North Carolina Lieutenant Governor Mark Robinson, a Republican, is facing calls to resign following a leaked video that shows him calling the LGBTQ community “filth.”
The video, obtained by the People for the American Way’s Right Wing Watch project, shows Robinson spewing a hate-filled rant about LGBTQ-inclusive education over the summer at the Asbury Baptist Church in Seagrove, North Carolina. In the viral one-minute clip of Robinson’s speech, he also used outdated and homophobic language to refer to the queer and trans community.
“I’m saying this now, and I’ve been saying it, and I don’t care who likes it: Those issues have no place in a school. There’s no reason anybody anywhere in America should be telling any child about transgenderism, homosexuality — any of that filth,” Robinson told the congregation.
He added, “And yes, I called it filth. And if you don’t like it that I called it filth, come see me, and I’ll explain it to you. It’s time for us to stop letting these children be abused in schools, and it’s not going to happen till the people of God stand up and demand different, same ones that established those schools, to begin with.”
North Carolina Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson says Christians must take control of public schools because children are being abused by being taught "filth": "There's no reason anybody anywhere in America should be telling any child about transgenderism, homosexuality, any of that filth." pic.twitter.com/aXjCPFKTs0
— Right Wing Watch (@RightWingWatch) October 6, 2021
The lieutenant governor, who holds one of the highest posts in the state, is second in the line of succession to North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper.
National and state-based LGBTQ organizations are also calling for Robinson’s resignation, including the Human Rights Campaign and Equality North Carolina.
“Equality NC condemns this dangerous rhetoric from Lt. Governor Robinson,” Equality North Carolina said in a written statement on Facebook. “At a time when LGBTQ people, especially those with multiple layers of marginalization, need a supportive state, Robinson offered transphobia and homophobia instead. No one who thinks like this should be in a position of power, and these discriminatory attitudes underscore the need for comprehensive nondiscrimination protections in North Carolina.”
John Wesley Waugh, a spokesperson for Robinson, defended the politician’s anti-LGBTQ remarks.
“Topics surrounding transgenderism and homosexuality should be discussed at home and not in public education,” Waugh said in a statement to NBC. “We must focus on reading, writing, and mathematics in North Carolina. Our students have struggled with these topics even before the pandemic. Our primary focus needs to be helping our students succeed, not on topics that should be discussed at home.”
White House Deputy Press Secretary Andrew Bates echoed calls for Robinson’s resignation.
“These words are repugnant and offensive,” Bates said in a written statement to USA Today. “The role of a leader is to bring people together and stand up for the dignity and rights of everyone; not to spread hate and undermine their own office.”
Last week, Robinson refused to apologize for his comments in an interview with WRAL. Despite the public backlash, Robinson told the outlet he is not “ashamed” of using anti-LGBTQ language and plans to “use it in the future.”
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