It appears Paul Nepote (pictured) has removed from his Facebook group “TRAVERSE CITY OPPOSING A GAY AGENDA ORDINANCE” the video of men shooting rifles at human-shaped targets (which he captioned “I love this rifle!”). Nepote is the retired salesman and rabid anti-gay activist in Michigan who’s made no secret to his opposition to the Traverse City Commission passing an ordinance banning discrimination in housing based on sexuality and gender identity; he wants voters to have a say on the issue. But with mentally sick people shooting up elected officials and a climate of gun-tainted language permeating politics, openly gay Commissioner Jim Carruthers, who pushed for the ordinance, is coming forward to say it’s guys like Nepote that are contributing to fearmongering.

Writing the media, his colleagues, and Traverse City’s police chief, Carruthers says: “Considering what has taken place, I am going on record to say (as I have in the past) I personally as a political leader feel threatened by the extreme rhetoric that is being espoused by anti-gay hate groups in Traverse City toward people such as myself. These people are unstable and I fear bad will come from them in the future. I fear more and more for my personal safety with such hateful people in our midst.” He tells the Michigan Messenger Nepote, whom he describes as a “freak” and a “troubled man,” is “using Photoshop and posting weird pictures of me with commentary about the gay commissioner and how wrong I am.”

So what does Nepote have to say for himself? Just that Carruthers is “so full of shit. If somebody was going to shoot him he’d be dead years ago.” As for his liberal use of gun imagery? “There is an awful lot of people who think that the economy is going to go to hell and a lot of people are recommending not only that people stock pile food but that they buy guns and ammunition to protect their homes.” And he’s tired of you comparing him to the likes of the Westboro Baptist Church leader Fred Phelps! “I feel nothing but disdain for people like [Phelps]. I just don’t want gays to indoctrinate my children.” So the similarities end … where, exactly?

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