Letter to the Editor: Troy High Senior Responds to Mayor's Anti-Gay Post

"I am here today to say, I will not stop," writes Troy High School senior Xinxin Zhou. "I will never stop fighting, never stop supporting until all people are treated equally."

This Letter to the Editor is in response to Troy Mayor Janice Daniel's , which received widespread criticism Friday after it went viral on the social networking site.

Dear Mayor Daniels,

My name is Xinxin Zhou and I am currently a senior at Troy High School.

I know you must be incredibly busy with your duties, so I shall write with brevity.

I am sure you are aware your post on Facebook has caused quite the controversy, and you have received your fair share of emails. I am not here to lecture you in anyway or some other trivial nonsense.

I am here to speak from my heart.

I have always been proud to live in a great city like Troy. We were different. We were above the rest.

We were accepting.

So when our high school set up a Gay Straight Alliance, I believed it was the beginning of the end. It was the end of ignorance and hatred. Yet you, personally, have ended that ideal.

Your words were brought to my attention this afternoon, and it hit me. Some people would never change, just as their tormenting words could never be unspoken.

So I am here today to say, I will not stop. I will never stop fighting, never stop supporting until all people are treated equally. You may have your opinion, well, so do I.


Xinxin Zhou

Troy Patch welcomes opinions from readers. Please send your Letter to the Editor to Jen Anesi at jen.anesi@patch.com

anne December 03, 2011 at 03:17 PM
This is the type kind of representative I would like to see Troy have, and the nation see about our city. Brilliant young mind. Thank you for your eloquent voice.
Alan Stamm December 03, 2011 at 04:42 PM
I also thank you, Xinxin, for an inspiring reminder that strong people rise above "tormenting words" and that this issue is about acceptance and respect. A public official who defends her exclusionary views is an unworthy leader. Acknowledging "a poor choice of words” after being caught does not show acceptance and respect for those with a different orientation.
Jennifer Griffith Hilzinger December 03, 2011 at 04:53 PM
Xinxin for mayor.
Ashley Ish Sadlier December 03, 2011 at 05:34 PM
I am so, so, so proud to say that I am very good friends with this brilliant young woman. We have so many intelligent students in our district- I have much hope for the future of our city. <3
Jen Anesi (Editor) December 03, 2011 at 09:40 PM
A comment was removed for violating our Terms of Use (http://troy.patch.com/terms).
Jennifer Griffith Hilzinger December 03, 2011 at 09:53 PM
You mean the Prop 8 that failed? Right, the gay mafia; losing is not usually how mafias work. And are you actually comparing LGBT folks to pedophiles? Because I think that Sandusky's wife of 46 years might disagree with you. If he was gay, those kids might have been safe. Sadly they were not as was he was a pedophile - learn your facts, Ross.
Jen Anesi (Editor) December 04, 2011 at 03:35 AM
A comment was removed for violating our Terms of Use (http://troy.patch.com/terms)
firelight December 04, 2011 at 04:54 AM
High school student, Xinxin Zhou, never, never let one person take away your ideals, your hope, your optimism. Never let a trilion people take them away. Nothing has changed except that the flaws of one person have been exposed. Compassion and prayers for her might be what our better selves would aspire to.
Bob Jackie December 04, 2011 at 05:05 AM
From what I understand, Janice Daniels is active in the PAC "Troy Citizens United" Tea Party rabble which is connected to Woodside Bible church that is actually a fire and brimstone evangelical Baptist church in Troy on Rochester Rd between Square Lake and South Blvd. The church from the very core is deceitful and insincere, in that they changed their longstanding name from Troy Baptist which was down near Big Beaver and Rochester Rd to a generic homogenized name like "Woodside" Now why would they do that? To blend in to their new upscale suburban digs? Nature lovers are they? It should come as no surprise that Janice Daniels would state the hateful things she says because it is in the evangelical ideology. Evangelicals despise homosexuality. Oh they'll say they "love the person just as she has in her half hearted attempt to apologize but I believe Janice Daniels got into the Troy mayors office with these beliefs under the radar and it is all starting to ooze out.
Jeff December 04, 2011 at 07:28 PM
In retrospect, given her recent publicized bigoted slur, it's disgraceful that Ms Daniels continues to share with everyone what a good "Christian" life she leads. What I find simply amazing is how can someone who has aspirations to lead such a large, progressive city like Troy, MI exhibit such a lack of judgment? Why would you be so incredibly stupid to post such a comment on a social network as large as Facebook? Janice Daniels included in her Facebook profile that she is employed by Century 21 Town and Country-Troy as a Associate-Broker, Realtor. I find it ironic that Ms Daniels' success in the real estate industry depends on her finding homes for clients in one of the most "diverse" communities in the country, knowing her bias. Yet, by posting such a hurtful, thoughtless, and despicable comment...she puts her own career at risk, tarnishes the image of the city of Troy, embarrasses her employer, and most importantly, totally disgraces her own family. Congratulations, Madame Mayor on your accomplishments; all in less than a month as our leader!
Concerned Citizen December 05, 2011 at 05:55 PM
When I was a student at Troy High School, I tried starting a gay/straight alliance. When I went to the office to request a form to start a new club, the secretary looked at me with disgust and said derisively, "A club for lesbians?" Clearly, she had heard about what I was trying to accomplish and was conveying her disapproval. She refused to give me a form. I was eventually convinced that it would be easier to get the administration to agree to a "diversity club," which we eventually called the Human Equality Rights Organization or H.E.R.O. When I heard about the mayor's comments, my first reaction was to say this is why I moved from Troy the day after I graduated from high school. I was tired of the ignorance of the place. It seemed to verify everything I hated about my hometown. But I am incredibly moved by your bravery and eloquence. Thank you for showing the mayor that you come from a place of tolerance and love not ignorance and hatred and for showing even a cynic like me that Troy can be the diverse, welcoming city of tomorrow it purports to be!
Xinxin December 05, 2011 at 10:17 PM
Dear joyce wu, I can honestly say I am incredibly honored. However the words I wrote were nothing more than my duty. As a citizen of Troy, it is my responsibility to stand up to a wrong I see. What caught my attention was the club called H.E.R.O. you established. It truly is a small world. I was President of H.E.R.O. for two years. :) That club was where I first established my calling. So right now it is my time to thank you. It must have been difficult and frightening to start something new. I am just following in your footsteps. <3 Xinxin Zhou
Paul Pelley December 06, 2011 at 03:51 PM
It's time she steps down. Her campaign slogan included integrity. with that statement she has lost all integrity. Turn the light out when you leave, I will show the exit .


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