Just last Wednesday was Valentines Day’s, but the ghouls over at E City Beat ✅ seem stuck in the first act of The Grinch. Great Falls faces a lot of problems right now, from a housing crisis to a police force without mental health services support. Yet, “ECB Staff” which is typically code for “Commissioner Rick Tryon” decided they needed to release a hard-hitting report on two local philanthropists.
Keeping people angry and ignorant is a key Republican tactic. So, although dystopian, it should be no surprise that Republicans have turned their ire towards libraries. Free information, community space, help with things like taxes and legal paperwork, all of these services infuriate the right. Frankly, the less you read, the more likely you are to vote down ticket Republican. So while libraries are, undoubtedly, a-political entities simply serving the public good, they are now the #1 target for idiots like the staff at E City Beat.
Enter the “Vote Yes” campaign. This privately-funded initiative worked to promote the library levy which passed last summer. Not a single taxpayer dollar was used for this initiative. The library levy passed, and Commissioner Tryon has been going after the library ever since.
Most recently, ECB decided to drudge up the records of who donated to the “Vote Yes” initiative. This information is indeed public record, but what confounds this author is that ECB would attempt to shame local citizens for their philanthropy. Charitable giving to institutions like libraries and schools (and the groups that support them) should be the subject of praise and appreciation. In another journalistic faceplant, ECB even revealed that the two families donated to the Great Falls Public Schools Foundation and the United Way of Cascade County respectively. The horror! The shame! The selfless sharing of wealth!
ECB’s ire towards these donors is particularly funny considering their vocal support of the failed safety levy. The media campaign for that levy was NOT based on private donors. Instead, Tryon spent tens-of-thousands of OUR tax dollars to try to sway the voters. He failed. You still paid the price.
However, if ECB really wants us to start getting into who is donating to causes, it seems fitting we look at the ANTI-library campaign. You know the one. They had several billboards all around town. They falsely claimed that the library promoted pornography and drag queens. They also used the “No” symbol twice, grammatically negating their claims and reminding us of the importance of literacy.
The main funders of the anti-library campaign, the group “Liberty and Values MT,” were the Duncans. They donated a total of $3987.00. The Duncans are also the owners of Happy Tails Lodge. If you either support libraries or simply don’t believe in misinformation and homophobia, then consider NOT boarding your pets at Happy Tails. If you’re pulling your pet from their services, be sure to let them know that E City Beat’s article is the reason you’re taking your business elsewhere.
Also of note, Lola Sheldon Galloway donated $200 to the group. Considering the Galloways are millionaires, it appears they weren’t wholly committed to this project. Perhaps they considered it a bad investment? Importantly, Beth Cummings ALSO donated to the campaign. Cummings is the latest hire at the elections office. More on this clear conflict of interest in a forthcoming article.
I anticipate ECB will now claim this information is all “publicly available” and perhaps try to claim their article had no ill-intent. That’s bullshit. ECB wanted to make these donors uncomfortable, and likely wanted to turn public opinion against them. We trust that Great Falls citizens are smart enough to realize that philanthropy towards groups like United Way, the Great Falls Public School Foundation, and the library is a GOOD thing. The only time such donations are shameful is when they’re supporting groups that trying to cause harm and spread hate- groups like Liberty and Values MT.
Since we can’t count on our actual Commissioners to say this, we will instead.
THANK YOU to the generous donors that supported our library. We appreciate your use of private funds to support this great cause. You saved the city money. In stark contrast to the safety levy, you didn’t rely on taxpayer dollars for your initiative. Our city is better when the library is fully funded. Our city is better when those with the means support fantastic organizations like the United Way. We appreciate that you care enough about others to help support these wonderful institutions. There is NO shame in philanthropy, and we sincerely hope that you won’t be dissuaded from future donations because of ECB’s pathetic attempts to shame you. Great Falls is better when we take care of each other. We appreciate you being part of that.
Read about our prior interactions with this confederacy of dunces here: https://wtf406.com/2023/04/wtf406-forces-anti-library-group-to-change-its-name/
Read about Tryon and friend’s history of attacking the library here:
Here’s verification of the donors to the anti-library campaign. This, too, is public record.
These screenshots show the donations discussed above. You can also see the records for yourself by searching Liberty and Values MT here: Campaign Electronic Reporting System (dashboard) (mt.gov)
An out-of-state NeoNazi named Christoper Pohlhaus finds himself without anywhere to get his pump on. After learning that Pohlhaus has been frequenting a local Bozeman gym, What The Funk reached out to the business. It appears we weren’t the only folks to voice concerns. By the time the business responded, poor Mr. Pohlhaus was no longer a member of the facility.
Some might question if it’s wrong to target Neo-Nazis to limit their access to society’s little pleasures. Short answer- Fuck no. Long answer- Neo-Nazis are violent and they preach violence. They venerate Hitler, and seek the extermination of groups they hate. It is not only okay to exclude them from public life, it is necessary. Actions have consequences. Threatening minority groups is never acceptable, and one way we push back is by creating social and economic consequences for such behavior. This resistance is intended to make it harder for Neo-Nazis to spread their hate and violence.
Further, businesses operate for-profit. It is to their benefit to have policies and procedures that prevent liability. Every business should have measures in place to protect their customers and employees from discrimination. That surely means not allowing in a Neo-Nazi who has a well documented history of threats and harassment, including screaming slurs at people, to use their facility.
In their response, the gym also noted that Pohlhaus has left the area. We can’t confirm this information, but heartily hope it to be true. Montana has no room for Nazis.
Read about Polhaus’s prior NeoNazi activity here: https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-news/neo-nazis-florida-march-1234817532/
The times, they are a…fucking disappointment mostly. But there is one silver lining. Thanks to the internet and misunderstood geniuses like Elon Musk (the self-driving car of CEOs) we are now all privy to the VERY BIG FEELINGS of men who like football.
Remember the good old days? When Republicans were angrily burning their nikes and pledging an NFL boycott because a Black man had an opinion. Well, Meltdown Season has returned, and this time the threat is none other than the lovecraftian horror known as female pop music.
Taylor Swift is in her athlete era. Suddenly, a whole swath of people who never gave a fuck about carbon emissions are out holding hands with Greta Thunberg. What does it take to make a Republican “go woke?” A little blonde pop star.
But this reaction to female fandom isn’t new. We see it whenever a woman is too much of something- too loud, too honest, too comfortable in spaces reserved for men.
As a Queer woman, I am contractually obligated to follow at least one sport. Long ago, I had an ex who liked the Raiders. Long story short, left the guy but kept the team. Now, each year I get up to 3 CEUs (Masters, Bisexuality) for fulfilling my football viewing obligations.
Of all the things I do that piss men off, having a football team is near the top of the list. Even expressing such a preference typically comes with an entrance exam. Wear a black and silver t-shirt and a man will materialize to ask you if you even know the name of the quarterback. A similar effect occurs when a woman wears a band t-shirt. The arenas may be slightly different, but the problem is the same. A “woman” has entered a space that is owned by The Men. Allowing women in that space inherently devalues it. Whenever women like something en masse, the cultural narrative quickly deems that thing as frivolous, unserious, and other updated versions of “hysterical.”
Never in my wildest dreams did I expect that this year Taylor Swift would be able to make the cringiest NFL fans so mad that they would be forced to devote their loyalty to….San Francisco?
Yes, America’s Queerest City is getting the love and support of Republicans across the country. Suddenly, men who love to own the libs are using phrases likes “carbon footprint” and “billionaire class.” While musical taste is subjective, I think we can all appreciate the joy of watching stupid people get angry. And with that goal in mind, Taylor Swift is this year’s MVP (Most Valuable Popstar).
The Gallatin County Republicans has caused quite a stir with an invitation to their annual fundraiser dinner. You may have already seen it circling online. If not, we’ve included it below. We think this invitation pretty much speaks for itself.
Read the Democratic Party’s response here: https://www.montanademocrats.org/news/mtgop-calls-hundreds-of-thousands-of-montanans-peasant-families
“If you are a God fearing, truth loving person, do not patronize this place.” Beware, dear reader. The Queers are out to get you caffeinated. The cat’s out of the bag. Shortly after stealing the rainbow from God, the LGBTQ+ community moved on to the next logical step, creating safe spaces in the form of coffee shops. We want to supply you with that extra pep in your step you need to sin.
Lucky for all the God fearing, truth loving people out there, Luna Coffee has finally gotten their comeuppance. One man is on a mission to protect the people of Great Falls from the gay agenda (iced coffee and board games) and he is sending a LOT of emails. He’s also calling, leaving messages, and review-bombing Luna on google and yelp. This dude REALLY hates gay people, and he definitely doesn’t want to drink their coffee.
A few favorites from his correspondence include his assertion that, “I have heard this establishment is “lgbtq” owned. 2024 is going to be different for you.” Why is “lgbtq” in quotation marks? Are you implying we aren’t real, like Santa Claus and the trickle-down economy? Honestly making me feel ethereal, and I like it.
Later, he writes, “Do NOT ENDORSE sexual perversion and degeneracy in the public square!” What I like here is the phrase “in the public square!” Feels like a real throw back. This man wants to put someone in the stocks and he is not afraid to show it.
In his One-Star review written under the name “Mr Sonoranbird” he asks, “What side of the conflict of this insidious ideology will you be on?” Fair question. As a bisexual, I refuse to choose sides.
I can confirm that Luna Coffee is indeed an LGBTQ+ owned business. (I am sharing this with permission, which should always be the practice!) Last time I checked, they had an extensive tea and coffee menu, but no visible Gay Agenda anywhere. Rather, Luna is a local business that contributes significantly to our community, both as an employer and as an accessible community space.
It’s easy to dismiss people like “Mr Sonoranbird” as stupid. Often well-meaning folks suggest that the recipients of discrimination should shake it off, not let it affect them, don’t even respond. But that’s not how it works. It doesn’t stop discrimination, and it doesn’t acknowledge the very real effect these kinds of messages have on people. The truth is, messages like this often escalate into real world danger. Along the way, they make people feel unsafe and unwanted. One-star reviews can indeed drive down business, and could ultimately result in jobs lost.
Community means protecting one another from shit like this. So let’s not dismiss this. Instead, let’s show Luna Coffee some support. Here’s what I’m asking. Over the coming weeks, make an effort to stop by Luna Coffee. Try something new on the menu. Snap a selfie, send it to us, and we’ll compile them to share in an update. Leave Luna a good review. Help us further the gay agenda of creating a community that stands up for one another.