The other day, I wrote about Tim Ravndal, the Tea Party leader in Montana whose Facebook wall played host to a little good old fashioned anti-gay “humor,” when Ravndal and one of his friends joked about taking care of the gays by hanging them up for “decoration,” like Matthew Shepard. Lots of other people wrote about it too.
The right people got the message, it seems, because Ravndal has been fired:
The Big Sky Tea Party Association removed its president, Tim Ravndal, after inflammatory comments from his Facebook page surfaced in national blogs and local media.
In a press release, Board Chair Jim Walker of the Tea Party group based out of Helena, called Ravndal’s comments “unacceptable,” and said that the group learned about them Saturday, when an article about the comments was published in the Tribune.
The exchange between Ravndal and another Facebook user named Dennis Scranton was originally posted on July 23 on Ravndal’s personal Facebook page.
“The discussion in that Facebook conversation is entirely outside the position of the Big Sky Tea Party,” Walker said in the statement. “We continually make it known that we will not tolerate bigoted dialog, behavior or messages at our functions, our meetings or within our ranks.”
Roger Nummerdor, a former president and current member of the association’s board or directors, said Ravndal’s statements were “completely” outside the Big Sky Tea Party’s mission statement, which he said focuses on such principles as limited government and fiscal accountability on a government level.
Since we’re talking about Montana here, where the strains of libertarianism and conservatism that would inform their Tea Party movement have long had more of a Western “You Kids Get Off My
Lawn Ranch” flavor, I’m inclined to believe Ravndal’s peers probably were genuinely disgusted.
I could be wrong, and if this were Alabama, I’d probably be saying “way to save face!” Time will tell, then. We’ll see if Ravndal pops back up, having been shuffled to a different place of leadership in Greater Teabaggistan, or whether he’s shut out for good.
[h/t Joe Sudbay]