Dunkerton High School in Iowa thought it was providing students with a positive message about provocative lyrics in music, but the You Can Run But You Cannot Hide Ministry used its invitation yesterday to promote anti-gay and anti-choice messages with the students. Superintendent Jim Stanton then called a second assembly to apologize to the students, admitting he was wrong to bring the group to the district. He owned his mistake in an interview with KWWL:
STANTON: Where did that come from? That’s not what we were anticipating, and when we called the other schools where they had been… why wasn’t that mentioned? [...] To not take that responsibility, what is that teaching our children? We made a decision. It was a poor decision. And you know what? We’re going to suffer the consequences of that decision. We’re going to continue to do what we can to make it right.
Had the district researched the ministry, it would have quickly found the vile anti-gay rhetoric of its founder, Bradlee Dean. Dean has supported the criminalization, incarceration, and execution of gays through his radio show, which makes it no surprise that the Southern Poverty Law Center has designated his ministry a “hate group.” He also has close ties to Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) and has defended the efforts of the Parents Action League — also now a designated “hate group” — to maintain an anti-LGBT atmosphere in Minnesota’s Anoka-Hennepin School District.
Watch KWWL’s report of the assembly gone awry, featuring reactions from students and parents.