CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Openly lesbian Charlotte City Councilmember LaWana Mayfield has doubled-down on her support of anti-Semitic and anti-lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) hate group leader Louis Farrakhan following a breaking story on Friday morning detailing her attendance at a recent Farrakhan event in Charlotte at which she said he was “doing God’s will.”
In posts on Facebook (a screen capture is available below), Mayfield has now accused a fellow LGBT leader of intolerance and again declined to “pass judgement” on Farrakhan. qnotes had previously asked her to condemn Farrakhan’s history of anti-Semitic and anti-LGBT remarks.
Shane Windmeyer, founder and executive director of the Charlotte-based national group Campus Pride, responded to a posting on Mayfield’s Facebook page on Friday night in which a flier for Farrakhan’s event last week was posted. Windmeyer’s post contained several of Farrakhan’s comments on Jews and gays.
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[Ed. Note — This writer was briefly employed by Campus Pride during his hiatus from the newspaper this past spring. He is currently assisting Campus Pride with a web-based project left uncompleted when his tenure with the organization ended. He has no other official ties with the organization.]
“I support all residents in my district and with over 1,100 [Facebook] friends I am not going to always delete information that shows up on my page,” Mayfield wrote in response. “It is not my place to pass judgement on anyone that is GOD’S work.”
Windmeyer later responded with his opinion on how Farrakhan’s anti-gay religious views could harm LGBT young people.
Mayfield then accused Windmeyer of intolerance.
“Understand this, I NEVER COMPROMISE MY PRINCIPALS [sic] including when 1 group opposes another,” she wrote. “I attended a local muslim [sic] community event and they sent out a flyer. You or no-one [sic] else will have me Not represent ALL people in this community. I will no sooner remove this than I would remove a flyer you have sent, [Human Rights Campaign] flyers or the Jewish Community flyers. If you are working for FULL Equality than practice that as I do. You do not get to advocate intolerance here…. [sic]”
In a follow-up posting, Windmeyer said he questioned Mayfield’s commitment to equality.
“For you to be so adamant in your support for Farrakhan without condemning his past actions is disturbing — at minimum,” Windmeyer wrote. “I am an advocate for full equality and I stand against bias and hate in all its forms. … I will not tolerate hate toward anyone in the name of God or any faith, especially when LGBT youth are victims of such religion-based bigotry. Yes, I therefore question your principles and will continue to do so openly — to do otherwise is contradictory to equality and justice.”
Mayfield was among several other local elected officials who attended an event on Oct. 13 at which Farrakhan was a headliner. A separate event was held the next day in which Mecklenburg County Commissioner Vilma Leake appeared on stage with Farrakhan. Mecklenburg Board of County Commissioners Chairman Harold Cogdell was also at the Oct. 13. On Friday, he, too, refused to condemn Farrakhan’s anti-Semitic and anti-LGBT remarks.
Mayfield became Charlotte’s first openly gay or lesbian elected official in 2011. Both Leake and Cogdell have past endorsements from a local LGBT rights group, the Mecklenburg LGBT Political Action Committee, or MeckPAC. That group has endorsed Leake in this fall’s election for county commission seats. They have yet to issue a statement regarding the Farrakhan controversy and whether any of their endorsements might be rescinded.
Facebook screen capture
Screen capture image current as of Friday, Oct. 19, 2012, 10:12 p.m. Click to enlarge.