Latta, South Carolina Police Chief Crystal Moore was fired by Latta Mayor Earl Bullard last week after 23 years on the force. Officially, it’s for these seven reprimands, but in light of statements made by the mayor, and the fact that all seven reprimands were given IN ONE DAY by the mayor, plus the fact that Moore had received exactly ZERO reprimands in her 23 years, points to a personal vendetta on the part of the mayor.
To be fair, he also fired her for investigating a person he hired who had a questionable background and a suspended license. More on that later.
Council members have alleged Bullard had it out for Moore even before taking office. However, on this issue, he said that her being gay was not a reason for her firing. Councilman Jarret Taylor said Moore was fired because she refused to sign seven written reprimands. Taylor said Moore simply asked to talk with her attorney before signing, but Bullard demanded that she sign the reprimands immediately. When she didn’t, he fired her.
Even if Bullard’s lying, and it sure looks that way, it wouldn’t be illegal. 29 states allow firing and discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. In a country where people who want a homophobic CEO fired are called ‘the gay mafia’, homosexuals of any position can be fired without a peep.
“I would much rather have — and I will say this to anybody’s face — somebody who drank and drank too much taking care of my child than I had somebody whose lifestyle is questionable around children. … I’m not going to let two women stand up there and hold hands and let my child be aware of it. And I’m not going to see them do it with two men neither.” - Mayor Earl Bullard
There is a bill, the Employee Non-Discrimination Act, that has already passed the Senate and is sitting in the House. It would put an end to discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. John Boehner refuses to bring it up for a vote, though – because, you know, election year.
As I said, aside from the mayor’s homophobia there is another questionable reason that he fired her. Moore was investigating the town’s new Parks and Recreation Department Director Vontray Sellers, who was hired by Bullard in February. The Latta Police Department began looking into Sellers’ background after it was reported that Sellers was driving a town vehicle despite having a suspended driver’s license.
To sum up:
- for being gay, and
- for investigating the mayor’s own corruption.
These are, of course, ‘allegedly’.