Trantalis angry at Rodstrom over Naugle rant!

  
      Former Commissioner Dean Trantalis is very upset over Mayor Jim Naugle’s homophobic message in the current addititon of the City’s newsletter “the Focus”., and it’s not just Jim Naugle who he is furious at.

      In Naugle’s latest article, he continued his focus on his priority of stopping “gay sex” at City parks and bathrooms. The “Focus” is mailed to all Fort Lauderdale residents.

     The article created quite a stir in the community, and Gay residents demanded that the City Commission rebuke Naugle at their latest meeting. The commission, with Commissioner Cindi Hutchinson leading the effort, agreed to keep any more Naugle missives from appearing in the publication. They agreed to replace Naugle’s column with a column of their own. (See Sun-Sentinel’s Politic Blog at http://weblogs.sun-sentinel.com/news/politics/broward/blog/)  

     The effort, which was the strongest admonition yet of the Mayor by his Commission, didn’t pacify Trantalis when it came to the statements of his handpicked successor, Commissioner Charlotte Rodstrom. Below is a copy of an e-mail sent by Trantalis to Rodstrom yesterday.


     Hi Charlotte-

    Naugle’s recent statements regarding the gay community, especially in
light of the death and beating of two individuals who were GLBT members, has
enraged the entire community.  The statements which he included in his State
of the City address, and now his most recent attack in the Focus article,
are clear signs that this guy is not going to let up. We can all say that,
oh well, he’ll be gone in a year so let’s just grin and bear it. Well,
unfortuantely, that doesn’t work. We all thought that the mayor would have
had his round last summer, and having seen the community response, would
have just felt satisfied that he said his peace and would move on with the
business of the city. That is clearly not the case.

    The gay community and its friends are planning a significant response to
the mayor’s latest actions. In its fight, its leaders will look to see who
is with them and who is not, and specific moments will be seen as tests to
determine community loyalty. Yesterday afternoon, at the conference meeting,
we were looking for a response from the other commissioners like yourself to
stand up to the mayor and insist that he not demean the city and the
position of mayor in his continual diatribe about bathroom sex which only he
seems to think is a problem. Many eyes were on you, Charlotte, and frankly
your attempt to try to shove the issue under the rug is being viewed as your
agreement with the mayor and his beliefs. You cannot look to find excuses
for the mayor when he conducts himself in an inexcusable manner. You can see
that he is unapolgetic, is shameless, and your looking to appease the anger
with a motherly pat on the head is making people in the GLBT community
feeling betrayed.

    I say this to you because I have always supported you and I believe in
your continued role as our commissioner. But Charlotte, this issue hits too
close and too hard for me to ignore and for you look indifferent. People are
dying because of their sexual orientation and being ruffed-up right here in
our own back yard–at the Floridian no less!! You cannot dig your head in
the sand; as much as we all hoped that the issue would have gone away it has
returned and with a vengeance. His rhetotic has emboldened people to attack
innocent victims and your refusal to stand up against the mayor or anyone
else who speaks his point of view is being interpreted as your agreeing with
him.

    Charlotte, you need to make a strong and bold statement real soon and in
a very demonstrative way. I can only hold back the anger for so long. (I
even convinced Coleman Pruitt to run in district 4 and not against you.) But
to let the mayor continue to offend and to especially put lives at risk is
just not acceptable. The city does not deserve to have as its mayor someone
who revels in filth, and certainly, with such a large GLBT population that
exists in Ft.Lauderdale, we need to know that we have people who are there
to protect us.

   

DEAN