A California Politician Called For a Straight Pride Month. It Didn’t Go Well.

“Now hundreds of millions of the rest of us can celebrate our month.”

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Ted Hickman is, at the moment, vice mayor of Dixon, California, a small city about 30 minutes outside Sacramento. He’s straight, he’s proud, and he wants the world to know it, according to a snarky newspaper piece he wrote in the town paper, the Independent Voice, in which he objected to a nearby college’s announcement that it would, like the rest of the world, mark June as LGBT Pride Month.

“Now hundreds of millions of the rest of us can celebrate our month, peaking on July 4th as healthy, heterosexual, fairly monogamous, keep our kinky stuff to ourselves, Americans,” the 74-year-old Hickman wrote in his regular Voice column. “We do it with our parades.  We honor our country and our veterans who have made all of this possible (including for the tinker bells) and we can do it with actual real pride, not some put on show just to help our inferior complex.”

The column didn’t go over too well. Sacramento mayor Darrell Steinberg has called on Hickman to resign, and nearly 30,000 people have signed a petition calling for his removal. Last week, 200 people showed up to a Dixon city council meeting on the matter, including a local pastor named Jeff Myers.

“[His] words not only misrepresent the values of the vast majority of our city, they ascribe to us an ignorance and a closed-mindedness that most of us would fight to the death to avoid,” Myers said, according to a Facebook post via the Washington Post. “This is not a free-speech issue.”

According to the Sacramento Bee, Hickman’s column has long contained derogatory language, including content targeting Muslims. A Recall Ted Hickman Facebook group is planning a rally on July 24 to coincide with an upcoming city council meeting. 

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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