Valdosta Mayor Gayle continues to provide earned media to a group he doesn’t agree with, South Georgia Pride. He says people support him ten to 1 in refusing to issue a proclamation against bullying. Yet a local TV online poll is running 2 to 1 against his position. In addition to the obvious cultural issues, there are also economic issues involved.
Dean Poling wrote for the VDT today, Pride denied: Valdosta mayor denies LGBT event proclamation,
WTXL.tv (ABC 27) asks in a poll attached to a story by Jade Bulecza yesterday, Mayor turns down proclamation request from gay community,
Do you agree with Mayor Gayle’s decision not to sign the P.R.I.D.E. Proclamation?
That looks to me like 2 to 1 against the mayor’s position. Bulecza’s story included:
“Most of them (proclamations) are for the cancer society, the heart fund, you know things like this or either a pastor at a church for so many years and everything and this is the first one I get like this where my beliefs interfere with it,” said Mayor Gayle.
The mayor says he recognizes all the group does for the community. He says he welcomes everyone to Valdosta.
Since Mayor Gayle took office in January this is the only proclamation he turned down. The south Georgia group says they had a proclamation signed last year.
In less than a year in office the mayor has already found difficulty separating his personal beliefs from his office as mayor.
What was he asked to sign, anyway? The VDT story has the details:
The requested proclamation does not include an endorsement of gay marriage nor does it officially endorse the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender lifestyle.
“The proclamation opposes bullying and hate crimes based on sexual orientation,” Williams said. “It says the city recognizes we’re here and we’re part of the community.”
In essence, the submitted proclamation would have noted that the South Georgia Pride Committee: