There will be a protest outside Thanet Council's offices at 5.30pm tomorrow (12 July) demanding Cllr Ken Gregory's resignation for leaving a voicemail message on Cllr John Worrow's phone saying: "With any luck you'll get AIDS."
To wish such a horrifying disease on someone known to be bisexual is sickening and it astounds me that a politician can say such things and seemingly be let off the hook. How Cllr Gregory has the gall to think he can carry on as an elected representative in the wake of this scandal is astonishing. Can you imagine the outcry if Cllr Gregory had wished cancer on somebody instead?
I genuinely believe Cllr Gregory should stand down. In my opinion, Cllr Gregory's comment far eclipses the offensive remarks Cllr Mike Harrison made as they veer away from insults and cross over into hate crime territory, anathematising in a homophobic misconception about the nature of the AIDS virus. Had it not occurred to Cllr Gregory that the majority of HIV transmissions in Sub-Saharan Africa originate from heterosexual intercourse?
To date, Cllr Ken Gregory has received a police caution for malicious communications; he's been suspended from the Conservative Group for just six months; and the standards committee has incomprehensibly cleared him of misconduct claiming Gregory did not break the councillor's code of conduct. It beggars belief that Cllr Ken Gregory should be allowed to get away with this. Personally, I think the picture is right - with a bit of luck, he'll resign.