Tea Party vs. Business Conservatives

As we said previously, there are two camps in this election. The supporters tell the story. Will the board be controlled by Tea Party/912-endorsed folks or those endorsed by business conservatives? Remember 2014? Incumbents and challengers were all Republicans. The contest was between the Tea Party/912-endorsed challengers and the more moderate business Republican incumbents. The Tea Party/912 candidates won every seat. And here we are again. The Williamson County version of the Tea Party right: focus on religion (and specifically on the teaching the content of world religions in social studies), skepticism of public (or, as some call them, “government”) schools and teachers, driving national ideological/political fights down to the school board level. Business conservatism is less ideological. Local businesses are focused on home values, community reputation, and an ability to recruit and retain quality professional employees who want to move here. They view school quality and reputation as a part of Williamson County’s economic success and believe the Tea Party drama of the last two years detracts from that. District Tea Party/912-endorsed Business/conservative-endorsed 1 Richard Davis No endorsement (Angela Durham is the non-Tea Party-endorsed candidate) 3 Kim Little No endorsement (Eliot Mitchell and Christy Coleman are the non-Tea Party-endorsed candidates) 4 Joey Czarneski Anne McGraw 5 Julie Mauck Gary Anderson 7 Jennifer Luteran Bobby Hullett 9 Denise Boothby Rick Wimberly 11 Stuart Cooper KC Haugh   A note on our reporting: We plan to post the endorsements of active PACs (and other groups) in the county. We will note information that seems relevant, including but not limited to the type of group, their past and current involvement in school board and other politics, and the decision-makers of the group. You...

912 TN Endorsements

J. Lee Douglas, 912 TN President, has published his endorsements for the 2016 Williamson County School Board elections. Recall that 912 played a major role recruiting, coordinating, and supporting candidates in 2014. 912 TN President J. Lee Douglas, who later did a petition for the removal of Dr. Looney, saw the election of 2014 as an opportunity to “take” the school board. 912 had been diligently vetting and supporting school board and county commission candidates for several election cycles. Every single one of the winning challengers was endorsed by the 912 TN President, and five out of six (Dan Cash is the exception) were members of 912. 912 and their allies’ (including the Republican Women of Williamson County or RWWC) efforts were very successful in 2014.  “If we take the Board this time, we’ll know that our work has been worth it.” – J. Lee Douglas Douglas indicated in a December 2015 Tennessean article that he planned to be involved with expanding the number and strength of 912’s representation on the WCSB. He had already endorsed Joey Czarneski, who is running against incumbent Anne McGraw in District 4. “I think you haven’t seen anything yet. Seeing what took place last election, those people that opposed my viewpoints — they’re going to be out.” – J. Lee Douglas This year, 912 TN has endorsed the opposite candidates in every case from those endorsed by the Williamson Business PAC and WillCo Rising PAC. Again, 912 TN’s endorsements completely mirror the Williamson County Homeschool Coalition’s endorsements. 912 TN is not a registered PAC.   A note on our reporting: We plan to post the endorsements of active PACs (and other groups) in the county. We will note...

Your Guide to the Anti-Muslim Holiday Inn Hatin’ Hootenanny

The Steve Gill/912 Project/Laurie Cardoza-Moore/99.7 WTN event tonight regarding Islam in the schools purports to be about WCS, though given the track record of the participants we see no reason to believe this event is anything but another stop on the anti-Muslim campaign tour. Here’s a handy guide for those who want to understand a little more about the hosts and presenters.   Reviews from previous stops on the tour “County by County orchestration by Steve Gill & Co. They’ve been distributing DVD’s, spreading fear tactics, etc. stuff since the summer. I had the outside guys stop by and spew this stuff to me in July/August. They convince someone locally to take up their cause & they come in with “revolution in a box” to be our saviors from Islamic Indoctrination & liberalism. Call people from other counties. It’s all the same. Please don’t act like this has randomly popped up. …I’m a Baptist Pastor, Father & a registered Republican & I’m telling you the truth about this. This site [Citizens Against Islamic Indoctrination] is owned and operated by Steve Gill and there is money, power, and votes at stake here. I’m speaking out because of their use of deception, fear tactics, attacks against local officials, hatred and inciting of disunity.” – Pastor Brad Walker (First Baptist Church of Sparta) Hosts  Steve Gill — Gill Media. Gill has been running this tour in the plateau counties and started Citizens Against Islamic Indoctrination (CAII). Who is paying Mr. Gill? “Why do you think Islam is coming to the Bible belt? Because if they can win here, they know the rest of the way will...

“Our Kids are Getting Indoctrinated” Road Show

The “Our Kids are Getting Indoctrinated in Social Studies” road show is coming Home for the Holidays! Franklin Alderman and campaign consultant Bev Burger and 912 TN President J. Lee Douglas have been busy promoting the event, held conveniently (?) on the Wednesday night of exam week in a Cool Springs hotel lobby. They call it a Town Hall meeting, but let’s call this what it is: a campaign event. This statewide campaign, aka “Citizens Against Islamic Indoctrination,” is being run by political operative and Brentwood resident Steve Gill. (We are asking again: who is paying him?) Anybody feel like we’ve been on this ride before? We’ve had months of this political campaign roosting in our school board. Multiple resolutions, speeches, a petition. We parents should be very, very afraid that our kids are being indoctrinated by their teachers, the standards, or the textbooks or by (most menacingly, apparently) PowerPoint presentations. We are being told to “wake up!” This is all about Islam and it isn’t new. This is about fear. And fearmongering. “Children are being forced to learn how to convert to Islam” and “schools are censoring Christianity and proselytizing Islam.” – ACLJ “Why do you think Islam is coming to the Bible belt? Because if they can win here, they know the rest of the way will be easy.” – Steve Gill “The threat of Islam is not in far off countries. It’s in our classrooms in White County.” – CAII paid radio ads in White County “All it takes is one seventh-grader to go home and recite the five pillars of Islam, then go to a school with a bomb in...

912 TN President Starts Petition to Remove Dr. Looney

On Wednesday, February 10, Project 912 TN Founder and President J. Lee Douglas sent out a petition (see DumpLooney.com) to his 912 Project mailing list asking people to support the removal of Dr. Looney from his role of Williamson County Schools Superintendent. Mr. Douglas accuses Dr. Looney of “tyranny” and says that “sufficient grounds for dismissal already exist.” We’ll have more in the coming days.   What You Can Do Please write the school board today and ask them if they support the aims of the petition. Ask them to state their positions publicly. It is possible that Mr. Douglas “claims” some board members (he claims 8 out of 12 as 912 members) who don’t want to be claimed or some who were closely aligned with him but have changed their minds. We urge you to request straightforward answers on where board members stand on this petition and Mr. Douglas’ accusations. Let them know what you think of this petition. We’re not sure how Mr. Douglas and his crew plan to present it to the board as valid since they say all names will be kept secret and they don’t seem to require county residency. Attend the Monday, 2/16 2/23 School Board Meeting. Sign-up for public comment begins at 6:00, and the meeting starts at 6:30.   Some Background The 912 Project and the School Board (8/4/14) “If we take the Board this time, we’ll know that our work has been worth it.” — J. Lee Douglas Project 912 TN Leader Reports on WCS Board (11/11/14) “The war continues… Locally, in Williamson County, you may recall that there are now 8 (of a total 12) nine-twelve...

Textbooks, Part 3: Check out the “experts”

A couple handfuls of textbook activists have successfully changed state law to make sure that non-educators have a greater say on textbooks at both the local and state level.  Several WCS board members are quite connected to these activists. Both Candy Emerson and Beth Burgos said they ran because of the textbook issue. Now, some school board members are indicating they want to be ON the local review committee and also approve the work of the committee. At least one board member has indicated she wants to be able to determine specifically who isn’t on the committee. Several also seem to be looking for an official role for the textbook activists. The board will talk more about this at the 11/17 School Board Meeting when they plan to vote on how the local review committees will be formed. So who are these leading textbook activists (who will likely be called “experts who just want the truth”)? Laurie Cardoza-Moore: Ms. Moore has her own organization called Proclaiming Justice to the Nations. She was featured on a Daily Show segment about the anti-Muslim activists who fought against the Murfreesboro mosque. (See here.) Note that the mosque has existed peacefully in Murfreesboro for thirty years. LCM: “Islam is a political system of global domination… 30%, based on the numbers that were done, are terrorists…..We know we have a huge terrorist network here in Tennessee. The Nashville Islamic Center appears to be the mothership.”   Host (joking): “You know about the mothership?”   LCM: “Everybody knows about the Mothership.”   Host: (joking, again) “How do you know so much?”   LCM: “Internet. All you have to do, I mean,...