Tunney asked to join LGBT catholics in demonstration against Cardinal George
Chicago, IL —
Rainbow Sash Movement (RSM), a Catholic LGBT group, has invited Chicago Alderman Tom Tunney (44th Ward) to participate in a planned demonstration Sunday against Cardinal Francis George following his comments that compared the gay liberation movement to the Ku Klux Klan.
"It is our hope that you will join with us in condemning such comments as both scandalous and unjust," wrote RSM executive director Joe Murray in an open letter released Tuesday.
Murray asked the openly gay alderman to "stand with our community this Sunday outside Holy Name Cathedral."
Tunney was part of a group responsible for the compromise
on the Chicago gay pride parade start time with Our Lady of Mount Carmel, an issue that ultimately lead Cardinal Francis George to make his controversial gay-KKK analogy during a television interview
on Dec. 21.
George, who is the Archbishop of Chicago, later blamed
parade organizers for "inviting" the reference.
As Chicago's first openly gay alderman and a member of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Tunney has been caught in the middle of the growing debate, which includes a call for George to step down.
"My purpose in writing this letter is to make this invitation public thereby giving you the opportunity to make your position known," wrote Murray.
He concluded that "silence on this matter will only enable this form of bigotry."
Tuesday afternoon Alderman Tunney replied to the invitation in a statement released to ChicagoPride.com.
"Cardinal Francis George's recent comments about the LGBT community are regrettable. It is clear that his comments are his own and are not shared by Our Lady of Mount Carmel parishioners and the majority of Chicago Catholics," said Tunney. "It also is important to note that before his comments were made public, we came to a friendly compromise on a local issue involving the 2012 Pride Parade that will help protect public safety and allow parishioners to celebrate their morning services."
RSM has joined a number of other LGBT advocacy groups, including The Civil Rights Agenda
, in calling
for George's resignation.
The protest lead by RSM and Gay Liberation Network
is planned for noon on Sunday, Jan. 8 in front of Holy Name Cathedral, 730 N. Wabash Ave.Open Letter to Alderman Tom Tunney
Dear Alderman Tunney,
I wanted to take this opportunity to invite you both as fellow gay Catholic, and a Alderman that has a large gay constituency to stand with our community this Sunday outside Holy Name Cathedral.
My purpose in writing this letter is to make this invitation public thereby giving you the opportunity to make your position known on our efforts to have Cardinal George issue a public apology regarding his unreasonable metaphor of equating GLBT Community to the KKK . It is our hope that you will join with us in condemning such comments as both scandalous and unjust.
I believe silence on this matter will only enable this form of bigotry that parades itself in the mantle of Prince of the Church. The Rainbow Sash Movement fully supports this demonstration.
It is my hope I will see you this Sunday at Holy Name Cathedral.
Rainbow Sash Movement