The dean of the Michigan Legislature says he did not support a resolution of tribute to native son Earvin (Magic) Johnson because “I don’t like people who have AIDS.”
The tribute, adopted by the House on Tuesday, honors Johnson, a Lansing native and former Michigan State University basketball star, for his contributions to basketball and his community service.
Earlier this month, Johnson announced that he was retiring from the Los Angeles Lakers after testing positive for the virus that causes AIDS. He said he contracted HIV through heterosexual relations.
“I don’t honor anyone--whether it be Magic Johnson, my neighbor or a member of my family--anyone that has AIDS,” said Rep. Dominic Jacobetti when asked why he did not support the resolution. “I don’t honor them.
“I’m against AIDS and I’m against homosexuality. You can stop AIDS. You know what it is. It comes from sex. That can be stopped. I don’t like the disease. I don’t like people who have AIDS. I don’t like the way it comes about.”
Jacobetti, serving his 19th two-year term, is Michigan’s senior state legislator and chairman of the House Appropriations Committee.