Commentary: Foxx's rhetoric fuels fires of ignorance, intolerance

This editorial appeared in The Charlotte Observer.

U.S. Rep. Virginia Foxx, R-N.C., is making North Carolina famous – for uttering wacko things in Congress.

In March she opposed the Generations Invigorating Volunteerism and Education Act, fuming, "We are teaching our people to go to work for the government. What a shame! Shame on us."

Never mind that Foxx has worked for government agencies all her career, including UNC Chapel Hill, Appalachian State University, Mayland Community College, the N.C. Senate and now Congress.

The latest Foxxism: 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 expanding the definition of hate crimes to those motivated by sexual orientation.

As the floor manager for opponents of the proposed Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act, Foxx told her colleagues 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."

To read the complete editorial, visit The Charlotte Observer.