Michael “Duke” Lowrie is planning to run for the Louisiana State House of Representatives in March. Nothing too unusual in this. Except that Michael Lowry is an outspoken, ruthless bigot. In 2015, he posted the following on his Facebook page;
“So friend’s. The time has come that we must face and take action against this evil that has been placed before us. All day I have prayed and contemplated what to do. Many of you may or may not know but Shreveport Bossier was one of the cities on one of the islamist kill lists. Perhaps they despise our hospitality here and or our over the top support for our military. Regardless the fact is the islamist seek to kill us and make us submit to their false religion and god. There are many who worship, if you call it that, islam here among us. I do not believe they deserve the peace of our culture or the continued fruits of our society while following this religion. I for one will no longer knowingly go to or do business with any establishment that has someone who I know is a follower of islam working there. I will challenge every islamist I see to denounce their false god and religion. Those islamist here walk among us in stores and we act is if they are no different than any of us. Well im sorry they are different. Their religion demands you convert or die.
Friends I ask you to support me in boycotting any business that is owned or ran by islamist.
If you feel offended by this post you should promptly unfriend me and seek the friendship of the islamist.”
Just last week, Lowrie reiterated his position, saying he stands behind his year-old Facebook post, citing an alleged Daesh “kill list” which was long since de-bunked as propaganda. “Many of you may or may not know but Shreveport – Bossier was one of the cities on the Islamist kill lists. Perhaps they despise our hospitality here or our over the top support for our military. Regardless the fact is the Islamist [sic] seek to kill us and make us submit to their false religion and god.” Hospitality? Did he say ‘hospitality’? Because frankly, given the attitude he conveys, and last week’s incident where a judge threw out an executive order providing equal rights for LGBT people, I don’t see much in the way of ‘hospitality’ in Louisiana.
The aforementioned law that was overturned by Judge Todd Hernandez did more than protect the LGBT community; it also protected state employees against discrimination based on race, religion, disability and age. It banned state agencies from discrimination, while offering an exemption for churches and religious organizations. All of which is now null and void in the state of Louisiana. And the reason the executive order came before the judge in the first place? Because the state’s Attorney General, Jeff Landry, a Republican who has described himself as a “campaigner for conservative family values” challenged it.
Last Thursday, Lowrie announced his intention to run for office in March and by Friday, he was being questioned over his prior Facebook post. His reply was “We are a Christian nation. The threat of Islamic terrorism is real. Too many times, politicians are sometimes so afraid to speak the truth because of the PC culture in which we live. I’ll call it how I see it. We must tackle Islamic extremism head on. I believe President Trump will do that.” No, Mr. Lowrie, we are a secular nation that welcomes all religions. What part of the Constitution did you not understand? And have you ever heard the term “separation of church and state”? Thus far, there are no other candidates for the seat Lowrie is seeking, thus he may run uncontested.
A visit to Lowrie’s Facebook page (link in first paragraph) shows more of his hateful bigotry, such as the meme below:
However, I was encouraged by the majority of the comments I read that called him a racist, compared him to David Duke of KKK infamy, and said they would never vote for him. Perhaps there is a degree of sanity in Louisiana after all, however if nobody runs against him … undoubtedly there are some who will vote for him, and he will slide into office, even without the support of the majority of the state’s residents.
In the past year, we have seen an increase in bigotry both in government and in society as a whole. This increase is, in part, directly attributable to the bigoted speech of Donald Trump, among others. No fewer than ten mosques have received threatening letters referring to Muslims as “children of Satan” and calling Trump the “new sheriff in town” who will “cleanse America and make it shine again” by eradicating the country’s Muslim population. “He’s going to do to you Muslims what Hitler did to the Jews,” the letters state. Additionally, The Council of American Islamic Relations (CAIR) Chicago chapter received a letter riddled with pro-Trump material, anti-black slurs and anti-Muslim conspiracy theories. In part, the letter reads:
“Your comments about your fears for Muslims with a Trump presidency are unfounded. You have had your guy in the White House for eight years. He has done as he promised in 2008 on Meet the Press: reduced the U.S. military to a ‘level equal to that of our Muslim brothers.’ So it is QUITE ironic that you claim fear about Trump as president when we have just responded to 8 years of Islamic rule from a half-assed Negro, half-assed Muslim in the White House. No – you are NOT the victim. Sir: those who voted for Trump have been the victims of 8 years of rule by a Muslim fascist dictator, which is now over. When our next civil war comes, CAIR will be the focus of freedom-loving Americans, which you are NOT.”
The letter defies words. We simply cannot afford to continue to elect government representatives who are against diversity, who are driven by a hatred of those who are different, or who are committed to any form of discrimination. It is the people in government who not only make the laws we must all live under, but also set the tone for society, lead by example, as it were. I do not want any government employee who is a narrow-minded bigot in my employ. Unfortunately, there is an element in this nation that seems hell-bent on making the United States a WASP nation, a nation of bigots, a nation of hate and fear. I, for one, embrace the diversity, the richness of blended cultures in this country. I have friends who represent at least seven different religions, at least three races, uncountable ethnicities, and each of them make my life richer, I learn from them and they from me. I neither wish nor intend to live in a WASP nation. We must stop NOW electing those who would make it so. This nation was founded on diversity … why do so many suddenly want to reverse the course?