09/19/10-by Bridgette P. LaVictoire
While Michigan Attorney General Mike Cox is no longer a candidate for Governor of that state, he is facing something of a problem thanks to his staffer, Andrew Shirvell. The man who spends his free time virulently and vitriolically writing anti-gay blog posts targeted the University of Michigan’s gay student body president, Chris Armstrong. Shirvell is an assistant district attorney, and he has been spreading slander via his blog posts. He refered to Armstrong as a “viciously militant homosexual activist” as well as stated to the parents of the univerity’s students “the University’s first openly ‘gay’ student body president … is actively recruiting your sons and daughters to join the homosexual ‘lifestyle.’”
Of course, Shirvell could be starting up his own campaign to become the next Tea Party darling like Christine O’Donnell. Cox has been championing against cyber-bullying, but tried to avoid the whole issue until he eventually had to tell the press that he had chastised Shirvell. He even stated “All state employees have a right to free speech outside working hours. But Mr. Shirvell’s immaturity and lack of judgment outside the office are clear.”
It is a valid point; however, there is also a problem with this given that Shirvell is an assistant DA. How would he react to a case involving a lesbian or gay? Would he pursue to the full extent of the law a hate crime committed against a lesbian or gay?
While this revelation has come at a time when Cox’s political career is now winding down for the moment, it is unlikely that it will matter any what Cox does, but it may become a complication for the Republican Party going into the election in November as it creates a feeling that the Republicans condone what Shirvell is doing in his own time, and are willing to overlook the problems of him being a known and virulent homophobe in a job when he may be called upon to pursue criminal charges against other homophobic individuals who have engaged in acts of terror against their fellow Michiganders.