Newly elected mayor of Troy, Janice Daniels, used the word “queer” in a Facebook posting in which she explained her opposition to gay marriage in New York. Although she has apologized for the use of that word, many don’t believe her sincerity. In interviewing her, I hope she is sincere. She does want to move away from this topic but it won’t happen. In fact, she may have advanced the acceptance of gays in this area.
Months ago, before she was a candidate for office, she posted this on her Facebook page: “I think I’m going to throw away my I Love New York carrying bag now that queers can get married there.” When it was recently uncovered, she first defended the post by saying, “I believe in one man one woman for marriage” and then she became defiant saying, “It’s only a word.”
It wasn’t until she went on my radio show that she apologized for the remark, but the apology was superficial. For example, she equated the slur as being a “poke in the eye” and said her post was a joke, a silly thing, and without taking a breath, said “and by the way, I love being the mayor of Troy.”
Mayor, you need to show that you truly care. I’m not feeling it. Nevertheless, you started a discussion that is long overdue.
At a recently packed city council meeting an honest discussion about gay life and the need for acceptance took place in front of the mayor. Participation in gay pride events, consideration of an anti-gay ordinance, and hearing from a loving gay family whose elementary-school-aged kids drew pictures for the mayor were received by loud applause.
If you are truly sincere, you owe it to the gay population to embrace acceptance. You don’t have to change your core belief that marriage is between one man and one woman but you must accept in other areas of life that gay people are here and a valuable part of your constituents and our society.
Think of the “Q” word as the new “N” word. I want you to succeed as mayor and with a little more sympathy to all your constituents you will start your journey.