Senator demands lieutenant governor’s resignation over LGBTQ attack
Update: “White House: NC Lieutenant Governor Robinson’s Anti-LGBTQ Comments Are ‘Disgusting’ and ‘Spread Hate'”
A state senator has said Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson should step down for calling homosexuality and transgender “filth.”
“There is no debate here,” said Senator Jeff Jackson, a Democrat from Mecklenburg County. âIt’s open discrimination. It is totally unacceptable.
“Mark Robinson should resign.”
Robinson, a Republican, made the comments in June at Asbury Baptist Church in Seagrove, but part of the speech was posted on Right Wing Watch’s Twitter profile Tuesday.
âThere’s no reason anyone anywhere in America should talk to kids about transgender, about homosexuality, about all this filth,â Robinson said. âYeah, I called it dirt. ”
His rant began when he told the crowd it was child abuse to force parents to send their children to school, tell them where to send the children to school, and then learn to their children to hate America and that they are racist.
It doesn’t matter to him who doesn’t like what he said, he added.
Robinson spokesman John Waugh wrote in a statement to The News & Observer on Friday that Robinson’s statements focused on education. and how schools should focus on reading, writing and math.
“The topics surrounding transgender and homosexuality should be discussed at home and not in public education,” the statement said. “Our main focus should be on helping our students succeed, not on topics that should be discussed at home.”
Robinson’s comments to church didn’t stop at LGBTQ issues. In a full video of the speech posted to YouTube, he calls people who support race theory critically and fund police movements and the Black Lives Matter movement “morons.”
âBlack lives don’t matter to Black Lives Matter,â said Robinson, who is black. “Do you know how I know that?” Because if they knew where they would be instead of being at the police station? They would be over there in the gang lair, in the house of the drug dealer who was setting him on fire. They would be in the abortion clinic burning it down if black lives really mattered.
He called Black Lives Matters activists “socialist liars and idiots” who lack truth and God.
“Hateful rhetoric,” says governor’s office
âNorth Carolina is a welcoming state where we value public education and the diversity of our people,â said Jordan Monaghan, spokesperson for Governor Roy Cooper. “It is abhorrent to hear anyone, and especially an elected official, use hateful rhetoric that harms people and the reputation of our state.”
Attorney General Josh Stein has said hate has no place in the state.
âEvery person in our state deserves respect – not just because it’s right, but because it’s necessary to build the kind of future we want for North Carolina,â Stein tweeted.
Senate Democratic Leader Dan Blue said in a statement Friday afternoon that Robinson’s comments did not reflect the views of Senate Democrats, who support and value the LGBTQ community.
âAt best, Robinson’s comments reinforce the need to better fund our schools so that we can ensure that students do not learn to hate each other for their differences,â Blue wrote. âWe hope that no educator will ever teach their students to regard another person as ‘filth’.
The Human Rights Commission, the country’s oldest LGBTQ organization, called for Robinson’s resignation on Friday evening.
Equality NC also released a statement on Twitter reminding the LGBTQ community that they are worthy and worthy.
âIt is difficult to find words to respond to this hatred. No one who thinks like that should be in a position of power in our state, âthe tweet said.
Kendra Johnson, director of Equality NC, told The N&O in a written statement that her organizations condemn Robinson’s “dangerous rhetoric”.
âAt a time when LGBTQ people, especially those suffering from multiple levels of marginalization, need a state of support, Robinson has instead proposed transphobia and homophobia,â Johnson said. “No one who thinks like this should be in a position of power, and these discriminatory attitudes underscore the need for comprehensive protections against discrimination in North Carolina.”
A group of ministers representing churches in the metro community, the North Carolina Council of Churches, the Alliance of AIDS Services Carolinas and the LGBT Center of Raleigh sent a letter to Robinson saying they accepted his offer, made during of his speech, to meet anyone who disagreed with his statement.
Jackson sent out a nine-tweet thread calling out Robinson for repeatedly attacking the LGBTQ community.
The senator said the post of lieutenant governor should not be held by someone who is “clearly and proudly discriminatory.”
Jackson, who is running to represent North Carolina in the US Senate, has warned that Robinson is preparing to run for governor in 2024.
“If he runs, he’s almost certain to be the Republican nominee,” Jackson wrote. “He is immensely popular within his party – and I imagine he always will be, even after this.”
Jackson apologized to the LGBTQ community for Robinson’s comments.
âIt tells a lot of wonderful people – our friends, our family, our neighbors – that someone who represents them thinks they’re all under basic dignity,â Jackson wrote. “No one should find this acceptable from a distance.”
Lawmakers join condemnation
Other lawmakers joined with Jackson in condemning Robinson’s speech:
âª “He was not suitable for a position as a candidate, [and] he is not fit to serve as lieutenant governor, âsaid former state senator and current US Senate candidate Erica Smith, a Democrat from Northampton,
âª “I stand in solidarity with the LGBTQ community and I hope you join me in condemning this hate speech by our state’s top elected Republican official,” tweeted. Senator Wiley Nickel, a Democrat from Wake County, who echoed Jackson’s call for Robinson’s resignation.
âª “I think it’s degrading and outrageous,” said Rep. Marcia Morey, Democrat of Durham and a member of the LGBTQ community. “I think he should apologize, and if he wants to be a leader in the state, he should act like one.”
âª âHe’s clearly a very ignorant and mean guy,â said Rep. Deb Butler, Wilmington Democrat and member of the LGBTQ community, âHe’s just a very small-minded little man with a big, gruff body, which makes him a bully, and no one likes a bully, especially an ignorant one.
The Rise of Robinson
Robinson came to power after a video went viral showing him berating Greensboro City Council for considering canceling a gun and knife display at Greensboro Coliseum after the school shooting in Parkland, in Florida, which killed 17 people.
Instead of criticizing the shooter, Robinson said, law-abiding gun owners should take responsibility for it.
In November 2020, he was elected Lieutenant Governor of North Carolina. His victory made him the state’s first black Republican elected to an important post since the 1800s, The N&O previously reported.
Robinson has a long history of commenting against the LGBTQ community.
Even before being elected, his Facebook posts called transgender a âmass illusion,â The N&O previously reported.
He used his platform to speak out against critical race theory and update social studies standards to teach racism in America.
The NC Democratic Party tweeted: âThe most senior North Carolina Republican is, once again, spitting out hateful and venomous rhetoric while @NCGOP remains silent. Human beings are not “dirt” and no one who calls them that way should be in office. “
Butler said other Republican leaders in North Carolina must condemn Robinson’s statements.
âSilence is complicity,â said Butler.
House Speaker Tim Moore and Senate Leader Phil Berger did not comment on Robinson’s video and neither could be reached for comment.
Moore’s spokeswoman Demi Dowdy said he was in court on Friday and could not be reached until Friday evening.
Several Republicans, including political consultants for GOP lawmakers, shared their views on Twitter shortly after the video was released.
Berger’s senior policy adviser Brent Woodcox tweeted: âThere is no future for an anti-gay political party. There just isn’t a big enough riding in this country for that attitude. The world has changed. Some politicians are catching up.
Moore’s former political consultant Madison Downing tweeted: âIf people don’t call it, then we allow it. We are a big tent party, or this party is no longer mine. We should embrace everyone, regardless of orientation.
Lawrence Shaheen Jr., a conservative lawyer and political consultant, tweeted: âOur NCGOP is a big party that should accept all people, regardless of their sexual orientation. Period. End of the conversation. Jesus wouldn’t have wanted it any other way.
Senator Paul Newton’s political advisor Andre Beliveau also tweeted: “The reality is that sometimes people with whom we largely agree and with whom we identify politically say things with which we do not agree. and say it in a hurtful way. It is a beautiful consequence of freedom of expression. All I can do is promise to do my best to be civil and pray for the grace of God.
This story was originally published 8 October 2021 10:01 a.m.