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Listen: Secret Audio Reveals City Councilwoman’s Extreme Homophobia And Anti-Gay Strategies

by David Badash on August 16, 2013

in Bigotry Watch,Civil Rights,Discrimination,News,Politics

Post image for Listen: Secret Audio Reveals City Councilwoman’s Extreme Homophobia And Anti-Gay Strategies

UPDATE 08/19: Texas Councilwoman Defends Leaked Homophobic Comments As Her ‘First Amendment’ Right

A Texas city councilwoman was secretly recorded by an aide as she and her staff discussed homosexuality before coming up with strategies to oppose a local anti-discrimination ordinance.

Homosexuality is “so disgusting!” San Antonio District 9 Councilwoman Elisa Chan told her staff. Chan also said she believes homosexuality is a choice, that gay people “take hormone shots,” and that gay people should be “banned” from adopting or raising children.

Editor’s note: As noted in this story, in May, Councilwoman Chan was discussing a proposed San Antonio, Texas anti-discrimination ordinance. Wednesday, the City Council held a hearing on that very proposal. And this happened:
Marine War Hero Eric Alva Excoriates A Texas Crowd Who Booed Him Because He Is Gay

Local news columnist Brian Chasnoff at Hearst’s San Antonio Express-News, offering excellent analysis, reported the story:

“By the way, this is politically incorrect,” she tells her aides. “I don’t think homosexual people should do adoption. They should be banned by adoption. You’re going to confuse those kids. They should be banned.

“If you wanted to choose that lifestyle, we don’t want to discriminate you, but you shouldn’t affect the young people,” she continues. “How terrible. … They’re going to be confused. You see two men go into a bedroom. You see two women kissing. Is that not confusing? It’s confusing.

“It is actually, what you call, suggestive, for the kids to be corrupt, which is against nature. I’m telling you, anything that is against nature is not right.”

“You know, to be quite honest, I know this is not politically correct,” she says. “I never bought in that you are born, that you are born gay. I can’t imagine it.”

“When I say that it’s … behavioral preference, they say that, ‘No, you’re born with it.’ But I never bought into that.”

“I think it’s just disgusting just to even think about. All the definitions. …”

But what is even more disgusting than Chan’s personal beliefs are the lies about her positions she says she is willing to tell to cover them up.

In strategizing on how to oppose the anti-discrimination ordinance, Chan decided to have her staff draft an op-ed to appear in a local paper.

“Can you guys come up with a draft?” she asks her aides. “Come up with draft with all the good, those arguments we talk as a speaking point, in terms of we’re addressing an issue that is not an issue. This is national politics again at the council level.

Chan tells her staff what lies to toss into her op-ed to explain her opposition, as if they were from a standard list of options on an anti-gay checklist:

“This is another layer of bureaucracy, that we have not heard any discrimination,” she continues. “And then add in the family value in there. … Maybe I’ll use the industries, that we have a trend, that is, maybe I’ll use we have water rates and CPS rates to worry about.”

And this shocking comment from Chan about the proposed op-ed:

“Maybe what we can do, can we maybe throw some questionable confusions like, OK, this ‘transgender,’ because the definition is so broad…”

Chan and her staff strategize about how to wiggle out of the backlash from her anti-LGBT positions if they’re taken as too extreme. Chan says:

“Maybe I say I was not educated on what transgender is about.”

She adds she could say she looked it up in Wikipedia.

Chasnoff adds to his report that the secret recording was made in May by an aide, James Stevens, who quit this week.

“My decision to record in the first place was that, during the staff meetings, we weren’t really discussing the ordinance itself,” Stevens told me. “We were really just talking about ways to appeal to the (voting) base and to get them fired up as opposed to analyzing the ordinance.”

Chan “is only focused on her political future,” he continued. “She’s not focused on the policy itself and how it’s going to really affect the city. We spent 80 percent of that meeting talking about how disgusting homosexuality is.”

Reached at City Hall on Thursday, Chan wouldn’t confirm a rumor that she plans to run for mayor in 2015.

Elisa Chan for mayor of San Antonio, Texas?

Remember that name.

Listen:

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{ 30 comments }

cipher August 16, 2013 at 10:25 am

Apparently, it isn't enough that Texas grows its own regressives, bigots and homophobes. Now it's starting to import them from other cultures.

There is no reason for Texas to retain statehood status. It should be downgraded to a territorial possession. Like an adolescent or developmentally challenged adult, it obviously can no longer be responsible for its own affairs.

fiddle mike August 19, 2013 at 2:17 pm

Screw that, just let us separate from the fascist government in DC, completely. We already have enough racist, heterophobic religious bigots trying to push us around.

felanie77 August 19, 2013 at 7:35 pm

every fucking time i see a story like this, it's in texas. that herd needs thinned out, NOW! and these ignorant(bordering on illiterate) racist assholes are in the GOVT.! at least in most states they have enough sense not to say this kind of shit where others might hear you. but in texas, this is the way you're expected to think. i just can't believe how ignorant and backwards their belief system is. it's seriously like you're dealing with the mentally handicapped and you need to talk to them real…….slow and explain that they found out that thunder is really not god bowling.

Sean590 August 19, 2013 at 9:18 pm

Oh, I see. So wrap up every single individual who lives in Texas and claim they all think the way Chan does. You're apparently as bigoted and uninformed as the nutcase council woman is. What state do you live in, Cipher? I'm sure a quick google check would reveal quite a lot about that state that I could complain about. Oh and of course I'd blame you and every single other American living in that state for the actions of a single individual. People like you are the type that shoot first, ask questions later. Good job!

SeanLiberty13 August 16, 2013 at 10:45 am

Ignorant fascist whore.

MissSaraFirefly August 16, 2013 at 11:06 am

So, by this ignorant bitches logic its safe to say all hetero parents will raise hetero children. Hmm… I wonder why I turned out queer when my parents are straight. I guess ill have to assume my parents are gay!!!

Str8Grandmother August 16, 2013 at 11:28 am

WOW!!! You know what, I hope her kids grow up gay.
THEN she can ask Robert Portman of Ohio how that works out for you.
The ONLY way this type of bigotry and ignorance is overcome is by people like her knowing somebody who is gay. She needs to see those happy pictures from Minnesota http://www.buzzfeed.com/mjs538/the-75-most-unforg
And her staff, what a bunch of HATERS!

richkadams August 16, 2013 at 12:52 pm

Ms. Chan,
Being gay is about as much of a choice as choosing to have slanted eyes or not. Ponder that. People are born the way they're born. Gay, straight, white, yellow, slanted eyes or not. Discriminting against someone based on the way they're born is morally reprehensible. Image being denied work, housing, healthcare because of your slanted eyes. Ponder that. I know YOU wont' read this, you are too close minded to venture onto a site like this. It just feels good to vent against ignorance and bigotry.

TahitiNut August 19, 2013 at 5:23 pm

Obviously Ms. Chan has agonized and pondered her "choice" at great length. She apparently doesn't comprehend the fact that others experience no such ambivalence. It's tough to come out of the closet when she doesn't seem to realize she's in one.

Just what does she think attracts those who've made the 'choice' to be gay? Just what 'features' does she think there are? Puzzling.

SteveWhichard August 16, 2013 at 1:04 pm

She is sickening but who is the bigoted male adding fuel to the fire in the discussion. People should know about him as well. Bigots need to be voted out of office and their bigoted assistants political career killed before it even begins.

elizapar11 August 16, 2013 at 1:34 pm

People should ban her from their business, treat her with the same disrespect that she is giving others. Maybe she should go back to China like the other losers from that country.

LEOINTHESUN August 16, 2013 at 2:09 pm
bgryphon August 16, 2013 at 2:38 pm

The page has been removed; I guess she couldn't stand the heat…

LEOINTHESUN August 16, 2013 at 3:29 pm

it still works for me..

bgryphon August 16, 2013 at 6:38 pm

I searched and found that facebook.com/pages/City-Councilwoman-Elisa-Chan-District-9/168229566527908 works- the link in your comment above gets turned into facebook.com/pages/City-Councilwoman-Elisa-Chan-District-9/168229566527908%5C which doesn't.

bjohnm August 16, 2013 at 3:22 pm

I was just about the same thing as bgryphon…she pulled her Facebook page. The coward.

mikeintexas August 17, 2013 at 9:54 am

She has 2 FB pages. One is apparently friends only. Use this one. https://www.facebook.com/pages/City-Councilwoman-

brotherbarnabas50 August 16, 2013 at 9:16 pm

No, Madam Councilperson, what is "disgusting" is an Asian American woman who is a homophobic bigot, and that, my dear lady, is you. I strong urge you to issue a profound apology and/or resign your office. You are a disgrace to your political party, your gender and your Asian heritage. All true Americans, along with your ancestors, are deeply offended by your comments and ashamed of you. May God have mercy on you, and may the voters of San Antonio demand your resignation from public office.

brotherbarnabas50 August 16, 2013 at 9:18 pm

I have posted twice on her FB page in the past few hours. You need to make sure you go to Elisa Chan … then select the one that includes San Antonio information. In the meantime, will someone in San Antonio please post her mailing address and local telephone number. This woman needs to change her ways and we need to encourage her to do just that!

mikeintexas August 17, 2013 at 9:52 am

http://www.sanantonio.gov/council/d9.aspx

City Hall
P.O. Box 839966
San Antonio, TX 78283
Office Line: 210.207.7325

Constituent Office
Frost Bank Building
16500 San Pedro, Suite 290
San Antonio, TX 78232
Phone: 210.207.0955
Fax: 210.207.0956

City Hall
P.O. Box 839966
San Antonio, TX 78283
Office Line: 210.207.7325

Constituent Office
Frost Bank Building
16500 San Pedro, Suite 290
San Antonio, TX 78232
Phone: 210.207.0955
Fax: 210.207.0956

City Hall
P.O. Box 839966
San Antonio, TX 78283
Office Line: 210.207.7325

Constituent Office
Frost Bank Building
16500 San Pedro, Suite 290
San Antonio, TX 78232
Phone: 210.207.0955
Fax: 210.207.0956
district9@sanantonio.gov

jjpca August 16, 2013 at 9:22 pm

The best thing is to leave messages on their site. They need to be overwhelmed by the outrage and disgust.

laolawblog August 19, 2013 at 2:18 pm

Done.

max5457 August 16, 2013 at 11:20 pm

It is sad that as much educated some people feel they are, they are still so ignorant on matter of life. This woman is a typical case of using homophobic remarks out of ignorance. I would like to invite her to an open forum with LGBTQ people for all walk of life, age, race and nationality, where she can get educated in the topic and to be able to realize how little she knows about this important issue. She doesn't need to agree with everything, but unless it will give her a more insightful experience of what truly means to be a LGBTQ person in society.

jnetjnet August 18, 2013 at 1:03 pm

I suggest her next opponent run using the phrase: "Don't elect stupid people, people."

Worse than Chan, her advisers are embarrassingly unable to articulate, much less advise.

paulalast August 19, 2013 at 3:02 pm

What happened to the aide who recorded the meeting?

jrj102 August 19, 2013 at 3:17 pm

I find it both ironic and disturbing that a large percentage of the comments on this thread are responding to her homophobic bigotry with cultural/racial bigotry.

She's ignorant and bigoted, but let's not bring her race and cultural background into – it has nothing to do with her homophobic views and desire to mislead the voters about those views.

ohiasia August 19, 2013 at 3:19 pm

"Anything that is against nature is not right.” I love it! So airplanes, office buildings, Oreos and the computer I'm typing this on is also "not right". Haha.

liessi_from_BC August 19, 2013 at 7:25 pm

Please don't tar everyone with the same brush as these Neanderthals. There are good people in Texas who deserve to be recognized as the opposite of these idiots, and who are the only for preventing them from rising to power. Take care not to vilify the people who are changing the world (and not just posting comments). Witness: http://www.upworthy.com/a-hidden-camera-show-goes

castlerockbear August 20, 2013 at 5:47 pm

Get Equal Texas has issued a TRAVEL ALERT …NOT TO VISIT San Antonio http://thenewcivilrightsmovement.com/getequal-tex

I'm sorry but the environment in TX is JUST not SAFE for the LGBT community as a whole…I just wish they would quit coming into Colorado!!…THEY ARE THE WORST Drivers we have up here and do the most destruction to the outdoors I've ever seen……they NEED to stay home!

castlerockbear August 20, 2013 at 5:43 pm

https://www.facebook.com/elisa.chan.735?fref=ts Will get you her personal FB page

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