Cost to Spread Hate at a Public School? $2,000

***Update***: The principal of the high school has resigned in the wake of this scandal:

Dunkerton Superintendent Jim Stanton informed the Waterloo-Ceder Falls Courier about the resignation. [Principal Mike] Cooper will remain on the job until the end of the school year. Cooper has not been willing to issue any statements.

A Christian group called You Can Run But You Cannot Hide and its musical group Junkyard Prophets recently held an assembly approved by the Dunkerton Community Schools in Iowa.

They said they were going to talk about how to keep kids off of drugs and alcohol — both worthy goals — but this is what actually happened:

“They told my daughter, the girls, that they were going to have mud on their wedding dresses if they weren’t virgins,” said Jennifer Littlefield, a parent upset with the band’s performance.

Her daughter, Alivia Littlefield, 16, is a junior, and called Littlefield after the event.

“I couldn’t even understand her, she was crying so hard,” Littlefield said.

Littlefield also did not appreciate what she described as gay bashing.

“They told these kids that anyone who was gay was going to die at the age of 42,” she said. “It just blows me away that no one stopped this.”

Meanwhile, the boys were “given the group’s theocratic view of the Constitution.”

So how much did that lovely presentation cost the taxpayers in the district?

$2,000, according to the contract (PDF) obtained by the Freedom From Religion Foundation:

(For what it’s worth, other reports cite a $1,500 amount, but none of them link to the contract.)

The band’s biggest deception? They didn’t mention in the contract that their presentation included anything about homosexuality and abortion. They also added that everything in their presentation was “factual,” an obvious lie:

This school assembly is shocking,” said FFRF Co-President Annie Laurie Gaylor. “The anti-gay and religious propaganda was offensive to students, teachers and parents. The school is entitled to a full refund, and You Can Run But You Cannot Hide cannot be allowed into any public school again.”

RH Reality Check has a lot more background about the hate group leader Bradlee Dean.

At a school board meeting last week, many parents spoke out against the group and blamed Superintendent Jim Stanton. He says he was duped by the organization… but how hard is it to at least run a Google check? Stanton apologized and added that he would make changes to the district’s assembly procedure.

That’s a good start on his part. But it’s not enough.

The band deceived the district and they owe the students in those schools $2,000.

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.

  • http://twitter.com/Brimshack northierthanthou.com

    Bradley Dean is a festering bloodfart and a miserable excuse for a human being. When Maddow tore him a second and a third orifice, he whined about being taken out of context. …and of course took himself out of context in order to make the case.  The man loves to bait homosexuals. Loves to do it!

  • Tracker

    I can’t believe that a teacher or administrator didn’t stop this!  I am livid!!

    • Tracker

       Goodness they were at the school in 2003.  There isn’t an emoticon strong enough. 

  • Sue Blue

    I’ve posted about this incident elsewhere, and I’m suspicious of the claim that the school officials didn’t know what this group was about until students and parents complained after the assembly.  Doesn’t the school do any kind of checking on groups that want to make presentations to students?   I smell stealth christians in the school at work here.  Furthermore, how does inviting a christian group to give an assembly during school hours NOT violate church/state separation?  Far from thinking the school district should get their money back, I think they ought to have to pay more – to defend themselves against a lawsuit.  Those kids were mentally assaulted by extreme religious scare tactics, and I’m not so ready to let the school district off the hook.

    • http://fred5.myopenid.com/ fred5

      You are rightly suspicious of the school officials.

      YCRBYCH and Junkyard Prophet performed at the same school in 2003 and received much acclaim.

      And here is a copy of the reference the school administrator gave YCRBYCH and Junkyard Prophet after the performance.

      If the reference is indeed real, and I have no reason to doubt it isn’t, then it is quite convenient that everyone forgot about what YCRBYCH and Junkyard Prophet is all about. (I know it was nine years ago but really, a letter of recommendation?!??!)

      Go figure.

      • Anonymous

        Unmitigated gall! 2003 really? So the principal was definitely in collusion with this nasty group returning to the school.

        Fortunately I expect they won’t ever show up in my son’s school in Maine.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Margaret-Whitestone/100001682409207 Margaret Whitestone

       Me too.  Two minutes online would have given anybody all they needed to know about these hatemongers.   Either the school was woefully negligent or they were complicit. 

      • Annie

        I think they were negligently complicit.

        I can’t even watch the second video.  I am so angry that people who are paid to educate children could ever see the “Junkyard Prophets” as a positive learning experience.

    • Anonymous

      Even if they didn’t know, that just means they are grossly incompetent. It takes just a few minutes with Google to find out the truth about them. They have been involved in several other scandals

    • Kevin_Of_Bangor

      I just e-mail Hemant with this info…

      High School Principal Resigns In Wake Of Bradlee Dean Debacle     

      Mike Cooper oversaw the 7 through 12 grades at the school in Dunkerton, Iowa, and now, he has resigned. The reason for his resignation came from the green lighting of Bradlee Dean’s Christian rock band. Not only did Dean show up and sing, but he added to the entertainment by showing students images of fetuses and spread his anti-woman and anti-gay message.

      http://lezgetreal.com/2012/03/high-school-principal-resigns-in-wake-of-bradlee-dean-debacle/

  • Anonymous

    ahh, So much bullshit on only two videos.

    • Anonymous

      Because 4 video’s would have changed the *context*?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Paul-Reed/692599362 Paul Reed

    Just a quick point. I’m not an American, so I don’t know, but the Declaration of Independence stuff they mentioned (all men are created equal, inalienable right to life etc)… doesn’t that only apply to American citizens? And don’t people only become citizens once they’re born and they get a birth certificate…..?

    • http://twitter.com/kariedgerton Kari Edgerton

      The Declaration of Independence is only a legal document between the U.S. and Britain. It doesn’t actually contain any laws.

    • http://profiles.google.com/statueofmike Michael S

      It’s more of a philosophical justification for rebellion and self-government. I think those sentiments are supposed to apply to everyone, though.

    • JohnnieCanuck

      It’s a very high minded document that at the time would have been quite illegal. Treason usually is.

    • http://twitter.com/KevinSagui Kevin Sagui

      The Declaration of Independence is the fallback for those who can’t get around the fact that the Christian principles this country was supposedly founded on are completely absent from the Constitution, as is any mention of their precious god beyond the Establishment and Free Exercise clauses of the First Amendment.  It’s a propaganda piece that has absolutely no bearing on American law.

  • M Wilson

    Oh that is horrible. Just horrible.

  • JohnnieCanuck

    Another source of this kind of deception is Scientology. They have created covert groups that offer to come into schools (and prisons) to warn about drugs, etc. Somewhere along the way a door opens into the wonderful world of membership in the cult.

  • Lauren Elizabeth

    omg… what is it with xtians and their overcompensation with speakers and other sound equipment… trust they could hear you just fine with maybe one or two!

    • Lurker111

       It must be compensation for sexual inadequacy.

  • HitchsApprentice

    Start throwing books at the asshole’s head…………….

  • Kevin_Of_Bangor

    I didn’t make it very far into either videos because I felt this rage starting to come over me.

    I’m so glad I live in Maine. We still have some backwards people but I doubt this would ever occur at my daughters school.

  • Debbie Robertson

    Who knew that tables kill babies?

  • Debbie Robertson

    What is so maddening is his claim that in the 1970′s homosexuality was thought of as a mental disease…..so, “hysteria” was thought of as a mental disease experienced by women in the 19th century, and racism was legislated to the teeth throughout the 20th century….so is he saying we should go back and listen to those theories instead?

  • nym

    what will it take to make this right?

  • Jett Perrobone

    I can’t believe that f***stain tried to compare the stabbing to death of a baby to abortion.  Goddammit I am so mad right now… >:(

  • http://www.quietatheist.com/ Slugsie

    “You Can Run But You Cannot Hide”, that sounds like a pretty ominous threat to me.

  • Tracker
  • http://www.facebook.com/people/James-Sweet/1280927267 James Sweet

    I do feel an iota of sympathy for the school officials; I may be being naive, but I get the impression they were honestly duped.  They seem almost as unhappy with the how the assembly turned out as the students.  

    Still, only an iota: As you say, how hard is it to Google?  You’d think they’d do the tiniest amount of background check before they spent two grand bringing this group into the school.  Hell, my wife does more research before she buys a frikkin’ toaster oven…

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_ED6TTXZER7BVAJZVM5OB26GPT4 MarkM

      The Principal wasn’t duped this time, because they had performed there in the past.  http://youcanruninternational.com/news/dunkerton-high-schools-referral.html .  He knew exactly what he was getting into.

  • Chris_B

    Where in the hell are the school district’s lawyers?   This joke of a contract was clearly written by the performers with no apparent input from the school’s legal counsel.

    Why isn’t there an indmenity clause for the school.  Something along the lines of ‘the performers will indemnify the district for any legal costs resulting from their actions?’

    Why isn’t there a clause that the performers will abide by the districts speech guidelines attached as addendum ‘A’?

    If these clowns won’t sign a contract with those clauses, then that should ring some alarm bells.  And Mr. Cooper could at least point out that the band broke their contract and the school disctrict will not be held liable for it.

    • http://fred5.myopenid.com/ fred5

      I cannot find any Board of Education minutes on their website indicating that the Board ever considered this contract let alone approved the expenditure of $2000. From that I am forced to conclude that unless the approval was done in closed session, the Board of Education never saw this contract and certainly never approved its contents.

      I would also have to assume that Mr. Cooper probably didn’t have signature authority to sign a contract obligating the school district to pay $2000 to this group which is why he lost his job in the end. 


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