha. Email: agilbert@usatoday.com.

Read or share this story: https://www.usatoday.com/story/life/2021/05/03/gay-man-threatened-wanting-paint-house-rainbow-colors/4919766001/