During a time of year when people are often more festive, generous and selfless, Troy resident Glenn Clark is urging others to move past the controversy surrounding newly elected Troy Mayor Janice Daniels and support the city's local businesses during the holidays.
Clark, president of Michigan Faith & Freedom Coalition, is urging residents to do their shopping in the city with its "Home for the Holidays: Shop Troy" campaign. The group will feature and promote one local business on its Facebook page each day leading up to Christmas.
Clark's request for residents to "Shop Troy" comes after Daniels' anti-gay Facebook status update went viral last Friday, inciting backlash from members of the community who asked for an apology, asked for her resignation and vowed to boycott Troy businesses until Daniels is no longer in office.
"People need to support Troy retailers because there’s real people behind those store marquees, and real families and children," Clark said. "We need to get back to normalcy and start coming together as a community."
Clark said he and other members of the group agree that what Daniels posted on Facebook is unacceptable, but the situation has since been "grossly exaggerated."
"I don’t condone her words," Clark said. "I told her it was wrong, but that’s not related to her conduct as mayor of Troy. She wasn’t mayor when she said that, and she’s apologized for it, and I don’t understand how people can be so vindictive.”
Clark said he and other members of the group have taken offense to the reactions the mayor's post has received locally and nationally in the past week.
"Those who supported the other candidate have been using it as a political weapon to really rip apart our city," Clark said. "We said, enough is enough. This is a time that should be of good will toward men, peace on earth."
Clark said that from now until Christmas, the group will be featuring one local business a day and encouraging residents to shop there. “You’ll see some familiar names as we move forward and some unfamiliar, smaller mom-and-pop operations," he said.