The Addison City Council voted 4-3 Tuesday against removing a Planning and Zoning Commission member, despite his anti-Muslim comment. Commission member Tom Hunse made the comment on his LinkedIn page, where he explained why he resigned from Eastern Illinois University’s Board of Advisors.
The comment reads: “I resigned in September 2013 from [the] board upon being made aware EIU had named a Muslim to head the Lumpkin School of Business. After pondering the tragic events over the last couple of decades in this country and the role Islam has played throughout the world, as a Christian and a patriot, I cannot support the university’s decision…”
What’s wrong with that?
Dallas News After learning of the comment Council member Chris DeFrancisco made a motion to remove Hunse. “Our reputation has now been tainted by the endorsement of Mr. Hunse,” DeFrancisco said in a written argument to the Council. “Tolerance is encouragement, and we must not tolerate these types of activities from members of our Boards and Commissions,” DeFrancisco said.
Hunse responded with a letter, where he apologized and explained that his resignation from EIU had to do with how the university hired the Muslim man, and not the man’s religious beliefs.
During the meeting both DeFrancisco and Hunse called several citizens of Addison as witnesses for their arguments. Witness John Oliver, in favor of Hunse’s removal said, “this is going to be a giant step toward who and what the town of Addison is. Are we a town of bigotry?”
Hunse called Mark Hood as one of his witnesses. “In the 15 years I’ve know Tom I have not seen him act with anything other than kindness toward others,” Hood said. Chuck Chamberlain, an army veteran and old business partner of Hunse’s said, “in every cases he always functioned with me with honesty and integrity. I’ve also dealt with him in social environments and never once have I seen what he’s been accused of.”