Former Alaska Governor Tony Knowles has
endorsed a measure which would add sexual orientation and gender
identity to the Anchorage Equal Rights Initiative.
The Democratic Knowles served as the
seventh governor of Alaska from December 1994 to December 2002.
During a press conference held
Thursday, Knowles, 69, criticized opponents of the measure for
running “dehumanizing” ads.
“As many people predicted, here in
the last days of the campaign ads on the Internet and Facebook
against Proposition 5 have taken an ugly turn. They depict
unacceptably offensive and intentionally stigmatizing distorted
cartoons of gay and transgender individuals. Such dehumanizing
stereotypes do not represent the values that we share as a
community,” Knowles told reporters.
In one 30-second ad from Protect Your
Rights – Vote No On Prop 5 titled Daycare, an animated day
care owner is forced to hire a “transvestite” as horrified
parents look on. The cartoon “transvestite” is drawn to look
like an unshaven, hairy chested man in a short pink dress.
“If she hires him, she risks losing
customers,” a female narrator is heard saying. “And if she
refuses, she can be fined or imprisoned.”
Knowles' three Republican successors –
Frank Murkowski, Sarah Palin and Sean Parnell – have not spoken on
The Anchorage Assembly approved a
similar ordinance in 2009, but it was vetoed by Mayor Dan Sullivan.
Voters will decide the issue on Tuesday.
gay protections Prop 5 passing, poll says.)