The lesbian granddaughter of the homophobic New York State senator Ruben Diaz Sr. has taken a public stand against her grandfather’s opinions.
Erica Diaz, 22, said in an article in the New York Post today: “I want him to know that every word he utters hurts his own blood.”
Senator Ruben Diaz Sr. represents the 32nd senate district in the Bronx. He is a staunch opponent of gay rights and has been very vocal in his opposition to gay marriage.
Last month, he jointly hosted a march and rally against marriage equality in South Bronx. The march attracted 2,500 people.
Ms Diaz, who has two children, was discharged from the US Navy under the now-defunct Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy.
She said she was “shattered” when her grandfather remained silent on a Spanish radio station in April after a guest on the same show said that gay people were “worthy of death.”
She said in the article that she’d: “finally conjured the courage to stand up for what is right.”
Ms Diaz chose to remain closeted during her adolescence “out of “respect” to her father’s side of the family, who revered Ruben Diaz as a patriarch.
She has now been with her girlfriend, Naomi Torres, for two and a half years.
Ms Diaz is only one of Sen. Diaz Senior’s gay relatives. He has said in the past that he loves his gay relatives, but did not “believe in what they are doing.” He even brought Ms Diaz to the podium during the anti-gay rally he co-led last month, in order to tell the crowd that he loved her.
However, Ms Diaz said to the Post: “You cannot tell someone that you love them and stay silent when people call for their death. ‘Love’ is empty when you say someone’s life isn’t natural.”