OKLAHOMA CITY - Former Oklahoma City mayor Kirk Humphreys joined Freedom Oklahoma on Tuesday to apologize for comments he made about homosexuality on an episode of KFOR's Flash Point.
During a discussion of sexual harassment in Congress on the episode of Flash Point, Humphreys voiced his opinion regarding whether homosexuality is "right or wrong."
At one point, he seemed to link homosexuality to pedophilia, an opinion KFOR does not endorse. He later apologized for the comment.
On Tuesday, Humphreys joined Freedom Oklahoma for a joint press conference, where Humphreys apologized in greater detail:
“I have watched the show more times that I can count - and I am sorry. Some of the things I said do not reflect what I believe or the way that I have tried to live.
Let me be clear, I do not think that homosexuality in any way disqualifies a person from full participation as a citizen in our community including service in public office. At no point in my public or private life have I sought to take any action that precludes or otherwise diminishes the opportunity for every person to be treated as equals.
To be candid, I brought up Barney Frank as a partisan counterpoint in the heat of the moment. I intended to reference the scandal early in his career - and then simply couldn't remember the details. At that point my argument went off the rails and I said some things that I deeply regret.
Further, I do not think that it is right or appropriate to equate homosexuality with pedophilia. Preying on children is always wrong, no matter who you are or what political view you hold.
Perhaps my greatest regret is that I've hurt a lot of people.I know I should always seek to speak the truth in love. I failed to clearly convey what I believe to be true and my tone was not loving. I apologize for my failure.”
In a previous apology, Humphreys, in part, said “For clarification, my moral stance about homosexuality is that it is against the teachings of scripture.”
He didn’t reiterate that at the press conference and wouldn’t take questions from the media.
"I believe he made it very clear in his statement to us and yesterday at our meeting that he did not believe the same things he said on Flash Point," said Troy Stevenson with Freedom Oklahoma.
Humphreys sits on the board of regents at the University of Oklahoma and the board at John Rex Elementary School, where protesters have been calling for his resignation.
"I think he's done a lot of amazing things for the school, for the community. He's been around a long time, but that doesn't mean his ideology matches up with what we're doing at John Rex,” a parent said after the press conference.
Paula Lewis of the OKC Board of Education, referring to the former mayor's apology, said, " Maybe this moved the needle a little bit but, I still don't think he is representative of the kids and parents at John Rex."
Freedom Oklahoma officials said this is just the beginning of the conversation. Humphreys will join them for a forum on January 18 at OU to address the topic with the student body.
A special meeting of the OU Board of Regents will occur on Wednesday morning. The Humphreys matter will reportedly be discussed.