1. johnny says

    Always amazes me when I hear about these little closed-minded, rabid-right, homophobic communities in California, supposedly one of the most forward-thinking states.

    What ever happened to the California I once knew in the 70s when I lived there?

  2. Henry Holland says

    Johnny, these kinds of people have *always* been here. It’s the dirty secret of CA politics: while the coastal cities north of Orange County tend to be liberal, the rest of the state can be as backwards and reactionary as AL or OK. See: Bakersfield.

  3. HadenoughBS says

    Bigoted anti-gay fanaticism is alive and well (and breeding) in Porterville, California. Onward Christian Soldiers, marching as to war…with your fellow but less-than-equal GLBT citizens.

  4. Jack M says

    No “religious community” should ever be given the power to have that kind of effect on government. Guess they’re not persecuted victims in this case.

    It’s 1984. Love = hate.

  5. AggieCowboy says

    They should sue under California’s non-discrimination laws. If an employer can’t fire someone for their personal beliefs, neither should a city council be permitted to do so (especially not a city council). Animus is NEVER a reason to fire someone from their job…not even a duly-elected public official.

  6. Tom in SF Bay Area says

    For Johnny and those of you who may only know coastal California: Imagine a state that ran from Savannah, GA to Cape Cod, MA and inland 200 miles. Now, think about all the different types of people who live in that state. On the west coast, that’s called California. And Porterville is smack dab in the middle of our own little “Bible Belt.”

  7. MiKem says

    I’ll make certain not to stop at Porterville on my way to Sequoia National Park. They don’t deserve any of my queer money.

  8. jamal49 says

    With each and every passing day, I come to despise christians more and more. Foul, fetid religion. Curse them and a pox on all their houses.

  9. Mary says

    I never heard of a situation where a city council is allowed to “remove” a mayor. Don’t mayors get elected by the voters? Wouldn’t there have to be a recall vote to oust the mayor? Possibly she would survive a recall election. The city council’s actions may not reflect the wishes of most of this town’s people.

    No matter how one feels about gay rights issues it seems silly to oust someone from office due to a formality like declaring a pride day for any group. It’s really just a formal gesture.

  10. Gregory In Seattle says

    @Mary – Most of the small towns in California follow a council-manager form of government, where the people elect a city council and the council hires a city manager to serve as chief executive. This executive is often styled Mayor. Just like the CEO of a corporation, the city manager / mayor serves at the discretion of the council. It is actually a pretty common form of municipal governance, most common in smaller entities.

  11. Huntington says

    Gregory, my understanding of the council/manager form is that the City Manager and Mayor are separate, the latter being just one of the (usually) five members of the City Council, without any executive responsibilities but with the power to issue proclamations like this one. In that context, it makes more sense that his or her fellow council members could just vote another one of their own to be the mayor whenever.

  12. anon says

    So, I guess the mayor in this town has to rubber stamp every council decision lest they be removed from office by mere majority voting.

  13. Bill says

    @Jonny: Porterville is located in Tulare County, part of California’s Bible Belt. Tulare County has been a Republican stronghold, but is changing: 66% Republican in 2004 versus 56% in 2012. If some of these places sound backwards, kind of like rural Oklahoma, the cause is poor environmental policies in the earlier part of the 20th century, which led to the “Dust Bowl” and a migration from Oklahoma and similarly affected states to rural parts of California. They brought their fire-and-brimstone religion with them.

    I think what is changing is that places like Porterville in the past would be simply ignored as all the news came from large news organizations. They’ve always been there.

    BTW, quite a few smaller California cities and towns are set up so that the mayor is elected by the city council – one of its members – and simply runs the council meetings and performs various ceremonial functions but is not directly elected.

  14. Gregory In Seattle says

    @Huntington – There are several different ways that a council-manager government can be put together. In California, it is common for the manager to be styled “Mayor.” Less common out here (more in the midwest and east) is to have both a mayor and a manager. In that case, the mayor is typically the president of the council and not a separately elected position. An executive appointed by the council rather than elected is always a manager, regardless of what title that position may have.

    Differences also exist on how much power the manager wields. I believe that the mayor of Porterville has a fair bit of autonomy within a narrow range of authority. I’m not really certain of that, though, as I lived in nearby Visalia which has a somewhat different government system.

  15. sean buckley says

    If idiotic right-wing Christians can burn the Koran, it is time we start collecting Bibles and burning them I know where there are plenty of bibles to burn…in most hotel and motel rooms. Seperation of Church and State does not exist in Poeterville, Ca.

  16. Larry says

    I’m really glad to see a city council stand up to this disgusting lifestyle. Deal with it, Joto’s not everyone approves of you!

  17. says

    I wish the LGBT community would stop making reference to the “Religious Community.” Be specific. There are plenty of religious organizations such as the Unitarian Universalists, who are fighting their asses off in the streets and in the houses of legislature to guarantee rights and protections for LGBTQ people. If someone has a problem with religion, that is their choice, but we can’t assume that all people in the LGBTQ community have the same problem. There’s a UU Congregation in Porterville that would resent beign lumped into the “Religious Community” this way.

  18. Ken says

    I grew up in that hellhole. I know a Fundamentalist pastor in that town who beat his children mercilessly and cheated on his wife, but was a pillar of the church and community. I know someone else who cheated on his wife with his own first cousin. But you’d better not be gay.

    It is a hateful, hateful place.