Delivering American University's news and views since 1925. | Monday, May 21, 2018

VP candidate under fire for Facebook note

Correction Appended

Queers and Allies voiced concern about vice presidential-candidate Jeremiah Headen and a Facebook note he wrote in December.

“While reading over the note we realized that there was a lot of sexist, homophobic and explicitly trans-phobic and intersex-phobic remarks through this note and it just created a really disturbing picture for us,” Executive Director of Queers and Allies Rachel Lachenauer said.

Queers and Allies was particularly uncomfortable with remarks about transsexuals and intersex people, the language used about women and the need to protect them as well as the overall message about “unmanly men,” according to Lachenauer.

“FOOLS!! That! ... is no longer enough to define a man,” a line from the note read. “For now we have women with surgically implanted penises/ As well as those who have been born with both genitals/ NO! These Weaklings are not what I define as a ‘man.’”

Headen said he meant having a penis did not define being a man, but rather taking responsibility.

“I would like to apologize to anyone who was offended by the note,” he said. “Know that I didn’t mean it in any offensive matter.”

Tonei Glavinic, the director of transgender advocacy for Queers and Allies, wrote an e-mail to Headen asking him, on behalf of the club, about the note.

“His remarks really did not ease our tensions and did not really get at the core issues,” Lachenauer said.

Headen said that the message that Queers and Allies took from his note is not what he intended.

“In the note I wasn’t talking about sexual orientation; I was talking about responsibility,” Headen said, “Honestly, it’s a misunderstanding and I wish I would’ve put my words differently, but I’m not a homophobe, I’m not against transgender [people]. When it comes to matters of what it means to be a man, my dad’s taught me a lot.”

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