A Utah state attorney, Steven Wuthrich, has apologized after sending a hateful email to an LGBTQ candidate for Salt Lake City council. The candidate’s crime? He unintentionally woke up the attorney from a weekend nap.
Darin Mano has been appointed to Salt Lake City council and is standing for election to become an official member. Mano, who hopes to become the first Asian American to be elected to the council, is gay and lives with his partner, Kevin Randall, and their four kids.
On Saturday, Mano was out on the campaign trail, knocking on doors and distributing leaflets. One of the homes he called upon was where Wuthrich lives. He was not actually looking to talk to Wuthrich but someone else registered to vote at the address (either Wuthrich’s wife or a tenant).
Unbeknown to Mano, Wuthrich was inside napping. And he didn’t appreciate being woken.
He later sent Man a foul-mouthed email dissing him and his campaign and complaining that when Mano put campaign material (which included a photo of Mano with his family) through his door, it had woken his dogs. The disturbed hounds then woke everyone else “having a siesta” in the house at the time.
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“I will do everything in my power to make sure you never get elected to any office higher than dog catcher. I hate you. I hate your family. I hate your solicitors. I hate your contributors. I hate your sponsors. Kindly die and go to hell mother fucker.”
Mano posted the email to social media, saying, “After a day of canvassing and trying to reach my constituents in District 5, I came home to this hateful email. As an Asian American and member of the LGBTQ+ community, I must stand up against hate speech and call it out when I see it. As a City Councilmember and a candidate running for election, it’s my duty to reach my constituents, listen to what is important to them and make informed decisions. There’s no room for hate in our city.”
On Tuesday, Wuthrich issued an apology, saying: “Last Saturday I was awakened from a nap and reacted with undue anger based solely on the interruption to my tranquility. Since then I have regretted the ferocity and language of that email.
“My words were uncivil and unprofessional. From me personally I apologize to Salt Lake City Councilman Darin Mano and his family. I never wished harm to Mr. Mano, his family or anyone associated with him. No parent, spouse or child should be subjected to such emotional outbursts. I am deeply sorry.”
Mano responded saying he appreciated the apology but that it was not up to him whether Wuthrich faced any disciplinary action.
“I appreciate the apology from Mr. Wurthrich (sic), particularly the assurance that my family is safe. I will leave it up to Mr. Wurthrich’s employers and the bar association to decide on any disciplinary actions. That is not my place. Each of us can and must improve ourselves with an eye toward kindness and equity in order to build a safe and inclusive community for all.
“I’m hopeful this has been a learning experience for us all that we need to slow down, think before we react, and treat each other with kindness and respect. I am still Mr. Wuthrich’s representative and the invitation to hear his views about Salt Lake City and District 5 remains open.”
The Utah attorney general´s office says it is still deciding whether to take further action against Wuthrich.
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