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Ferguson and Gays

Assemblyman Gil Ferguson has misrepresented the facts concerning an incident during his campaign (Letters, June 3).

Ferguson says in his letter that he refuses to apologize for referring to a group of homosexual activists with a diminutive (sic) term. He cites as his reason for this the accusation that he was cursed by those people and his car was spat on as he left a church where he had just spoken at an anti-gay forum.

As a participant in the events of that day, I want to emphasize that Ferguson is attempting to obscure the truth. In addition, Ferguson neglects to mention that this ground has already been covered extensively in a series of hearings at the Orange County Human Relations Commission, as well as in a number of letters between him, the group I represent--the Orange County Visibility League--and the commission.

After the incident in question, we went to the commission to request that they censure Ferguson for using the language he did, and the commission followed up with a letter to him. In his response, in which he refused to apologize for using the word in question, Ferguson said for the first time that his car was spat at and he was cursed by our group, which was outside the church property.

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On the day in question, no one in our group even saw Ferguson. He was inside when we got there and stayed inside until we left. No one spat on his car or cursed at him. These facts can be checked with the Anaheim police lieutenant who was on the scene. He says he made the remark in response to our taunts, but the fact remains that he made the remark in question to reporters inside the church, before he left and was supposedly accosted by our group.

Ferguson has tried to obscure the facts and make himself out to be the victim when, in fact, he is victimizing Orange County lesbians and gays with his vicious homophobia.

Had Ferguson used the type of language he did against another minority group, the outcry would have been far more considerable. Unfortunately, in Orange County, it is still acceptable to refer to lesbians and gays with gutter language. The fact that he was just overwhelmingly renominated and will most likely win in November speaks volumes about the voters of his district.

KEVIN FARRELL

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Co-Chairman, Orange County Visibility League


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