Jim Naugle’s Gone
Alas, only from the Tourist Development Council, but it's a good first step.
Broward County commissioners voted unanimously Tuesday night to remove Fort Lauderdale Mayor Jim Naugle from the Tourist Development Council.
The leadership of Broward County's multibillion-dollar tourism industry demanded Thursday that Naugle stop his attacks on homosexuality even as he pressed them to change a marketing campaign meant to attract gay tourists.
I'm glad it was a unanimous vote, because it sends the unequivocal message that Fort Lauderdale wants nothing to do with Naugle's comments. It's also proof that some things transcend party–Naugle is a Democrat, after all, albeit a crappy one we'd rather didn't make the claim. But we're not making excuses for our crappy public servants. We hold them accountable.
NOTE FROM PAM: Fight Out Loud released this statement:
Fight OUT Loud is extremely pleased that Commissioner Stacey Ritter’s motion to remove Naugle from the Broward County Tourism Development Council was unanimously approved yesterday. The move comes in response to Naugle’s continued attacks on the gay community. Fight OUT Loud is equally pleased that not only did the Commission remove Naugle, but all of the commissioners publicly and strongly denounced his hate-filled comments from the dais. The County also urged the Fort Lauderdale City Commission to formally rebuke the mayor at their next meeting.
Fight OUT Loud applauds Ritter and the County Commission for taking steps to remove Naugle from the Tourism Board, thereby giving him one less platform from which to spew dangerous misinformation and hate. Naugle is on a personal mission to demonize a large segment of the community he represents. By continuing his spread of lies and bigotry for his own personal satisfaction and agenda, Naugle has put the entire region at risk economically. More importantly, he has threatened the safety of LGBT citizens and visitors. He is putting the public at great risk by spreading misinformation about HIV/AIDS and other health issues. The mayor is also endangering the entire community by painting everyday citizens as depraved criminals and “abominations”, in the process encouraging hate and violence against them.
Fort Lauderdale and its surrounding communities have been damaged in the eyes of the public. Travelers and residents are beginning to feel that it is no longer a safe, modern, accepting place. It is encouraging that true leadership was shown by the commission and that they have sent a clear message to the rest of the public that the County has zero tolerance for such hate and will no longer give someone a platform from which to spew such damaging rhetoric. He is hurting every member of the community by continuing these attacks and must be stopped.
By removing Naugle from this position, the Commission sends a clear message that Broward County does not allow this type of divisive discourse and truly welcomes all. It is the first, strong step in repairing the extensive damage Naugle has done.
More available at Incertus.