Updated: Monday, April 13 2015, 07:46 PM CDT
Molly White’s Office responds to a report that said it would be a waste of time for an LGBT activist to talk with her about gay rights as LGBT supporters rallied at the capitol.
A story by the Temple Daily Telegram said White’s Chief of Staff Hannah Bell told an LGBT activist it would have been a waste of time for him to talk with Representative Molly White about gay rights. This is the second time White’s office has faced criticism for possible discriminatory comments.
White instructed staff during a Muslim rally in Austin in January to ask Muslims visiting her office to ‘renounce Islamic terrorist groups and publicly announce allegiance to America and our laws.’
This came as more than a hundred LGBT supporters gathered on the north steps of the Capitol for a “call to action.” They want to stop nearly two dozen bills they say discriminate against the LGBT community.
“It lets us know that this is something we should be paying close attention to,” Representative Ron Reynolds said.
Reynolds spoke in front of the crowd on the steps comparing the LGBT rights movement to that of the civil rights movement.
“Those citizens are being discriminated against, they are fighting for equality,” Reynolds said.
After the speeches, the crowd went inside where people went one by one talking with legislators. That includes Pamela Neal from Temple, who wanted to talk with her representative, Molly White.
“We all have a voice and we all have something to say and she owes it to each of us to hear what is said,” Neal said.
Neal said she saw the article about White and thought it was important to talk with her. She said she just wanted to tell her story.
“I want to give her my personal story and let her know that I’m not talking about everybody in Texas I’m talking about one specific person,” Neal said.
Neal did make it to White’s office, but she wasn’t able to talk with White because the representative was busy. However, she talked with White’s staff and said she was happy with the conversation.
White’s chief of staff Hannah Bell also responded to the report.
“That was completely taken out of context,” Bell said.
She said it’s not a waste of time for people like Neal to talk with White or their office. She also gave her side of the story as to what happened with the activist.
“And so I just relayed to him that the issue that he was bringing to us, the representative has a stance on that issue and so we didn’t really want to waste his time and therefore the meeting concluded,” Bell said.
Bell said she was able to meet with the activist Monday afternoon, and said in a statement everyone is welcome to their office.
However, Neal was a little disappointed she didn’t get to talk with Neal. She also said she didn’t really want to make any changes to White’s stance on issues, she just wanted to humanize the bills she’ll be voting on.
“I’m not here to change anybody’s mind, I’m just here to put a face on the issue,” Neal said.
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