A West Virginia lawmaker opposed to LGBT rights has described LGBT rights advocates as “brutal monsters” and the modern Ku Klux Klan.

Delegate Eric Porterfield, a Republican from Mercer County, first criticized the groups during a House committee meeting working on an amendment that sought to prohibit cities and municipalities from enacting ordinances that prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

The groups, he said, “represent a socialist agenda” and are “opponents of freedom” and “brutal monsters.” He said that business owners should be allowed to decide if a “lifestyle” is unacceptable to them.

After making his comments, Porterfield, who is blind and cannot fully open his eyes, received calls to resign and several threats, including a text that referred to him as “slits-for-eyes.”

“I am terrified of these people,” he told The Register-Herald. “I feel like the LGBTQ … would be the Ku Klux Klan in the modern era without the hoods.”

He claimed that criticism of his remarks by Democrats on the House floor had incited a hate crime against him.

While he insisted that he does not “persecute” gay people, Porterfield, who was wearing a Make America Great Again hat last week, reiterated that business owners should be allowed to not “serve a particular lifestyle.”