Some creationists have a talent for frequently popping up in your Curmudgeon’s news scans. Consider Terry Kemple, who ran unsuccessfully last year for the District 6 seat on Florida’s Hillsborough County School Board. Hillsborough County, as you know, is the power base of Rapturous Ronda Storms.
Our last post about Terry was Tampa Creationist Back in the Headlines. He had somehow been appointed to his county’s Board of Human Relations (whatever that might be) and certain — shall we say — socially progressive elements in the area were offended at Terry’s total lack of politically correct views. But Terry wasn’t discouraged. We reported:
“I have a mission in life,” Kemple said, “and to allow some naysayers to deter me or sway me from my mission would be an inappropriate decision.”
The saga continues. Today, in the Florida Baptist Witness, we read Pro-family appointment to local board angers homosexual rights group. The Witness isn’t the source of creationist news it used to be in the heady days of Ronda Storms’ crusade for creationism in Florida back in 2008 (see Florida’s Axis of Creationism), but they’re still a valuable source of information.
It’s interesting, but not really surprising, that the Witness has an article about Terry Kemple. As an aggressive creationist he’s their kind of guy. The article is mostly about Kemple’s conflict with the gays, a topic we don’t blog or even think much about, but it’s obviously part of the creationists’ political package in Florida. Therefore we’ll give you some excerpts, with bold font added by us:
In a 5-2 vote, with one of the dissenting votes being from an openly homosexual commissioner, the Hillsborough County Board of Commissioners awarded the vacant board position [on the county’s Human Relations Board] to Terry Kemple, president of the Christian-based Community Issues Council (CIC) and a 25-year member of Bell Shoals Baptist Church in Brandon.
Here’s the website of the CIC, of which Terry is president: Community Issues Council. Check out their collection of Helpful Links, and you’ll recognize a few familiar names. You must be wondering how the county commissioners could even consider appointing a flaming creationist to that thing they call the “Human Relations Board.” It’s not difficult to understand — remember, this is happening in the heart of the Florida Ark. The what? According to the Curmudgeon’s Glossary:
The Florida Ark is that concave stretch of coast — an arc, get it? — starting at the Alabama border and then sweeping down the shore of the Gulf of Mexico all the way to Tampa, and a bit beyond. This blessed region is home to a great number of creationists.
Let’s read on in the Witness:
Kemple said four of the five commissioners that voted in his favor have worked with him in the past and are familiar with his level-headedness in handling issues. “These were not people who were voting in a vacuum. They know, although I do have definite opinions, I am very rational in the way that I approach things,” Kemple said. “I am not a ‘bigot.’ I am just a person who is interested in the best things for the community.”
See? They know what Terry is all about and they like his opinions. We continue:
Kemple told Florida Baptist Witness the county’s human rights ordinance does not address issues of sexual orientation or gender identity. Kemple said the uproar is a moot point, as any complaint regarding these issues would never come before this particular board.
Maybe so. Can we find a creationism angle in this story? Stay with us, here’s more:
When news of the controversy surrounding Kemple’s appointment broke last week, Bill Bunkley, Florida Baptist Convention legislative consultant and host of “Drive Time with Bill Bunkley” on WTBN-AM, invited Kemple to be a guest on his radio show.
Both Kemple and Bunkley said it is ironic that the homosexual activist community, which prides itself on tolerance, appears to demonstrate a lack of tolerance for a Christian who does not share its values.
We’ve previously pointed out the peculiarity of a religious denomination having a legislative consultant — but an examination of Terry’s CIC website indicates that they don’t believe in the separation of church and state. All right, we know you’re growing impatient for the creationism. It doesn’t appear until the final paragraph. Here it is:
No stranger to public controversy after years as a community leader and having failed in a bid in 2010 for a seat on the Hillsborough County School Board in which he ran on a campaign platform of sexual abstinence and opposition to Darwin-based biology, Kemple said he feels called by the Lord to carry the Christian message into the community in a manner that will attract others to Christ.
We can be confident that with Terry on the Human Relations Board, peace and tranquility will reign in Hillsborough County. It is the gift of Landru.
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