MassResistance is Harmful to Kenosha
MassResistance is an anti-LGBT hate group that works to ban books. Caleb Laitinen, Karen Mahoney and Blaise Mahoney have started a chapter in Kenosha. You can read about them here.
Here are some of the harmful tactics this group has engaged in to try to force KUSD and other Kenosha County school districts to ban books they don't like:
- The Libs of TikTok targeted 42 school districts in September alone, 11 of them received bomb threats. The Libs of TikTok began targeting KUSD schools over 'pornography in books' just days after MassResistance announced it had formed a group in Kenosha to remove 'pornography' from schools. The Libs of TikTok said it was targeting KUSD in response to a 'tip' from a concerned citizen. MassResistance shortly thereafter reported KUSD's Twitter account was disabled due to a cyber attack over books, saying the attacks would continue until the district complied with their demands;
- MassResistance and the Libs of TikTok target primarily books that contain LGBT content;
- MassResistance and Kenosha Moms for Liberty members have attracted Jose 'Rocky' Rodriguez of Gays Against Groomers to KUSD; last week Pulaski School District obtained a 4-year restraining order against Rodriguez for threats and harassment. The Pulaski Police Chief said they may file criminal charges against him for his activities against the school. Rodriguez attended the September KUSD school board meeting, sitting with members of both groups.
- MassResistance member Kevin 'Kelly' Hutchinson obtained the family contact information from over 12,000 KUSD students and says he plans to use that information to contact families about banning books. That is information KUSD families entrusted to the school district in good-faith that will now be used to advance a personal/ political agenda that KUSD families did not agree to.
- MassResistance called for the firing, even imprisonment, of KUSD leaders and staff over books to which they object;
- MassResistance members distributed leaflets in the community, falsely claiming the KUSD School Board president supports pornography in KUSD schools;
- MassResistance publicly attacked citizens on social media who disagree with their stand on banning books;
- MassResistance leaders falsely claimed to have filed a police report against the Kenosha County Democratic Party and the Forward Kenosha Facebook page for threats and harassment.
Kenosha GOP and Moms for Liberty Push for Book Bans in Public Schools and Target County Public Libraries.
Kenosha Moms For Liberty, an extremist group, and the Republican Party of Kenosha County have openly embraced MassResistance, with all three groups sharing each other's social media posts and joining in the call to ban books from public school libraries over their claims of pornography. Kenosha Moms for Liberty and the Republican Party of Kenosha County have even called for the banning of books from Kenosha County libraries, as well as the removal of displays they don't approve of and posters they don't like. You can read more about how they are involved here.
These Elected Kenosha Republicans Have Openly Embraced Attacks on Public Libraries and Book Bans:
County Board Supervisor Tim Stocker
Conservative Kenosha County Supervisor Tim Stocker has repeatedly criticized Kenosha County public libraries over books he objects to and displays and posters he doesn't like. While the County Board has no authority over public library content, Tim Stocker is now circulating a resolution based on his false claim there is pornography in the public libraries:
KUSD School Board Member Eric Meadows
KUSD School Board member Eric Meadows has been openly supportive of book banning efforts in Kenosha, posting in support on his Facebook page. He also openly touts his support of Moms for Liberty, of which he is a member. Moms for Liberty are one of the groups driving book bans in Kenosha, and across the country, as well as supportive of anti-LGBT legislation. Moms for Liberty worked to elect Meadows to the school board. MassResistance regularly shares Meadows' Facebook posts about banning books on their Facebook page.
Eric Meadows back row glasses, pictured with other members of Moms for Liberty
Eric Meadows with the head of Kenosha MassResistance
KUSD School Board Member Kristine Schmaling
KUSD School Board member Kristine Schmaling is also a member of Moms for Liberty and supportive of books bans:
Kristine Schmaling in white, pictured with other members of Moms for Liberty
Kristine Schmaling with the head of Kenosha MassResistance
Kenosha County Board Supervisor and Wisconsin Assembly member Amanda Nedweski
Amanda Nedweski, pictured on the right in red, was the founder of Kenosha's Moms for Liberty chapter. A Republican, she was elected to those public offices in part due to media attention she gained leading her Moms for Liberty group in protesting COVID protocols. School board meetings were forced to be canceled due to the disruptive activities of the Kenosha Moms for Liberty group. Nedweski supports anti-LGBT legislation in Wisconsin. She was removed as Chair of the Public Health Committee of the County Board earlier this year after a disagreement with the Republican County Board Chair.
Amanda Nedweski, founder of the Kenosha Moms for Liberty
Where Do These Other Elected Republicans Stand Who've Been Pictured with MassResistance?
Kenosha Republicans Who Have Largely Remained Silent on the Harmful Tactics of MassResistance
Whether or not these Republicans were aware of MassResistance's harmful and divisive tactics in the community when they posed for a photo with that group's leader is unknown. However, it is time these Republicans take a stand either in support of or against MassResistance and their harmful tactics in our community.
We are asking these Kenosha elected Republicans to make a public statement about this organization's tactics. We are including their contact information so you can ask them where they stand as well. There is a sample of language you can use when you contact them at the end of this blog.
Next year is an important election year. We need to understand whether these Republicans support the harmful tactics of MassResistance.
Contact these elected officials for a statement:
Representative Bryan Steil
Republican Rep. Bryan Steil poses with the head of Kenosha MassResistance
Contact Rep. Bryan Steil for a statement regarding the harmful tactics of MassResistance: Email Bryan Steil
Republican County Board Chair Gabe Nudo
Republican County Board Chair Gabe Nudo with the head of Kenosha MassResistance
Contact Chair Nudo for a statement regarding the harmful tactics of MassResistance: Email Gabe Nudo.
Republican County Board Supervisor Brian Thomas
Republican County Board Supervisor Brian Thomas with the head of Kenosha MassResistance
Contact Supervisor Thomas for a statement regarding the harmful tactics of MassResistance: Email Brian Thomas.
**Sample language for an email to these Republican elected officials**
You have been photographed with the leader of the Kenosha MassResistance group recently. MassResistance has threatened our school leaders, supported cyber-attacks against public school social media, is spreading misinformation about our libraries, about school leaders and has particularly targeted books for the LGBT community.
I am writing to you with 3 questions:
- Do you support the tactics of MassResistance?
- Do you support our public school libraries, teachers, administrators and leaders?
- Do you support banning books?
Your answer to these questions may be shared publicly.
Thank you for your time.
Please Share the Responses You Get from these Representatives
If they do not respond, that is a sign of tacit approval of the organization and we encourage people to publicly share that information as well.
We Need to Elect Representatives that Reflect the Values of the Community
**NOTE: this blog was originally posted with two photographs of Alderman / Mayoral candidate Dave Bogdala with MassResistance leader, Caleb Laitinen. He has informed us he is not a Republican and issued this statement repudiating MassResistance, so we have removed the section with those photographs:
"I do not know the individual who is referenced in a selfie I took while campaigning for Mayor in Kenosha. I was also unware and never heard of mass resistance movement and had to google the group to learn what they are. After reading the information, it is obvious to me that they are a hate group and have no place in Kenosha or anywhere in this country. Also, regarding the designation of me and my campaign as "Republican" is not accurate. I have not been a member of either party for many years. Alderman and Mayor are non-partisan seats and I have always conducted myself in that manner and will always in the future. I would appreciate you taking those pictures and statements about me down as they do not reflect my beliefs or my values." -Dave Bogdala
We will be happy to alter its contents as we hear from other elected officials.