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Police Chief under fire by anti-gay
QSanAntonio, July 31, 2007
A group of anti-gay "Christian" zealots plans to speak before
the San Antonio City Council on Thursday, August 2 to express their displeasure
to the Mayor and City Council regarding Police Chief William McManus’
participation as grand marshal in the S.A. Gay Pride Parade on July 2.
The protest is being staged by the same KSLR AM "Christian"
radio talk show host who last year organized the three H-E-B pickets and
the failed boycott of that grocery chain.
KSLR listeners are being asked to come before the City Council and speak
during the "Citizens to be Heard" portion of the meeting to
demonstrate their "objection to Police Chief McManus, using his influence
to legitimize homosexual sex which is unnatural, unhealthy and unbiblical."
The protesters will be asked to stand as a group while they present their
complaints to the Council. Ironically, participants are being asked to
be "polite and Christ-like" when they make their anti-gay speeches.
This is the second time this radio station has attacked Chief McManus
for his participation in the gay parade. The last time was at the end
of June, just before the parade took place. At that time many of those
"Christians" posted remarks to a blog on WOAI.com where some
of the comments were patently un-Christ-like, bordering on hate speech.
The attacks on the Chief continued on KSLR for several days after the
parade had taken place.
Since his tenure in San Antonio began, Chief McManus has reached out to
the GLBT community to help improve what in the past had been a rocky relationship.
He has met with community groups, initiated GLBT sensitivity training
at the Police Academy, and has, in general, made it clear that he will
not tolerate anti-gay behavior by the police force. In fact, on August
9, about a dozen GLBT citizens will be conducting a daylong class at the
Police Academy as part of an "in-service training" for police
QSanAntonio is asking its readers to show their support of Police Chief
William McManus and for equality for all citizens in San Antonio by contacting
the Mayor and their City Councilperson. Click here to send them an email:
& City Council.
If possible, please consider attending the City Council meeting on August
2, which starts at 6 p.m. at the Municipal Plaza Building. The entrance
is in the pedestrian walkway just north of San Fernando Cathedral. You
also can register at the Municipal Building to speak before the City Council
between 8 a.m. and 5:50 p.m. on Thursday, August 2. Several GLBT groups
are organizing support for the Chief and will have some of their members
Teenagers from the Christian Boot Camp line up outside
the City Council chamber preparing to take part in KSLR "Christian"
Radio's protest against Police Chief William McManus.
A KSLR "Christian" holds up a crucifix while
Rev. Mick Hinson, pastor of the Metropolitan Community Church addresses
the City Council. Rev. Hinson was jeered and heckled while he spoke.
hate-fest takes the podium at City Council meeting
QSanAntonio, August 3, 2007
A rude and noisy crowd of "Christian" zealots, organized by
KSLR Radio, went before the Mayor and the City Council on August 2 and
treated them to evening of hard and soft core gay bashing. While the main
purpose of the visit was to express their displeasure at Police Chief’s
William McManus’ participation as Grand Marshal of the Gay Pride
Parade, many of those who spoke used the occasion to make public their
revulsion of all things "homosexual." At times, their expressions
of disgust were couched in terms that were less than "Christ-like."
The Council chamber was filled to the brim, with KSLR’s rowdy "Christians"
taking up about two-thirds of the seats. There were many families with
small children in tow, numerous jeering bullies, and one man who waved
a large crucifix whenever someone with a differing opinion stood up to
The atmosphere took on the air of a Fascist circus when 45 teens from
the Christian Boot Camp were paraded out in camouflage uniforms, marched
up the center aisle of the Council chamber and made to stand at attention
when the group’s main organizer took his turn to speak.
The "Christians" heckled the white-haired, 75-year-old Yvonne
Jonas, president of PFLAG while she addressed the Council. They jeered
at Rev. Mick Hinson, pastor of the Metropolitan Community Church when
he spoke of his family and defended Chief McManus. For a group that was
purportedly there to spread the message of Christ, the KSLR group seemed
to lack basic civility and human kindness.
The anti-gay speakers pulled no punches. One Mexican-American man used
the word "jotos" a pejorative term equivalent to "faggots"
to describe gay people. Terms like "pernicious sickness," "disgusting,"
and "pedophiliac" were used openly and freely. One lady angrily
intoned that the Police Chief had no business leading a parade filled
with "murderers and drug dealers." Another woman presented a
"divine proclamation" which she said God had given her the day
When group’s puffed-up main organizer took the podium he lambasted
the Chief of Police for endorsing the "homosexual agenda." Didn’t
the Police Chief know that homosexuals spread disease and had sex in public
bathrooms he asked? Didn't he know he was setting a bad example for the
children of San Antonio? And what made the Chief so special that he "could
ride in an open convertible waving like some Miss America" in a parade
where "fruit flavored condoms" were being distributed?
The "Christians" appear to have won the shouting match but they
also succeeded in proving that intolerance, homophobia and blind fanaticism
are alive and well in San Antonio and especially at KSLR "Christian"
Left to right: Phillip Barcena, President of Gay Pride
San Antonio, addresses the City Council. Roberto Flores, Co-chair of the
Stonewall Democrats being interviewed by KWEX-TV. Yvonne Jonas, President
of PFLAG, with one of the young people in that organization.
Left to right: Rev. Illene Dunne, pastor of the Madison
Square Presbyterian Church with Rev. Mick Hinson, pastor of the Metropolitan
Community Church. Julia DeGrace a corporate executive and member of the
Human Rights Campaign in San Antonio. Dee Villarubio, member of the Stonewall
Democrats (right, in green shirt), talks to self-proclaimed homophobe
Jack Finger (in white shirt).
Voices of support for our Police
QSanAntonio, August 3, 2007
Several GLBT activists took to the podium on August 2 to defend Police
Chief William McManus before the Mayor and the City Council despite the
hostile atmosphere created by the KSLR "Christians." Here are
excerpts of what some of them had to say.
"As someone raised Lutheran/Catholic/Christian and versed in the
Gospels, I do not understand the alleged "family values" touted
by those who seek to censure Chief McManus. I do know that in all my training
and experience as an investigator, those who yell the loudest usually
have the most to hide."
-- Pam DelaBar, Member, Stonewall Democrats & American Veterans
for Equal Rights
"I am here to say, as a member of the straight community, that is
seems some unloving people are complaining about our Chief of Police being
in our GLBT Parade that was held on July 2. Our city is moving forward,
we need to be helping each other rather than trying to hurt others."
-- Yvone Jonas, President, Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays,
"We support the City Council and the recommendation of City Manager
Sheryl Sculley for presenting Chief William McManus’ name for hiring
of that position. One of our own Stonewall Democrat members was on the
committee for screening the candidates. We hope that this Council will
continue to support Chief William McManus for the professional and excellent
job that he is doing."
-- Roberto Flores, Co-chair, Stonewall Democrats of San Antonio
"The poet Audre Lord once said, ‘It is not our differences
that divide us, it is our inability to recognize, accept and celebrate
those differences.’ Perhaps the city of San Antonio should take
Chief McManus’ lead and celebrate those differences."
-- Phillip Barcena, President, Gay Pride San Antonio
"When I heard about this protest, I wondered why there is objection
to Chief McManus? He’s been a great Police Chief. You all know that.
I concluded that this isn’t about the Chief at all. He’s just
collateral damage in an on-going crusade against gay, lesbian, bisexual
and transgendered people."
-- Julia DeGrace, Member Political Committee, Human Rights Campaign
"Please support Chief McManus against the ignorance
of extremists. As Police Chief, he is responsible for the safety of all
San Antonio citizens, including the LGBT community. His outreach to the
LGBT community is an example of best practices used by major metropolitan
cities in Texas and across the country. Training police officers to better
serve the community is a benefit to all San Antonio citizens and builds
trust between officers and respective communities. This trust fosters
support of police work and strengthens the community by reducing crime."
-- Equality Texas, excerpt from email sent to thousands of members
in San Antonio
"As a father, a clergyperson, and as a Christian gay
man, I am overwhelmed with appreciation for the courage, strength of character,
high moral and ethical fiber , that Chief McManus exhibited in the simple
act of taking part in a parade. His active commitment to recognize all
people as citizens entitled to equal protection and inclusion under the
law is admirable and should be lifted up as an example for all to follow.
I am filled with great joy, knowing that we have a chief of police who
really cares and takes his oath seriously to protect and defend all citizens
within his charge. "
-- Rev. Mick Hinson, Pastor, Metropolitan
Police Chief William McManus (center, wearing white
baseball cap) and his wife pose with law officers prior to marching in
the Gay Pride San Antonio Parade on July 2, 2007.
You have to wonder why they hate
By Julia DeGrace, HRC S.A., QSanAntonio, August 4, 2007
Following is the text of an address presented before the San Antonio
City Council on August 2 when local "Christians" protested Police
Chief William McManus’ participation in the Gay Pride San Antonio
I came here tonight because Adam McManus called for Christians to protest
Police Chief William McManus being the Grand Marshal of the Gay Pride
San Antonio Parade.
I was on North Main that Sunday evening. There was unusual behavior there.
Some grown men were holding hands and I saw some women kissing other women.
Some fashion choices were strange. Young men in the back of a pickup truck
were wearing only briefs or Speedos; and a grown man wearing go-go boots
and a miniskirt, with way too much makeup on and carrying a parasol.
Those are not fashion choices I would make. BUT -- you know what? No one
was fighting, or being obnoxious with their language. No one was being
hurt. No one was preaching hate. No one was urging passersby to learn
how to become homosexual or transsexual. They all seemed quite happy and
were having a good time: Except one man walking on the other side of the
street, carrying a big sign that read, "The Wages Of Sin Are Death."
What did he mean by that? We’re all going to die. It happens in
the natural course of life. Did he mean that everyone dies naturally because
everyone is a sinner? Or did he mean to imply that the people on the other
side of the street, displaying activity he disapproves of, might somehow
come to a swift, premature death?
When I heard about this protest, I wondered why there is objection to
Chief McManus. He’s been a great Police Chief. You all know that.
I concluded that this isn’t about the Chief at all. He’s just
collateral damage in the on-going crusade against gay, lesbian, bisexual
and transgendered people.
You have to wonder why they hate us so. They don’t even know us.
This is certainly not a lifestyle choice. Twenty-first century medicine
and science have determined that we are just born this way and there isn’t
a darn thing we can do about it. I can’t any more change my being
transgendered and lesbian than I can change being 5-foot-11. God made
us this way and I believe that God loves everything he has made.
You’re going to hear that the Chief is endorsing immoral behavior.
I put to you that he is just acknowledging the right of a minority of
our citizens to have police protection, just like everyone else.
For years, the majority of us have hidden our secrets for fear of the
consequences of discovery. As more and more of us come out, others gain
the courage to come out as well. So our numbers are far greater than you
might imagine. We live in the community, work, pay taxes, support local
organizations, do volunteer work and are for the most part good citizens.
And we also turn out to vote.
An open letter in support of Police
Chief William McManus
By Toby Johnson, QSanAntonio, August 2, 2007
Following is a letter sent to Mayor Phil Hardberger in response to
local religious extremists' plans to protest before the City Council regarding
Police Chief William McManus' participation last July in the Gay Pride
Dear Mayor Hardberger: I am writing in support of Police
Chief McManus's participation in San Antonio's Gay Pride celebration last
month. As one-time chair of the San Antonio Gay Alliance and openly-gay
psychotherapist and AIDS educator in the early days of the gay men's health
crisis (mid-1980s), I can testify that positive affirmation by city officials
of gay people's role in the life of the city is certainly good for members
of our community.
Virtually all of the "problems" the gay/lesbian community suffers
from--and is villainized for by conservatives--originate from low self-esteem
and what is called in psychotherapeutic lingo "internalized homophobia."
Countering that homophobia with human respect and positive regard helps
resolve those problems.
Chief McManus has a personal history of being gay-supportive in other
cities where he has served honorably. His history and his own personal
freedom to believe in and support cultural trends he resonates with gives
him the right as a free American to participate in the Gay Pride events
without condemnation by religious hate groups.
It is difficult to imagine that Jesus Christ would behave like the Chief's
namesake at the "Christian" radio station. Jesus taught love
and forgiveness and acceptance. In chapter 8 of the St. Matthew gospel
and 7 of St. Luke, Jesus is recorded as healing the male consort of the
Roman Centurion at the Centurion's request. Jesus was not anti-homosexual
in his own day. He certainly wouldn't be if he were alive today.
Adam McManus does not represent true Christianity.