HRC removed a Twitter posting on Aug. 18 praising lesbian mayor Lori Lightfoot after her participation in programming connected to the 2020 Democratic convention. HRC officials apologized for the initial post and acknowledged pushback they received from Lightfoot's detractors.
"We believe in holding ourselves accountable and ensuring our actions are reflective of our intent," said officials. "An earlier tweet was troubling to people who viewed it as prioritizing visibility of LGBTQ people over the policies that impact usespecially QTBIPOC. And so we have removed it."
Lightfoot has enjoyed support from many in the LGBTQ community, but has also been closely tied in the eyes of her detractorsmany of them also from the LGBTQ communityto the Chicago Police Department ( CPD ).
HRC's initial post celebrated the implications of an open lesbian taking part in high-level discussions about the Democratic Party's future. It read: "It's great to see @LoriLightfootthe nation's first Black, openly lesbian mayor of a major citytake the virtual stage and address racial violence in our country through an intersectional lens."
Prior to becoming mayor, Lightfoot was president of the Chicago Police Board, which enforces police accountability. Her engagement with CPD and management of City response has been questioned further this past summer, as deeper questions of policing and racial equity were raised following the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis, when protests and incidents of unrest broke out in many cities, among them Chicago.
The mayor was especially critical of participants in unrest the evening of Aug. 9 and has ordered bridges raised and other means of access to downtown limited at various times this summer. At the same time, she has faced criticism from others who maintain that city authorities have been unresponsive and too lax on violence under her watch. Ald. Raymond Lopez ( 15th Ward ), who is also openly gay, has been one such critic and has exchanged harsh words with Lightfoot during City meetings.
Lightfoot posted on Twitter on Aug. 17: "I hear you, and we are listening. We will continue to reach out to a range of stakeholders to listen, learn and work together towards real solutions."