KALKASKA, Mich. (WWJ/AP) – A village president in northern Michigan is refusing to apologize for sharing Facebook posts denouncing Islam and calling for the killing of “every last Muslim.”
The Record-Eagle of Traverse City reports that Kalkaska Village President Jeff Sieting said Monday that he doesn’t owe anyone an apology over his Facebook posts that some have called racist and hateful.
The posts were discovered by area native Cindy Anderson, who along with others unsuccessfully sought an apology last month. They’re now looking to remove Sieting from office.
One post Sieting shared said Muslims are destructive and “there is simply no place for them in our world.”
Other posts, some of which were several months old, addressed other controversial issues. MLive reports. in an October 2016 post, Sieting said the Black Lives Matter movement has grown out of control, adding that “it’s time to thin the herd of this crap.”
Sieting also reportedly called being transgender a mental illness.
The posts have since been deleted, but not before screenshots were saved and posted on multiple websites and on social media.
In an interview with UpNorthLive, Sieting said he has a right to his opinion adding that his comments are protected by the First Amendment.
“I have a right to my opinion,” Sieting told the new outlet. “If they don’t like my opinion, stay off my social media page … None of these opinions have any effect on how I serve this community.”
A “No Hate in Kalkaska Demonstration” was held in response to the comments over the weekend. “We reject the deeply disturbing, hateful and Islamophobic rants of the village president of Kalkaska,” read the event’s description. “We demand the resignation of Jeff Sieting.”
Sietin maintains that those trying to oust him are only doing so because they oppose President Donald Trump, whom he supports.