Chico Cromartie is a bigot running for the city council of St. Petersburg, Florida. He is basing his entire electoral campaign around the idea that queer people choose to be LGBTQ and are a political menace with outsized influence. It’s a hateful campaign, so it’s nice to hear Drew Garabo, an interviewer with the radio station 102.5 The Bone, press Cromartie on his uninformed views.
Cromartie’s platform can basically be summed up by his own words: “To hell with Pride.” Looking to foment anger between St. Petersburg’s queer and black communities, Cromartie asserts that the black community suffers because the City Council gives money to the annual Pride parade.
Cromartie said, “There appears to be that there’s a disparity in resources being allocated by the city administration… and it appears to favor one segment of the population.”
When Garabo points out that the Pride festivities bring in tens of millions of dollars for the city, all Cromartie can respond with is, “Well, media does say that.”
Later on in the interview, Cromartie says, “The fact that people are afraid to disagree with homosexuality is alarming to me, especially in St. Pete because you have a city administration that’s predominantly homosexual, so the philosophy is kinda forced on a lot of residents..” (Only three out of the City Council’s eight members are gay, by the way.)
Cromartie later says that being gay “is a choice,” stating, “[Gay people] can wake up one day and say, ‘I don’t want to do that anymore.’ It’s not like, ‘Oh, I got to sleep with the same sex.’ I don’t think that people are compelled to do it to that extent.”
Garabo asks him, “Do you think you could wake up tomorrow morning and think, ‘I want to sleep with a man today?'” Cromartie responds, “No, never.” Then Garabo says, “Then how could they wake up tomorrow and say, ‘I want to sleep with a woman today?'”
Garabo then asks if Cromartie “chooses women over men,” When Cromartie says, “Every man does,” Garabo asks, “So physically, you could be into dudes?”
When Cromartie calls homophobia “traditional” in American culture, Garabo points out that racism was once traditional in American culture too.
All Cromartie can say to defend his view that people choose to be gay is, “Sex is always a choice. You could choose to have sex or not.”
Here’s video of Garabo’s interview with Cromartie: