For the first time, Glendale councilman apologizes for vulgar online posts from dais

Glendale Councilman Zareh Sinanyan apologized for the first time from the dais at a council meeting Tuesday night for posting racist, homophobic and vulgar comments several years ago on YouTube.

“It truly does not matter to me if you’re Armenian or Latino or Anglo or Korean. It doesn’t matter if you’re gay or straight. It doesn’t matter if you’re Christian, Jewish, Muslim or Hindu,” Sinanyan said. “As my life experiences have shown, the only thing that matters to me is that I want to serve Glendale.”

Last month, Sinanyan publicly confessed to making the comments, many of which were violent and centered around Armenia’s geo-political enemies, to Glendale News-Press columnist Ron Kaye. He mentioned how much he regretted the comments, but several residents still called for an apology.

“If I have not gone far enough, let me be clear: I apologize to anyone who may have been offended by my past comments. I am truly sorry,” Sinanyan said.

He has not discussed the comments at council meetings since being elected in April, even after he was publicly chided by residents from the public speaker’s podium.

The comments surfaced in March, just weeks before the election, but Sinanyan would not say then whether he wrote them. He lost several high profile endorsements — including Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Burbank) — and was at risk of losing his seat on a city commission.

Councilwoman Laura Friedman, who Sinanyan called a liar at the time, became a target for his supporters, some of whom said she fabricated the comments to smear a political contender.

“I do hope your supporters stop saying it’s a conspiracy by me against you as happened last week outside of these chambers,” Friedman said. “I sincerely believe that we can work together.”

-- Brittany Levine, brittany.levine@latimes.com

Follow on Google+ and on Twitter: @brittanylevine.

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