Janice Daniels, the newly installed
mayor of Troy, Michigan, has offered a tepid apology for criticizing
New York's decision to legalize gay marriage.
Daniels, a Tea Party favorite, wrote in
a June 25 Facebook status update: “I think I am going to throw away
my I Love New York carrying bag now that queers can get married
Monday on the Charlie Langton radio show, Daniels said she was
sorry, then added that her comment was in jest.
“I absolutely do regret it, I
shouldn't have used such language, and while I do believe marriage
should be between one man and one woman, it was inappropriate to use
that language … For me to have said it, it was a poke in the eye
and it was inappropriate and I do apologize.”
“It was meant to be a joke, just a
funny, just a poke, just a silly thing,” she added.
The acknowledgment was a flip from
Friday – the day her status went viral on Facebook – when she
defended her comment in a statement: “I firmly support marriage as
being defined as between one man and one woman and I am not going to
change my position. The groups that despise me are digging deep to
try to find something to worry about. They probably should start
worrying about how they can best work with a new mayor who believes
that we live in a free country and we all have first amendment rights
to speak our minds on any and all issues that are before us.”
Later in the day on Monday, Daniels
also apologized to a group of Troy High School students who were
calling for her resignation outside Troy City Hall. But the students
became riled when Daniels told them that queer “is just a word,”
Free Press reported.
“That shows she just does not
understand,” Zach Kilgore, 17, told the paper. “We had a pretty
calm conversation and then it erupted into people screaming at her
and calling her [a] bully,” he said.