Bradlee Dean is well-known as a controversial pastor. Last May, the Christian preacher, who is often described as "anti-gay," drew the ire of politicians and the public, alike, when he questioned President Barack Obama's faith during a prayer he delivered on the Minnesota House floor.
In his latest flap, Dean is drawing attention for a head-turning speech and performance his ministry delivered at Dunkerton High School in Dunkerton, Iowa.
TPM has more about the events that unfolded at the school:
Dean’s band — Junkyard Prophet, a Christian heavy metal/rap group — performed at Dunkerton High School on Thursday and then split the audience up into several groups: boys, girls and teachers. They reportedly told the girls that they would have mud on their wedding dresses if they weren’t virgins, advised them to take a submissive role in their marriages and showed images of aborted fetuses.
Those at the school who walked out on the program were mocked and shouted down, the WCF Courier reports.
The LaCrosse Tribune adds more:
Everyone anticipated the message from Junkyard Prophet, a traveling band based in Minnesota, to be about bullying and making good choices. Instead, junior and senior high students at Dunkerton High School and faculty members said they were assaulted by the group's extreme opinions on homosexuality and images of aborted fetuses. [...]
During the breakout session, the young men learned the group's thoughts on the U.S. Constitution and what one Prophet referred to as its "10 commandments." The leader also showed images of musicians who died because of drug overdoses, including Elvis Presley. [...]
The girls, meanwhile, were told to save themselves for their husbands and assume a submissive role in the household. According to witnesses, the leader in that effort also forced the young ladies to chant a manta of sorts about remaining pure.
Following the event, some students said that their peers left crying and Dunkerton Community Schools' Superintendent Jim Stanton claims that the Junkyard Prophet's (part of the You Can Run But You Cannot Hide Ministry) "opinion about intolerance" isn't in line with the district's teachings. Apparently, the band had come years before and their past message, according to district staff, was much tamer.
Below, watch the abortion portion of the address, which covers infanticide, Planned Parenthood and offers some other graphic themes and pictures (caution: graphic images):
And here's the portion on homosexuality:
On Thursday, following the presentation, students reportedly passed around a petition in an attempt to ban anyone like Dean from coming to the school to present or perform again. The district is responding to the incident by providing students with counseling, pledging to come up with an action plan to better vet speakers and presenters and trying to recover the monies provided to the band. Stanton pledged that this sort of debacle "will never happen again."
On Monday, the WCF Courier also reported that the group is planning to return to the community to clarify its statements, the images it showed and its methods. Junkyard Prophet members feel that their overall message and intentions were misunderstood. However, the only venue -- the Dunkerton Community Hall -- is unavailable (the board of directors voted not to allow the groups to use it) and the high school won't permit them back to speak.
Based on the above videos, do you think the presentation went too far? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section.