Right-wing radical and enemy of public health Breanna Funke quit the Rapid City school board this month after less than six months of public service. In a statement read at the end of the November 2 board meeting, Funke said she had to move out of Area 2, the school board district in which she’d been elected, because she found Rapid City was not the safe haven she thought it would be when she moved from Kentucky for Freedom™:
We are moving out of my school board area, because I refuse to live in a home that robs my peace of mind, and keeps my family and I from attaining goals that we have set.
My neighborhood has become increasingly unsafe. My heart goes out to those who live in even worse areas of town. I commend out police force and their efforts, but it is out of control. We have experienced multiple murders down the street, gang shoot outs right outside our door, and multiple interactions with aggressive homeless people. I don’t think anyone knows what the solution is, but I know things need to change [Breanna Funke, written statement, read aloud at end of Rapid City school board meeting, as documented in RCAS draft school board minutes, 2021.11.02].
Funke also suggested that she found serving on the board because issues were too complicated for her absolutist right-wing mindset:
I will say that one of my flaws as a human being is the tendency to be very black and white, with no room for gray areas. Tonight was a perfect illustration of one of the many learning experiences I have had while serving on the board [Funke, 2021.11.02].
Funke’s reference to “tonight” serving as “a perfect illustration” of a “learning experience” is curious: given that she prepared her statement before the meeting (I doubt she composed these six paragraphs during the meeting), how could she anticipate that the meeting would perfectly illustrate her “learning experiences”? The paragraph reads more like a parting shot of veiled frustration (hey, Breanna, and all Trumpists: why can’t you just say exactly what you mean instead of playing word games?) at the board anticipating that the board backed away from her black-and-white proposal to cancel the board’s membership in the Associated School Boards of South Dakota over her perception that the ASBSD was improperly supporting the federal government’s efforts to check her base’s nationwide campaign of domestic terrorism against public schools.
Funke’s departure has allowed the Rapid City school board to become more black and less white: on November 30, the board picked Troy Carr from among six candidates to replace Funke and swore him in December 7.
Troy Carr is pastor at Faith Temple Church in Rapid City. (Hey, which it is: temple or church?) His people call him not just Pastor but Bishop, even though his degrees are in business, not divinity. (But hey, Paul’s only credential when he went off to build his breakaway fringe one-off congregation was his certificate from the Tarsus Institute of Tent Technology, so go ahead, do your thing, FTC.)
The Rapid City Journal reports that “Carr’s appointment was met with applause, and a spirit of calm seemed to permeate the short meeting” on November 30. But Carr is Gordon Howie’s pastor, so I’d suggest that parents, students, and teachers fighting for science, fact, and sensible policymaking won’t feel calm for long.
Consider Carr’s opinion that LGBT kids are doing the devil’s work. In a July 2014 interview with his fellow Faith Temple Churchinarian Howie, Carr complained that he had read that there were more applications for gay pride parades in more cities in the country and wishes there were more applications for RW Schambach/Oral Roberts-style Christian tent revivals. (Tents, Paul… it’s all coming together….)
Carr goes on to say, “…we need to obviously do more, because the devil is not ashamed about promoting what belongs to him.”
Howie immediately follows up with, “…you talk about the gay pride parades—it’s very clear that God commands us to love the sinners… but loving the sinner doesn’t mean condoning the sin.”
“Exactly, exactly,” says Carr. He talks about Jesus choosing not to stone the woman caught in adultery and exhorts his fellow believers, “Let’s come from the approach of loving the sinner and hating the sin.”
“And when we talking about loving the sinner,” says Howie, “it really is loving to give them the truth so that they have an opportunity to choose.”
“Correct,” says Carr amid Howie’s sentence. “Correct.”
Read Rapid City school board member Carr’s words carefully, kids: he responds with dismay to displays of gay pride because he views them as the devil’s shameless promotion of what belongs to him. He agrees with parishioner Gordon Howie’s position that he properly shows his love for homosexuals by telling them they are sinning and that their homosexuality is a choice that they can correct.
Pastor Carr says he plans to run for election to the Area 2 seat in the June special election. Let’s hope a strong candidate rises to foil his election and prevent him from practicing on the school board much more of what he preaches.