The day before Lt. Governor Andre Bauer takes the stage in a guberatorial candidate debate, the state conference of the NAACP officially responded to his recent controversial statements. The civil rights organization’s President Lonnie Randolph sent to the media the following release.
Statement of Dr. Lonnie Randolph, Jr. —
The South Carolina State Conference of the NAACP condemns the statements by South Carolina Lieutenant Governor Andre Bauer during a town hall meeting in Greenville County, where he compared citizens receiving government assistance to stray animals. It is particularly telling that he displays such bigotry, as passed through three generations of his family, with such pride while holding the second highest elected office in South Carolina. His comments give us no confidence in his ability to fulfill his oath to serve all of the people of South Carolina. We also view his poorly attempted apology as insincere and insulting to all South Carolinians, including those who may find themselves in need of help at some point in their lives. The poor are not strays or pets as Mr. Bauer views them. Those who utilize government assistance are fathers, mothers, and children who comprise a significant portion of the population in the state where he aspires to serve as governor. Because of Mr. Bauer’s opinions, South Carolina is once again distinguished as the place to find model leaders in public service.
Bauer has apologized for using the words “stray animals” in his speech at an Upstate forum, in which he said: “My grandmother was not a highly educated woman, but she told me as a small child to quit feeding stray animals. You know why? Because they breed. You’re facilitating the problem if you give an animal or a person ample food supply. They will reproduce, especially ones that don’t think too much further than that. And so what you’ve got to do is you’ve got to curtail that type of behavior. They don’t know any better.”