Odious Misconceptions

Aug 14, 2019

To the Editor:

The Barnegat Township Committee’s August meeting was a reckless and hate-filled spectacle. Rather than conducting the business of the town, Mayor Cirulli wasted the taxpayers’ time and money by spending nearly half the meeting explaining why in his view LGBTQ+ people have no place in Barnegat. Not a single committee member objected.

The prompt for this tirade was the inclusion of LGBTQ+ people in history books, and its potential psychological effects. It was a strange objection, given LGBTQ+ heroes can already be found in our history, from World War II hero Alan Turing to the first American woman in space, Sally Ride.

As an educator myself, I am further confused since the psychological effects of LGBTQ+ representation include increased student success through relatable role models, and a greater appreciation and empathy for their fellow people. But it seems that Mayor Cirulli is more interested in perpetuating the hate and abuse that contributes to LGBTQ+ youths’ elevated suicide rates. Shame on him.

To the community members who spoke out at the meeting, thank you. I am glad I have such thoughtful neighbors to educate our mayor and, having once been in their shoes, I am sure the younger members of our community appreciate knowing this outburst does not represent the best of us, that they are welcome, and that they have allies in the community.

I am thankful Mayor Cirulli is retired from teaching so he cannot harm our students with his odious and small-minded misconceptions. If he can no longer put the well-being of the entire community first, perhaps it is time he retires from office as well.

Daniel Ward




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