Conservative blogger Tara Servatius of Charlotte, resigned on Thursday, after posting an offensive photo of U.S. President Barack Obama on the John Locke Foundation's website earlier this week. (See the photo here.)
The Charlotte Observer reported that the photo was digitally manipulated to show Obama in drag, along with chains, high heels and a bucket of Kentucky Fried Chicken between his legs. The photo was used along with Monday's blog post where Servatius spoke about Obama's objection to a ban on gay marriage in North Carolina.
Similar state laws have passed over his plate no less than a dozen times since he took office, but he felt no need to step up to bat, Servatius wrote. In fact, until now, he wouldn't take a specific position on gay marriage at all, choosing to support civil unions and call his views on gay marriage 'evolving.'
Servatius' then issued a statement, apologizing for including the photo in her blog post.
I am genuinely sorry my inclusion of the photo along with my blog post has caused controversy for the John Locke Foundation, she wrote. If it has offended anyone, I sincerely apologize for that. That was certainly not my intention. It was meant to illustrate Obama's Southern political strategy, nothing more. An honest reading of the piece itself shows there is nothing offensive in it.
John Hood, president of the foundation, noted on his Facebook page that he was embarrassed and angered.
Hood's post on Thursday, described said Servatius, a freelancer, included an offensive illustration that was offensive and utterly inappropriate for our blog or anyone else's.
Hood said a reader brought the post to his attention the day before and he immediately had it removed.
But the damage was done, Hood continued. I'm sorry I didn't see it earlier and I'm deeply sorry it was our site for any length of time. The political discourse in our state and nation has grown increasingly coarse, unnecessarily personal, and destructively vitriolic.
This is the kind of episode that can only make the situation worse, Hood's post read. We should be able to disagree about controversial issues without it coming to this.
Correction: The president of the John Locke Foundation is John Hood. The post has been updated to reflect the change.