Michael Humphrey, a candidate for Fairbanks North Star School Board, says that protecting children shouldn’t be controversial. During the Golden Days Parade last weekend, his gigantic float, which was of an inflated walrus complete with tusks, came complete with a sign with just one word: “Johnny.”
When the judges realized that Johnny is the star character in a book by Matt Walsh that asserts gender sanity, rather than gender ideology, one judge went into grievance mode. She took to Twitter to rant and rave that neither she nor the other judge would have have voted for the walrus had they had only known.
An offended person from Ester wrote a letter to the Fairbanks News-Miner, saying that such a float has no business in the Golden Days Parade.
Welcome to politics in 2023. But Michael Humphrey, the new candidate in his first run for elected office, is not backing down. He issued a statement explaining what he intended with the float:
“This Saturday I walked with my wife and six children in the Golden Days Parade. I displayed a giant inflatable walrus with a name tag that said “Johnny”. This float was based on a bestselling kids’ book by the same name that currently sits at almost 8,000 reviews and 4.9 stars on Amazon,” Humphrey wrote.
“There was no dog whistle here – no one was hiding the ball. One of the judges commented online after they learned about the story of Johnny the Walrus that they ‘had no idea’ and ‘both feel sick.’ It’s illuminating that the intent of the judges was not to award the best float, but merely the best float with which they agreed,” Humphrey continued.
‘If they can’t expect a political float to have a political message, there’s not a lot that can be done about that. Regardless, we all had a great time and received hundreds of compliments along the route.
“Since then, the float has proven to be controversial to some, and you may be asking yourself, ‘what is the point?’ The point is to illustrate the absurdity (or if you prefer, uncertainty) of gender ideology and ensure that it does not get taught in schools.
“It is commonsense to say that we should not create an environment where girls must endure boys who believe they are girls in their bathrooms and in their sports. Schools are a place where children should learn core subjects. They are not a place to be confronted with a new values propositions from positions of authority that could very likely contradict what they are being inculcated with by their parents.
“Are there children who believe that they are the sex or gender that is opposite of how they were born? Absolutely. However, one can be both sincere and wrong. It doesn’t make them evil or less deserving of respect, it just makes them sincerely wrong. This is the Christian view and the loving view. You don’t have to be religious to realize that it also happens to be the commonsense view.
“Radical gender theory making its way into the classroom is a fundamental issue for me in this campaign, but it takes more than that to serve on the school board. I also support creating more opportunities for parental involvement in school. Homeschooled kids generally outperform their peers in public schools because the parents of homeschoolers have more of a connection to and investment in the outcomes. By and large, homeschool parents are not professional educators. Most parents can’t afford to homeschool their kids, but there is something we can do to approximate the environment. Schools need to create more opportunities for parents to volunteer. Whether it’s for special events, lunchroom or recess duty, or perhaps curriculum review, etc., the more buy-in we can get from parents in their children’s education, the more outcomes will improve.
“Another key area of concern is targeted budget control. When it comes to reducing spending and balancing the budget, nothing should be off the table. There isn’t one key item to cut. There is no panacea enacted by a single hard choice in order to keep district spending within limits. There are hundreds of hard choices, each seemingly inconsequential on their own (i.e., CEC relocation) but adding up to real savings and meaningful realignments. Reducing administrators and allowing teacher salaries adjusted for cost of living to at least keep up with inflation should be the goal. Throw in the costs associated to reach the goal of smaller class sizes and maybe only hundreds of hard choices was a underestimation.
“The bottom line is, there is nothing ‘-phobic’ going on here. There is no exclusion of individuals or calls to discriminate. All parents’ first priority should be advocating to protect their children in the best ways they know how. Pointing out that schools should be a place of academic learning and not centers of indoctrination is not controversial to the overwhelming majority of people in the Borough,” Humphrey concluded.
Since word of his Johnny the Walrus parade entry spread around the country, the author of the best-selling “Johnny the Walrus” featured the humorous event on his podcast, and the story at Must Read Alaska has been ready by thousands of people around the world, featured on the Bongino Report, The Daily Wire, and several other outlets.
You can learn more about Michael Humphrey at his campaign website.