Carol Swain, infamous ultra-right-wing former Vanderbilt professor, has also announced her candidacy for Nashville’s next mayor, joining Briley, Clemmons, and perhaps others in seeking the position. Swain announced during a faculty breakfast club event hosted at Tennessee State University.


Swain will likely be one of the few arch-conservatives, if not the only one, in the August 1 election. Last May, Swain finished an extremely distant second to Briley in a special election. With over a dozen candidates running, Briley managed to avoid a runoff by getting over 54% of the vote in the first round, while Swain pulled a relatively abysmal 22.9%.

“The city of Nashville deserves a mayor that is committed to making commonsense improvements that will enrich our community,” Swain said, proceeding to vaguely attack the mayor. “It is a disgrace that under the leadership of our current mayor, Nashville has the highest debt per citizen of any city in the nation, teachers remain under paid, we lack affordable housing, all while traffic and infrastructure problems clog our streets.”

Swain has pledged to work closely with the police, firefighters, first responders and emergency personnel to address ongoing concerns regarding funding, working conditions and competitive pay, without making any concrete suggestions about how these promises will be funded.

In a press release, her campaign insisted “that Nashville can be a model for what can be done with sensible, community based leadership instead of false promises and self-serving dealings.”

“What I can promise you are transparency and an achievable plan for protecting the character and culture of Nashville while bringing prosperity to our city,” Swain said. “I am asking our community to stand and Be the People for Nashville. To stand up against a failed mayor and make the right choice for our city.”

We need not guess what Swain thinks the people want, and what character she wishes to protect in Nashville. Swain is perhaps best known for her attacks against the LGBT community and the Islamic community, not only generally but at a very personal level. Swain reportedly outed a gay student at Vanderbilt. And, when students questioned her bias against Islam, she characterized the criticism as harassment and demanded protection. Snowflake indeed…

Swain really is a nightmare candidate for many in Nashville’s community, and while she doesn’t have … a snowflake’s chance, she shouldn’t be underestimated. Before the race is over, she will likely have sown enough discord and could have fomented enough hatred to make Nashville a worse place just by having run.


For more about Carol Swain, particularly charges of homophobia and Islamophobia, click here!


This article has been republished from Out & About Nashville, and was part of a series of first-person pieces written by the late Bobbi Williams.

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