Make us your home page

The Buzz

From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Gay rights group wants Carroll to apologize



Equality Florida, a gay rights advocacy group, has launched an online petition campaign demanding an apology from Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll, who drew the group's criticism by telling a Tampa television station on July 14 that "usually black women that look like me don't engage in relationships like that." Carroll was responding to allegations that a former aide caught her in a "compromising position" with a female staffer.

Carroll's comments immediately caught the attention of Equality Florida, whose executive director, Nadine Smith, wrote a biting opinion piece on The Grio. The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation and various gay rights activists have also criticized Carroll's statements.

However, she has not publicly responded to the controversy or clarified her remarks. Now, Equality Florida has launched a petition drive demanding Carroll's apology.

“As a black lesbian from Florida, I personally felt the sting of Florida Lt. Governor Jennifer Carroll's words. Instead of simply denying the claims, she stereotyped black lesbians in order to deflect her own charges," said Smith. “With that one quick statement, Lt. Governor Carroll appealed to racial and homophobic stereotypes that do real harm.”

The online petition, which can be found here, is already more than halfway to its goal of 500 signatures.

Here is the video of the WTSB interview where Carroll made the controversial comments:

[Last modified: Wednesday, July 25, 2012 10:10pm]


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours