Memphis city councilwoman Janis Fullilove is paying the price from God’s Gentle People™ for sponsoring an LGBT rights law. So far she’s received four telephoned death threats and the body of a dead cat tossed on her front lawn.
Police think the threats are serious enough have increased patrols around her home to keep her safe. All four calls came Tuesday and each call mentioned the proposed employee non-discrimination ordinance. Someone also threw a dead cat on her lawn. Each phone call mentioned her support for banning discrimination against gays in city government. Distraught, Fullilove reached out to Jonathan Cole with the Tennessee Equality Project. “She essentially said that they were threatening to kill her,” said Cole, who thinks the death threats are just another example of intolerance in Memphis. “It’s scary and our city needs to stand up to this kind of ugliness.” Police are keeping a close eye on Fullilove and her family. She’s asked her telephone provider to track the calls. Meanwhile, Cole says the councilwoman’s experience should highlight the need for the ordinance to protect gays and lesbians working for the city.
Fullilove (great name!) says the threats will not make her back down. The vote on her legislation is expected to come on August 10th.