The Institute on the Constitution, founded by former League of the South board member Michael Peroutka, bills itself as an educational outreach of Peroutka’s law firm. I have contended for over a year that the IOTC is a theocratic enterprise which does not educate but rather misleads followers about the Constitution.
Today I note an illustration of how the IOTC subtly misinforms followers. On their Facebook page, the IOTC attributes to George Washington the following spurious quote:
It is impossible to rightly govern a nation without God and the Bible
According to the IOTC Facebook page, this post has been shared 66 times. That is a lot of ignorance going around.
According to Mt. Vernon website, there is no evidence that Washington ever said this. The exact quote has never been located in Washington’s works. A similar quote was first included, without citation, in an book published long after Washington’s death. There is no evidence he ever said this.
This is not the first fake Washington quote used by the IOTC to advance their agenda.
The IOTC course on the Constitution is riddled with errors and cannot be trusted as a source on the subject. In addition, the IOTC has posted material on the organization’s website defending racial and religious discrimination. Peroutka believes the wrong side won the Civil War.
The IOTC is making a strong push to establish what they call “American Clubs” in public schools. In my view, these clubs are dangerous and should be resisted by parents. It is beyond disgusting that the Liberty Counsel, affiliated with Liberty University, defends the American Clubs in school districts who attempt to resist them.
As noted earlier today, former League of the South board member and founder of the theocratic Institute on the Constitution, Michael Peroutka, won the District 5 County Council race in Anne Arundel County MD.
His friend Michael Hill, president of the League of the South, offered his congratulations to Peroutka on the League’s Facebook page.
Michael Peroutka won the Anne Arundel County (MD) District 5 Council seat over Patrick Armstrong by around 1900 votes.
Peroutka, founder of the Institute on the Constitution and former League of the South board member, will on paper give the Republicans a majority on the Council. However, more accurately, the Council now consists of three Democrats, three Republicans and Peroutka, a Theocrat who believes the wrong side won the Civil War.
A lot of important elections tomorrow. One I have been following is Michael Peroutka’s bid to gain a seat on Anne Arundel County’s county council. Peroutka is the subject of an election eve article in The American Prospect. The article asks if a neo-Confederate, theocrat can get elected in one of the richest U.S. counties. Good question; we’ll soon find out.
Peroutka, who doesn’t believe in civil rights or public schools but deceives the public about having one of his Constitution clubs in the public schools he dislikes, might win. Even though he was a defender of the white separatist League of the South until recently, and according to a source who does not want to be named, still supports the League financially, Peroutka might garner enough votes to defeat his Democrat challenger.
No matter how you look at it, a Peroutka win would be a disaster for the GOP.
Recently, the Institute on the Constitution used a video of an unidentified teacher to claim they had established another American club in a public school. (See below)
More recently, the IOTC posted a better produced video of the same teacher (an intervention specialist at Logan High School) and a student discussing how easy it is to start an American club in the public school.
As it turns out, the claim is false. The high school in question is Logan (OH) High School and there is no American Club at this school.
On Friday, I spoke with Jim Robinson, principal at Logan High School. He had not heard of the club and told me that no clubs by that name or with the themes of the American club had applied to be recognized at the school.
This false claim is not the first time the IOTC falsely claimed to have an American Club at an institution. In May 2014, the IOTC said an American Club had been formed at Calvin College. The college administration flatly denied that claim:
Bob Crow, Dean of Student Development, informed me that the Institute on the Constitution’s Director Michael Peroutka met with a small group of students when he visited campus. However, about an American Club, Crow said, “I can confirm that no such student organization exists at Calvin College.” Furthermore, given the affiliation of Mr. Peroutka with the neo-Confederate League of the South, Mr. Crow said, “it is unimaginable that such a group could exist here.”
Peroutka and the IOTC are using the American Club concept to raise “a money bomb.”
Prospective donors should know that there is no evidence that IOTC is a non-profit organization which means donations are not deductible. Furthermore, it is hard to know how donations could help establish American Clubs since it costs nothing to establish one in a school.
And in this case, there is no club.
Michael Peroutka told the Baltimore Sun that he quit the League of the South when he found online some views of interracial marriage held by League members that were “contrary to his beliefs.” I find this to be extremely doubtful. Peroutka has been going to League of the South meetings since at least 20o4 when he was endorsed by the League in his Constitution Party quest for president. While I realize he may not have attended this session, League of the South president Michael Hill presented his opposition to interracial marriage at the same 2o12 League of the South conference where Peroutka led the crowd in singing “I Wish I Was in Dixie” (at 50:34 into the video) and called it the “national anthem.”
At 45:30 minutes into this speech, Hill describes his hope that his children marry in his race.
He proceeds to extol white pride and the superior accomplishments of Western Civilization.
Again, it is possible that Peroutka missed this session but it seems unlikely to me that he never heard these views spoken at a League meeting.
I heard early yesterday that former League of the South board member Michael Peroutka and leader of the theocratic Institute on the Constitution quit the organization. In an article dated today in the Baltimore Sun, Peroutka is quoted as saying he quit the League.
He declined to give reasons.
Update: Somehow I missed this section from the Sun article (comments in italics added on 10/18)
Peroutka, a Millersville Republican, said he left the group prior to Labor Day because he discovered statements members made on the subject of being opposed to interracial marriage were “contrary to my beliefs.” He would not elaborate.
I saw the article as soon as it was posted the night before; perhaps this section was added. In any case, I apologize for the omission.
Peroutka’s “discovery” is suspicious. The League has made no secret about white separatist views and Peroutka has been going to and speaking at League of the South meetings since at least 2004 when the organization endorsed his candidacy for president.
After defending the League of the South early in his campaign for Anne Arundel County Council, Peroutka now suddenly announces he is no longer a member and he doesn’t want to talk about it. To me, that is not sufficient. Peroutka needs to further explain his reasons for first defending and then quitting a group which defends white separatism, especially since that group does not hide those views. Although Peroutka says the move was not for political reasons, without a more plausible explanation there is no reason to believe him.
Peroutka also told the Sun that he was taken out of context when he led the audience in singing the song “I Wish I Was in Dixie” at a League of the South meeting. He called the song the “national anthem.” The entire video is on You Tube (see below). He wasn’t taken out of context. That he continues to spin the situation is an indicator that he is still not being straightforward.
Peroutka even wrote League of the South president Michael Hill when he won the GOP primary for county council and asked for League support. Perhaps the League didn’t come through.
Furthermore, I have heard from a source close to the situation that Peroutka continues to support candidates who have ties to the League of the South, most notably the GOP candidate for sheriff Joe Delimater.
David Whitney, the co-teacher at the Institute on the Constitution, is still listed as chaplain of the Maryland-Virginia chapter of the League of the South.
It is quite possible that Peroutka quit the League in order to preserve his connection to Ken Ham. Ham is supposed to present his creationist position on behalf of Peroutka’s Institute on the Constitution this coming weekend. Ham’s organization denied Peroutka was a member of the League and refused to address clear evidence that Peroutka did belong to it. Perhaps, Ham threatened to back out if Peroutka remained a member.
If Peroutka wants this move to be taken seriously, he needs to do better than he has so far and explain his departure from the League.
Watch Peroutka lead the League of the South in Dixie, or in Peroutka’s words, the national anthem.
The Institute on the Constitution continues their quest to bring theocratic lessons to school children. Regularly requesting non-deductible donations for their efforts, IOTC is working to start inappropriately named, “American Clubs” to public schools. IOTC’s lead teacher David Whitney teaches that only born again Christians should be citizens, the federal government has no role in commerce, and that civil government should worship God according to their reconstructionist ideas.
Unfortunately, some teachers are buying in to these ideas. Take this unidentified public school teacher (I’m guessing from Maryland or Ohio):
If I knew the school where this club was established, warnings could be provided to parents in that district. Unfortunately, there is little a school district can do to prevent the distortion of the Constitution to be presented by the IOTC.
If anyone recognizes this teacher, let me know.
Ken Ham’s Answers in Genesis is misinforming questioners about Michael Peroutka who is sponsoring of next month’s creationism speech at a church in Severn, MD. According to AiG representative Troy Lacey, Michael Peroutka never was a part of the League of the South. Acting on a tip from a reader who first wrote AiG earlier in the day, I wrote the organization and asked:
I understand that Ken Ham is speaking at an event in Severn, MD sponsored by Michael Peroutka. Mr. Peroutka is a member and former board member of the League of the South, a Southern nationalist secession group.
Is Mr. Ham aware of Mr. Peroutka’s affiliation with the League of the South?
Mr. Lacey answered on behalf of AiG:
Hello Warren thank you for contacting Answers in Genesis. Ken Ham is speaking at Severn Christian Church in Severn, MD on October 18th; not to an organization. He was invited by the church leadership to speak there on Creation evangelism topics. The group that is sponsoring the conference appears to be a conservative constitutional reform party, but nothing more that I can see. As an organization we do not involve ourselves in politics.
To answer your question, to our knowledge Michael Peroutka was not a member of nor ever a former board member of the League of the South organization.
I hope this has been helpful,
The ad for the event lists the Institute on the Constitution as the sponsors, not the church. I wrote the church to ask for comment with no response.
The church may be doing more than providing the venue, but it is clear that Ham is being featured by the IOTC which is a DBA label for Michael Peroutka.
There can be no doubt that Michael Peroutka is a member and defender of the League of the South. He refused to distance himself from them at his news conference last month, he wrote the League’s president Michael Hill and asked for support from them, he proudly served as a board member for nearly a year, and he pledged the resources of the IOTC and his family to the aims of the League.
Clearly, AiG is misinformed or hoping to mislead questioners. Ham is speaking at an organization sponsored event and Michael Peroutka was and is a member of the League of the South.
The question now is what will Ham do about it? The denial of Peroutka’s membership seems to imply that the League of the South connection could be a problem for Ham and AiG (as it was for General Jerry Boykin). We shall see.
Mike Collins, columnist for the Capital Gazette, has a helpful summary of Michael Peroutka’s statements which build to the conclusion that Peroutka can be called many things, but Republican is not one of them. Peroutka is running for a seat on Anne Arundel County Council, founded the theocratic Institute on the Constitution and is a member of the Southern secession group League of the South.
In an odd twist, I suppose you could call him a RINO.
Collins exhorts his fellow Republicans to consider the impact of their vote:
Before Election Day, I ask Republicans in District 5 — and throughout the county—to think through some questions: Do you want this wretched man to take on the proud label of Republican? Does he truly belong in the party of Lincoln and Reagan? Does he have a real allegiance to our party?
You need to do so because a vote for Peroutka will make him not only your representative, but also your responsibility — and our party’s.