Mr. Bill McBride (now deceased) had a personal vendetta against Pastor Demers and Christ's Church In Action (CCIA). His wrath stemmed from a conflict at the Library that had been long and ongoing between Mr. Steve McCartney, the Library’s Director, and Pastor Demers. Mr. McCartney did not like Pastor Demers' suggestions that things such as full frontal nudity and other sexualy explicit materials should be displayed in areas not accessible to children. (Because of his personal vendetta, Mr. McBride actually brought a complaint to the city to have the city investigate CCIA's tax-exempt status on their building which had been burned by arson. Mr. McBride actually used the City of Meridian to harass this pastor and this church, who were only expressing views regarding those types of materials being kept out of view of young ones, views which are probably held by most of the people down there in the Bible Belt.)
At the latter end of this conflict, Mr. McBride was embarrassed by his being exposed by the Lauderdale Board of Supervisors for his sexually permissive opinion concerning lewd material being displayed and available to children. This occurred when the Board (through a letter from Mr. Tony Green, County Administrator at the time) admonished the entire Library Board of Trustees (including Mr. McBride) and Mr. McCartney to take Pastor Wade Demers’ recommendation that lewd material and nudity and other offensive materials be kept more prudently. Mr. McBride was angry at being admonished for this.
Let me try to explain more clearly what led to the letter from Tony Green, County Administrator, dated December 29, 2006 (see McBride doc p.3.JPG (75,5 kB)), which started Mr. McBride on his vendetta.
Pastor Demers had suggested to Mr. McCartney (Library Director) that total frontal nudity on display at children’s eye level, and articles containing such material as quoted below (in “Book Page” – complimentary magazine available in many places on surfaces in the Library), should be properly housed, i.e. out of direct view of young ones.
Quote from article in “Book Page”:
‘“The year I turned ninety…” the narrator says, “I wanted to give myself the gift of a night of wild love with an adolescent virgin.” The narrator contacts an old madam and makes a contract for the deflowering of a working girl of 15. That night he totters to the whorehouse, where he discovers his virgin, naked and asleep…the old man spends much of the night inspecting the body of the naked child.”’
Pastor Demers explained that he thought most of the adult community in Meridian, especially parents, would agree with him that such material was inappropriate to be readily available and/or visible to young people at the Public Library.
Mr. McCartney only mocked and laughed and acted rudely and condescendingly towards Pastor Demers for over a year, whenever Pastor Demers would bring these types of things to his attention.
Subsequently, Pastor Demers was banned from the Library for answering an unsolicited question about the Bible from a Library employee.
The decision was made by the church to go to the Library Board concerning Mr. McCartney’s apparent liberal, secular, Godless attitude towards prurient sexual material made accessible and available to children of any age at the Public Library.
After the meeting had been set, but prior to meeting with the Board, Mr. McBride went (with his wife) to the parsonage of Christ’s Church In Action (CCIA) of Mt. Zion. Present at this meeting were Pastor Wade Demers, his wife Patricia, Lucinda Johnson (Executive Assistant to Pastor Demers), Dr. Charles Spahn, and Raven Mixon. Mr. McBride stated categorically that he saw no reason to stop displaying full frontal nudity at the Public Library. Then he read the passage quoted above and said he found “nothing offensive about it.”
Ms. Johnson, a former children’s music teacher from Connecticut, was horrified at Mr. McBride’s comment. After the McBrides left, she told her colleagues that when Mr. McBride said that he found nothing offensive about that article, she was so shocked she almost “fell off her chair."
When Mr. McBride came back to the parsonage a few days later, he repeated his comment, and Ms. Johnson told him, “If you don’t see anything wrong with that, then you’re nothing but a dirty old man.”
At the Library Board meeting, after viewing the material and hearing about frontal nudity, and seeing the article, the whole Library Board agreed with Mr. McBride and said that there was no problem and they would take no action…Pastor Demers and the other attendees from Christ's Church In Action, of course, were shocked.
Thus, CCIA went to the Lauderdale County Board of Supervisors (who oversee the Library Board). The Board of Supervisors’ reaction was the same as Pastor Demers’ and the members’ of CCIA of Mt. Zion (they were shocked), and the letter from Tony Green ensued.
Thus began Mr. McBride’s personal vendetta against CCIA of Mt. Zion*. And, of course, the allegations of obstruction and cover up concerning the arson at CCIA's property only support the administration’s attitude in this matter.
PLEASE NOTE: Wallace Heggie was given the job of reviewing CCIA's tax-exempt status on the building. On Friday, January 12, 2007, Pastor Demers and his wife happened to see Mr. Heggie when they were at the (temporary) City Hall. Pastor Demers mentioned to Mr. Heggie that “we have seen you on a number of occasions talking with Mr. McBride, including the day of the City Council meeting where Pastor Demers and his wife discussed the arson and other attacks upon CCIA of Mt. Zion. Mr. Heggie did not deny this. In fact, to the contrary, Mr. Heggie said, “MR. McBRIDE and I ARE GOOD FRIENDS and have talked on many occasions.”
Those at CCIA of Mt. Zion believe that Mr. Heggie had a conflict of interest due to his friendship with Mr. McBride, who had a personal vendetta against them.
In addition, it is believed that Mr. Heggie was just another pawn being used by Mr. McBride as he worked his all too familiar pattern of trying to hurt those who pointed out his foibles.
Further, it was convenient for Mr. McBride to use Mr. Heggie and other principals in the City Administration because of the Mayor’s predisposed and openly expressed hatred of CCIA of Mt. Zion, its pastor, and their beliefs.
Remember it was John Robert Smith who lied and participated in continuing the obstruction of the investigation of the arson at the subject property.
*Mr. McBride got WTOK involved in sneaking to film CCIA's arson-burned building and trying to depict it as a run-down house being used as a tax dodge, as opposed to a legitimate building used by a church for storage (the fire department had saved the structure), which was the original purpose for which the church's building was approved as tax-exempt.
A point to note: If Mr. McBride was not acting with malicious-directed intent, then how did he ever choose an unmarked building on the South side of Meridian to have the TV cameras take pictures of, and get Wade Phillips of WTOK involved in falsely reporting that this building was not tax-exempt? …and why did he bring those pictures of 518 41st Avenue and the TV cameras to the Board of Supervisors to demand that this building alone be charged as non-exempt?
By the way, a simple phone call from WTOK to CCIA would have solved this, because documents from the US Government and the MS Government would have shown the truth, that CCIA and the building were (and are) tax-exempt.
Wade Phillips of WTOK subsequently apologized to Pastor Demers and admitted that he should have called the pastor before running the story. What happened to checking out the facts before slandering someone? (They slandered a whole church!) But, then again, this is the same media responsible for the blackout of the arson and the mayor's crimes and cover-up; we needn't be surprised at this.
 September 19, 2006
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