October 28th, 2010
09:56 AM ET

Arkansas officials condemn anti-gay comments on Facebook

CNN Wire Staff

(CNN) - The Arkansas Department of Education has condemned anti-gay comments made by a local school board member and posted on a social networking site.

Midland School District Vice President Clint McCance wrote on his personal Facebook page that he wanted gay people to commit suicide, according to The Advocate, a newspaper focusing on gay news. McCance used the terms "queer" and "fag" repeatedly, promised to disown his own children if they were gay, and stated that he enjoys "the fact that [gay people] often give each other AIDS and die."

A strongly worded statement signed by Dean Stanley, superintendent of the Midland School District, disavowed the remarks. "The district strives to foster an environment that discourages all forms of bullying," the statement read, "and an environment that encourages a safe and productive educational climate of all of our students. The district is very diligent in pursuing and addressing bullying of any variety on our campuses."

A separate statement sent to CNN by Julie Thompson, director of communications for the Arkansas Department of Education, said the department is "dismayed to see that a school board official would post something of this insensitive nature on a public forum like Facebook."

Because McCance is an elected official, the department cannot deal with him directly, according to the statement. But staff will be monitoring schools to provide a quick response in case students are bullied because of McCance's comments, it said.

The posts were made, according to The Advocate, in response to a bullying awareness campaign sponsored by GLAAD, the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation. The "Spirit Day" campaign aimed to foster recognition of bullying directed at gays and the effects it can have on young people through a series of events held on October 20

Full story

October 28th, 2010
09:29 AM ET

Dirty Politics: The dirtiest races

Tom Foreman | BIO
AC360° Correspondent

(CNN) - Let’s start with a simple truth: There are so many dirty races out there right now, that it would be impossible to call one the dirtiest. The fight between Republican challenger Sharron Angle and Democratic Sen. Harry Reid out in Nevada, for instance, has been worse than a bare knuckle brawl on a Saturday night. But then, the scrap down in Florida between Dem Rep. Alan Grayson and his challenger, Republican Dan Webster, has hardly been an afternoon at the zoo either.

There is a reason that so many independent observers of elections are saying this is at least as nasty as any they have ever seen, and maybe more so. So without picking a favorite, it is worth considering just how brutal it has been by checking in on a few of the contenders for top honors in the race to the bottom.

Filed under: Raw Politics • Tom Foreman
October 28th, 2010
09:20 AM ET
October 28th, 2010
09:15 AM ET
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