Bonnie White’s American Carnage

Bonnie White paints a dark picture of America in her video monologue that appeared on a now-deleted web page before she ran for mayor. She calls it, “Where I Grew Up,” and compares modern society to her picture of an ideal community, condemning modern practices and social norms, and harking back to a time when she felt that America was closer to her vision of God. It’s a “holier than thou” rant about how modern culture has gone off course, and how times were better back then… assuming you were a middle-class, white, heterosexual Christian.

In the video, she proclaims the following was true about where she grew up, and suggests that current society has gone off-course:

  • Sunday was for church, not football or shopping
  • You knew who was a boy and who was a girl by the way they dressed
  • There was Christian prayer in school
  • Teachers didn’t rape kids
  • No homosexuality was portrayed on television
  • No divorce
  • No children outside of wedlock
  • Dads worked and moms stayed home to raise kids
  • No selling of liquor
  • No tattoos
  • Parents didn’t drown their kids

Of course, almost all of the things she listed did, in fact, exist or did transpire when Bonnie grew up. But probably because she was a somewhat sheltered, white, middle-class, heterosexual, Christian woman living in a small town, she was closed off from the major movements of the 60s, 70s, and 80s… namely Civil Rights Movements, Women’s Movements, and Gay Rights Movements. Either she was unaware of or willfully ignorant of those changes that started taking place while she grew up in the 1960s.

But this video wasn’t published in the 1960s, 70s, or even 80s when many of these new cultural norms were still growing and changing. This video was published around 2014, around the time she decided to run for public office. By then, most of the civil rights we take for granted today were in place, gender roles had evolved, and Will and Grace had already been off the air for eight years.

Published in 2014, it makes one wonder about her values, motives, and wishes for the future of Kerrville and the future of our country. Kerrville, along with the rest of the country, is made up of people of all stripes… Black and white, gay and straight, traditional and modern, progressive and conservative, religious and agnostic, rich and poor, married and divorced, tattooed and not. When you watch this video, do you feel that this is a person that can lead by inclusion, and lead all of the diverse parts of our community? Will she be guided by what’s best for all of Kerrville, or just the portions of the community she approves of?

Near the end of this video, she quotes a verse from Psalm 9:17, “The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God.” She says, “We have hell in our schools, in our homes, and our government. Where will it all stop?” This is not the Kerrville I know and love.

When you vote beginning on April 23 for early voting, or on Election Day May 5, ask yourself which is the real Bonnie White — the one from her advertisements or a relic from a different era that seeks to impose her specific religious and cultural values on the rest of the world?

I support Bill Blackburn for Mayor and I hope you’ll vote for him with me on Election Day.