COLAGE Executive Director Jordan Budd calls on Los Angeles City Council Members Nury Martinez, Kevin de León, and Gil Cedillo to resign:
In a leaked conversation, Los Angeles City Council Member Nury Martinez made racist and queerphobic remarks about fellow City Council Member Mike Bonin’s son, a COLAGEr. She also made homophobic remarks about Bonin and his husband’s ability to be parents. Council Member Kevin de León also compared Bonin’s child to a designer handbag. While racism and homophobia are not new to California, or politics, we must hold racist and queerphobic “leaders” accountable, especially in a climate where many LGBTQ+ families are already feeling under siege. They should not be allowed to continue holding positions of power in the most populous city in the most populous state in the nation, especially when so many LGBTQ+ families call Los Angeles home.
As a person with an LGBTQ+ parent and a Black, queer man, I am horrified by the comments made on the leaked audio. Perhaps even more striking than the racist and queerphobic comments themselves was the total silence from our so-called “allies.”
It does not take much research to understand the weighted and racist history behind comparing Black people to monkeys. Similarly, it doesn’t take much to understand the homophobia between equating children being raise by gay men to designer accessories. Our parents do not raise us as accessories. Just like straight parents, queer parents want to build their family and provide a loving home. COLAGErs deserve to feel safe and secure in their families, and that includes living under leadership that understands and appreciates our experiences. There is no excuse for the kind of ignorance and vitriol spewed by Martinez, de León, and Cedillo.
They must resign.
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