Mobile County Treasurer apologizes for controversial Facebook comment

Mobile County


UPDATE: 8:50 pm – Mayor Sandy Stimpson tweets his response to the controversy

UPDATE (3:30 pm.) — Commissioner Jerry Carl released the following statement regarding the comments by Phil Benson:

“After listening to the sincere comments presented to us by members of the LGBTQ community at this morning’s Commission meeting, I want to make it perfectly clear that I do not in any way support, condone or tolerate Treasurer Phil Benson’s comments. I will not support anyone who conveys their thoughts or feelings in such a negative and derogatory manner.”

UPDATE (1:30p.m) — After several LGBTQ activists and supporters spoke at the Mobile County Commission meeting Monday morning, County Treasurer Phil Benson posted an apology on Facebook.

The post reads, ” My personal belief is that while the practice of homosexuality goes against the clear teaching of scripture, I apologize to anyone that I may have offended for my mean-spirited choice of words. Jesus teaches us to love all people, even when we don’t agree with their lifestyle”.

ORIGINAL STORY: Several LGBTQ activists and supporters were speaking out this morning at the Mobile County Commission meeting. This comes days after a controversial Facebook comment made by County Treasurer Phil Benson many have called homophobic.

LGBTQ homeowners and residents just wanted their voices heard. A crowd of a little more than two dozen LGBTQ supporters filed into the Mobile County Commission meeting. They all felt motivated following a Facebook comment by Phil Benson who wrote online in part “Freaking Queers have gotten too much sympathy.” Most of the comments at the meeting were civil, carefully worded and brief. A common theme among the speakers became a desire for acceptance and respect.

“I am a freaking queer. Though I’d redefine it to passionately, unwaveringly different. And Yes we passionately, unwaveringly different people will continue to make ourselves known,” said Jessica Banks with Rainbow Mobile. Noticeably absent from the meeting was County Treasurer Phil Benson, I went to his office and was told he wasn’t in yet today.

Jerry Carl is the last county commissioner to weigh in on the controversy. He stopped short of condemning Benson but said there was no way he agrees with what Benson wrote. Activists say they’ll be at tomorrow’s Mobile City Council meeting to continue talking about the need for acceptance for people who identify as LGBTQ.

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