Another Snake?

Seems like every couple of years or so, a sneaky snake comes out from under a rock in Knoxville and slithers it's way to Lenoir City. First it was the Freedom From Religion Foundation that showed up to complain about the patches on the LCPD uniforms because it had the word religion on them. Then it was the loony man and woman from Rationalists of East Tennessee who didn't like the fact that ministers gave the invocation before council meetings and wanted to give their own secular invocation before the meeting.

Now another one has made his way to LC. His name is Jonas Holdeman and he's all shook up cause he can't do what he wants to enlighten the people of Lenoir City.

It started when he showed up at city hall with this big plan to install what he called a "little library" in Rock Springs Park. According to Holdeman, a "little library" consists of a box on a pole where people can leave a book or take a book. Never mind that there's a full service public library just a few blocks away or the fact that every school in the county has a fully staffed and stocked library. The city declined his proposal. So why would this man want to install his "little library"?

Mr. Holdeman is affiliated with Rationalists of East Tennessee, the anti prayer people and Freedom From Religion Foundation, the anti patch people, both of which are anti Christian and deny the existence of God.

Mr. Holdeman has started an email campaign to try to force the city to let him have his "little library". From his facebook page:

Friends & visitors and your friends, I NEED YOUR HELP. It is bad enough that two groups of young people should be discriminated against by a public official for who they are and what they believe, but it is even more onerous when they are denied the opportunity for public service for those reasons.

I want to send that message to Lenoir City Parks & Rec Director, Steve Harrelson through HUNDREDS of emails. Will you help make that happen? Please send emails to both of Mr. Harrelson's e-addresses (and perhaps a copy to Mayor Aikens) asking that he approve placement of the Secular Student Alliance and Diversity Clubs' Little Library on the LC Greenway across from Rock Springs Park. Addresses are:; &; ,;

Please be kind to Mayor Aikens though because he approved of the project knowing the nature (Secular & LGBT) of the clubs.

Holdeman has apparently filed a complaint with Freedom From Religion Foundation. From their web site:

Little Library: the Lenoir City High School Secular Student Alliance is working to erect a Little Library on the Lenoir City greenway. An initially positive response by Lenoir City Director of Parks followed by a denial of the request, after the Director learned who the sponsor was. The Director cited the threat of vandalism. This is likely a pretext rather than a bona fide reason, especially since a “Jesus Calling” book was photographed on the Director’s desk. A complaint from FFRF-ETC to the Director has been forwarded to the Lenoir City Attorney. A petition or an e-mail campaign might influence the Lenoir City government.

While all this is bad enough, it gets worse. Apparently Mr. Holdeman has been introduced into the Lenoir City school system and is working with at least two different student organizations, the Secular Student Alliance and Diversity Club.

I stopped by to ask the Lenoir City director of schools what if any credentials Mr. Holdeman had to be interacting with students. Unfortunately, Ms. Barker was out of town. I have no idea if Holdeman has been vetted or had background checks as required to work with students.

It appears that Mr. Holdeman is closely associated with at least one teacher in the high school. In some of his Facebook posts and photos, he is seen with LCHS English teacher, Elizabeth Corbett. Ms. Cornett is a well known advocate for illegal immigration and is an activist for in state college tuition for illegal immigrants. She apparently also supports non Christian ideas for her students. From her Facebook:

Of course Darwinism is the promotion of evolution over creationism, science over Biblical teachings. Could a Christian group hold a bake sale in the school and pass out Christian paraphernalia?    

What's going on at Lenoir City High School? Are students being educated or indoctrinated in anti Christian propaganda? Why is a 76 year old man from Knoxville participating in activities with students? Are there no schools in Knoxville that need his special expertise?  What process is in place at the Lenoir City school system for allowing private citizens to interact with students? Where's the director of schools on this issue? Where's the school board?   

Mr. Holdeman may be a fine man, a great secularist and atheist, I have no idea. But should he be interacting with students? That's for others to decide.

I'll go back where I started this story. What's the real reason Mr. Holdeman wants to start his "little library" at Rock Springs Park? Is it to promote literacy as he claims or to promote a personal agenda? I understand Mr. Holdeman plans to address city council at tonight's council meeting (4/10/17) on the matter of his "little library".

Below are some photos and links pertaining to this story and the News Herald story on the "little library". You can make up your own mind.   

Mr. Holdeman With Students At LCHS From His Facebook Page

Mr. Holdeman With Students And Ms. Corbett From His Facebook Page

Jonas Holdeman Facebook Page

Youtube Video Of Holdeman, Corbett And Students (Atheist TV: Lenoir City Secular Student Alliance)

LCHS Secular Student Alliance Facebook Page

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