Douglas: Gresham must end candidacy

This is press release from State Sen. John Douglas on Newton County school board candidate Don Gresham (Erick mentioned him the other day). Douglas is also a former member of the Newton County School Board.

State Senator John Douglas (R-Social Circle) who is Chairman of the Newton County legislative delegation today strongly objected to the candidacy of Horace Don Gresham to the Newton County Board of Education, District 2. In 1988, Gresham was convicted of sodomy in DeKalb County involving a boy under the age of 14. In 1999, he was charged with public indecency in Newton County. In the most recent case, Gresham admitted his guilt and voluntarily completed a pretrial diversion program in lieu of prosecution.

“The situation involving Horace Don Gresham qualifying to be a candidate for the Newton County Board of Education is unacceptable and must be reversed. Gersham should immediately withdraw his name from consideration,” said Senator John Douglas, (R-Social Circle). The thought of having a person who is a convicted pedophile and who engaged in an act of indecent exposure represent any part of Georgia on a local school board boggles the mind and defies logic.

After pleading guilty to one count of sodomy, Gresham received a 12 year sentence, the first to be served in prison and the other 11 years to be served on probation.

“Gresham has shown himself to be a repeat criminal offender, putting one of things we treasure most at risk,” added Sen. Douglas. “He is unfit to hold a position of trust associated with our children.”

Looking to the future, Douglas said, “The first bill I introduce in the 2009 session of the Georgia legislature will be to prevent this from happening again. We must move quickly to prevent a recurrence of this episode and to protect the school children of our state.” The idea that a member of the local school board who is entitled to visit schools at will being a pedophile is not something we can tolerate. The Newton County legislative delegation will take the lead in January to ensure this never happens again.”

17 comments

  1. StevePerkins says:

    Obviously, I agree with Douglas in that a pedophile shouldn’t serve on a school board. However, I disagree with Douglas on his apparent belief that the voters of his county are too stupid to vote accordingly.

    There have been a couple of threads this week about what parties should do to ensure that the “wrong people” don’t get ballot access. For pedophiles, they stand on firm ground… for people running in GOP primaries who have donated to Democrats in the past, their ground is far more shaky.

    No matter how you slice and dice it, this sort of thing is a non-issue unless you take it for granted that voters are complete idiots (as I’m sure most of the state legislature does). If you can vote, you should be able to run. If you can vote in either primary, you should be able to run in either primary.

    Voters will take care of instances like this, I assure you… so by all means milk the issue for its free publicity, Sen. Douglas, but don’t actually do anything stupid.

  2. Decaturguy says:

    Senator Douglas does not think the voters are idiots, he is an idiot, which he has not only shown repeatedly on this blog, but by, as you said, taking an opportunity to milk every hot button issue that comes along for political gain.

    But we now know that John Douglas doesn’t like pedophiles. Oh, thank goodness he is in the State Senate!

  3. rptrcub says:

    Good God in heaven. I hope that any such bill would get A) bipartisan support and B) passed in spite of GOP infighting that might derail next year’s session. (Richardson, Cagle, Johnson, Perdue: y’all play nice, please.)

  4. Chris says:

    Honestly a child-rapist would do less damage than the Clayton School Board. How many kids lives could a child rapist ruin in a year? At best 200? How many students are having their lives ruined by the Clayton School Board? Several tens of thousands I’d think.

    Vote for Child Rapists to replace the Clayton School Board – they’ll do less damage!

  5. Jace Walden says:

    The guy should have every right to run for office. Voters are smart enough to not vote for him. Then again, Douglas also thinks that voters are too stupid to decide for themselves on whether or not they can buy alcohol on Sunday…so…

  6. drjay says:

    if i read the article about this correctly–he may not be able to legally run for office — so even if he stays on the ballot i would think it would be a pretty simple legal/procedural matter to have his votes not count, no???

  7. drjay says:

    if i read the article about this correctly–he may not be able to legally run for office — so even if he stays on the ballot i would think it would be a pretty simple legal/procedural matter to have his votes not count, no???

  8. Jace Walden says:

    I wish someone would introduce a bill that prevents media-whore state legislators from introducing pointless bills as a way of “making a name” for themselves…

  9. Icarus says:

    “The guy should have every right to run for office.”

    Really? Come on now? Really?

    I trust the voters will not elect the man. I’ll buy that line of thinking.

    But do you really think it is out of bounds for the GA Legislature to set minimum qualifications for office? And that not being a convicted child perv is too tough a standard?

    Criticize Sen Douglas for grandstanding if you want, but I see no problem with him moving his proposed bill forward.

  10. Jace Walden says:

    Icarus,

    It is out of bounds for the GA Legislature to set minimum qualifications based on every hot-button issue that happens to pop-up.

    The only “minimum” qualification that should exist is this:

    Were you elected?

    No–You’re not qualified at this time.
    Yes–Welcome to your new job.

    Period. I trust people to make decisions more than I trust grandstanding legislators.

  11. Jace Walden says:

    What’s the limit on your idea of “Minimum Standard” Icarus?

    If we had it your way, the legislature could prevent people from running if they stole a pack of gum from a convenient store as a kid. After all, it is appropriate for them to set “minimum standards”, right?

    The dude is a child molester. He’s only wasting his own time by running. He’s not hurting any children by running. Hell, in fact for every dollar he spends on his campaign, that’s one more dollar he can’t spend on Candy and PlayStations to entice children up to his room.

    Why do you republicans hate our children?

  12. drjay says:

    “Gresham signed the Declaration of Candidacy and Affidavit, which states candidates must have had their civil rights fully restored for at least 10 years upon the completion of their felony sentence. According to the deposition, Gresham was sentenced to one year in prison and 11 years of probation in 1988, making him ineligible to run for public office until 2010. ”

    this paragraph from the article lnked when you scroll over chester’s name seems to say he is already not eligible to run–it seems like someone (his opponent?) could have him thrown of the ballot the way the guy fom south carolina was gainst sen. EJ last time, or the wat the guy that does not live in clayton was removed from the school board earlier this yer…no??

  13. Icarus says:

    If you met most of the people I’ve dated, you would know that my standars are minimal, Jace.

    I do find a different standard between stealing a pack of gum as a kid, and sodomizing a boy “under the age of 14” as an adult.

    “Why do you republicans hate our children?”

    We hate YOUR children because you are a Playboy babydaddy who isn’t taking responsibility for the seed you’re currently leaving all over the world, for other taxpayers to take care of.

  14. Jace Walden says:

    I do find a different standard between stealing a pack of gum as a kid, and sodomizing a boy “under the age of 14″ as an adult.

    I agree…there is a HUGE difference. That’s the problem with phasing in “minimal standards”. Over time, you have the capacity to eliminate virtually anyone from participation.

    If you met most of the people I’ve dated, you would know that my standards are minimal, Jace.

    I doubt that. I mean, you’re Icarus. King of the Internets. Surely you jest.

    We hate YOUR children because you are a Playboy babydaddy who isn’t taking responsibility for the seed you’re currently leaving all over the world, for other taxpayers to take care of.

    C’mon now, Icarus. You make it sound like I leave work at 2:00 everyday, hit the gym and go out on the town and try to get some. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Sometimes I stay at work until 2:30.

  15. Demonbeck says:

    Seriously, there are already certain jobs that convicted pedophiles are not allowed to hold. The fact that this is not already on the list is ridiculous.

  16. Icarus says:

    Too late Demonbeck. Jace is already somewhere between “gym” and “on the town”, trying to get some.

Comments are closed.