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There’s a story that I feel captures the essence of Wilson’s state House race. One day a frog was going to cross a river. He was approached by a scorpion who wanted a ride. The frog responded, “Give you a ride? You’re a scorpion, you might sting me!”
The scorpion meekly said, “Why would I do that? If I sting you, I might drown myself.”
The frog relented and halfway through the journey felt a sharp sting. Shocked, he looked up as numbness began to spread and said, “Why did you do that?”
The scorpion replied, “I’m a scorpion. You should’ve known better.”
I argue that Jean Farmer-Butterfield’s statements contradict her actual records. For instance, Farmer-Butterfield contends that she will represent the interest of the faith community, yet voted against the state building a statue for America’s pastor, Billy Graham (HB 540) and churches being able to defend themselves against armed attack (HB 174). Lastly, she routinely votes in the interest of abortion and against laws to preserve life (HB 716).
Butterfield states that she is from and that she is for Wilson County. However, she has voted against the N.C. Farm Act (HB 374). On other occasions she was not even present to vote on behalf of our county (HBs 1289, 774, 55). Furthermore, our county businessmen and professionals have had trouble even finding her at her office or in our community outside of campaign season.
Farmer-Butterfield also has remained silent on the violent protests and the unnecessary destruction of public property. This is not surprising considering that she voted against laws to crack down on violent student protest. It is particularly disturbing that a representative would consider mob riots a legitimate form of protest.
This is especially sad considering that Dr. King fought tirelessly against violent and destructive protests. Sadly, African-Americans used to be the targets of such protests during the times of lynchings. Ironically, Farmer-Butterfield now stands aside and condones this. I as an African-American leader condemn it. No person or property should be harmed in the name of protests.
Lastly, Farmer-Butterfield says that she’s bipartisan and pro-job creation but regularly votes against Republican-sponsored bills, even when those bills are in the interest of jobs, education and our county. I would agree that Representative Farmer-Butterfield holds the interests of her party, but not the interests of Wilson.
The writer is pastor of Bethel Baptist Church and a candidate for N.C. House District 24.