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Troy Mayor Refuses To Step Down After Gay Slur; Says ‘I Am Human’

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Troy Mayor Janice Daniels (WWJ Photo/Beth Fisher, File)

Troy Mayor Janice Daniels (WWJ Photo/Beth Fisher, File)

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TROY (CBS Detroit) – Troy’s embattled mayor apologized for the first time for the gay slur on her Facebook page Monday morning during an interview on Charlie Langton’s 1270 Talk Radio show.

“I absolutely do regret it, I shouldn’t have used such language,” Troy Mayor Janice Daniels said, adding, “While I do believe marriage should be between one man and one woman, it was inappropriate to use that language. It’s a dictionary word, it’s used in a TV show and in other contexts. It was inappropriate and I do apologize.

“It was meant to be a joke, silly, a funny thing.”

The comment, posted when New York legalized gay marriage in June, reportedly said, “I  think I’m going to throw away my I love New York carrying bag now that queers can get married.”

Langton asked Daniels if she plans to step down in the wake of public furor. She said “no.”

“I’m not going to resign, it’s a fascinating job … I won a hard-fought campaign. I’m very, very busy. I wanted to express my regret for having used that word,” the mayor said.

What does she want next?

“I hope it pretty much goes away,” Daniels said. “It’s a fascinating role, I love being the mayor and I hope to have many, many successes… I am human… My hope is that they’ll forgive me.”

Daniels, a longtime Tea Party activist, was elected the mayor of suburban Troy in November. The comment recently surfaced when Josh Schirle, a gay man from neighboring Royal Oak , launched a Facebook group opposing Daniels.

About 25 people joined a protest Monday afternoon outside Troy City Hall, some with signs asking Daniels to resign.

Daniels herself showed up to speak to protesters. She again apologized and than asked for forgiveness.

“This too shall pass, and if you’ll watch and see the good things that I do for the city, then maybe you can make it a little easier to forget and forgive,” said Daniels. “True forgiveness means that you wash the slate clean and you allow the person to prove themselves from that point forward.”

Schirle, who spearheaded the protest, told WWJ Newsradio he was appalled by her post. Oakland County’s Troy, notably, is only a few miles away from Ferndale, considered one of Michigan’s most active gay, lesbian, and transgendered communities.

“There is nothing dignified about the words that she said, whether that’s her viewpoint or not, that’s hate. I don’t think anyone thinks hate is acceptable,” said Schirle.

But he said he’s not asking that she be ousted.

“I’m concerned with how she apologies and how she rectifies what she said – I certainly think that she should apologize and I would like to see the city of Troy make a donation to a gay and lesbian charity – community house – anything like that,” said Schirle.

Daniels has deleted her Facebook page since the controversy began. The protest is expected to run from 3 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. Monday on the steps of Troy City Hall.

– Christy Strawser

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