Thursday, October 25, 2007

21st Century Calling Chuck Silcox: Join Us

Well, I am disappointed. I thought we could get all the way through the District 9 City Council race without this.

In this morning's Startlegram, Fort Worth City Councilman Chuck Silcox urged a group of Republicans to vote for Chris Turner in the nonpartisan District 9 council race because Turner is Republican and straight.

"This is an excellent time to have Republicans get out and support a Republican: Chris Turner," Silcox told a Republican Women's Club meeting on Wednesday. "We have two people of opposite partisan politics, opposite philosophical persuasions and opposite sexual orientations.

"I didn't tell you which one was homosexual," Silcox said as the crowd laughed. Pointing to Turner, Silcox continued: "He's married to a female, and the other's married to a male. You make your own mind up."

The article goes on to explain that the other candidate to which Silcox refers is Joel Burns.

Let me be clear -- there is no place for this type of bigotry in Fort Worth. Period.

Although I believe there are good reasons not to vote for Joel Burns, this is NOT one of them. A person's sexual orientation should not be an issue in Fort Worth politics.

Joel, I'm sorry that happened to you. Although I do not support your campaign, I support what your candidacy means for Fort Worth. I thought this was a new day in Fort Worth when an openly gay person could run for office as a candidate and not as "the gay candidate." Obviously, we aren't there yet, Fort Worth.

I hope that Mr. Silcox apologizes immediately for his remarks. I also hope Mr. Turner will clarify that Silcox's remarks have no place in Fort Worth politics. Chuck, you are out-of-step with the times. This is the 21st Century. Join us. It's nice here.

That said, it is time to move past petty partisan potshots and the politics of labels. The people are tired of it. I'm tired of it.

We don't need politicians, we need leaders. We need a someone who has a positive vision for Fort Worth.

I believe there is a leader in this race. That leader is Bernie Scheffler. Please vote for him and help bring the vision to reality.

UPDATE: Huh? Pete at Cowtown Chronicles reminds us that once upon a time, Silcox helped spearhead the addition of sexual orientation as a protected category under Fort Worth’s anti-discrimination ordinance. It just makes this whole thing that much more puzzling.

UPDATE 10.25.07, 5 p.m.: Tim Rogers at FrontBurner weighs in on Silcox: "There's something even more ironic about Chuck Silcox and his playing the "straight card." Follow me here: Silcox points to Chris Turner and tells everyone they should vote for him because he likes women. Everyone laughs. Turner is a political consultant. He has a partner named Craig Murphy. Together they run a firm called Murphy Turner Associates. Murphy ran Ed Oakley's campaign for Dallas mayor. Ed Oakley likes guys. And in that race, when the Heritage Alliance urged everyone to vote for Tom Leppert because he was straight, Murphy cried foul. To me, that sounds like hypocrisy."


Bernie said...

Well said, Steve-o. I'm sorry that Mr. Silcox has chosen to attack Joel in this way.

Luckily, I don't think anyone with a conscience would withhold their vote from a candidate because he loves somebody. What I do expect to see is a backlash against Mr. Silcox at the ballot box in 2009.

Don Young said...

Just when I was beginning to gain respect for Chuck Silcox he takes careful aim and shoots himself in the foot. His recent votes against high impact gas wells were an indication that he was a man of conscience and integrity. His "joke" at Joel Burns expense is not funny.

A man who jokes about sexual orientation probably makes similar remarks about blacks, jews, and women. Whatever respect that was blossoming for Chuck has now withered.


TXsharon said...

Gosh it's great to come here and read tolerance and respect for fellow humans. 11.5 years ago I move 60 miles north of FW and I went back 60 years in time. I am tolerance deprived.