A concerned parent spoke to embattled Troy Mayor Janice Daniels at a recent City Council meeting. Her message: "Choose love over everything."
Daniels has come under fire for posting a homophobic slur to her Facebook page. On Jun. 25, Daniels wrote a post that read: "I think I am going to throw away my I Love New York carrying bag now that queers can get married there."
Since the post resurfaced on Dec. 2, Daniels has been subject to intense media scrutiny and backlash from Troy residents and community members, many of whom showed up at the Dec. 6 City Council meeting to air their concern during the public comment period.
Among them were two moms and their two daughters, Troy Patch reported:
"We came here tonight because we wanted Mayor Daniels to have a really good look at -- and to meet for maybe the first time in her entire life -- a gay family," Birmingham resident Amy Weber said. Amy and her wife, Tina, spoke directly to Daniels during public comment, and the couple's two young daughters brought drawings to give to the mayor.
Weber presented Daniels with two pictures drawn by her daughters, Logan and Aiden. Each drawing included the word 'love.' Weber also encouraged Daniels to attend an LGBT event or pride march to show her goodwill.
"We talk every day about different families and different types of people and teaching respect and kindness," Weber said. "That is the heart that beats in our house -- about being kind, about choosing love over everything."
At the end of her speech the audience erupted into applause.
Public comment at the meeting continued until 1 a.m. Afterward, Daniels spoke to Patch.
"I'm so tired," Daniels said. "I wish I could think of something really nice to say, but I can't think of something that would be absolutely appropriate.
"I'm very, very moved by the whole experience," she continued, "and I'm going to be making some considerations certainly in the future."
Though Daniels has received intense public scrutiny (Keith Olbermann called her the "worst person in the world"), and was rumored to have been fired from her day job as a real estate agent, she has refused to resign.
High school students have been particularly critical of the mayor, arranging protests and penning blog posts promoting LGBT rights. One Troy resident created a video about the incident that referenced a viral video by Jonah Mowry, a bullied gay teen.
Some groups have even called for a boycott of the Michigan city.
For full coverage of Troy Mayor Janice Daniels, head over to Troy Patch.