Senator Brownback Derogatory Use of 'Fruits' Sinks Below Decency

Human Rights Campaign President Joe Solmonese sent the
following letter to Sen. Sam Brownback, R-Kan., following a recent
interview the Senator gave in Rolling Stone magazine in which he called
Swedish gay citizens "fruits."

January 27, 2006

Senator Sam Brownback
303 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
Fax: (202) 224-6521

Dear Senator Brownback,

While you and I are far from agreement on issues of fairness for gay,
lesbian, bisexual and transgender Americans, I had hoped we could
communicate our differences with dignity. Senator, your use of the term
"fruits" to describe gays sank far below the level of dignified
discourse Americans rightfully expect of their elected officials.

In an apparent attempt to use a Biblical passage to derogatorily jab at
gays and lesbians, you have stepped well over the line of decorum and
common decency.

I look forward to your clarification of the remarks about gay Swedes you
made in your recent Rolling Stone interview. Your many fair-minded
constituents, including those of faith who believe the Bible to be a
powerful tool of decency and respect, are owed an explanation and

I hope you will join me in a commitment to a political discourse that is
respectful and free from mean-spirited attacks.


Joe Solmonese

President of the Human Rights Campaign, the nation's largest civil
rights organization working to achieve gay, lesbian, bisexual and
transgender equality

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