Ex-councilwoman Leticia Ozuna says S.A. needs to talk about prejudice

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by Jeff Goldblatt / KENS 5

Bio | Email | Follow: @jeff_goldblatt

kens5.com

Posted on August 27, 2013 at 12:00 PM

SAN ANTONIO -- Former San Antonio Councilwoman Leticia Ozuna is speaking openly after a conversation that was secretly recorded in Councilwoman Elisa Chan's office stripped her of her personal privacy.

Last week, Ozuna called for Chan's resignation over intolerant comments about gays that Chan and her staff made during a closed meeting to discuss changes to the city's non-discrimination ordinance.

"I hate to say this," Ozuna said, "but I do think that there was some anticipation that I would be ashamed of my own personal life, that shame would drive me into silence."

The former District 3 councilwoman is married to Sophia Parafina, who underwent sex reassignment surgery. They've been legally married for 25 years. Together they have two children.

Ozuna's lifestyle was not mentioned in the original audio recording released publicly. It was mentioned in additional audio from the same May meeting during which Chan is heard calling some LGBTs "disgusting" and that same-sex couples should not be able to adopt children.

Ozuna sat down with KENS 5's Jeff Goldblatt on Monday to discuss why she wanted to go public with something so personal.

"This is not meant to be a titillating, salacious conversation. We need to talk about what prejudice looks like. We need to talk about why we need a discrimination ordinance in place for all people of San Antonio," she said.

Ozuna explained that she stepped forward, not out of vengeance, but from a position of strength.

"When you're in a position of leadership, you must be always cognizant of representing all of the people of San Antonio. You must be cognizant of basic responsibilities," she said.

Ozuna lost re-election in May. But during her time as councilwoman, she chose not to focus on her family in the political realm. Instead, she put her efforts toward south-side development.

Now out of office, her personal life has been thrust into the center stage spotlight at city hall.

"I think that this recording has created a tremendous amount of pain in the city of San Antonio. We have just unleashed hostility and venom, that we should really rise above," Ozuna said.

Watch her full interview in the video embed below.

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