The Republican member of the Nebraska Board of Education who until recently ran a blog that called President Obama a “half-breed” and railed against “queers and perverts” is facing calls from his peers to resign from his post.
By a 6-2 vote yesterday, Pat McPherson’s fellow state school board members approved a resolution calling on him to step down, but he has refused to comply.
McPherson, who maintains that he didn’t write the posts in question but refuses to reveal who did, told the board that the controversy over the racist posts on his blog was manufactured by his political adversaries on the left who want to “overturn an election.”
“I am not a racist,” McPherson said, before blaming “the frenzy around this” on “political interests who opposed me in the general election” who want to “inflame the issue using the racist appellation.”
One of McPherson’s allies, Doug Kagan of the conservative group Taxpayers for Freedom, claimed McPherson is the victim of “a witch hunt against him.”
McPherson said he was merely “negligent” in supervising the material that appeared on his blog and said it was the first time he had ever been accused of racism.
Pat McPherson, the Republican member of the Nebraska State Board of Education who runs a right-wing blog that has repeatedly called President Obama a “half-breed” and refers to LGBT people as “queers and perverts,” says he will not step down from his position.
After Gov. Pete Ricketts, a fellow Republican, called for McPherson to resign after the contents of his blog came to light, the embattled board member released a statement insisting that he did not write the racist blog entries and that his resignation would be “a tacit admission of the false accusations being made that I am a racist”:
Doing so would be a tacit admission of the false accusations being made that I am a racist. I am not. It would also reward the partisan political efforts of the Nebraska Democratic Party as well as the efforts of the Nebraska State Education Association which spent $25,000 in support of my general election opponent. It would allow these entities to overturn the results of an election that they could not win.
I didn’t write and have disavowed the racist comment made on the blog. I am also respectful of the First Amendment rights of others short of yelling “Fire” in a crowded theater.
I eagerly await the opportunity to work with my fellow board member as well as with Governor Ricketts in improving education for all Nebraska children. I will work earnestly to support the needs of parents and teachers as well. We have lots of challenges and work to do.
As we’ve reported, the racist slurs against the president are far from the only incendiary posts on McPherson’s blog.
Local branches of the NAACP have also asked for McPherson to step down:
The Omaha and Lincoln branches of the NAACP issued a joint statement Thursday calling for his resignation and condemning the blog entries.
“This behavior draws into question Mr. McPherson’s ability to equitably represent all students in the Nebraska school system,” according to the groups.
Four of McPherson’s seven colleagues on the state board, whom The World-Herald was able to contact Thursday, said the board would have a hard time moving ahead with McPherson in office.
Rachel Wise, the board’s president, said she has been exploring the options available to the board.
“The board doesn’t have the authority, as a board, to request his resignation,” she said. “Certainly, individual board members can express that view. My personal view is I think this is a distraction from our work.”
She said McPherson’s resignation would help the board move forward.
“But legally it’s his prerogative to resign,” she said.
Wise said the board has not met to discuss the matter, so she wasn’t speaking on behalf of the board.
“I personally will not tolerate any racism, bigotry, discrimination,” she said. “I believe strongly that our work is about all children. Any impressions that take away from our ability to form strong educational policy for all children in Nebraska detracts from our work.”
Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts started off his first term as governor this week by having to condemn a Republican member the state board of education, Pat McPherson, for running a conservative political blog that repeatedly referred to President Obama as a “half-breed.”
Ricketts stopped short of calling for McPherson to resign, as the board of education member pled ignorance and vowed to take down the blog. McPherson claimed that he did not write, or even read, the controversial posts on his blog, but refused to name the author. As the Omaha World-Herald reports, it is difficult to decipher who authored each post, especially since McPherson started attempting to scrub the website:
In all cases, the postings were unsigned.
McPherson said Tuesday that “on occasion” he may have posted anonymously to the site, but he said the controversial posts were not his.
“They weren’t speaking for me,” he said.
He said he usually signed his posts. A computer word search of the website turned up no articles indicating they were authored by McPherson, though the search may be incomplete because many of the prior postings had been deleted by McPherson along with the offending ones.
McPherson’s blog, as it turns out, has a lengthy record of posting offensive material.
In October, the blog posted a cartoon portraying Michelle Obama as obese and featured as its “thought of the day” a tweeting saying, “Barack Obama is what happens when Affirmative Action and The Peter Principle have a baby.” It also shared a birther joke: “Did you hear about the guy who managed to get into the White House without credentials? And then just the other day some guy jumped the fence.”
Other entries, as reported by the Aksarbent blog, criticized the “homosexualization” of the Boy Scouts and lambasted the government for “creating special classes for gays, lesbians, transgenders, cross-dressers, aka., queers and perverts.”
Another entry mocked the Lincoln public school system for trying “to make sure the littlest transgenders feel welcome at school,” adding: “The problem in our educational system is not a money problem. If anything our schools have access to entirely too much taxpayer money, if they can waste dollars on such foolishness..”
Another post likened gay marriage to bestiality: “I vote Democrat because I love the fact that I can now marry whatever I want. I’ve decided to marry my German Shepherd.”
Last year, McPherson’s outlet accused Warren Buffett, the Nebraska billionaire and philanthropist, of waging a “war on babies.”
In August, McPherson’s blog reposted a column by conservative writer Doug Patton saying that America is now worse than Nazi Germany thanks to gay rights and legal abortion:
What’s more chilling than a people oppressed by a Hitler, a Mao or a Stalin? A people that voluntarily oppresses itself, a reality that has now afflicted America.
We have watched over the last 40 years as American women have gone — willingly in most cases — into abortion mills to destroy one-third of a generation.
We have seen speech codes pop up on college campuses banning any conservative expression, and watched as so-called hate crimes legislation appeared on the books as the law of our land, a dangerous precedent if ever there was one.
Homosexual special rights groups have foisted their hateful rhetoric on us and cowered many into agreeing to support a same-sex “marriage” agenda that will fundamentally transform this country into something so perverse that none of us will even recognize it in 10 years.
Ben Sasse, the GOP US Senate candidate from Nebraska who has garnered endorsements from Tea Party-aligned groups including the Club for Growth, FreedomWorks and the Senate Conservatives Fund, appeared on Friday’s edition of The Janet Mefferd Show to reiterate his commitment to the social conservatives cause.
When asked his opinion on legalizing same-sex marriage, Sasse said he agree with the GOP’s opposition to marriage equality, adding, “Government doesn’t define marriage, marriage is defined by God and we receive it via nature and it predates government. And when the family is under assault as it is today, when the family is in decline, nothing else is going to work.”
“We need to stand for the idea that the Founders got with the Bill of Rights, which is that nature and our rights come to us not from government but they come to us from God and government is our shared project to secure our natural and inalienable rights,” Sasse continued. “The reason we want a government is to protect us from certain kinds of evils and uncertainties so we can live life in the central institutions like family.”
Activists fighting to keep a draconian anti-immigrant ordinance in a Nebraska town reportedly have called in the big guns: the Nativist group FAIR.
In 2010, voters in Fremont, Nebraska passed an ordinance barring landlords from renting to undocumented immigrants and requiring employers to check new employee’s immigration status. (The employment provision exempted the town’s largest employers, two meatpacking plants just outside of city limits.) Behind the law was Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, who has made a name for himself by peddling anti-immigrant and voter suppression measures to communities across the country.
Last summer, a federal appeals court upheld the law but a city councilmember has introduced a ballot referendum to repeal parts of it. This has angered proponents of the law, who have set up a group called “Our Vote Should Count” and gathered support from the national nativist group FAIR (a former Kobach employer), according to the Fremont Tribune :
Our Vote Should Count enlisted the help of the Federation for American Immigration Reform, the Tea Party Patriots, True The Vote, and other national organizations, including a Washington, D.C.-based analyst and an Omaha media consultant, to put together a media campaign that will use social media, print media, flyers and canvassing to get out their message.
UPDATE: The Fremont Tribune reported that the group True the Vote was involved in the Fremont initiative. True the Vote tells us that they had no involvement in the measure and are seeking a retraction from the Tribune. We have removed True the Vote from our our story.
UPDATE 2: The Fremont Tribune reports that Our Vote Should Count was in contact with local organizers at FAIR and True the Vote, which may not have come to the attention of the national groups:
“In assembling facts and data,” Von Behren replied in an email to the Tribune, “we met individually with representatives of Tea Party Patriots, True The Vote and (the Federation for American Immigration Reform). Each provided varying levels of support, including data access, technical support, data analysis and general knowledge of the issues from their experience. It's correct that the national office of True The Vote may not have known about local conversations. I would expect the same of (Tea Party Patriots) or FAIR.
“The information provided was all publicly available, but much easier to find with help from someone who works in that area. Neither of the other two organizations raised a concern so we assumed that was the normal function of a local representative,” Von Behren wrote.
Supporters of the Fremont ordinance don’t exactly hide that they are motivated by suspicion of the town’s growing Hispanic population – whether documented or not. One Vote Should count shared this graphic on its Facebook page, which warns that “Fremont is a sanctuary city” because its “Hispanic population TRIPLED! in 10 years”:
In November, Harpers author Ted Genoways visited a town meeting about the ordinance and found racial tensions running high, as one woman railed against “Spanish in my schools” and a Latina resident, a third-generation American, recalled a man screaming at her to “go back to Mexico.”
An Our Vote Should Count spokesman, after warning of the increase in the “non-white population” in local schools, told the Fremont Tribune that the real racists were undocumented immigrants:
Enforcing the ordinance is not about targeting a race, he said.
“There are two levels of racism here. One is a set of racists who will use illegal people for their own profit, and that is being done actively. The other racism is people who knowingly break the law to come here for their own profit,” he said.
We had never heard of Dan Delzell until today, but apparently he is pastor of Wellspring Lutheran Church in Papillion, Nebraska and a regular contributor to The Christian Post where he is given space to pen informative pieces such as this one in which he explains that "the promotion and practice of sex outside of marriage is doing more to increase the national debt than any other single factor":
The strong correlation between sexual immorality and overspending is beyond dispute. A perfect example in the Bible is the prodigal son in Luke 15. A perfect example in the world today is the United States.
Which came first...the chicken or the egg? Likewise, sensual indulgence is intricately interwoven with voracious spending habits. The prodigal son had it good at home. But he wanted more, and he wanted it immediately. His lust for money was fueled by his lust for sensual pleasure, and "vice" versa.
He took his inheritance which was intended to provide for future needs. He wasted it on wild living in the moment. He was clueless to what was happening while he was in the midst of his sensual storm. In America today, the promotion and practice of sex outside of marriage is doing more to increase the national debt than any other single factor. Blindness in one area produces blindness in the other. Just ask the prodigal son.
God made sex. God gave man and woman sexual desires. Sex within marriage between a man and a woman is a good thing. Outside of God's plan, there is chaos. When man feeds his sexual temptations, he creates financial confusion in his mind.....and this leads to economic disaster, among other things. Likewise, when man feeds his love for money, this often leads to sexual promiscuity. The two are somehow joined together in unholy matrimony. Remember....holy matrimony involves one man and one woman. Anything else is a counterfeit.
The Religious Right continues to target public schools in a variety of ways that disrupt education and threaten religious liberty, according to a report released by People For the American Way Foundation (PFAWF). The report provides an in-depth analysis of the struggle over the future of our public education system by focusing on six categories: creationism; textbook controversies; sexuality education; religion and public schools; anti-gay activity and censorship.