School Board District 1 race – Bergosh, Leonard, Waters

August 9, 2006

lensTodd Leonard’s supporters have begun injecting their candidate into every education post. Others  take the bait and the debate becomes a pro/con Leonard exchange. I’ll take some responsibility because I used Leonard’s campaign as way to debate Intelligent Design.
But it’s time we move on. Therefore, I’m setting up this post on the Escambia County School Board District 1 race – Jeff Bergosh, Todd Leonard, Doug Waters and their supporters can go at it.
Any new “Vote Todd Leonard” comments to other postings will be deleted.

Advertisements

159 Responses to “School Board District 1 race – Bergosh, Leonard, Waters”

  1. A Parent Says:

    Thanks Rick, it’s hard to let them post their propoganda without responding to correct the inaccuracies.

  2. WanderingHoo Says:

    Can we call this the “Tom Tom Clubhouse”?

    Finally, a place for a talking head who stopped making sense a long time ago to hang out.

  3. Anonymous Says:

    Rick,

    you said:

    “Todd Leonard’s supporters have begun injecting their candidate into every education post.”

    Really. I’ve followed it very closely. As best as I can tell, their comments were made in defense of their candidate, whom you and others regularly attack. It would have been a one sided slug fest otherwise.

    How disingenuous of you my friend. You brought out the cannons. They responded. You and others poked fun at him and his platform, he and his supporters responded.

    The very first commenter on your “New Academies” post attacked Mr. Leonard. Did you really expect his supporters to sit back and take it? Is that what you are suggesting?

    Sorry buddy. You’re just plain wrong on this one.

    Makes me want to vote for Todd Leonard just to spite you.

  4. Rick Outzen Says:

    I guess I’ll endure a few attacks from the TL gang. I’m not upset that you and others defended TL. It’s just time for you and his opponents to move the debate on his candidacy elsewhere on this blog.

    It is my blog. I set the rules. You can follow them or post to another. Don’t try WCOA for a few days.

  5. Tom Says:

    Parent, in the “New Academies” thread you took issue with my story concerning Pre-Ap in Middle school. I promised to check with the individual for confirmation/clarification and in fact did that this afternoon. I promised to recant or modify my earlier comments if necessary. Given the contents of that letter I fully understand how confused you must have been to read my comments. I was quite surprised and encouraged by the letter from which you quoted.

    Here is a copy of my response which was posted over on the previous thread:

    Dear Parent,

    I just spoke with the aforementioned individual who left Escambia County to teach in OKL. This particular individual was quite familiar with the letter your daughter received. Evidently, your daughter attends Workman, because I am told that it is the only middle school that is teaching Pre AP.

    So, it appears that I’ll not be recanting after all. For clarification purposes, there is a diffence between AP Strategies and AP Courses. The letter you received was supposed to have been a district wide letter. I am told that the other Principals in Escambia County did not want to tackle this additional responsibility (principal accountability rings a distinct bell) and therefore did not implement Pre AP.

    Additionally, this particular Nationally Certified teacher, sought employment in at least one of our local high schools as an AP Teacher, to no avail.

    Hence, the individual is now working in OKL.

    Interesting.

    Tom

    Hope you have a good night. Feel free to encourage your District One friends to check out Mr. Leonard’s platform at:

    http://votetoddleonard.com/

    Thanks for the comments. And thanks for taking an active roll in your childs life.

    God bless,

    Tom

  6. Anonymous Says:

    Mr. Bergosh’s website may be viewed at http://www.jeffbergosh.com

  7. Terry Says:

    Tom, please, please give it a rest. You seem so passive aggressive and angry. So many of us parents and teachers are so very weary of your tearing down our district. Please sir, move to Okaloosa County. You don’t listen, you don’t say anything good about our schools and you have yet to provide little more than hearsay. And, if I read any kmore about ID I am going to scream. I am a Christian and happen to believe in creationism. Why do you call it intellegent design? It is like you are trying to be politically correct with God himself. Why are you so wrapped so tight with this issue? I teach creationism in my home. They know that God created the heavens and the earth. They know it because I told them so. I don’t need some science teacher from here or Okaloosa county telling about it. Please Sir, you and Todd need to stay out of my child’s spiritual life. As far as pre-AP is concerned, maybe the principals have a good reason for not wanting it in their school. You assume so very much. Have you or Todd ever sat down and talked to Superintendent Paul. He could have answered some of the questions or concerns you might have. Perhaps you wouldn’t have put up half the goofy stuff on Todd’s opening page. And sir, in all do respect, half of it is nonsence. I am willing to bet however that you and or Todd have had a sit down with Superintendent Gaetz. Sure you can find a few angry teachers or administrators that agree with you. This breakthrough idea you have about giving vouchers to students that nee extra help. We started doing that in Escambia County last year. Education Station, Sylvan Learning, Link Systems and a few others are dong it right now and it doesn’t cost the students a penny. But yet you and Todd will keep telling people how wondeful Don Gaetz is doing with his vouchers and we should do the same. Todd, stop saying it, it only makes you look foolish. We are providing supplemental services to students using taxpayer funds just like taxpayer funds are doing it in Okaloosa. And by the way, are you willing to encourage Don Gaetz to come and learn from our Superintedent how to provide a better quality education to high cognitive students. I think our teachers could teach theirs a thing or two about that. I know, I know your post will say that I am being overly defensive and I am angry. Well, you would be right, I am overly defensive and I am angry. Teachers are encouraging parents in West Pensacola to read this blog. And,I assure you, next week during open house there will be many teachers that will make sure the parents read this blog and read Todd’s website. You and Todd can spin it anyway you want. But, we are tired of you tearing up the performance of our children. We are tired of you making it appear that our schools are unsafe, we are tired of you telling us how our children arn’t being taught morals and ethical behavior. You sir are wrong. But, then how would you or Todd know any different,you don’t even allow your children to go to public school.

  8. Richard Says:

    Terry, good job. I couldn’t have said it better myself. We will pass the word to parents about the blog. I must caution you however. Please don’t use school district materials to get the word out. It is against school board policy. I don’t know much about Jeff Bergosh. But, he appears to be a humble man and seems to understand the responsibilities of a board member. After reading Tom’s comments and Mr. Leonard’s site I really don’t think he does. Anyway, enough of that. The first week of school went very well. It’s going to be a great year. ps. It looks like Santa Rosa’s student count is down and Escambia’s is slightly up from projections. Have a restful weekend everyone.

  9. A Parent Says:

    Ditto, Terry.

    I am already hearing that there is a huge backlash developing against Todd in the ranks of the teachers and PTA moms on the west side of town. They are tired of him slamming them for all of their hard work and volunteer time, as well as the demeaning manner in which he talks about our kids.

    Based on what I have seen and heard about Todd, he doesn’t think our kids are smart enough or moral enough for his kids to associate with.

    I know that my friends and I are spreading the word that this guy is the last person we need making decisions about our children. We all need to work hard to continue to let everyone know the truth about what this guy stands for. I for one will be at a few of the open house and will be talking to folks.

    Oh, and by the way, I was looking at the latest campaign finance reports and saw where Jim Paul had donated to Jeff Bergosh, so I guess we know who Mr. Paul is supporting in this race.

  10. Anonymous Says:

    Terry, Tom sends his children to public schools and I have not seen him write anything degrading Escambia’s kids or teachers nor have I heard, read, or seen anything like that from Todd Leonard.

  11. A Parent Says:

    A direct quote from Todd:
    “Escambia has been plateaued at best and declining at worst. By just about any benchmark, whether it be test scores, student interest, teacher motivation, or disciplined and safe schools, we simply are not measuring up and are failing”

    Do you consider this a potive comment?

    As a parent of students in the public school system and the spouse of a veteran teacher, I sure don’t and neither do the large majority of parenst and teachers I talk to.

    Todd has also stated on his web-site that our schools are broken and stuck in a mire. Todd has stated our teachers do not provide a moral education for our kids.

    Is that what you consider encouaraging?

    I think not.

    It is clear that Todd Leonard has no faith in our kids, teachers, or hard working volunteers.

    He is the last person we need to serve on our children’s school board.

  12. Anonymous Says:

    Terry said, “Please Sir, you and Todd need to stay out of my child’s spiritual life.”

    Have you delivered this same message to your teachers and current school board members? Do you think that your kids’ teachers are staying out of their spiritual lives? Teaching your children that no one created the universe is not spiritually neutral.

  13. A Parent Says:

    Annonymous:

    How can you say he has not said anything degarding? The following is a quote direct from Todd’s we site:

    “…Escambia has been plateaued at best and declining at worst. By just about any benchmark, whether it be test scores, student interest, teacher motivation, or disciplined and safe schools, we simply are not measuring up and are failing…”

    Do you consider those positive comments? I think not!

    “We must seek wholesale reform of our schools rather than simply tweaking around the margins. The status quo must go…”

    Is that supposed to be encouraging words for our hard wroking adminsitartors, teachers, parents and volunteers who have brought about significant change at some of our inner-city schools such as Semmes and Yniestra.

    Todd goes on to suggest that the kids attending public achool, including mine, are not moral enough for his kids to associate with.

    It is abundently clear Todd Leonard has no faith in our schools, its teachers or the students. This is not the type od person we need as a board member making decisions that will affect everyone else’s kids, but not his own.

  14. Tom Says:

    Terry, Richard, “A Parent” and other of those in Jeff’s camp. Good luck with parent night and the grass roots “anti-Todd” campaign.

    For those parents who have been directed here because of the “Anti-Todd” spin machine, I invite you to visit Mr. Leonard’s website at http://votetoddleonard.com/. Contrary to what you’ve read and heard, you will not find an angry man bent on degrading you, your children and the hardworking teachers in Escambia County. Rather, you’ll find some very good ideas and a very reasonable and likable individual who thinks our best days are still ahead.

    Obviously, as is the case in our present situation, when someone new comes along with fresh ideas and straightforward talk, he is perceived as a threat by the establishment. This is politics 101. It is expected.

    Having spoken to Mr. Leonard on this Lord’s Day, I can tell you that he remains unmoved by the assaults of some well intentioned zealots from the other camp and looks forward to defending and defining his issues to any serious inquirer. He also expressed that he wishes Mr. Bergosh the best of luck in the upcoming race.

    A quick note, contrary to an earlier post, I regret to inform our readers that we are not doing anything like the $2000 turorial voucher program enacted in OKL. A quick call to these centers will confirm my statement.

    Well, good night and God bless. Have a great day in school tomorrow.

    For the no-spin straightforward views from the “ever so dangerous” Mr. Leonard, please visit http://votetoddleonard.com/.

    We need a man with fresh ideas. Todd Leonard is that man.

    Tom

  15. Tom Says:

    Good morning all,

    As you know, my good friend Todd Leonard is running for Escambia County School Board District 1. He is a very thoughtful and intelligent Christian man who has fresh ideas for Escambia County Schools. Todd was quarterback at PHS when PHS beat Emmit Smith- led Escambia 17-10. That game is still remembered by many.

    Mr. Leonard wants to make a positve impact on our children’s eduction/our community, and as a result he has become a lightning rod for those who fear that he’ll be elected. Some are simply the adversaries of reform, many are well-meaning individuals who are employing rather negative campaign tactics, while others simply fear anyone who espouses traditional Christian values.

    Take a look at this sampling of the Anti-Todd Leonard Blogs that were recently posted by Independent News reporter Rick Outzen (whose blog this is):

    Here are the links to each of the particular Anti Todd Leonard Blogs.

    https://routzen.wordpress.com/2006/07/27/oh-my-god-or-is-it-todds-god/

    https://routzen.wordpress.com/2006/07/28/todd-leonard-is-not-going-to-like-this/

    https://routzen.wordpress.com/2006/08/02/sorry-todd-you-are-a-monkeys-uncle/

    https://routzen.wordpress.com/2006/08/07/todd-says-intelligent-design-is-not-abo ut-religion/

    https://routzen.wordpress.com/2006/08/09/jim-paul-and-chamber-add-two-new-academ ies/

    Todd and his supporters are committed to truth and are confident that objective, absolute truth and fresh ideas are what is needed in our day. His message has been well received by many parents, teachers and volunteers.

    Be sure to drop by http://www.votetoddleonard.com and let Todd know that you are praying for him, Trina (who is about 8 months pregnant!) and their family. Todd welcomes your support.

    Thanks,

    Tom

  16. Anonymous Says:

    Tom,

    Look at the quote from Todd’s own website. (Post 13 on this string) That is a slam on the teachers and the district. Address this. Better yet, have Todd retract it. This is not an anti-Todd movement–but when you pull a tiger by the tail, expect that there might be a consequence. I’ll say this, in his video he comes across positive and supportive of the district, but in his “letter to the voter” he says we are failing. which message are we to believe, tom? looks like a “flip flop” (actually, it looks like politics 101, saying one thing, and then mixing the message by saying the opposite….which message do we believe, tom?)

  17. Tom Says:

    Anonymous,

    We appreciate you taking the time to view Mr. Leonard’s excellent video at http://votetoddleonard.com/.

    Good luck to all and God bless,

    Tom

  18. anonimous Says:

    I’ve been told by sources close to Jeff bergosh that he did not want to run for school board but was pushed into it by friends of his brother. Maybe one reason is because he was the defendant in a auto negligence civil case. For those of you that want more info the case number is:1989 CA 006074. Also his many businesses in California amounted to one small restaurant/tavern according to MANTA, a premium source for business information. Now, is this a type of guy you want on the school board? Anybody but Bergosh!!!

  19. Anonymous, Says:

    Personally, I think Jeff living in San Diego, CA, most of his adult life is way too LIBERAL for a conservative county like Escambia. WE don’t need his liberal ideas in our school system.

  20. Hannah Says:

    Clearly this blog is devoid of FACTS: 2005-2006 Escambia did not pass an ‘adequate yearly process’… it hasn’t for the past FOUR YEARS! http://schoolgrades.fldoe.org/default.asp

    To all you who have jobs on this blog — if you did not pass your yearly evaluation for 4 years straight, would your boss not make ‘adjustments?’

    I’ve read everyone’s site, Jeff — little heavy on just having his kids in school not so great on saying WHO he is (this California info has me wondering); Todd, heavy on the content, probably over most people’s head — not surprising people accept what others tell them, so they actually take away from his site that he is demeaning teachers and volunteers? Doug has a nice page for with no information other than a picture.

    So take away from this blog whatever you wish — take away that Jeff is a puppet, Todd a fanatic or Doug…a …who? But whatever you take, realize the schools are in trouble! I am not blaming teachers, I have some of the best friends in the world doing it — I see their daily hassles…the problem isn’t the classrooms, it’s the administration.

    Facts don’t Lie.

  21. A Parent Says:

    Annonymous:

    Come on, we can do better than that. He didn’t want to run because he was a defendant in an auto negligence case? If you ever rear-ended anyone you probaly were a defendant in such a case, or had the potential to be. Unless you have some specifics that he did something horrendus, this is nothing.

    Liberal because he lived and went to school in San Diego. Once again we need more effort from you. First, San Diego is a huge NAVY town, as is Pensacola, and it is not known for being liberal. Second, he is a Navy brat so he moved around quite a bit with his family. And what I know of Jeff and his family, who attend and are active in East Brent Baptist Church, they are pretty much as conservative as his brother, Gary.

    Also, what LIBERAL ideas are you talking about, please explain.

    Good try guys. Let’s see if you do better next round.

    Hannah:

    You are correct about Escambia and AYP . But few districts made AYP, incuding the highly touted Santa Rosa and Okaloosa. This school system is making adjustments and progress, call the district and ask, I’m sure they will be glad to provide you with details.

  22. Tom Says:

    Personal attacks like these are unChristian, unprofessional and unwelcome. Frankly, I deplore them and call on the poster to cease and desist.

    I assure you that Mr. Leonard is neither pleased nor well served by comments #19 and #20. Stick to the issues guys. This is a school board race, not the Presidency.

    Tom

  23. Tom Says:

    While I respect “A Parent’s” defense of Mr. Bergosh, he does nothing to help his case.

    “A Parent” said, “what LIBERAL ideas…?”

    “A Parent” you are not helping your man. Be they liberal or otherwise, you’ve put forth NO ideas on his behalf.

    Jeff seems like a very nice man, and as far as I know he is a good father, a good husband and a good brother. We wish him and his family well.

    Conversely, Todd Leonard offers fresh ideas and an agressive reform agenda. Visit Todd’s website at http://votetoddleonard.com to learn more.

    Good night all and God bless.

    Tom

  24. Lifelong Friend Says:

    Anonymous,

    It is apparent that you know nothing about Jeff Bergosh. First of all, let me say I am an ardent supporter of Jeff Bergosh—I have known him for more than 20 years. He is one of the hardest working, most dedicated men I have ever known. Your information about his business background is flat wrong. He has owned and operated 7 different small business ventures in his lifetime (just as he states in his campaign literature)—three of which he financed with SBA 7A loans. ( By the way, they don’t just hand those out—they are very difficult to obtain) I know at one point he had a robust multi-unit retail chain that employed 25 people, doing close to a million dollars yearly is sales. So, “Manta” or whatever you cite as your source is wrong. He has a work ethic that is unbelievable—he never misses work—ever. I don’t know anyone who is more creative and able than he is, when it comes to financing ventures or putting together business ideas. (He’s going to be a great school board member once he is elected!)
    I asked Jeff about the civil case you cited, and he accurately pointed out that the case was dismissed. He said he was “ a victim twice” kind of like the billboards you see around town that say “don’t be a victim twice” Jeff was a victim twice. He was hit by a drunk driver on Navy Blvd in 1984, and his car was totaled. (his head smashed through the windshield!) After the other driver went to the hospital, she went directly to jail. Her insurance paid Jeff’s expenses. In 1989, she attempted to sue Jeff over the same accident, but the case was dismissed.
    Your attack on Jeff reveals your desperation, tom 1, tom 2, todd, doug, or whoever you are. If you are going to try to criticize him, at least get your facts straight. About being liberal—what a joke!! Let me tell you something about Jeff, he is about as conservative as they come, especially with respect to fiscal matters. I know he is an avid listener of the Michael Savage radio show, has contributed to the Crist campaign, (look it up on the campaign finance report)and has met Charlie twice before getting into the non-partisan school board race.( Jeff showed me a picture of he and Charlie taken at a function at McGuires back in March.) He also was a huge supporter of the Boy Scouts in their last campaign fundraising drive. (Was Todd involved in that?) He is registered as a Republican, ( I confirmed this at the division of elections), and all of his ideas on his website http://www.jeffbergosh.com are very conservative. I live in Gulf Breeze, so I can’t vote for him. But I’m pulling for him because he’s the type of man you need on the School Board. One last thing—I don’t know if he was serious, but Jeff told me he intended to knock personally on every door in his district! ….. Knowing Jeff, I wouldn’t be surprised if he did!!(said he’d already knocked on over 1,500 doors!) He also said he had something “big” planned for the weekend… Look out todd, I think you are in a battle now. One final thing, I know Jeff has tremendous respect for todd, and if todd’s own kids were enrolled in public schools, Jeff would have supported todd’s campaign and written a check to him and volunteered to help. Jeff has nothing personal against todd or doug, he just feels strongly that if you want to be in a position to make decisions about other people’s children, but your own children are in a private school, how can you have any credibility? Jeff is proud to proclaim that, if elected, when he makes a decision that affects your children, it also affects his children. He also said this is really resonating with the folks he is meeting going door to door….
    Lifelong Friend

  25. A Parent Says:

    As with Todd, Jeff does have a platform which can be found at his web site, http://jeffbergosh.com .

    Thanks for the comments re: posts 19 and 20.

  26. Paranoid Parent Says:

    Enough of the Todd Leonard campaigning, already! We get it, Tom. Your boy is the greatest thing since sliced Wonder Bread. Unfortunately, the answer to every single post on this BLOG cannot be “Todd Leonard is the man! If can’t do it, no one can!”

    I am especially suspicious, ahh paranoid if you will, of anyone who pulls this kind of heavy handed, single minded, almost crazed campaigning tactics over a local school board race.

    Shadows of Vanette Webb. The greater ambitions of Mr. Leonard are painfully transparent.

    Lay off the campaigning and try to respond to the issues with originality.

  27. Joe Says:

    Tom: I agree with you about these blogs being unChristian, unprofessional and unwelcome. It’s not just #19 and #20 tho, but most of them. What these bloggers do not realize is the discomfort it causes the candidates’ families – wives, children, parents, etc. If these bloggers want to see their candidate elected, then they should talk up his good points without tearing down the other candidates.

  28. Annonymous Says:

    A parent:
    Jeff’s own website says he’s ‘a product of the Escambia County school system and that he graduated from San Diego State.’ Also, he lived in San Diego from about 1990 to 2004. So, how does he know what’s best for Escambia County schools when he’s been in California for most of his adult life?

    Lifelong friend:
    I wouldn’t brag about having operated seven different businesses in my lifetime. It means that six of them failed.

  29. Lifelong Friend Says:

    Anonymous, again you know not what you speak of. Jeff was able to sell his businesses for substantial profits before he moved his family back to Pensacola. I don’t believe Jeff ever had a business that failed. That is why he’ll make a great school board member for the folks over there in district one. He is sharp, and he has a track record of success.

    Lifelong Friend

  30. Annonymous Says:

    Lifelong Friend:

    Some of what you say don’t make much sense. Now, these are your words: ‘Jeff was able to sell his businesses for substantial profits before he moved his family back to Pensacola’ and ‘three of which he financed with SBA 7A loans.’ Now, I’ll ask you why did he need three SBA loans? Aren’t they for SMALL businesses? And if he made so much money on the sale of his businesses, why is he still working for a private contractor at NAS instead of owning / running some major company here in Pensacola? If you want the info on his California business, I suggest you go to:

    http://www.manta.com/coms2/dnbcompany_gnh6s4

  31. Tom Says:

    Lifelong Friend, neither Todd, nor Tom 1 (me) nor Tom 2 (me) nor anyone we know had anything to do with the attacks on Jeff. Refer to post #23 above.

    I’m glad to hear that Jeff is working hard. That’s great. We wish him the best.

    Joe, you said: “What these bloggers do not realize is the discomfort it causes the candidates’ families – wives, children, parents, etc. If these bloggers want to see their candidate elected, then they should talk up his good points without tearing down the other candidates.”

    Couldn’t agree more. Thanks.

    Paranoid Parent… Uhhh. Don’t quite understand the “enough of the campaigning already” comment. That’s what this blog was set up for in the first place. Nor do I understand your “respond to the issues with originality” comment. That is what we have been doing all along. I wonder if you’ll be so kind as to retract your vitriolic attacks on Mr. Leonard and call on others to do the same.

    We welcome your positive comments as you campaign for Jeff. Good luck!

    Tom

  32. An Observer Says:

    HUh??? What is your point Annonymous??

    Maybe he opened up his multiple businesses during the same time period. Also, many businesses take out numerous loans during the life of its operations.

    As for him moving back to town and working for a private contarctor, instead of running his own business, actually, he and his wife do run a local real estate development business.

    But earlier, you had negative comments about him moving away for Pensacola, and now that he is back that’s bad too.

    Huh???

  33. Richard Says:

    Tom, I am a bit disappointed in the mud slinging. We are in the business of children. Why must it be that way? Let’s face it, a board memeber has very little authority as an individual. He or she can act only when there is a quorum at a board meeting. His influence is limited to his ability to convince the other board members to vote for or against the agendized reccomendations of the Superintendent. In order for a sitting board member to do more than just act as a conduit for citizen complaints he must secure the confidence of the Superintendent and his fellow board members. It would seem that Mr. Leonard’s supporters, with or without Mr. Leonard’s approval are turning this campaign into a dirtty one. I pray he is somehow able to stop it. I also hope Mr. Bergosh’s supporters don not reciprocate.

  34. Tom Says:

    Richard,

    I agree that the mud slinging needs to stop. I point you back to comment number 23 where I voiced our disapproval of such mud slinging. Comment #15 will remind you that Mr. Leonard has borne more than his fair share of attacks. Certainly these things are counter productive to healthy debate on the issues.

    You said:

    “…[a board member’s] influence is limited to his ability to convince the other board members to vote for or against the agendized reccomendations of the Superintendent. In order for a sitting board member to do more than just act as a conduit for citizen complaints he must secure the confidence of the Superintendent and his fellow board members.”

    Mr. Leonard fully intends not merely to propose issues, but to see his agenda advanced for the good of our schools. He’ll work hard to gain the support of each member as well as Mr. Paul. He hopes his issues will be Mr. Paul’s issues and the Board’s issues and not merely Todd Leonard’s issues.

    I would encourage new readers to visit http://votetoddleonard.com/ to find out the specifics of his agenda.

    Thanks Richard,

    Tom

  35. Rusty Says:

    I have known Todd Leonard for several years now. He has inspired me to grow in my faith, in my role as a husband and a father, and to Glorify God with all of my life. In no uncertain terms, Todd has become to me a mentor. He has become a mentor and has encouraged me in all of these areas because when I called, he stopped whatever he was doing and talked with me. When I had an issue, he had time. When I did not understand, he was ready to take the time to explain. When I thought myself a failure, he was there to encourage. You see, Todd Leonard did not do these things because I could give him something or I had something that he wanted, but rather he did these things because that is the man that he is. One who cares about others and is prepared to invest his life in theirs for their good, not for his gain. However, this is not done at the expensive of his own family. No, Todd Leonard is a man who cares immensely for his family. Listen, I do not know the other candidates for this office (and nothing I say about Todd is somehow speaking ill of them), but I do know Todd Leonard and I know his heart and it is not to degrade the children or the teachers of Escambia County, but his hearts desire is to lift them up so that they can go farther and reach higher. I am sure the people on this blog have already chosen their man as evident in their posts, but let me assure you of one thing if you are looking for a man who will invest his life in all of the children, teachers, and administrators in Escambia County, Todd Leonard is that man. And how do I know this, because he has invested in me.

  36. MomOfThree Says:

    That is all well and good, Rusty. I applaud you and Tood Leonard for helping you. But as a school board candidate, Mr. Leonard wants to bring his christian beliefs into the public school system. That is where I have a problem with him. I pay taxes and my beliefs are not christian nor are my three children’s beliefs. I would never try to bring our beliefs into the school system. All I ask is that you do the same and respect my children’s beliefs by not trying to bring christian beliefs into the school curriculum. Keeping religion and government seperate is the best strength of this country. Our founders knew it. It protects government from religion as well as religions from government.

  37. Rusty Says:

    MomOfThree, thanks for the applause, but I am not sure where Mr. Leonard is attempting to bring Christianity into public schools? And, yes our founders did understand government and religion and that is why they based their right to Independence on rights given by a Creator and not a government. From a personal note, I would like to also know what it is about Christianity that scares you so much? I mean I think that something like evolution which teaches us about the survival of the fittest (you know, I must survive no matter what happens to you and if you are at the bottom you will be killed) and ultimately leads to a pointless life as one day it will all just end, is much more troubling than the grace and mercy of the Christian religion. I mean think about those poor Katrina victims, evolution says the water rose, they could not get out, big deal, they are obviously at the bottom of the food chain and those that could get out will survive and will move up the chain, you know all part of the process. This has also gotten people to think that they could by getting rid of people on the bottom, speed up this process. Anyways those are some of the things that trouble me and they are being taught in school, but heck I don’t know, what do you think?

  38. Joe Says:

    I don’t know how all this mud-slinging got started. But hopefully these people have gotten out it of their system by now.

    I don’t know Jeff personally, so I can’t comment about him. But I do know Todd and his family very well. You could not meet a nicer, more hard-working and honest family if you tried. Todd is a well-educated man, with great leadership capabilities. You don’t get an appointment to West Point and become a Lieutenant and platoon leader in the Army without those qualities.

    Todd has a lot of fresh ideas he would like to present to the school board. Just read his web site. Most people will agree with most of his proposals and some people will disagree with some of them. As it was once said “You can please most of the people some of the time, some of the people most of the time, but you can’t plaese all of the people all of the time.” So it’s up to the voters not to listen to bloggers with axes to grind and choose the candidate who is more in line with their beliefs/agenda.

  39. Joe Says:

    Rusty, thanks to your comments, I’m beginning to wonder if evolution was ever taught in schools to begin with.

    Biological evolution is most basically defined as genetic changes over time that result in new species. When you talk about “survival of the fittest,” you are referring to the concept of natural selection, which describes how organisms with favorable traits are more likely to survive and reproduce. (The traits don’t even have to be that favorable in the normal sense. As it turns out, carriers of sickle-cell anemia tend to be more resistant to malaria, which is why we find sickle-cell commonly in Africa, India, and other places where malaria is spread. So while African-Americans are more likely than other Americans to have sickle-cell, it serves no beneficial purpose in malaria-free America, so the incidence of sickle-cell grows smaller every generation.)

    Natural selection doesn’t say how things SHOULD be, just how they generally are. It is most certainly NOT a philosophy that “teaches us… I must survive no matter what happens to you and if you are at the bottom you will be killed,” nor does it make any statements concerning God or the afterlife. (And I’m not even sure what you’re talking about when you mention “getting rid of people on the bottom [to] speed up this process.” Eugenics? Nazis? That’s pretty creepy, dude.)

    But back to your question: one of Mr. Leonard’s campaign points is to advocate the incorporation of Intelligent Design (ID) into our public school classrooms and textbooks. ID fails to account for any of the phenomena explained by evolution and exists solely as a means to introduce creationism into public schools. Ergo, as MomOfThree says, Todd Leonard wants to bring his religious beliefs into public schools.

  40. A Parent Says:

    Rusty:

    Let me make sure I understand you. You are saying our schools are teaching our kids it is okay to let certain individuals drown in various natural disasters?

    I belive you need to go back and re-visit your biology classes, as I never recall learning any such thin when I attended school.

    There seems to be a disconcerting factor running just below the surface with all of the serious Todd supporters. And I think your implied, if not outright, assertion is evidence of that.

    Also, I did not get that Mom of Three was afraid of Christianity, only that she did not want it taught as THE religion to her kids, who apparently have a different belief system than you and I. Yes, I am a Christian.

    It is very clear that a main focus of Todd’s campaign is to impose his beliefs on those of our kids, which is not the job of our schools or government.

  41. Rusty Says:

    Yeah, you are right about the not being scared thing, I am not sure why I used that term, sorry. I should have said what bothers you. But that question had nothing to do with Todd Leonard it was just a personal interest. But, I do not think I need to revisit biology class as I began to understand that very thing in biology class. You see that is the logical conclusion of evolution, that is what it teaches, survival of the fittest, sorry if you don’t like that. Further more, it will teach children that ultimately they are the final authority of right and wrong because evolution sets that up. We are from nothing and thus accountable to nothing. This is very evident all over the school campus as children are taught, just as you seem to believe, that what is right for one is right for them and what is right you is right for you. This sounds all well and good on a school campus in theory, but try living like that for one day, each doing what is right for him. Maybe your 7th grade biology teacher did not teach you that, but that is it’s logical conclusion.

    Joe, I am sorry but I attend a liberal university and evolution is not just about cells in a classroom. No, it has touched all of academia and is in a sense a basis for much of our philosophy today, the philosophy that says matter is all there is, so do whatever.

    I think we miss this in America because we do have a Judeo-Christian heritage that teaches us to care about the poor and hurting and we feel bad for victims, but evolution provides no such basis for those sort of feelings.

    Sorry I have gone on this far and sorry I have taken up time with this argument. I hope the best for Todd Leonard and for the other canidates as I am sure they are all worthy men and will serve this county well.

  42. Terry Says:

    Will somebody help me out here? What are these fresh ideas Tom keeps atlking about? Everything Todd brings up as fresh ideas are either in place or have been done already.

  43. blah Says:

    It is really getting hard for me to navigate through these discussion to determine what is ACTUAL campaign related issues and what is people’s own prejudices towards or against religion. I find it rewarding that people are actually getting involved, but I wish the comments were more geared towarded the candidates and not based off an assumption of those said candidates belief systemn.

    I do wish to commend the Jim Paul crowd for turning this debate to a person’s perceived intentions (ie…comparing Todd to Webb)rather then on the intellectual debate of the substance of his intentions, but that is classic demagoguery politics 101. Of course, it is hard to promote fear and panic without a willing opponent, so some of the blame goes to Todd’s defenders, whose eagerness to defend an attack from a narrow minded group has moved us FAR FROM the issues.

    One question to those in the JP/JB crowd-

    Jeff talks alot about community involvement and for that he should be praised. All my life I have heard that one of the highest duties that one can do for his community is to vote. I have voted pretty much most of the time…while I was in Romania I voted, when I was in China, I voted, it is not only our right, it is our repsonbility. I understand that Jeff was not in our community for the something like 14 years, so there is good reason why his voting record in Esc is at 0%, one would hope that he was registered and voted in SD where he lived, but since he became a registered voter in Jan of ’05, why has he not voted?

  44. Cliff Says:

    U.S. Lags World in Grasp of Genetics and Acceptance of Evolution

    By Ker Than
    LiveScience Staff Writer
    10 August 2006

    A comparison of peoples’ views in 34 countries finds that the United States
    ranks near the bottom when it comes to public acceptance of evolution. Only
    Turkey ranked lower.

    Among the factors contributing to America’s low score are poor understanding
    of biology, especially genetics, the politicization of science and the
    literal interpretation of the Bible by a small but vocal group of American
    Christians, the researchers say.

    “American Protestantism is more fundamentalist than anybody except perhaps
    the Islamic fundamentalist, which is why Turkey and we are so close,” said
    study co-author Jon Miller of Michigan State University.

    The researchers combined data from public surveys on evolution collected
    from 32 European countries, the United States and Japan between 1985 and
    2005. Adults in each country were asked whether they thought the statement
    “Human beings, as we know them, developed from earlier species of animals,”
    was true, false, or if they were unsure.

    The study found that over the past 20 years:

    – The percentage of U.S. adults who accept evolution declined from 45 to 40
    percent.
    – The percentage overtly rejecting evolution declined from 48 to 39 percent,
    however.
    And the percentage of adults who were unsure increased, from 7 to 21
    percent.
    – Of the other countries surveyed, only Turkey ranked lower, with about 25
    percent of the population accepting evolution and 75 percent rejecting it.
    In Iceland, Denmark, Sweden and France, 80 percent or more of adults
    accepted evolution; in Japan, 78 percent of adults did.

    The findings are detailed in the Aug. 11 issue of the journal Science.

    Religion belief and evolution

    The researchers also compared 10 independent variables—including religious
    belief, political ideology and understanding of concepts from genetics, or
    “genetic literacy”—between adults in America and nine European countries to
    determine whether these factors could predict attitudes toward evolution.
    The analysis found that Americans with fundamentalist religious
    beliefs—defined as belief in substantial divine control and frequent
    prayer—were more likely to reject evolution than Europeans with similar
    beliefs. The researchers attribute the discrepancy to differences in how
    American Christian fundamentalist and other forms of Christianity interpret
    the Bible.

    While American fundamentalists tend to interpret the Bible literally and to
    view Genesis as a true and accurate account of creation, mainstream
    Protestants in both the United States and Europe instead treat Genesis as
    metaphorical, the researchers say.

    “Whether it’s the Bible or the Koran, there are some people who think it’s
    everything you need to know,” Miller said. “Other people say these are very
    interesting metaphorical stories in that they give us guidance, but they’re
    not science books.”

    This latter view is also shared by the Catholic Church.

    Politics and the Flat Earth

    Politics is also contributing to America’s widespread confusion about
    evolution, the researchers say. Major political parties in the United States
    are more willing to make opposition to evolution a prominent part of their
    campaigns to garner conservative votes—something that does not happen in
    Europe or Japan.

    Miller says that it makes about as much sense for politicians to oppose
    evolution in their campaigns as it is for them to advocate that the Earth is
    flat and promise to pass legislation saying so if elected to office.
    “You can pass any law you want but it won’t change the shape of the Earth,”
    Miller told LiveScience.

    Paul Meyers, a biologist at the University of Minnesota who was not involved
    in the study, says that what politicians should be doing is saying, ‘We
    ought to defer these questions to qualified authorities and we should have
    committees of scientists and engineers who we will approach for the right
    answers.”

    The researchers also single out the poor grasp of biological concepts,
    especially genetics, by American adults as an important contributor to the
    country’s low confidence in evolution.

    “The more you understand about genetics, the more you understand about the
    unity of life and the relationship humans have to other forms of life,”
    Miller said.

    The current study also analyzed the results from a 10-country survey in
    which adults were tested with 10 true or false statements about basic
    concepts from genetics. One of the statements was “All plants and animals
    have DNA.” Americans had a median score of 4. (The correct answer is “yes.”)

    Science alone is not enough

    But the problem is more than one of education—it goes deeper, and is a
    function of our country’s culture and history, said study co-author Eugenie
    Scott, director of the National Center for Science Education in California.

    “The rejection of evolution is not something that will be solved by throwing
    science at it,” Scott said in a telephone interview.

    Myers expressed a similar sentiment. About the recent trial in Dover,
    Pennsylvania which ruled against intelligent design, Myers said “it was a
    great victory for our side and it’s done a lot to help ensure that we keep
    religion out of the classroom for a while longer, but it doesn’t address the
    root causes. The creationists are still creationists—they’re not going to
    change because of a court decision.”

    Scott says one thing that will help is to have Catholics and mainstream
    Protestants speak up about their theologies’ acceptance of evolution.

    “There needs to be more addressing of creationism from these more moderate
    theological perspectives,” Scott said. “The professional clergy and
    theologians whom I know tend to be very reluctant to engage in that type of
    ‘my theology versus your theology’ discussion, but it matters because it’s
    having a negative effect on American scientific literacy.”

    The latest packaging of creationism is intelligent design, or ID, a
    conjecture which claims that certain features of the natural world are so
    complex that they could only be the work of a Supreme Being. ID proponents
    say they do not deny that evolution is true, only that scientists should not
    rule out the possibility of supernatural intervention.

    But scientists do not share doubts over evolution. They argue it is one of
    the most well tested theories around, supported by countless tests done in
    many different scientific fields. Scott says promoting uncertainty about
    evolution is just as bad as denying it outright and that ID and traditional
    creationism both spread the same message.

    “Both are saying that evolution is bad science, that evolution is weak and
    inadequate science, and that it can’t do the job so therefore God did it,”
    she said.

    Another view

    Bruce Chapman, the president of the Discovery Institute, the primary backer
    of ID, has a different view of the study.

    “A better explanation for the high percentage of doubters of Darwinism in
    America may be that this country’s citizens are famously independent and are
    not given to being rolled by an ideological elite in any field,” Chapman
    said. “In particular, the growing doubts about Darwinism undoubtedly reflect
    growing doubts among scientists about Darwinian theory. Over 640 have now
    signed a public dissent and the number keeps growing.”

    Nick Matzke of the National Center for Science Education in California
    points out, however, that most of the scientists Chapman refers to do not do
    research in the field of evolution.

    “If you look at the list, you can’t find anybody who’s really a significant
    contributor to the field or anyone who’s done recognizable work on
    evolution,” Matzke said
    .
    Scott says the news is not all bad. The number of American adults unsure
    about the validity of evolution has increased in recent years, from 7 to 21
    percent, but growth in this demographic comes at the expense of the other
    two groups. The percentage of Americans accepting evolution has declined,
    but so has the percentage of those who overtly reject it.

    “I was very surprised to see that. To me that means the glass is half full,”
    Scott said. “That 21 percent we can educate.”

    source: http://www.livescience.com/humanbiology/060810_evo_rank.html

  45. AnyMouse Says:

    I keep reading on this blog site the BIG discussion about Inteligent Design (creationism) and Evolution. Did any of you stop to think the two are more closely connected that you want to believe. Maybe ID and evolution are one and the same. We all know the life had to start somewhere and sometime. I’m sure it did not just appear like a magician pulling a rabbit out of an empty hat. Do you want your kids to learn that a million years ago there was a big puff of smoke and the human race suddenly appeared. Heck, it wasn’t too long ago kids were taught that the stork dropped them off as babies at their parent’s doorstep!

    As for evolution, people today are still evolving today – they are bigger, stronger, and smarter than their grandparents. Just look at the technical advances over the past years, centuries. Isn’t that a form of evolution?

  46. Anonymous Says:

    A Parent, come now brother. Rusty responded to Mom of Three’s assertion that Todd wants to inject his own religious beliefs into the class room. She is the one who suggested that… not Rusty. Rusty simply wrote a heartfelt letter in support of Mr. Leonard, for whom, quite understandably, he has great respect.

    What was the result? More attacks. This drives the point home even further doesn’t it… While Mr. Leonard runs on issues, others are interested in attacking their opponent. I dare say, if someone would have posted a glowing letter recommending Jeff or Doug, Mr. Leonard’s camp would have had given nothing but positive feeback. Mr. “A Parent”, look at Rusty’s comments for example:

    “I hope the best for Todd Leonard and for the other canidates as I am sure they are all worthy men and will serve this county well.”

    You will be hard pressed to find a similar statement coming from your camp that comes close to Rusty’s.

    This really is wearying. Makes you wonder why anyone gets involved in politics.

    Your correction of Rusty for using the word “afraid” betrays your unwillingness to maintain objectivity in this race. Rusty, sir, is not an administrator or a teacher like yourself, he is a minister of the Gospel. He was simply sharing the good news about Jesus Christ with this lady. His concern for her is evident. He addressed her personally after she responded to him. She comfortably asserted that she was not a Christian and wanted nothing to do with it, nor did she want her children taught Christianity, as if Christianity were poison. Rusty simply sought to do what every minister, no what all Christians, should do, and that is to bring the good news about the Lord Jesus Christ to a lost and dying world. Wouldn’t you agree sir?

    A Parent, as a Christian, surely you appreciate the responsibility of the Christian to share the good news about their Savior.

    Rusty never said “Mom of Three’s” children should be taught Chrisitianity in School. You know very well that Rusty was merely reacting to this Mom’s incredulous attack after his personal letter affirming Todd as a very influential man in his life.

    Lets be clear here, one’s worldview impacts every thought, decision and action we take.

    “A Parent”, since you are a Christian, then your Christian worldview effects your life and actions does it not? Certainly it does. And if it does not…well… then your Christian worldview is not Christian at all is it? It may be something else, but it is not Christian. Whether you are the superintendant Jim Paul, reportedly himself a Christian, or some other Christian member of the board, or whether you are Jewish or Hindu or Muslim or atheist, the fact of the matter is that you cannot separate your actions from your worldview. In fact, I suggest that it is because of your Christian worldview that you considered public service in our schools as a worthy calling in the first place–and it is.

    One thing is for sure, Mr. Leonard’s agenda is not lying “just below the surface.” His agenda is decidedly Christian and reflects his Christian worldview. He has hid nothing. Does that mean he’ll force children to learn the Westminster Catechism in 5th grade? No. It simply means that Christianity informs and shapes his life and actions, as it does yours if you belong to Christ.

    A Parent, allow your Christianity to shine a litte charity on fellow brothers. While you are very charitable toward Mr. Leonard’s detractors, you do not extend the same to him and his “serious supporters.”

    A parent, if you belong to Christ, you are above this. I hope you’ll reconsider your words concerning Mr. Leonard’s dangerous “below the surface” agenda.

    These kind of attacks and fear tactics are, to quote a previous poster, “unChristian, unprofessional, and unwelcome.”

    This is bordering on the rediculous.

  47. Joe Says:

    Rusty,

    I really have to wonder what you’re studying at this “liberal university.” Please give me some examples of how evolutionary biologists are teaching our children that “matter is all there is, so do whatever,” or that we shouldn’t care for the poor and needy. If anything, the theory of natural selection teaches us that we SHOULD help other people and empathize with the downtrodden, as it benefits the community as a whole and ensures the survival of our species. You may look at nature and come away a nihilist, but please don’t speak for the rest of us.

    You are correct, in a manner, that evolution affects other academic fields, like medicine and agriculture. For example, we will likely face a serious problem in the next century with increasingly-ineffective antibiotics and pesticides. Through natural selection, the bacteria which have mutated defenses to these materials will fare better and multiply more than those which have not, and new strains of diseases will emerge. Since our own immune systems are largely unfamiliar with these diseases (in part through our overuse of antibiotics), the loss of human life could potentially be catastrophic. But hey, maybe we shouldn’t worry about any of that, lest we give our kids the “wrong idea.”

    In short, Rusty, rejecting natural selection because you think it implies a dog-eat-dog, God-is-dead universe is no different than rejecting a heliocentric solar system because you think it makes the earth seem insignificant. Try as we might, facts remain facts.

  48. Amazed Says:

    Terry, if they are being done, then why is the administration so opposed to Mr. Leonard’s candidacy. If he is merely suggesting doing what is already in place, then why are they so concerned?

    It is because they are not “already doing” the things he is suggesting.

    To suggest otherwise is to igore the big elephant in the room.

    Exactly which of the issues listed on Mr. Leonard’s issues page are being done presently?

    http://votetoddleonard.com/issues.htm

    An earlier Bergosh supporter, I believe it was Lifelong friend, said Jeff supported Mr. Leonard’s conservative positions and would even consider voting for him if his kids were in public school. Apparently, even Jeff recognizes that Todd’s issues are valid. Let’s hope Jeff reconsiders this one obstacle that, according to that same poster, is keeping him from supporting Mr. Leonard. Lets hope Jeff and Doug realize that, whether a child attends public school, private school or are home schooled, Mr. Leonard really does have the best interest of ALL THE CHILDREN IN ESCAMBIA COUNTY AT HEART.

  49. Darwin's Black Box Says:

    Anymouse,

    To answer your question… No. Getting bigger and smarter is not quite the same as becoming something completely different than I was. For example, if I am a whale, it is one thing to become bigger and smarter. It is quite another to become a bear. If I am a Galapogos finch, I might grow a longer beak when drought comes, but I will not become a stork or a monkey.

    It is the difference between Micro and Macro evolution. Micro is mere adaptation to an environment. Macro says, that over billions and billions of years it might evolve into a stork or a monkey or a bird or a human. Just add time to the equation and anything might happen!

  50. Tired Says:

    I, for one, am tired of reading all this nonsense. Everyone is speaking for themselves, debating personal agendas and the postings have absolutely nothing to do with the candidates. Notice Jeff nor Todd are on these blogs. I am sure they are focused on running their campaigns and doing what will be most effective to them winning. If either of them had something to say, I’m sure they would say it. They both have websites to state their issues and/or positions. They both have their phone numbers listed on their websites so anyone can call them directly rather than make unfounded assertions.
    GIVE IT A REST!

  51. Darwin's Black Box Says:

    Hi all,

    Rick Outzen posted the following Blogs which will more than serve those who are interested in debating Intelligent Design Vs Evolution.

    https://routzen.wordpress.com/2006/08/07/todd-says-intelligent-design-is-not-about-religion/

    https://routzen.wordpress.com/2006/08/02/sorry-todd-you-are-a-monkeys-uncle/

    Some very enlightening comments can be found there. Feel free to add yours to the mix, but try to preserve this blog for campaign related conversation.

    Tom

  52. Joe Says:

    Hi Tom,

    If you’re going to lecture us on sticking to the issues, you should remember to change out the “Darwin’s Black Box” alias you just used. 🙂

    Speaking of… the micro/macro distinction you mention always cracks me up. Creationists used to argue that evolution couldn’t be proved at all, until a bunch of wiseacres observed it directly in a lab, so now this “micro/macro” thing is in all the talking points. I recommend you visit the Grand Canyon to get an idea of how simple, natural processes can do tremendous things over time.

    In the meantime, please peruse this FAQ on evidences for macroevolution:
    http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/comdesc/

  53. Tom Says:

    Great, thanks Joe. Yeah, I got a chuckle out of the Darwin’s Black Box thing as well! I’ll address the Grand Canyon issue on one of the ID blogs so as not to clutter up this blog any more than it already is.

    Darwin’s Black Box

  54. Confused... Says:

    So let me get this straight…Todd Leonard is supported by Darwin’s Black Box…now, that’s some news!! I’ll definitely vote for him now. Even Darwin thinks ID is okay…

  55. Tom Says:

    Confused, be not confused my friend. FYI, Darwin’s Black Box is a book written by Michael Behe in support of Intelligent Design.

    Glad to have another Todd Leonard supporter though.

    Thanks,

    Tom (ie. Darwin’s Black Box)

  56. District 1 Parent Says:

    Tired:

    You made a choice to click on this blog. If you don’t like it, don’t visit. Pretty simple.

  57. Anonymous Says:

    Uhhh. District 1 parent, I’m pretty sure you just yelled at a fellow Jeff supporter. Why so angry?

  58. MomOfThree Says:

    Why do I fear christianity? Who says I fear it? Why would I fear it? I was raised attending a southern baptist church. But since reaching the age of reason, I knew it was all lies. I studied three years of theology, two years of religious history, one year of eastern religion. It always amazes me how many people who call themselves christians have no idea of the origins of their bible, both new testament and old. But that discussion is for another blog.
    How was my question to Rusty an “incredulous attack”? Rusty had stated in his post that Todd Leonard would be a good board member to vote for. My point to Rusty was why would I as a parent vote for Todd Leonard when he advocates the teaching of creationism (intelligent design) in my children’s public schools? That is a valid question. Would you think it an incredulous attack if say a muslim were running for the seat and stated on his campaign website that he believe the Koran should be taught in public schools and a christian parent wrote in saying they didn’t want their children taught this?

  59. MomOfThree Says:

    And before anyone jumps to conclusions, no I am not muslim. Or jewish, or buddhist, or any other that you can think of. And yes, my husband & I have taught our children to be kind, responsible people. Every teacher they have ever had have said they are the most well behaved & considerate students they have in class. Morality and human kindness does not come from religion. It comes from teaching a deep respect & wonder for this world of ours and the fellow humans who fill it, and the miracle of that we as humans are able to reflect on this, our own existence.

  60. MomOfThree Says:

    These are MY beliefs. Which is not to say they are more correct than any of yours, just that they are mine. Unlike most christians & muslims, I don’t assume that anyone with beliefs different from mine are wrong and devoid of morals.

  61. Escambia Mom Says:

    Hannah, what are these facts you are referring to. My brother is an administrator in the district. Pay is up, the graduation rate is up, grades are up, drop out rate is down,, disciplinn in our schools is better, reserves are many fold better than they were six years ago, bad behavior is not tolerated by anyone. Help me understand what is wrong with the administration of this county. There is much yet to do of course. But, I am pleased as to the direction we are going.

  62. Tom Says:

    Mom of Three,

    I doubt Rusty will have anything further to say.

    I’d be happy to take up a religious discussion with you if you would like. Care to move over to the ID page, or the “Todd Leonard you’re a Monkey’s uncle” page? If not, I’d be happy to talk to you further at my own blog, “A Pilgrim’s Path.” It is a Christian Blog, meant to be a conversation among fellow Christians who, like me, need a bit of encouragement from time to time.

    You sound very intelligent and honest (yes, I’m sure you are a very moral person and a very good Mom) person. Your experience sounds alot like a lady named Nancy Pearcy, whom I very much admire. I’m sure my kids (my youngest at least!) could learn a thing or two from yours about how to keep one’s mouth shut in class (something I’m not very good at myself, obviously), etc.

    With your permission, I’d like to publish your comments on my blog, if that is okay with you, and carry on our conversation there. However, we can talk on anyone of these links if you’d like. I don’t want to take up valuable space on this particular post that is dedicated to the District 1 School Board race.

    https://routzen.wordpress.com/2006/08/07/todd-says-intelligent-design-is-not-about-religion/

    https://routzen.wordpress.com/2006/08/02/sorry-todd-you-are-a-monkeys-uncle/

    http://apilgrimspath.blogspot.com/

    Sincerely,

    Tom

  63. Tom Says:

    This is in reply to District 1’s comments on another thread.

    District 1 Parent said:

    Tom:

    Please give the ID issue a rest. We get the fact Todd and his camp are right wing fundamentalists. I concede that point.

    What PROFESSIONAL experience does Todd have in the educations field, besides selling stuff to them? And I don’t mean that as a negative comment, I understand that is how he makes his living.

    Just curious.

    Thanks

    Comment by District 1 Parent — August 16, 2006 @ 9:46 pm

    Comment by Tom (me) in response:

    District 1 parent,

    Feel free to call Todd and ask him the question just the way you put it to me… you know… with as much tact and respect as is due one of us “right wing fundamentalists.” I’m sure he’ll be happy to respond.

    As far as giving it a rest, your camp keeps bringing it up. I’m happy to give it a rest…

    …You really do not serve your cause well when the only thing you can do is belittle Mr. Leonard and his supporters…especially in midst of a very conservative District. You might want to rethink your strategy ma’am.

    You are fully aware of Mr. Leonard’s issues. We’ve talked about them openly. Start talking about Jeff’s or Doug’s or whomever it is that you are supporting.

    Seems like you already know the answer to your own question, so, I’ll leave it at that.

    Have a good night,

    Tom

    District 1 Parent Responds:

    Tom:

    Once again when faced with specifics, Todd’s supporters run off in some other direction. The questions re: his professional education experince is a valid question in comparing him to the other candidates.

    I belive Mr. Waters has served on the Santa Rosa School Board in the past, although he was not re-elected after his initial term, and Mr. Bergosh has completed graduate level work in education and has classroom teaching experience.

    I am not aware of any web site for Mr. Waters, but you can listen to a short, 3 minute audio clip of Mr. bergosh by going to http://inweekly.net/images/articles/Jeff%20Bergosh.mp3.

    Once agian Tom, just curious so we voters can compare the candidates.

    Comment by District 1 Parent — August 17, 2006 @ 7:48 am

    Tom’s Response:

    District 1 Parent,

    Specifics. We’ve given them over and over and over. In fact we gave them so often that Mr. Outzen created a special District 1 blog just for folks like you and me. I’ll refer you to that page. Any non-partisan observer will laugh at the idea the Mr. Leonard is running from specifics. He has laid out a very thoughtful agenda. You might not like his agenda, but, that does’t change the facts.

    Feel free to let us see Jeff’s agenda sometime. I’d be delighted to see what new ideas he is proposing.

    As far as Mr. Leonard’s experience, you can read all about him and his experience at his website. I’ll not post that link here, because Rick has asked us to reserve such things for the District 1 Blog. Here is the link in case you’ve misplaced it.

    https://routzen.wordpress.com/2006/08/09/school-board-district-1-race-bergosh-leonard-waters

    If you are asking has Mr. Leonard ever sat on the School Board the answer is no. If you are asking if Mr. Leonard has ever taught or volunteered in school classrooms, as well as other school programs the answer is yes. Has ever been a public school administrator? No. Has he ever been a public school teacher? No.

    But, then neither had Mr. Gaetz in Okaloosa county, who is now your Senator Elect. I don’t think you mean to imply that a gentleman like Mr. Gaetz was unfit for the job he did in Okaloosa. If so, we need more men like him who are similarly unfit! I don’t know of a single person who doesn’t realize that he did a remarkable job in Okaloosa.

    The issue is, who will bring fresh ideas to the table and work to build a better school system in Escambia County? I think we’ve made a pretty strong case for Todd Leonard.

    Feel free to disagree. As a District 1 Parent myself, if Jeff is elected, I hope he’ll take all of Mr. Leonard’s issues and make them his own. Heck, he can make them his own right now if he’d like. The more the merrier as they say. Lifelong Friend commented on the other post that Mr. Bergosh agreed with much of Mr. Leonard’s platform and if not for the issue of where his children attend school, Jeff himself would vote for Todd. So… I don’t know what else to tell you Ma’am.

    Hope that helps.

    God bless and good luck supporting your man,

    Tom

    Comment by Tom — August 17, 2006 @ 12:13 pm

  64. blah Says:

    District 1 Parent:

    A few post-graduate courses, one year as student teacher, 17 years in CA and only 1 1/2 years back in Escambia County–Doubtful Mr. Bergosh could know more about our school system than Mr. Waters and Mr. Leonard.

    Based on your/Mr. Bergosh supporters’ standards regarding qualifications, Gary Bergosh is not qualified to serve either. I don’t see where he has had any graduate level courses in education or has had “real class room experience”.

    Mr. Leonard has worked 12 years in the education field and does more than just “sell stuff”. I’m sure Mr. Bergosh does more than just “manage stuff and/or people”. Mr. Leonard has worked closely with many school administrators throughout Florida and Alabama. He has seen what works, what does not work and has fresh ideas he can bring to the table from the various county administrators he has worked with throughout the Southeast.

    If you or any other voter is really interested in comparing the candidates, call or email them directly. What better way to find out answers to your questions than by going to them directly?

  65. Another District 1 parent Says:

    I wanna know what is everyones views on “rezoning” isssues… is closing woodham high and making a mega middle school good or do you think it needs to start at the elementary level??

  66. District 1 Parent Says:

    THE STUDY CONDUCTED BY THE FACILITIES MANAGEMENT CONSULTANT/EXPERT SHOWED THIS WAS THE FIRST STEP IN THE PROCESS. ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS COME NEXT.

    WOODHAM HAS BEEN DYING ON THE VINE FOR A NUMBER OF YEARS, DUE TO THE FACT THE COMMUNITY AROUND IT HAS BECOME MORE COMMERCIALIZED AND LESS RESIDENTIAL.

    ALSO, YOU WILL RECALL THAT THE CURRENT ADMINISTRATION CAME TO THE BOARD A NUMBER OF YEARS AGO WITH A DIFFERENT PLAN THAT CALLED FOR CLOSING SEVERAL ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS. BUT THE BOARD BACK THEN DIDN’T HAVE THE BACKBONE TO SUPPORT IT.

    BUT I GUESS WE SHOULD WAIT ON MAKING A DECISION UNTIL WE SEE WHAT DON GAETZ TOLD TODD WOULD BE THE BEST TO DO !-)

  67. Anonymous Says:

    District 1 Parent,

    With your Todd Leonard dig, you managed to ruin an otherwise insightful and helpful comment.

    You don’t seem to hit any of the other candidates, but Todd Leonard. Regrettably, when one takes firm and clear positions on important issues, one should expect this sort of thing.

  68. Tom Says:

    Anonymous,

    It’s okay. Mr. Leonard can handle a “dig” or two. Good thing, ’cause he’s certainly had to field his fair share.

    Blah,

    Thank you for doing such a great job answering District 1 parent’s question concerning Todd Leonard’s qualifications/experience. Very nice.

    The honest observer, regardless of their personal views, must surely realize that of all the good men who are running for this position, Mr. Leonard is BY FAR the most qualified.

    Good night and God bless,

    Tom

  69. An Observer Says:

    Mr. Bergosh has classroom teaching experience in public schools – Mr. Leonard and Mr. Waters do not.

    Mr. Bergosh has completed graduate level coursework in education – Mr. Leonard and Mr. Waters do not.

    Mr. Bergsoh has professional experience in facilities management for a large government entity – Mr. Leonard and Mr. Waters do not.
    (Note: I beleive the post above points out how importnt that is currently, and will be for a long time. Mr. Paul needs someone on the baord with this type of expeinece as he moves this agenda through the process.)

    Mr. Bergosh has been, and still is, a succesful businessman dealing with all the various fiscal, operational and human resource related issues – Mr. Leonard and Mr. Waters are not.

    Mr. Waters served one term on the Santa Rosa School Board, (he was not re-elected) – Neither Mr. Leonard nor Mr. Bergosh have previoulsy served on a school board.

    Mr. Leonard has sold text books and class rings to various school districts, during which he has had discussions with numerous school administrators about education – Mr. Bergosh and Mr. Waters have not.

    Yes sir, I believe the above clearly speaks to the gentlemen’s qualifications to serve on the board.

  70. District 1 Parent Too Says:

    District 1 Parent,
    You forgot to include in your insightful response:

    “WE SHOULD ALSO WAIT ON MAKING A DECISION UNTIL WE SEE WHAT JIM PAUL, RONNIE ARNOLD, GARY BERGOSH AND OTHERS FROM THE DOWNTOWN CROWD TELL JEFF “GOOD ‘OLE BOY” BERGOSH WHAT WOULD BE BEST.”

    After all, he admits he had no desire to run and is running only because the Superintendent asked him to – Um…..no agenda and no desire for the office–who’s the lackey?

  71. Anonymous Says:

    I searhed for the comment by Lifelong Friend that has been previously referenced. While it does not say that he agrees with all of Mr. Leonard’s agenda, it does indicate stong support for Mr. Leonard’s agenda. Here is the comment as quoted from post #25:

    “I know Jeff has tremendous respect for todd, and if todd’s own kids were enrolled in public schools, Jeff would have supported todd’s campaign and written a check to him and volunteered to help.”

    That is a very strong comment. So, because of the fact that Mr. Leonard chose to give his children an EXPLICITLY Christian education, Mr. Bergosh decided to run against him?

    I find this hard to believe. As a man who reportedly would be a strong supporter of Mr. Leonard, and who, before being tapped by Jim Paul, had no interest in running (see article in today’s PNJ), Jeff Bergosh should give serious thought to setting aside this minor objection (yes minor) and get busy lending his support (financial or otherwise) to the Todd Leonard campaign.

    There are many voters whose kids attend no public or private school. There are many homeschooling families and many votiing families who have no children. They all pay taxes. All citizens, whether or not they have children in public school, have a vital interest in our schools. For as the schools go, so goes the county.

    Upon reading this mornings articale in the News Journal and surveying the various candidate’s web sites, it is crystal clear that Mr. Leonard (and only him I might add) has laid out any real platform for the continued improvement of our schools. The News Jounal, in typical fashion, points almost exclusively to what they consider Mr. Leonard’s Christian values agenda. However, upon perusing his website for myself, I found that his platform is much, much broader than this. Not that those agenda items which underscore a Judeo-Christian worldview are unnecessary, I think they are necessary. But there is much more. Ending social promotion is a huge agenda item. Providing $2000 vouchers for ALL FAILING students is another significant agenda item. All the candidates indicate their support for higher teacher pay. Only Mr. Leoard mentions the concept of merit pay, which would benefit individual teachers in any school regardless of the overall FCAT grade for the school. Only Mr. Leonard mentions his support for Charter Schools and Blended Schools (something most of us, including myself, are unfamiliar with) for homeschoolers. Only Mr. Leonard is proposing that Intelligent Design Theory be taught alongside Evolutionary Theory as a viable theory of origins. Mr. Leonard alone is advocating the streamling or our school system bureaucracy. He is the only one addressing our sports programs. His Fatherhood initiative and Faith Based institution initiatives are also absent from the platforms of the other gentleman.

    I agree with Mr. Bergosh’s sentiments. Where one’s children attend school aside, it appears that Mr. Leonard will make a great School Board member. Although, unless he gets the support of Mr. Paul and others on the board, he might well have to occupy the Superintendant’s chair himself if he truly wants to see all of his agenda employed.

    To see today’s PNJ article on the candidates to to: http://www.pensacolanewsjournal.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060818/NEWS01/608180342/1006).

  72. Yet another District 1 Parent Says:

    I searhed for the comment by Lifelong Friend that has been previously referenced. While it does not say that he agrees with all of Mr. Leonard’s agenda, it does indicate stong support for Mr. Leonard’s agenda. Here is the comment as quoted from post #25:

    “I know Jeff has tremendous respect for todd, and if todd’s own kids were enrolled in public schools, Jeff would have supported todd’s campaign and written a check to him and volunteered to help.”

    That is a very strong comment. So, because of the fact that Mr. Leonard chose to give his children an EXPLICITLY Christian education, Mr. Bergosh decided to run against him?

    I find this hard to believe. As a man who reportedly would be a strong supporter of Mr. Leonard, and who, before being tapped by Jim Paul, had no interest in running (see article in today’s PNJ), Jeff Bergosh should give serious thought to setting aside this minor objection (yes minor) and get busy lending his support (financial or otherwise) to the Todd Leonard campaign.

    There are many voters whose kids attend no public or private school. There are many homeschooling families and many votiing families who have no children. They all pay taxes. All citizens, whether or not they have children in public school, have a vital interest in our schools. For as the schools go, so goes the county.

    Upon reading this mornings article in the News Journal and surveying the various candidate’s web sites, it is crystal clear that Mr. Leonard (and only him I might add) has laid out any real platform for the continued improvement of our schools. The News Jounal, in typical fashion, points almost exclusively to what they consider Mr. Leonard’s Christian values agenda. However, upon perusing his website for myself, I found that his platform is much, much broader than this. Not that those agenda items which underscore a Judeo-Christian worldview are unnecessary, I think they are necessary. But there is much more. Ending social promotion is a huge agenda item. Providing $2000 vouchers for ALL FAILING students is another significant agenda item. All the candidates indicate their support for higher teacher pay. Only Mr. Leoard mentions the concept of merit pay, which would benefit individual teachers in any school regardless of the overall FCAT grade for the school. Only Mr. Leonard mentions his support for Charter Schools and Blended Schools (something most of us, including myself, are unfamiliar with) for homeschoolers. Only Mr. Leonard is proposing that Intelligent Design Theory be taught alongside Evolutionary Theory as a viable theory of origins. Mr. Leonard alone is advocating the streamling or our school system bureaucracy. He is the only one addressing our sports programs. His Fatherhood initiative and Faith Based institution initiatives are also absent from the platforms of the other gentleman.

    I agree with Mr. Bergosh’s sentiments. Where one’s children attend school aside, it appears that Mr. Leonard will make a great School Board member. Although, unless he gets the support of Mr. Paul and others on the board, he might well have to occupy the Superintendant’s chair himself if he truly wants to see all of his agenda employed.

    To see today’s PNJ article on the candidates to to: http://www.pensacolanewsjournal.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060818/NEWS01/608180342/1006).

  73. blah Says:

    An Observer:

    Your comments are so weak as to be almost laughable.

    First, Mr. Leonard is a successful business man. I am not sure what your measuring rod is. I am glad to see that you at least think we need businessmen running the schools and not educrats. While he has not owned a business directly like Mr. Bergosh, who is certainly to be applauded, Mr. Leonard has mangaged enormous budgets over the years. In his current position, he manages over sixty counties, three to four part time sales representatives, and muli-million dollar budgets. In addition, if leadership is an issue, it is clear his life experiences demonstrate far superior leadership than anyone else in the race. He has led on the athletic field, in the military, and in the business world of sales.

    It seems odd that you and others keep making this race an issue soley centered on the arcane issue of facilities management. You guys are so out of touch – you seem to think that what is most needed is a good comptroller – something I am sure Mr. Bergosh would be well suited for. What is even more worrisome is that you may actually be someone in the system – if you are then no wonder we are in such a mess. How out of touch can one be? You said yourself that a consultant was hired to do what Mr. Bergosh said he is so qualified to do – what’s the deal? How about curriculum and other issues associated with education? No mention of that, however. Your attacks are so illogical – one minute it’s “Todd has nothing new to offer” and then in the next breath it’s “Todd’s ideas are so out of touch and radical.” By the way, what ideas does Mr. Begosh put forth that are new and fresh? Online participation? Currently in place. Contingency Plans? I hope those are in place, but knowing you guys, probably not. What are “shared traditional values? Answer: Doublespeak, vaguries and indicative of someone who is not willing to stand for much of anything! As to classroom experience, once again, how weak! One year of student teaching! Come on, you can hopefully do better than that. Post graduate courses in educational theory? Just what we need – more of the nutty theories of Dewey and his gang that got us into this mess to begin with. If this race is about who is going to be the best comptroller, Mr. Bergosh wins hands down! I think the voters are more concerned about why Johnnie can’t read than they are about facilities management and the Avian Flu! Good luck – you are going to need it.

  74. Anonymous Says:

    Hi Mr. Paul,

    Your judgement is in serious question. Even the most casual observer can tell the Mr. Leonard is the most qualified individual for this job. Exactly, which of Mr. Leonard’s proposals do you find so objectionable? Or is simply the fact that he has ANY proposals AT ALL that concerns you?

    I address you as Mr. Paul because I believe either he, or his close associate is either “A Parent”, “District 1 Parent” or such other posters who regularly express themselves so eloquently and consistenly against Mr. Leonard. Only an insider would care so much about a Mr. Leonard candidacy that they take every chance imaginable to jab at him. Can’t figure out why you fear him so much, though? What, good sir, in all the issues addressed above, do you find so objectionable?

    If there is something we should fear, we would all like to know exactly what it is about Mr. Leonard that we should fear. And do not come in here with some anti-“right wing fundamentalist” rhetoric, please. We are not THAT imbecilic.

  75. Escambia Mom Says:

    Hi All, is it my emagination or is this thread getting kinda nasty and mean spirited?

  76. Horse Trader Says:

    Do you guys really think you need to drag Mr. Paul into your your silly arguments?

  77. Red Headed Flying Spaghetti Monster Says:

    All-
    Sit right back and you’ll hear a tale, a tale of a fateful ship (school District)… Here is the situation as I understand it…When Gary Bergosh announced he was seeking to be a judge (a true loss to the district), Todd Leonard approached Jim Paul about succeding Bergosh…Paul was receptive; however, Todd Leonard was told his chidren being in private school might be an issue (ala vannette webb), that his text book sales job might be an issue (ala John Dewitt)…JP thought that Todd could overcome this, but TL stated he had prayed and was led not to seek the position.
    Time was late the last day of Prequalification, and some rational candidate was needed; therefore, Jeff Bergosh was contacted about running (he has 3-children in the schools, has a college degree with education emphasis, a successful churchman…. Although reluctant, not wanting to be seen as riding on Gary Bergosh’s coat tails, he agreed to serve the community. The day Jeff Bergosh filed to run, Todd Leonard had a change of heart and was now led to run. He communicated this to Jim Paul. JP told Todd he thought he did not want to run and that JP now had a qualified candidate. JP sincerely asked TL not to run, as this would confuse the issues, create division and not be in the interests of the school district. Todd Leonard said” I do not carre…I am the Red Headed Flying Spaghetti Monster” and I am running. He opened his web page with garbage that the schoo district was broken and has been on the attack since then…
    Final analysis…

    1. I do not care that Jeff Bergosh was hit by a drunk driver…

    2. I do not Carre that Todd Leonard has a 10-year messy divorce that shows a lack of payment of child support…

    None of this is relevant. Elect leaders based ontheir experience and desire toserve and stop attacking.

    RHFSM

  78. My Kids' Dad Says:

    Let me see if I understand you Toddites?

    Jeff Bergosh was encouraged to run by Mr. Paul, (not forced as some of you imply and as the PNJ incorrectly reported, look for the correction).

    Mr. Paul was the first Superinetndent to be re-elected to a second term in a whole lot of years.

    Mr. Paul’s approval ratings are in the 70’s.

    The only two candidates to recieve more votes than Mr. Paul in Escambia County during the 2004 election was President Bush and Jeff Miller.

    So a school board candidate being endorsed by Mr. Paul is a bad thing?? EHHHHH!!! WRONG AGAIN LEONARD SUPPORTERS!!

    Oh, and your other point. Jeff wishes to serve his community as has his brother Gary, (one of the the most highly respected and acclaimed elected officials in Escambia County), and as did Gary’s wife, Carissa, when Gary went to Irag with the Marines. This is a bad thing?? EHHHH!!! WRONG AGAIN LEONARD SUPPORTERS!!

    The word on the street is that between Mr. Bergosh and Mr. Leonard, Superintendent Paul chose to support Mr. Bergosh.

    Sorry guys, this argument is a loser, as are all the other asserations you guys have put forth.

    Until you guys get past the fact that parents and teachers understand that Todd has no faith in our public school system, pretty much all the rest of your energy is being wasted.

    Sorry, I know the truth hurts sometimes.

  79. An Observer Says:

    Tom:

    Is it true your candidate, Mr. Leonard, used to be a Democrat? Just curious.

  80. A Good Friend of Mr. Leonard Says:

    Red Headed Flying Spaghetti Monster:

    As one who knows Mr. Leonard well, you are really way off base. First, I have spoken with Mr. Leonard directly this morning regarding these assertions. Your tale has many holes in it. First, Mr. Leonard never spoke to Mr. Paul personally. He reports that he did have a pleasant conversation with Mr. Arnold and that the issue of his children being in private school was discussed but was never reported to be an issue by Mr. Paul directly or by Mr. Arnold. He did say that he would indeed pray about running but never indicated that he had made a final decision not to run. He took a period of a month to make a decision and was never approached again by Mr. Paul or his personnel during that period. He made the decision to run and went to pre-qualify on the last day of prequalification. At that time, with Mr. Bergosh having pre-qualified the day before, he sent word to Mr. Paul that he would in fact be a candidate. You are correct that Mr. Paul sent word through a third party that his desire was for Mr. Leonard not to run. However, at this point, having made the decision, Mr. Leonard went ahead with plans to run. The following week Mr. Leonard received a phone call from Mr. Keith Leonard, a district staff employee, asking him if he was committed to running and if he was aware that Mr. Paul had thrown his support to Mr. Bergosh. Mr. Leonard states that he told Mr. Keith Leonard that he was aware of this but that ultimately he was committed to running, as he was never seeking Mr. Paul’s approval and support to begin with. Some discussion occurred once again regarding his children being in private school and Mr. Leonard once again stated his position regarding this and his respect for, and willingness to work with, Mr. Paul. Mr. Leonard was then told by Mr. Keith Leonard that he would be receiving a phone call from Mr. Paul or someone from his staff within a few days before final qualifying but the call never came. He went ahead with qualifying and entered the race. Contrary to many assertions from multiple parties on this ridiculous blog, Mr. Leonard has stated both publicly and privately that he holds Mr. Paul in high regard and those on this staff. As he has said on his site, he believes that we can do far better but wholeheartedly agrees that Mr. Paul has certainly moved the district in the right direction. However, knowing Mr. Leonard, once a decision was made, whether Mr. Paul or anyone else tried to discourage him from running, his decision would have been firm if he felt it the right thing to do. Finally, having spoken to Mr. Leonard again regarding the issue of his divorce ten years ago, you are once again way off base. There has never been a period where he has been behind in any obligation to his children. Feel free to look at court records and you will see that there was a credit for support paid directly to Mr. Leonard’s ex-wife as he had been paying her directly every month, as was his obligation, since the dissolution of marriage. As to your assertion of his ten year messy divorce battle, Mr. Leonard readily acknowledges that this past year, at the behest of his teenage children, he took steps to prevent them from being moved out of state. Ultimately, he and his former wife resolved the issue out of court. These kinds of things are really petty, as are the stupid claims of whoever posted the civil case regarding Mr. Bergosh. Mr. Leonard has attempted to run a campaign based on issues from the beginning and will continue to do so regardless of what others may say or do. Get your facts straight before you spew forth half-truths and lies.

  81. Tom Says:

    Hope Jeff does well. I’m sure that he is a fine man. Todd, by the way, is also a very fine man. But, the constant attacks are quite dissappointing. You really should stick to the issues. Many false and unChristian statements were made by Jeff’s supporters above. I hope Jeff will be as quick to condemn them as we were in condemning the attacks against him.

    Good luck, God bless, see you on the campaign trail.

    Tom

  82. teacher for todd Says:

    My Kid’s Dad –
    I am an educator and a District 1 voter. Please do not presume to speak for me, as I wholeheartedly support Mr. Leonard. As for approval rating quotes, is that really how you pick a candidate? Please, stand up for yourself, have your own opinions. Which brings me to ID, why do you bloggers keep bring it up and why is it such a horrible thought to some of you that my children may have the right to challenge evolution in school? All Mr. Leonard is suggesting is that it be offered as an alternative. As a math teacher, I welcome alternative problem solving strategies. It makes for great discussion and that is when learning occurs. I have stayed off this blog until now, because of the fact that I am a teacher and my daily concern is that your student receives the best education possible. However, as a voter and someone who knows Todd Leonard, the attacks on his character cannot go unchecked. Todd Leonard is a fine Christian man and a dedicated husband and father. He is also a man of integrity and truly wants to help make this school district the best it can be. If you disagree with his stand on the issues, say so, but stop the personal attacks. They serve no purpose and certainly our children deserve a better example.

  83. Bradley Says:

    “Freedom is the freedom to say two plus two make four. If that is granted, all else follows.” — Winston Smith, “Nineteen Eighty-Four”

    “2+2=5, for sufficiently large values of 2.” — math humor

    Teacher For Todd, it’s just super that you “welcome alternative problem solving strategies in [your] classroom,” but do you welcome alternative solutions as well? If a student doesn’t know the answer on a test, can he give a BS answer like, “there is some debate in the mathematical community regarding this issue amounting to a general lack of consensus, so I choose to answer simply that math is inherently unknowable and that, uh, God did it”?

    Or in other words, can 2+2=5 if a child has faith that two plus two CAN make five? That’s all Intelligent Design says: it’s religious dogma packaged as “science” and pushed by creationists (like you, no doubt) into schools as an “alternative.” But it’s not an alternative, it’s just a cop-out. And it has no place in a science classroom.

    And, incidentally, I seriously doubt that you’re really a math teacher who happens to know Todd and just conveniently popped in to offer some “educator cred.” Care to offer any verifiable proof? (You can give the proof to Rick, who can confirm it here, if you want to avoid public scrutiny.) Or didn’t you know that bearing false witness is a sin?

  84. My Kids' Dad Says:

    Teacher for Todd:

    Please rveiw my last post, I did not make any personal attacks against Todd. That was the the spagheeti monster,I belive.

    And I agree with Tom, this type of personal revelation is not necessary. The fact that Todd was sued by his ex-wife for back child support does not fit in with the discussions carried on this blog, as we have been attemmting to deal with issues and philosiphies.

    Nor did I indicate that I spoke for each and every teacher. If you support Todd, good for him.

    The main point of my blog was that some of the Toddites took several cheap shots at Mr. Paul and Gary Bergosh accusing them of being “good ol’ boys”. Nothing could be farther form the truth.

    They also tried to assert that by being associated with Mr. Paul and his brother Gary, Todd’s assocaition with them would be percieved as a negative, which it is not.

    I would be extremely suprised if Todd would not have been overjoyed to receive the superintendent’s endorsement.

    And by the way, I don’t believe Todd would approve of your alternative learning strategies, seeing as he is against “politically correct” teaching methods.

    Oh, it was Todd that intejected ID into the discussion by making it top and center of his campiagn platform, although it has since been releagted to the bottom of the list and his supporters have been trying to drop it like a hot potatoe.

    Have a wonderful evening everyone!

  85. teacher for todd Says:

    Bradley – My only point in blogging was to defend the character of Mr. Leonard, whom I consider a friend. I am in fact a math teacher and will not be defending myself on this blog again. I have lessons to prepare. I hope you have a blessed week. Sleep well, knowing that you are now fully human, where as once only a blob of goo existed. And by the way, “nothing plus nothing never equals everything.” – evolution logic, ID humor

  86. tom Says:

    Teacher for Todd,

    Thanks for the support. And, thanks for the evolution humor. We could all use a dose of laughter.

    My Kids Dad,

    Nice job slinging mud while denouncing the slinging of mud. I guess it is to be expected.

    Teacher for Todd, have a good week. Hope you are teaching my child. Need more like you.

  87. Bradley Says:

    Isn’t it interesting that when Tom posted on August 19 @ 11:46 am his name was spelled “Tom” with a capital T. After two posts by “teacher for todd,” we hear again from Tom, only this time it’s “tom” with a lowercase T, who compliments “teacher” for his sharp wit. I don’t know about you guys, but my web browser remembers who I am after every post, so there’s really no reason for Tom’s name to be spelled different… is there?

    By the way, I just loved the I.D. joke, but you forgot the last part: “Nothing plus nothing never equals everything… unless we’re talking about God!”

  88. tom Says:

    Former Blob of Goo, but now fully human,

    YOu are wrong about so many things. While you’re right about this, I used a lower case “t”, you’re wrong about everything else… including my identity.

    On another note, why such hatred toward God? Are you 100% sure that God had no part in creation? Were you there? You are on dangerous ground my friend. I hope you have a change of heart sooner rather than later.

    Tom

  89. My Kids' Dad Says:

    Tom/tom/tOm/toM and all the other Toddites:

    It’s funny how you guys throw all these wild assertions out there and take shots at people, but when a logical reply based in fact is provided, you either move on to some other topic or whine about how nobody is showing Todd the proper respect.

    The fact of the matter is that Todd has no faith in our teachers, students, parents, volunteers or Mr. Paul. Between bashing our schools and the ID/Chistmas Break issues, he has shown himself to be another Vanette Webb/Hal Mason.

    That is the last thing we need for our kids.

  90. District 1 Parent Says:

    Great point was made by My Kids Dad. The biggest, and most important, difference between Bergosh and Leonard is that Bergosh belives in our teachers, parents and kids, and Leonard does not.

    Leonard speaks of broken systems, mire, muck, lack of ambitions and morals, etc. To read his site is to be set into a serious depression.

    Mr. Bergosh, on the other hand, knows that our teachers, parents and kids are great and continue to work hard to improve each and every day. He knows they have value and are worthy of our praise and confidence.

    Leonard states that the current administration is “tweaking at the margins” which is far from the truth as explained in this artiucle from an Independent News article in Novemebr of 2004;

    “Despite a sometimes raucous first term, Paul and his supporters point to several victories, including the number of “A” schools doubling and the district being graded as a “B” overall; teacher’s salaries increasing an average of 18 percent with some going up as much as 30 percent; the number of administrators being slashed 20 percent and the budget cut by $25 million; general fund reserves tripling; the public renewing a 1/2-cent sales tax despite an anti-tax mood; student enrollment increasing by more than 700 students the past two years after a seven-year decline; and the standardization of schools’ curriculums, which is credited for rising state test scores.”

    I would also suggest that readers of this blog to read the Left Behind article in this weeks Independent News to see how Mr. Paul has taken extrordianry steps to lift up Hallmark, one of the inner city schools facing some of the greatest of obstacles in the state when it comes to educating our kids.

    I am really tired of Mr. Leonard’s lack of faith in our schools and the arrogance of the Toddites that continue to post their bombastic and unfounded missives on this blog. But hey, this is America, and if you want to sound arrogant and foolish, more power to you.

    Mr. Leonard, until you learn to have faith in our school system, stay away from my kids and their education.

  91. Tom Says:

    My Kid’s Dad,

    Well… hope you have a good day.

    Tom

  92. blah Says:

    My Kids Dad-

    funny thing about subjective arguing- people base ones logic on their own thinking, so it makes it hard to see hypocrisy-

    you make a pretty judgemental statement towards “toddites”- then you end your comment, with…AN ASSERTION/ASSUMPTION-

    I am sure you don’t see it, but I am laughing at your silliness

    PS- Where has Floyd been? I liked him, he was a sharpe guy

  93. tom Says:

    District 1 Parent,

    Guess we’ll have to leave it up to the District 1 voters.

    Much work to do today. So many doors to knock on, so many hands to shake…”and miles to go before I sleep, and miles to go before I sleep.” My knuckles will be bleeding and my feet blistered by the end of the day.

    Small price to pay for a “right wing
    fundamentalist” “Toddite” like me.

    Well, sir, …hope you have a good day.

  94. District 1 Parent Says:

    blah:

    If you are implying I am Mr. Sharp, I appreciate the association/compliment. However, I bleive there is no “e” on the end of his name.

    As for my statement re: Mr. Leonard not beliveing in our kids and teachers, that is neither an assumption nor assertion, but fact. Following is a direct quote from Mr. Leonard’s web site:

    “Escambia has been plateaued at best and declining at worst. By just about any benchmark, whether it be test scores, student interest, teacher motivation, or disciplined and safe schools, we simply are not measuring up and are failing…”

    I find this far from uplifting, enlightening, positive, or insipiring confidence.

    Sorry blah, but Todd Leonard has no faith in our schools, teachers, or kids.

  95. My Kids' Dad Says:

    District 1 Parent:

    I beleve blah was addressing me, but good point.

    Thanks

  96. Anonymous Says:

    Don’t you two “downtowners” have something to do? Streamlining the bureaucracy never looked so attractive!

  97. My Kids' Dad Says:

    Anonymous:

    Once agian, a non-response to the issues, and I am actually located in NE Pensacola.

    Sorry, wrong again.

    Tom:

    Todd is lucky to have someone so dedicated to his cause. Be sure to bring along plenty of water, it’s gonna be another hot one tody.

  98. My Kids' Dad Says:

    What happened to all the Toddites?? It appears that they have run from the light of truth and logic.

    We miss you guys. Hope all is well.

  99. Bradley Says:

    Hi Todd, this is the former blob of goo speaking. You say I\’m \”wrong about so many things,\” but you offer no examples or reasoned rebuttals. And I have no hatred towards God; I was merely pointing out how Creationists love to appeal to \”common sense logic\” when they ridicule science — for example, \”Darwin says, if I leave this rock here long enough, it will become my Uncle Fred, haw haw!\” — but they refuse to apply that same logic to themselves. Sure it\’s great to believe that some almighty deity waved His magic wand around and poofed us all into existence in half a fortnight, but who poofed Him into existence, eh?

  100. Toddite Says:

    Bradley,

    Jeff’s your man then. Vote for him if you live in district 1. When you die, and die you shall, feel free to ask God, your Creator, who “poofed Him in to existence” (after you pick your jaw up from off of the floor). I’m sure He’ll be delighted to answer. Then you’ll have all eternity to ponder His answer.

    My kid’s Dad,

    Glad we were missed. Not running from the light as you put it. Just the opposite, we love the Light. And are not afraid to come into the light and let our deeds be known. You guys lied about Todd and you know it. But, that’s neither here, nor there. We’ve been very busy meeting the people in the various subdivisions throughout District 1 and are very ecouraged. Just campaigning hard that’s all.

  101. My Kids' Dad Says:

    Toddite:

    Since you have been away from the blog, just wanted to make sure you heard the news that in addition to Superintendent Paul endorsing Jeff Bergosh, apparently so has Jim Bailiey, former many-term school board member for District 1, as well as former Superintendent Bill Maloy.

    I saw that on his web-site, http://www.jeffbergosh.com, last night.

    Glad to hear from you though. Hope you are drinking plenty of water while you are out there knocking doors so you don’t get dehydrated.

    Also, please specify what lies I have supposedly posted on this blog so that I may correct them.

    Have a great afternoon

  102. Toddite Says:

    My Kid’s Dad,

    You requested:

    “please specify what lies I have supposedly posted”

    I did not say that it was you, alone, who lied about Todd Leonard. I said “you guys”. It might have been that you simply relied on the word of your misinformed friends.

    Nevertheless, here are a few of the lies you propogated, whether knowingly or not:

    Lie #1. From Post#85 “Oh, it was Todd that intejected ID into the discussion by making it top and center of his campiagn platform, although it has since been releagted to the bottom of the list and his supporters have been trying to drop it like a hot potatoe.”

    This is so obviously a lie that it is ridiculous for me to respond. ID has occupies the same place in Mr. Leonard’s platform that it has occupied since the inception of his campaign. As for who made it “top and center” see Rick Outzen’s posts referenced in Post#15 and 17. Mr. Leonard has not dropped this issue and you know it. How assanine.

    Lie #2. “And I agree with Tom, this type of personal revelation is not necessary. The fact that Todd was sued by his ex-wife for back child support does not fit in with the discussions carried on this blog, as we have been attemmting to deal with issues and philosiphies.”

    Where do I begin?

    First, You do not “agree with Tom.” Tom condemned attacks against Jeff that were unfounded and ridiculous. YOU SAY you condemn such attacks and then commence attacking Mr. Leonard with several lies of your own:

    a. “Personal Revelation” – it was not a “revelation” as you say. Rather, it was FABRICATION! This issue has been addressed in Post#81 by Todd Leonard’s Very Close Friend.

    b. “The fact that Todd was sued by his ex-wife for back child support…” Sir/Ma’am (for your attacks are certainly not manly), this is downright slander. “The fact” you say! “The fact”? Are you kidding me! Check your “facts.” It is a bald faced lie and you know it! If not, you are very, very gullible.

    By the way, Bergosh and his supporters never apologized for that one.

    c. “…we have been attemmting to deal with issues and philosiphies.” Ma’am, you are delusional. Mr. Leonard has talked about issues. Mr. Bergosh’s supporters have talked about how he is a good “yes man” for Jim Paul.

    Lie #3: “It appears that they have run from the light of truth and logic.” Laughable. We’ll soon see who is “running from the light of truth and logic” and who loves the light and runs TO THE LIGHT!

    Having fun yet?

    Too many lies told by the other Todd-haters to address them all here.

  103. Toddite Says:

    Someone I know, posted a comment earlier concerning the owner of The Red Carpet Lounge. Why have you not posted that comment?

    You had no problem posting lies about Mr. Leonard’s “messy divorce” and “back child support.” These things were outright lies. The info about the particular candidate who owns the Gay and Lesbian lounge, The Red Carpet Lounge is not a lie. IT IS RELEVANT AND FACTUAL. You should post their comment and you know it!

  104. Very Concerned District 1 Voter Says:

    My Kid’s Dad,

    You said:

    “What happened to all the Toddites??”

    Well, I don’t know about all the other Toddites, but my comments keep getting sensored, courtesy of the Freedom-of-speech-loving Webmaster.

  105. Very Concerned District 1 Voter Says:

    In fact, I’ve posted two comments about the owner of the Red Carpet Lounge, who happens to be a candidate for School Board District 1. These comments named no one. It simply stated the facts. The owner of the Red Carpet Lounge is running for School Board in one of the districts. It is a seedy establishment and well known hot spot for the Memorial Day weekend crowd and the Pensacola Power.

    Interesting that neither of those peices were posted.

    Hmmm.

    The Red Carpet Lounge.

    Google it. Interesting indeed.

    I wonder what A Parent, District 1 Parent, My Kid’s Dad and others will say? Will they be happy? Or will they be back pedaling a bit? Time will tell.

    Oh well, lets try it again.

  106. Rick Outzen Says:

    Tom,
    Is there a reason you changed your posting name from Tom to Toddite to Very Concerned District 1 Voter?

    Depending on the content some emails are placed on hold and I don’t have time to immediately review every email the second they’re posted.

    However, I don’t intend for people to keep posting the same message under a variety of names and try to make the public believe there is a bandwagon on an issue. You’ve post five items bashing Bergosh…it’s not helping you as much as you think.

    Mr. Leonard’s divorce issues are public record. We’re checking into the Red Carpet Lounge report and will have something on it soon.

    I respectfully ask that both sides stay on the issues and stop the personal attacks.

    Thanks, Rick

  107. Tom Says:

    Ok,

    I’ve posted the comment on The Red Carpet Lounge TWICE! Not 5 times. I Posted as Toddite, yes. Because that is what we’ve been called. I posted as Very Concerned District 1 voter. And yes. I am very concerned. And yes, there is a bandwagon of folks who are equally concerned. You are not concerned that your man owns Red Carpet Lounge. Why did you not call on Bergosh and his supporters to retract their lies. The court records do not show a “messy divorce” and “back child support”. That is either a lie, or laziness on the part of the one who saw court info and misinterpreted it. There is no misunderstanding who owns The Red Carpet Lounge Mr. Outzen and you know it. You’ll here from several others I’m sure.

    Tom

  108. Very Concerned District 1 Voter Says:

    Mr. Outzen,

    Contrary to what you state above, I have not posted the Red Carpet Lounge story under different names. The two that you would not post were both written by me, Very Concerned District 1 Parent. I posted as Toddite, and again as Very Concerned District 1 Voter to see if you would post comments that did not concern the Red Carpet. Guess what… you posted them. In fact, both were immediately posted, sir. That is when I sent it in again. I thought maybe you didn’t receive it the first time around. I named no names in the earlier two posts. I do not care which one you post. But, you should post one of them.

    By the way, did you check the facts on the court records concerning Mr. Leonard? Hmmm. You and the other bashers owe him an apology.

    So, again, at best you printed things you misinterpreted. You guys were rejoicing over these things and when your errors were pointed out, NO ONE APOLOGIZED to Mr. Leonard and his family.

    You know full well that the Red Carpet story is true. Waiting to hear the spin.

    Just to reiterate, I emphatically did not post the same comment under a variety of names. If you have more posts than the two sent by Very Concerned District 1 Parent, then you must have a bandwagon of posters trying to say the same thing. I wrote 2 comments on the Red Carpet thing. And they were not nearly as long as the comment I made in response to My Kid’s Dad concerning “lies”.

    Sincerely,

    Very Concerned District 1 Parent, Toddite (as we are called) and Tom.

  109. Rick Outzen Says:

    News is news. The blog is the blog. I owe no apologizes to Mr. Leonard or Mr. Bergosh.

    This blog is an opportunity for you to sell your candidate to the public. I try not to get too involved in any of your posts.

    But be careful before you get what you ask for, you just may get more of an investigation than you, Mr. Leonard or Mr. Bergosh want.

    Mr. Leonard’s public records don’t show a simple divorce, but I’m not sure you or him want the divorce to be a campaign issue.

    You can email any official explanation of his divorce proceedings, and I will look at it.

    Mr. Bergosh, you and your supporters can email your explanation on the Red Carpet Lounge — I have a reporter verifying the accusation by TOM, but if it’s accurate, I would appreciate your response.

    Both candidates can email their positions and responses directly to me at rick@inweekly.net.

    Thank you.
    Rick

  110. Calm down everyone Says:

    Wow. I truly lament the loss of Gary Bergosh…He will make a great judge. I do not think he would be the only good board member, I just hate the things going on in this Blog. I really could care less that

    1. Todd had a divorce that got ugly due to child care issues. Lets face it, 50% of all marriages end in divorce, escpecially when you marry young and have kids young.

    2. That Jeff is a business man who owns property that is frequented by alleged homo sapiens. big deal. These people are everywhere and homo sapiens deserve to be treated like they are human, because they are.

    3. Tom (or toddite or troglodite or whatever you call yourself), for a supposed man of God, you seem to revel in the sordid details of peoples lives. When you go to church on Sunday, know that I will be praying for you, because your works betray your black heart. I am praying you recover.

    Lets stick to the issue of what is best for our children and stop judging the morality of everyone. It is an excercise in futility, as we all sin.

    Mr. Outzen, I implore you to not indulge the twisted fantasies of those on the Blog here and cover any story of divorce or real estate investment holdings. It will hurt the great news you really do and put you in the league of the Star or Enquirer.

    calm down everyone

  111. Cowboy Says:

    Here is the movie script I wrote about this blog

    Tom-

    I love you todd leaonard.

    Todd-

    Tom, I can’t quit you.

    Tom-
    Lets go drink at Jeff’s bar and discuss intelligent design.

    Todd-

    I sure hope Outzen’s undercover reporter is not there when we go.

    Tom-

    Well, we’ll just dress as girls and use the names a very concerned district one parent and toddite.

  112. Red Headed Flying Spaghetti Monster Says:

    I told you all to stop attacking. Why won’t you listen???? Here is another tale of the fateful ship (school district) and the wannabe’s who want to run it. Instead of talking about the children, everyone wants to discuss that jeff bergosh –

    1. was hit by a drunk driver in 1989

    2. owns real estate that is frequented by the sisters (what a bunch of racists)

    and that Todd –

    1. left west point early for unknown reasons

    2. has a 10 year messy divorce with child support issues

    3. has had allegations of domestic violence against his first wife (i know the officer’s name who responded, even though a report wasn’t filed)

    Stay focused on the issues…which are…wow…the children. The rest of this is mere gossip that is pointless.

    RHFSM

  113. Ruth Says:

    So funny, how when the TRUE story of a ‘small business’ owner comes out, how quick EVERYONE wants to return to the ‘children’?

    Correct! That is the point, unless the Clerk of Courts of Esc, the State of Florida and sunbiz.org is posting FASLE documents, the facts are the facts. (RHFSM, these ‘reports’ were recorded, not rumors)

    Personally, I do not want a person on the board making choices for our CHILDREN that is making a living on the gay lifestyle. If this was uncovered in a simple School Board race, how long will it take the Gay Activist to know and them put the pressure on the board to accept their views?

    Leave the schools to those who don’t make a quick buck on a lifestyle you can’t discuss at Sunday School.

  114. Not Quite alife Long Friend of Jeff Says:

    Tom:

  115. Terry Says:

    How is it that so many people know what goes on in a tavern in Pensacola? Ruth, have you ever been there? Should we get rid of all those officials that ever been to a tavern? Shall we just put a sign up saying if you have ever been to a resteraunt or store or tavern or barbershop you aren’t wanted here. Ruth/Tom are you sure you havan’t been to a place frequented on occassion by Gays? I find the lot of you very sick puppies. You aught to be ashamed of yourselves.

  116. Friend of Jeff, Not Quite Life Long Says:

    Tom:

    Ooooh!! You get the grand prize for figuring out that Mr. Bergosh owns some real estate.

    Here’s the “story”,(as Tom calls it above), as I know it. The Bergoshs recently purchased a piece of property on which is located a small strip of various businesses. And yes, one of those businesses is the Red Carpet Tavern. The property also includes other busineeses such as a pet store, a beauty parlor, nad I believe some sort of charity thrift store.

    The Bergoshs purchas various properties and businesses, improve the property, and then sell them for a profit. They do not run the businesses, nor due they bartend at the tavern. It’s what is known as a business enterprise.

    I am curious Tom, and Ruth, what is your point regarding the fact that this piece of investment property has a neighborhood tavern which may be frequented by homosexuals?

    Would you expect Jeff to go in there one night and smite them all down? Or would kicking them out on the street and taking away there source of income and livelihood satisfy you?

    Should Jeff question each and every customer of the pet shop, beauty parlor and other businesses to determne if any of them are gay, and if so shut them down also?

    Or is the real problem that it has a significant black clientel, Tom?

    The true bigot in you is starting to shine through brightly.

    Ruth, your comment regarding not being able to discuss “this lifestyle” in Sunday school is very enlightening. I am a Christian and attend a mainstream Protestant church. We have enough faith in our Saviour and ample love in our hearts to be able to discuss this “lifestyle” and many other issues which apparently you and you fellow parishoners are too weak and afraid to mention in proper comapny. That is sad, truly sad.

    Getting back to the Red Carpet Tavern, this is an old nigborhood pub that has been in existence for almost three decades. It is not only patronized by homosexuals, but by many heterosexuals as well. I, as a matter of fact, visted the tavern a few times in my younger years and enjoyed a few beers. And no Ruth, I am not gay.

    Oh, I was at Evenings in Old Seville tonight and I am sure some of the people in the park were homosexuals, so I guess you better attack the Pensacola Historical Society and the City of Pensacola for sponsoring an event that promotes homosexuality.

    Get a clue!!

    I hope that Todd distnaces himself from the hate-filled bigotry being posted on this blog. Or does Todd belive we should interrogate all of our kids to determine if they have homosexual tendencies so we can send them to a “special” school.

    You guys make me sick to my stomach. Go crawl back under the rock from whence you came.

  117. blah Says:

    Terry:
    These are Jeff’s own words from his website:
    “He is also a successful small businessman, having started up and operated seven different small businesses in California and Florida.
    Currently, and in addition to his duties aboard NAS Pensacola, Jeff and Sally own and operate a medium sized retail/ investment property in Pensacola.”

    If it is no big deal that they own and operate a Gay bar/tavern or whatever you want to disguise it as, then why didn’t he include it on his website? Why say it’s just a “medium sized retail/investment property”? Why has he tried to hide it and now attempts to treat it like it is a non-issue?

    You don’t have to go into the Red Carpet to know what goes on there. Google it on the internet and you will get your fill of information.

    Tom and Ruth are not the ones that should be ashamed of themselves.

    RHFSM-known facts vs. allegations……it’s a FACT per Sunbiz.org, Myfloridalicense.com, and the Clerk of Court websites that Jeff and Sally, indeed own the Red Carpet Lounge.

    FACT-Todd put on his website/bio that he left West Point after two years-if he didn’t want people to know that, he would have just said “I graduated from UWF”.

    Messy divorce ten years ago and child support issues–again, “life-long friend” responded to that earlier in this blog. Not true-anyone can go to clerk of court records to see the FACTS -“life-long friend’s” response states the truth regarding this. Todd paid his ex-wife on a monthly basis directly, not through the courts, and she wrote a letter to the court indicating such. Thus, in an EIGHT day period “PETITION FILED FOR CREDIT FOR DIRECT PAYMENT OF CHILD SUPPORT/ALIMONY”, “AFFIDAVIT FOR RECEIPT OF ALIMONY/CHILD SUPPORT PAYMENTS AND ATTACHMENT BY MS. LEONARD” and “ORDER GIVING CREDIT FOR DIRECT PAYMENT” are on the clerk of court records. A matter resolved in eight days.

    ALLEGATIONS of supposed domestic violence where no report was written or filed–Whatever.

    Your pathetic attempts to equate a failed marriage which is of a personal nature with the current solicitation across the state in homosexual advertising, propagation and profiting off of an immoral and devient lifestyle is absurd. This speaks directly to Mr. Bergosh’s extreme lack of judgment and to his holding of values polar opposite of those voters in district 1.

    Again, if it’s a non-issue, would he have a problem informing the voters and his supporters that he owns this type of establishment?

  118. Ruth Says:

    Terry:

    Where are the facts to your opinion, again? If you cannot handle the facts of the situation, then make up a story you can live with, after all, that is more fun.

    Sick puppies? Revealing facts? Sick puppies. Do the research!! I had no clue about the nature of this establishment until last night. Luckily for me, I know how to use Google…I suggest you figure it out and get back with me (we don’t live in China it isn’t censored).

    Living on the profit of a lifestyle which doesn’t agree with the image he is promoting, is just a lie. Stop passing the blame, it is what it is — sorry, it sucks when the facts aren’t all happy happy like we’d all want.

  119. Shelia Says:

    Why the bashing of the Red Carpet? I’ve been there many times and no, I’m not gay. I’m a married mom of two. The red carpet is a bar with two pool tables and usually a crowd of very nice people. It’s only vice is a karaoke stage that is sometimes inhabited by people who shouldn’t even sing in the shower, much less in public. :o)
    Ruth: Being gay is not a “lifestyle” anymore than your heterosexuality is. You didn’t “choose” to be heterosexual. Gays & lesbians do not choose either. Stop judging and condeming good people who you know nothing about. “Judge not, least ye be judged.”

  120. Glad I don't live in District 1 with all you crazy people Says:

    Big deal…the guy owns some real estate and a tavern leases it from him. Good for him; he’s an enterprising businessman. Effect on School Board qualifications: if any, positive. It shows the guy knows how to make money. Leave him alone already.

    By the way, my personal favorite is comment #104 – “a gay and lesbian lounge”…I didn’t know a lounge had a sexuality preference – I thought it was just a building.

  121. Friend of Jeff, Not Quite Life Long Says:

    Ruth, blah, other Toddites:

    No response to sepcifics in post #117 from you guys… not a suprize!

    By not listing every renter in his recently acquired real estate holding, Mr. Bergosh is not hiding anything. Neither does he state that the property contains a pet shop, beauty parlor and a charity thrift store.

    Can he get credit against the terrible “gay and lesbian” bar for the cute pets in the pet store and the good works associated with the thrift store?

    I bet you and your other small minded, hate filled sisters and brothers are just giddy over this supposed “story”. It is people like you that give Christians a bad name.

    I bet you guys are distributing your talking points as we speak to your merry band of like-minded bigots so you can have a concerted effort of spewing your hate filled rhetoric. I’d bet a million dollars that soon some of you will try to attack those supporting Mr. Bergosh and accuse them of being immoral also.

    Please answer my questions in #117 with specifics? If you are capable of doing such.

    Just to make sure I have Todd’s campaign platform down… he is for interjecting his approved version of ID into our childern’s education, his other top priority is to rename Winter Break to Christmas Break, he is a bigot, (based on the comments of his supporters above), and he beat Escambia H.S. in football when Emmitt Smith was there… WOO HOO!!! Sign me up for the kool-aid drinking team!

    Like I said earlier, your slimmy rock is waiting for you.

  122. Ruth Says:

    Shelia:

    Thank you for not judging me (?!?!). Don’t toss around half a scripture verse unless you will decide to debate the entire passage, which I hardly doubt this is everywhere the place to do it.

    Someone who cannot post their real name:

    When you own a liq. license, it’s more then a building.

    To the rest of the post, it is amazing how much people will say to cover it up (or make it ok?). To qoute this candidate ‘That dog just don’t hurt’ and I am sure many voters in Dis 1 will see it that way.

  123. Friend of Jeff, Not Quite Life Long Says:

    Ruth:

    So.. if I can interprept your somewhat illegible post…

    Owning a liquor license is differnt than owning abuilding… uh, yes you are correct, one is a tangible item the other is intangible. Are you implying that anyone that owns a business that has a liquor license is immoral?

    No one is covering up anything regarding his business venture.

    Do you mean this dog won’t “hunt”? Which candidate are you quoting?

    And once again, please respond with SPECIFICS, not your illogical ramblings?

    Have a great day!

  124. the other blah Says:

    Friend of Jeff- (6:53 am)

    If you are wanting SPECIFICS, please stay tuned as you and the rest of district 1 will have it broadcasted to them soon- When the other shoe drops…..even you will be jumping ship;)

    I really think it will be a shame to lose sight of this debate. The Red Carpet is not on trail, it is a legal operation, one that is sanctioned by law. I personally do not have an issue with it, or its patrons-

    My main issue- Jeff frequents churches ( I say frequents because he has been here for two years and is not a memember anywhere, I hear he attends Hillcrest???) and his website promotes his family values. But he owns part of the morgage and the liquor license to an establishment which has the occasional drag queen shows. How can you on one hand tell me you are a family values man, when you own this bar? I mean, I guess it boils down to the subjective meaning of “family values”- but I hardly seeing that lining up with District 1’s values-

    Has anyone heard from Jim Paul? Does he still support Jeff, including all his business ventures? If he still does, that should make for an interesting SOS race in two years- All future candidates will have to do is look into police reports from pertaining to the bar and paint JP has somone who condones such lifestyles. Of course that will be a stretch, but that is politics- Isn’t that right Steve and Ronnie? I would hate to be in your shoes….

    Also- has anyone heard from Jim Bailey or Bill Maloy? I wonder if they endorse Jeff’s “family values” too?

    In the same flow….did Gary know about this? I bet he feels horrible knowing he has pimped his brother out to all these pastors as a “family values” guy- Does he go back to apologize for not sharing with them exactly the nature of his business ventures? When this hits the fan, will this hurt his judgeship? Wow….too many questions

  125. Anonymous Says:

    What an amazing contrast in world views! I certainly hope that none of our school board administrators are involved in defending this “real estate” venture. Moral relativism is the REAL “slippery rock”.

    Very disappointing!

  126. Friend of Truth Says:

    I don’t personally know either candidate and I don’t live in District 1, but I can read. My research reveals the following:

    1. Jeff and Sally Bergosh have owned Tavern Enterprises, Inc. since August 2005.

    2. Tavern Enterprises, Inc. owns the liquour license in the name of Red Carpet Cocktail Lounge.

    3. Tavern Enterprises owns and operates (not a lease)the Red Carpet Bar and Lounge.

    4. Since the Bergoshes purchased and began to operate the Red Carpet Bar and Lounge the bar has continued to advertise on gay and lesbian websites, including LambdaBusiness.com, LesbiaNation.com, Navigaytion.com, GayBusinessWorld.com, gayyellowpages.com, etc.

    5. Since the Bergoshes purchased and began to operate the Red Carpet Bar and Lounge the bar has actively participated in local gay and lesbian activities including events during Coming Out Pensacola (October 2005) and Memorial Day Weekend (May 2006). These activites included “girls parties”, “drag contests” and “bikini contests.”

    I am not “judging” Jeff Bergosh (although the Bible says that believers are supposed to judge other believers in the area of sexual immorality, etc.), but as a conservative Christian I cannot support someone for the School Board that operates a business that demeans women and profits from promotion of homosexual activity.

  127. Horse Trader Says:

    Big News— Big News…..A gay man was spotted going to the Olive Garden and I heard a Lesbian was once seen at The Fish House. I hope this doesn’t mean Tom and all of his surnames doesn’t call for a Boycott of those two establishments. Oh and by the way, we are still trying to verify a story that Todd actually shopped at Joe Pattie’s not to long ago. Could it be that Todd is financially supporting a business owned by a known felon. What kind of family value is that? I’ll try to keep you all updated.

  128. Marvin Says:

    Tom, is it really true you guys are calling Jeff’s donors to inform them of Jeff’s sin. Why would you do such a thing? You people are so very sick. And your “wait till the other shoe drops” comment tells all of us how you seem to relish the opportunity to hurt others. Such joy you seem to have. God save us from you and your ilk. I hope the readers of this Blog are comming to understand how mean these people are. The irony? They want to be advocates for your children.

  129. Tom #2 Says:

    Tom, do you really want to begin a discussion on family values? Just a question.

  130. Anonymous Says:

    Family values? Everyone should welcome his entrepreneurial spirit. Calling donors? Why would they? I’m sure his donors have no problem with it.

    The man owns a lounge, big deal! But, do we want a Lounge owner as a school board member? That is the question.

  131. Joe (the original) Says:

    I finally figured out why Outzen is so dead-set against Todd and for Gary. BOTH Gary and Jeff Bergosh take out nice BIG ads in his mullet wrapper (IN Vol 6, No. 34, AUg 24). Makes good business sense to me – to talk good about those who throw some money your way and bad about those who don’t. In other words, don’t bite the hand that feeds you.

  132. Joe (the original) Says:

    I was supposed to include Jeff Bergosh as well as Gary in my previous blog of who outzen is in favor of. It’s difercult to tell the Bergoshes without a scorecard.

  133. anonymous Says:

    In regards to Jeff owning and operating a Gay Bar in P’cola, I tried to tell y’all back in comment #20 that Jeff was waaay to liberal for Escambia County. Maybe now y’all listen to me. And I gave you a link in #31 to show that he owned a drinking establishment in San Diego.
    Check it out.

  134. Terry Says:

    Why wouldn’t we want a lounge owner as a Board Member? We have quite a few highly respected community members that own taverns and lounges as stand alones or as part of their resteraunts. Which is worse Tom, owning a tavern or going to a tavern? Just curious of course.

  135. Friend of Jeff, Not Quite Life Long Says:

    Terry:

    Great question, but you won’t get a logical response from Tom.

    We just need to let them wrap themselves around this issue as they have ID and their bashing of our schools, teachers and kids.

    They have had their 15 minutes of fame with this latest mean-spirited attack.

    In case you haven’t herad, Jim Paul, Bill Maloy and Jim Bailey are still supporting Jeff irregardless of this bigotted attack by Tom and his small minded cronies.

    They realize that Jeff is a good person with high moral character and that this is only a real estate investement.

    Let them continue their personal attackes on Jeff and his family, they’re just driving more people away from Todd. Nobody wants another Vanette Webb/Hal Mason clone on the school board.

    I am going to chill out and enjoy my weekend, suggest you do the same Terry. Let Tom and his buddies roll around in the mud by themselves.

    Have a good one.

  136. Anonymous Says:

    How is it a personal attack to state a mere fact? They own a lounge, not a tavern or a pub where good food and good drinks are served, but a “lounge” where alcohol, bikini contests, and drag contests are the norm. This is no McGruires or Beef O’brady’s. Nor is it a “Neighborhood Bar and Grill” like Applebee’s. It is a dive pure and simple. They made a decision to buy a lounge. Whether or not it is advertised (which it is) as a gay and lesbian lounge is beside the point. Again, “do district 1 voters want a LOUNGE owner as their school board representative?” How is this an attack? Be proud of your entrepenurial spirit. Sale it and make a huge profit, then buy another “tavern”. “Tavern Enterprises” (the name of Jeff and Salley’s company) is a profitable business.

    “…Jim Paul, Bill Maloy and Jim Bailey are still supporting Jeff irregardless…”

    That says alot about the state of our school board and our society at large. Very disappointing. Our moral compass looks alot like Captain Jack Sparrow’s compass. It is way off kilter here. It is amazing to me that we so easily adopt such a moral relativistic approach to life.

    A divorce which happened 10 years ago, is not quite the same as someone purchasing a lounge for personal profit. No matter how you slice it, as Mr. Bergosh likes to say, “That dog won’t HUNT?”

  137. anonymous Says:

    Terry:
    It just shows a lot about Jeff’s character and what he would do to put a buck in his pocket. Now, what would happen if some one offered Jeff some money to see things their way!!! Would he accept it as a “business investment?!” And I think the only reason Jim Paul, Bill Maloy and Jim Bailey are still supporting Jeff is because of his brother Gary!!!

    And as for Todd’s divorce, it only takes one person to get a divorce in this state. The other has no choice in the matter. He could have fought it, but it would only hurt his children to to drag their mother thru the mud.

  138. nana Says:

    I have never posted here before, but I have been reading all of the posts faithfully for quite a while.
    I am confused about some things, and am hoping that you all can help me… There seems to be a lot of information flying around about Mr Bergosh and the “ownership” of an establishment that caters to the gay/lesbian community. I have heard that he does own an establishment like this and then I have heard that he doesn’t own such an establishment. Now the confusion is this….I have always understood that if someon’e name is listed in a legal document as one of the owners…then that means that you own it…correct??? Okay…why is Mr Bergosh denying that he owns this establishment? I have even heard that he has admitted to owning the establishment, but didn’t know that it was a gay/lesbian bar…but there seems to be a lot of information on the internet about Mr Bergosh’s establishment and some of the events that go on there…and recently too! Is this why he hides the name of his establishment and what goes on there because he’s afraid that not everyone will approve what goes on there? I just don’t know…why would you want to own something that has the potential of harming innocent young children, but want to run for a position that involves the education of young children?

  139. An Observer Says:

    Nana??? Isn’t that sweet!! ;~)

  140. Rick Outzen Says:

    I don’t read the comments on this post very often so I apologize for not responding to Comment #132 sooner.

    Advertising has no impact on the editorial content of the Independent News. We regularly lose and gain advertisers. You may not like what we write, but buying advertising in the paper won’t change a thing.

    As far as all the comments from the Bergosh and Leonard camps – you’re both making Doug Waters look better every day.

    You may be fighting for who gets in a run-off with him.

  141. temper-temper Says:

    Gosh….
    Is that the way you’re going to treat anyone who disagrees with you at a school board meeting???

  142. Jeff Bergosh Says:

    9/5/2006 11:45PM

    My congratulations go out to my two opponents in this race, Mr. Waters and Mr. Leonard. It was a hard fought battle, and a spirited race makes every candidate work as hard as they possibly can. I look forward to serving the people of district 1, and a special thank you goes out to everyone who helped me with the campaign, and most importantly to the voters of district one who came out and voted.

    Thank you.

    Very Respectfully,

    Jeff Bergosh
    Escambia County School Board District 1 Board Member (elect)

  143. Steve Sharp Says:

    Hey Tom:

    54% to 27%… it didn’t work did it??

    Pretty embarassing for you!!

    Have a great evening!!

  144. Anonymous Says:

    Jeff Bergosh and Jim Paul…the winners. Escambia County Schools and Escambia County itself, the losers.

    Pretty embarrassing for Escambia County Schools. Well, we got ourselves a good facilities manager. His experience with the Red Carpet Lounge should come in handy.

    A sad day for our Schools when we elect a man who has only been in P’cola for a little under 2 years and who is the proud owner of “Tavern Enterprises” and “The Red Carpet Lounge”. Name recognition and Gary’s Marine Corps picture helped Jeff out tremendously, especially in the stongly military precincts. Smart pick for Mr. Paul in that regard. But, he’ll feel the ramification of his selection in the years to come. Too bad for us.

    Mr. Outzen promised that, once investigated and confirmed, he would address Mr. Bergosh’s Red Carpet Lounge. Never happened. Not surprised. The News Journal ran away from the article as well. That’s to be expected I guess. Neither of these “news papers” are conservative by any stretch.

    People have a right to know that there newly elected District 1 School board rep, is the owner of Tavern Enterprises which owns the popular gay bar “The Red Carpet Lounge.” Had they known, undoubtedly there would have been a different outcome. Shame on PNJ and IN for not running this legitimate news story.

    53.9% is not exactly stellar, but, congrats anyway…Mr. Paul. Thanks for giving us this fine pick and thanks for twisting his arm. You’ve got your coveted facilities manager. What a shame. What an embarrasment.

    Sit back and watch enrollment in private schools continue to increase, while enrollment in our public schools continues to decline.

  145. Rick Outzen Says:

    The Red Carpet Lounge was a non-issue…just as Leonard’s divorce. The voters made their decision based on the candidates themselves and their positions on the issues.

    See comment #110: we asked both sides to respond to the Red Carpet Lounge and the divorce – neither sent me emails so we decided to drop it.

    The age of personal attacks winning an election may be over in Escambia County.

  146. Anonymous Says:

    Pointing out that a potential school board member owns a gay bar and invests in lounges is not a non-issue and it is not a personal attack. The man has only been in P’cola TWO years. Do you REALLY know him. You cannot not equate a 10 year old divorce with a present day ongoing business interest in Lounges. The divorce rate is over 50%. Lounge ownership is at .0001%. Not the same.

    Very disappointing Rick. I’d have thought you would have had the courage to report this. Your friendship with Jim clouded your judgement on this one. It’ll hurt Jim in the next election if he is still around. At a minimum, he should’ve pulled his endorsement from Bergosh.

  147. blah Says:

    Steve- (Floyd)

    Glad to see that you FINALLY are posting your name- we knew it was you…I hope that you have never posted while using State Computers. It would be cool to do a public records request on your county cell phone to see if you had called Jeff …. Of course, your buddies at the INweekly would never do an article, they seem to only “investigate” people they don’t like, but I digress-

    I am happy you did win, it probably takes the sting of defeat from the SOE race last go around.

    But why do you gloat?

    Leonard and Waters were fighting a six year name ID- Why don’t you put someone up against Miller, or Murzin? It would be the same differance and the same response. Any political consultant worth his salt would know it was hard to do, I am shocked that you take glee in the result.

    Why would you call out “Tom”? The “Tom” you are addressing is not the “Tom” you think you are addressing I can assure you. I wish you would have taken some lessons in class from your candidate, but that is a little TOO much to ask I am sure.

  148. blah Says:

    Rick-

    you comment about personal attacks being a thing of the past-

    you seemed to rail all over the SOC people giving them funny monikers, which could be interpeted as personal- but this may not be what you mean

  149. Steve Sharp Says:

    If Tom is not Tom???… than how do you know the Steve you are addressing is the Steve you think it is? Are we to assume you are truly an indivudual named “blah”?? So much mystery!!

    The post you reference above is directed at Tom, not Todd. Is it actually Todd who posted the somewhat conciliatory concession posted above.

    A question for you blah, do you consider it classy that “Todd” posted his concession to Jeff on this blog, but did not not take time to personnaly call Jeff… Hmmmmm!! Classy… Hmmmm??!!

    Two other questions – what does SOE stand for?? What do Miller and Murzin have to do with this race??

  150. blah Says:

    Lifelong Friend-

    I normally don’t enter into other people’s blog discussions- but here I go-

    On your note of sour grapes? How does a person act “bad and classless” because of sour grapes BEFORE losing an election? Your timeline is screwed up…

    When I read your blog, my overwhemling thought….you have a BLACK heart. You call him out on character assassination, all the while you are assassinating his. Does this seem strange to you? It does me, only a person with a BLACK heart could be blind to that.

    I don’t know why you have such a fetish with Tom, but the one you are talking about has never posted on this blog. I am not sure where you are getting you information, but …get the IP addy from Rick on one of Tom’s comments and run it…and I dare you to find its host being bellsouth. The email from the Tom you are talking about is from bellsouth. Ask your lifelong friend, he got an email from Tom and so did Gary and Jim. In fact, Gary was the only one with class to talk to Tom face to face and he (gary) apologized for the misunderstanding- But….again that maybe hard for someone who has such a BLACK heart to accept.

  151. blah Says:

    Steve-

    You ask how do I know that the Steve I am addressing is Steve I think it is? Of course I am assuming, but there are only two Steve Sharps on whitepages.com from Pensacola. Judging that Rick’s Blog is predominately popular with those around downtown and there is a Steve Sharp who works in the JP admin, also knowing that this same Steve Sharp was running/consulting Jeff’s campaign I am going on a limb and assuming you are he…am I wrong? If not…someone should quickly tell Steve that someone is using his name on a blog coincidently dealing with his former client, I think he would want to know that

    I am shocked that you don’t know what SOE (supervisor of elections)means. But it does exlpain how Greg lost the race though.

    I am not here to be an apologist for Todd, how he wishes to concede is his deal. I was referring to you directly- Your poor sportsmanship in gloating over a victory that was almost incumbentish was classless. Your explaination by tying another person’s action to defend your classless actions confirmed the original charge.

    The connection to Miller and Murzin- Murzin has name ID that is six years old….running against his name ID would be equivilant(sp?) to leonard and waters running against the six year old Bergoush name ID. The same with Miller- anyone running against them will experiance the same result that Leonard and Waters did.

  152. Ronald (Reagan/Arnold??) Says:

    My Dear blah:

    Assumptions?? I have found those to be quite unreliable. However, you may assume what ever you wish.

    Incumbentish?? Please provide the origin and definition for this word, as I can’t find it in the dictionary.

    Also, please respond to the “incumbent” issue you raised on the other thread and explain why several well-known, multiple term incumebents were booted out of office. How did their opponents manage to beat them, but Todd could not beat Jeff, (who by the way was not an incumebent).

    It’s been fun guys, but I belive we have expended way too much energy on the Toddites. I hope you guys have a wonderful life. I’m out of here.

    Take care

  153. Lifelong Friend Says:

    Blah,

    Wouldn’t expect you to understand. Don’t worry, it’s all over and your boy Todd got his lunch handed to him in a stunning fashion. You can dress it up all you want, but in a local election with three candidates, your boy Todd could not even muster enough support to force a run off. Tommy, you, toddite, troglodite, very concerned district one parent, and all the other Todd Leonard Kool Aide drinkers need to look in the mirror to figure out why Todd was defeated so soundly. Right wing extremists, black hearted, judgemental, scripture quoting hypocrites scare the s$%!t out of people!! Oh, one last thing, Blah, on the timeline. Your Boy Todd knew he was losing badly right before the election (kinda like Gallagher) So, like Gallagher going negative on Crist, Leonard went negative on Jeff Bergosh. Same result..Crist crushed Gallagher, and Jeff Bergosh trounced golden boy of perfection Todd Leonard. Also, don’t try to come in here and act unbiased…On this blog from day one, you have been a Leonard guy. I’m sorry that your man lost in such a stunning spectacular fashion. Look into the mirror and see why. (while you are looking in the mirror, you’ll see tommy boy coming upon you with some Kool Aide—enjoy it, savor it, while you wait for the next comet!!!

    Lifelong Friend

  154. blah Says:

    Lifelong-

    I do understand that you have issues, I can see that, but thanks for assuming I wouldn’t understand you-

    I am impressed that you see that I am “todd boy”…what clued you in?

    a sentence from you:

    Right wing extremists, black hearted, judgemental, scripture quoting hypocrites scare the s$%!t out of people!!

    Wow…I wish i was as openminded and nonjudgemental as you???!!!???

  155. Anonymous Says:

    Wow! Talk about anger and venom. Point out that the new school board member from district one owns a lounge (which happens to be a gay lounge) and you’ll be labeled the scum of the earth. Say that Jim Paul’s endorsement of this man (who very few know very little about) will hurt him in a future election and you are black hearted.

    It is all true. The man owns the real estate that the three businesses sit on. He owns the Red Carpet Business not just the building (although, he shouldn’t even allow a lounge in his retail space if he is truly a Christian– standing by for your guns to come out on this one). He does not own the pet store. And I, I’m not sure, but, I do not think he owns the beauty/tanning salon.

    As for my identity… I’m not Tom Thompson. I am Tom, however. And I am a very good friend of Mr. Leonard. I’ve know Todd for much longer than have the Thompsons.

    I’d tell you my full name, but, I do not want my friends to feel the axe from the Jim Paul camp — too many friends in the school system to take that chance.

    Since when is it wrong for Christians to judge Christians. Scripture (I know you hate that word “Life Long Friend”) commands that we judge one another in the body of Christ. I will tell you that Matt 18 was followed. Mr. Bergosh (Jeff, not Gary) was contacted privately and asked about this issue. He never repented or exhibited the humility that you mention. He defended his investment. I’m sorry, a Christian should not own a lounge PERIOD. whether it be a gay bar or a straight bar, How can it possibly be a God glorifying establishment.

    I am a pastor. You may call me a black hearted pastor if you’d like. But, pastors who speak the truth are rarely loved by those whose lifestyles are in conflict with Scripture.

    You hate the the truth. You hate the scriptures. You, are a God hater. You do not think that you are. In fact, even now, you are angry. You say, “I do not hate God. The gall of this ‘black hearted Tom’.” I agree that you do not hate your version of God. But, sir/ma’am, you in fact do hate the God of SCRIPTURE. Do you really think God approves of owning a “lounge”? Come on, be truthful, surely you know that it is not biggoted to say that it is wrong for a School Board Member who will be serving as a role model for our children, let alone his/her own children, to own a lounge. A lounge (be it gay or otherwise), that makes its living by promoting half priced drinks, bikini contests, drag contests and the like, and that advertises itself as a gay bar in the major gay advertising venues.

    Am I biggoted for saying these things?

    You judge me. You do not even know me. I share the same name as Tom. I share many of the same beliefs as Tom. I’m not near as good a father, or as good a preacher as Tom Thompson. But, I am a Christian. And the Scripture says (you are not going to like this, I know), that “everyone practicing evil hates the light, and does not come to the light, lest their deeds should be exposed.”

    I’ll give you a hint, that verse is in John chapter 3. It follows not long after a verse that I’m sure you are very familiar with, “For God so loved the world, that he gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” We all sit poised on the brink of hell. Yet God has offered a life line to you (Life Long friend) and to me (Tom). The life line is Christ Himself. And is belief merely a casual kind of “at a distance” sort of thing, or is it something more. To believe is to rest in Christ, and to trust in Him alone, repenting of your supposed “goodness” to say nothing of your sins, and follow Christ. A tree is known by its fruit (another Scripture for you to consider), a good tree does not bear bad fruit, neither can a bad tree bear good fruit (no matter how good it looks on the outside, the fruit of one who has not trusted in Christ is rotten). Nevertheless, God has offered a life line to whomever will trust in His Son, and only in His Son. Christianity is exclusive. It is open to whosoever will come (more scripture). But, only those who come to Christ on His terms can claim themselves to be Christian. Let no one fool himself, one may say he has faith, but, a “said” faith cannot save. Only real faith can save. Do not trust in your “birth right” (a term coined by Tyndale when he translated the Scriptures into English). Your first birth can’t save you. You need a second birth. And unless you’ve experienced this new birth you are lost and stand poised on the brink of the gaping mouth of hell itself.

    “You show yourself to be intolerant and unloving when you speak of a fiery hell”, you say? Well, Jesus Himself is unloving and intolerant then. For it was he and not me, who spoke of these things.

    More Scripture for you, “He who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on Him.” (from “John” again, 3rd chapter).

    You spew your venom toward a godly man, Tom Thompson. I do not claim the same (godly man) for myself. I know I’m a sinner, and a very big sinner at that. But, Tom Thompson expects this kind of activity from a lost and darkend heart. Christ warned His disciples of these things. John the Baptist had his head cut off from lost and dark hearted men. Jesus, Himself, was condemned to death by the likes of those who claimed to be religious and had an outward form of religion, but who on the inside were full of death and darkness.

    More Scripture, “A disciple is not above His teacher, nor a servant above his master. It is enough for a disciple that he be like his teacher, and a servant like his master. If thaey have called the master of the house Beelzebub, how much more will htey call those of his household! Therefore, do not fear them. For there is nothing covered taht will not be revealed, and hidden that will not be known…And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”

    These are Jesus’ words. Not mine. Not Tom Thompson’s either. So, I’d counsel Jeff, Life Long Friend, Ronald, Steve and whomever else may be reading this, to “LOOK IN THE MIRROR” of God’s word. It, and It alone, shows a man/woman what he/she truly is.

    “Repent and believe” is the scripture of the day. It is given to all. Who will heed it? No one, unless God opens their eyes and heart to see their own sinfulness and to behold the beauty of Christ.

    Owning a lounge is small potatos compared to owning your own righteousness as your hope for heaven. Make every effort to be like the Apostle Paul who said (more scripture),

    “being found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own…but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness whic is from God by faith.”

    We need God’s righteousness. Ours will not do. Ours will earn hell for us. His will bring heaven to us.

    The “Tom” comments on this blog are mine. I’m sure I erred along the way and was too brash and too angry at times. Forgive me.

    However, it IS WRONG for a Christian to own a lounge and invest in Taverns with a clear and clean conscience. Jeff portrayed himself and his wife as sincere Christians who “attend” Church. Jeff courted the vote of men like Gordon Godfrey, pastor of Marcus Point. Jeff claims to be a believer. Believers acknowledge their sin. Unbelievers deny that they sin. Which is it in this case?

    “Look in the mirror” of God’s word.(James 1:22-25).

    Tom (not Thompson).

    I doubt this one is published. Too much scripture I’m sure.

  156. blah Says:

    Ronald Reagan-

    I think I did cover those incumbents on the other thread- I do admit that Stidham is a difficult one to justify with my thinking, I guess she falls in the 10% of the incumbents who do lose.

  157. Anymouse Says:

    Rick:
    We all know the truth about Jeff, his endorsements by you, Jim Paul, Mason, and the other down-towners is not because of Jeff but his because of brother Gary. We all know Gary was hand-picked by Jeb to be on the school board to replace Webb. Then Gary’s wife was selected to take his place when he went active. So, Jeff was the logical successor to the throne when the down-towners picked his brother to run for judge. We all know the down-towners control the politics in Escambia County. They pick their candidates in their cigar-smoke-filled back room and then throw their full support and money behind them. Anybody else in the race doesn’t stand a chance. Another example of the cigar-smoke-filled back room politics was when Whitehead was TOLD to step aside so W.D. could be the comissioner in District 1 when he he had to step down as state rep due to term limits.


  158. ford f250 service manual

    ha-rd-po-rn-fu-ck 2834304 Relevant links for ford f250 service manual.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s