In March Foxx (right) opposed the Generations Invigorating Volunteerism and Education Act, fuming that “We are teaching our people to go to work for the government. What a shame! Shame on us.” Don't forget: Foxx has worked for government agencies all her career, at UNC Chapel Hill, Appalachian State University, Mayland Community College, the N.C. Senate and now Congress.
Her latest: She said the killing of Matthew Shepard, a gay man beaten and left for dead in Wyoming in 1998, is being used as a “hoax” to push legislation to expand the definition of hate crimes to those motivated by sexual orientation.
Foxx said that “the Matthew Shepard Bill is named after a very unfortunate incident that happened where a young man was killed, but we know that that young man was killed in the commitment of a robbery. It wasn’t because he was gay. The bill was named for him, the hate crimes bill was named for him, but it’s really a hoax that continues to be used as an excuse for passing these bills.”
One of the two men tried and convicted of killing Shepard cited a “gay panic” defense: He was uncontrollable because of a homosexual advance.
Foxx later said she had used “a poor choice of words” and made a mistake believing some news accounts that speculated the motivation for the killing was drug use. Shepard's death, she said, was “nothing less than a tragedy and those responsible … deserved the punishment they received.”
Her explanation suggests Foxx is less concerned about the killings of gay citizens and more concerned about limiting the ability of authorities to consider a victim’s sexual orientation as a motive. It raises this question: did voters in her congressional district also make "a poor choice"?