Most Were Found In North Miami
Last week, about a half-dozen of Scott Galvin's campaign signs were defaced when an unidentified individual spray-painted the word “fag” on them.
Galvin, a Democrat running for U.S. Congress, says he’s disappointed by the vandalism.
“When I first came out—and that was in 2004—most of the letters I got at that point were very supportive, he said. “There were a few letters that came in that were negative. Nothing since then. I was very proud of North Miami being so accepting of me. Until this point, it was a non-issue.”
North Miami resident Clint Bower, a Galvin supporter, said he found two vandalized placards this week, one at 135th Street near Northeast 13th Avenue; the other near Northeast 14th Avenue and 133rd Street.
Bower said: “As a gay person, I find it very offensive. As a constituent here, I’m very troubled by the fact that they would bring his sexuality into the race. I would like to think that in 2010 this would not be an issue in life and in a political campaign.”
Galvin said he reported the vandalism to North Miami police, but that no one knows who is responsible.
“I certainly look at it as a hate crime, a crime of discrimination, something that none of us should tolerate at any level. I'm certain that whoever did it knows I'm gay and wanted to make sure others knew it.”
Michael Kenny, executive director of Florida Together, an LGBT advocacy group, notes that Galvin would be the first openly gay representative at the state or federal level in the Southeast.
"It's sickening that narrow-minded people are trying to crush Scott's opportunity to make history with this vandalism," Kenny posted on his group's website. "And it is simply unfair that they are forcing Scott to raise money twice so that he can replace his ruined signs."
Galvin says that the attack was made to embarrass him and undermine his campaign.