Candidate's anti-gay speech comes amidst suicides and hate crimes.
Washington– The Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender civil rights organization, today issued an action alert encouraging members and supporters to seek an apology from New York gubernatorial candidate Carl Paladino. The candidate on Sunday gave an anti-gay speech in which he said he didn’t want children “brainwashed into thinking that homosexuality is an equally valid or successful option.” Paladino’s hateful remarks came amidst news of suicides by young people who faced anti-gay harassment as well as a horrific hate crime in the Bronx that targeted three gay men.
“By his own words, Carl Paladino has made himself the poster boy for the kind of divisive leadership that makes young LGBT people question their self-worth and gives license to those who use violence to advance their hate,” said HRC President Joe Solmonese. “Carl Paladino should think about how young LGBT people feel when he tells a crowded room that they're not as ‘valid’ or will be as ‘successful’ as someone else.”
Paladino’s anti-gay tirade came directly after he warned that “we must stop pandering to the pornographers and the perverts who seek to target our children and destroy their lives.” He blasted his opponent Andrew Cuomo for participating in a gay pride parade, and in a today show appearance yesterday described the parade as “disgusting.”
“What’s disgusting is that Carl Paladino’s idea of celebrating the eve of National Coming Out Day is to tell young LGBT people that they’re not equally valid,” added Solmonese. “There is nothing to be proud of in giving voice to the kind of divisiveness that so often leads to violence.”
The Human Rights Campaign is America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality. By inspiring and engaging all Americans, HRC strives to end discrimination against GLBT citizens and realize a nation that achieves fundamental fairness and equality for all.