Dwight Boykins, Houston councilman and mayoral candidate, is under fire for remarks he made at a youth summit over the weekend.
Overall, many those who are sounding off on Twitter claim what Dwight Boykins said at the summit was inappropriate and made them feel uncomfortable. They’ve been using #BoycottBoykins on social media to share what happened.
This all took place at a youth advocacy summit June 28. The summit was being hosted by Mi Familia Vota and OCA-Asian Pacific American Advocates.
In the invitation letter that one of the organizers sent to Boykins, he asked the mayoral candidate to share his personal story, his experiences as a council member and to “insipre the students as they continue to understand that each of them is an important part of the social fabric.”
When you search #BoycottBoykins on Twitter, attendees claim Boykins advised women to keep their legs closed and encouraged them not to be tainted by a man their freshman year of college.
Boykins released a statement about the comment, saying he has spoken to youth throughout his time on city council and says quote “I sought to encourage them to remain focused on their future hopes and dreams while drawing attention to the pitfalls that plague many young people.”
The following is the full statement Boykins made:
On June 27, 2019 at 4:08 p.m., I received the attached email request from Ramiro Ojeda, Community Organizer with Mi Familia Vota asking me to participate in a Youth Advocacy Summit to meet with groups of students, and to share my personal story and experiences as a councilmember.
The email indicated that Mayor Turner would speak regarding mental health, criminal justice, school safety, environmental justice, homelessness, and economic opportunity. By contrast, I was asked offer words of inspiration to the students and to help them understand the important role they play in our future.
As I have previously done on countless occasions throughout my district and around the city when speaking to our youth, I sought to encourage them to remain focused on their future hopes and dreams while drawing attention to the pitfalls that plague many young people. As I mentioned in my initial statement, it was never my intention to cause anyone discomfort but to speak frankly about the pitfalls which I have seen derail the future of many of our youth, including teen pregnancy…an issue I have firsthand experience with in my own family.
I regret that a few seconds of my discussion with these young people have apparently overshadowed my entire conversation which was meant to ensure that our youth have the best opportunity to succeed in life.
Again, please see the attached “invitation email” which verifies the topic of the remarks I was asked to make.
The statement also included a copy of the original invitation he received for the engagement.
Boykins went on to say that he regrets those few seconds of the discussion because it overshadows the conversation he was trying to have to ensure that our youth have a successful future.
Summit organizers later released a joint statement, saying “to our great concern and disappointment Boykins diverged from the program purpose and instead made statements and engaged in conduct that was wholly unacceptable”