Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Disposable Sheep

Douglas Wilson won’t hesitate to dispatch a kirker on a suicide mission, requiring his martyr to strap TNT all around his torso and self-detonate on a street corner. Here is today’s front-page story from the Moscow-Pullman Daily News, describing the antics of a rabid Kirk loyalist on such a mission. And for the record, the three City Councilpersons he protests are three of the most liberal, tolerant people in the city, who have done nothing to harm Christ Church, though they have not given a blind eye to Douglas Wilson’s illegal activities, which includes multiple violations of the Zoning Code to keep New Saint Andrews College afloat.

Protest draws questions, counter arguments
Claim of bigotry brings reaction from candidates, families

By Tara Roberts Daily News staff writer

Dave Glasebrook says the sign he carried downtown Monday isn’t political or connected to any political group. “This is a religious protest,” said Glasebrook, whose sign read “Vote for the Bigot Party, Ament, Lamar and Pall.” Incumbent Moscow City Council members Aaron Ament and Linda Pall are up for re-election Nov. 6. Tom Lamar, who was appointed to the council in June, is also running for a four-year council seat.

Glasebrook’s protest took place Monday morning and evening at the corner of Third and Main streets and drew several question-asking bystanders. In the evening, there was a counter-demonstration by Lamar’s wife, Aly, and daughter, Brya.

Glasebrook, a Christ Church member and professional pilot, said Ament, Lamar and Pall are part of a long-running vendetta against Christ Church. He said the City Council’s decisions on issues such as the boardinghouse ordinance and zoning restrictions for Christ Church-affiliated New St. Andrews College are examples of bigotry.

He also carried a copy of a flier that was passed around town in August in protest of the church’s Trinity Festival. The flier states that Christ Church, NSA and other affiliated organizations are “racist, sexist and homophobic.” He said the flier was distributed by people who are allied with Ament, Lamar and Pall.

Glasebrook said his protest was not on behalf of Christ Church as a whole or any other group. He said he chose to use political terms on the sign because people wouldn’t understand a strictly religious protest. Glasebrook said the people listed on his sign are “going to get at (Christ Church Pastor Douglas) Wilson no matter how they can.” “For two years our City Council has focused on fighting Christ Church. Christ Church isn’t fighting back,” he said.

Glasebrook said he did not include the names of other people who have supported issues he views as anti-Christ Church on the sign because he didn’t have room. He said he does not intend to have any effect on the election, and that only God would be able to affect the results.

Aly Lamar said she spoke with Glasebrook on Monday evening before leaving in tears. She returned later with signs in support of Tom Lamar to “offer the other side.” “It’s one thing to be pro-candidates. It’s another thing to be against and name calling. . . . It’s not good politics,” she said. “My feelings are hurt. I don’t think it’s a good way to go about getting his message across.” Aly Lamar said she was not concerned with how Glasebrook’s sign would affect the election. “If anything it will support those candidates (on the sign),” she said.

Brya Lamar, a senior at Moscow High School, later joined the counter-protest. Aly Lamar also added signs in support of Ament. Brya Lamar said she does not believe her father deserved the accusations on the sign. “I don’t think he’s prejudiced about any of that,” she said.

Ament stopped by the demonstrations briefly on his way to another appointment. “(Glasebrook) has the right to express his opinion,” Ament said. “He’s absolutely incorrect. I think his definition of a bigot is anyone who doesn’t agree with him is pretty wrong, but he’s entitled to that opinion.”

Linda Pall said she drove by the protest and felt “profoundly disappointed.” “I would have to say that the last person to be called a bigot in this town should be me,” Pall said. “I was the author of Moscow’s most recent diversity resolution. I was the original mover and shaker to create a Human Rights Commission. I’ve been on the Latah County Human Rights Task Force since we’ve had one.” When New St. Andrew’s and Bucer’s coffee shop were “under attack” for their connection to Christ Church, she supported them against boycotts, Pall said.

Evan Holmes, who is running for a two-year City Council seat, said Pall was one of the least bigoted people in the history of Moscow. He does not believe the protests will effect the elections. “We’re a pretty tolerant town,” Holmes said. “We’re even tolerant of protestors.”

Holmes’ opponent for the two-year seat, Walter Steed, and the other four-year candidates, Dan Carscallen and Wayne Krauss, said they recognize Glasebrook’s right to protest but are not affiliated with his efforts. “I don’t condone it, but I guess I don’t condemn it either,” Carscallen said. He said those who don’t agree with Glasebrook should leave his protest alone and it likely will go away.

“We’ve been civil amongst ourselves through all of this,” Steed said. “I’d like to continue that way.”

Krauss said he thinks the protest “will add to the divisive climate that we now have.” “All of the candidates for City Council have run an honorable race, and I hope the voters will see this is a one-man protest,” he said.

Tara Roberts can be reached at (208) 882-5561, ext. 234, or by e-mail at troberts@dnews.com.