On October 21, Jihad Watch brought you the news of an event in Minnesota called “Exposing Sharia and the Deception of Islam,” that had been canceled by the venue where it was supposed to be held. I just received this email from one of the organizers, explaining what happened next. Please contact the Ironwood Springs Christian Ranch and politely and courteously register disapproval of their Sharia compliance and persecution of Gary Froiland for calling attention to unwelcome and unpopular truths.
I wrote to Bob Bardwell and Tracy Bashore and asked them these questions:
1. Can you confirm that Gary Froiland was a Board member of Ironwood Springs Christian Ranch?
2. Can you confirm that he was fired for his role in the “Exposing Sharia” event?
3. Do you believe that criticism of jihad terror and the oppression that is justified under Islamic law (Sharia) ought to be off-limits? If so, do you believe the same thing about criticism of Christianity? If not, why did you consider it necessary to fire Mr. Froiland?
Bardwell did not answer. Bashore confirmed that Gary Froiland had been on the Ironwood Springs Board but declined comment on anything else. Here is the email I received from Gary Froiland:
Thank you for your article sharing the dilemma about our event in Rochester, Minnesota to have Usama Dakdok speak. I am Gary Froiland, one of the guys helping with this event, and I am the one who designed the poster.
After a pastor who promised us his church backed out the night before the event to have Usama Dakdok speak this past spring in Rochester, we planned to attempt it again in the fall with the American Legion. That should be a patriotic place to have an educational speaker explain why Sharia is not compatible with our constitution. But they too backed out of the contract and gave us our money back after they received pressure from the Sheriff’s department. So we tried the Stewartville Sportsman’s Club.
That’s where your article picked up. We had just covered the town of Stewartville putting door hanging sleeves on nearly every house in town, containing the brochure “Islam in a Nutshell, Peaceful or Violent?” which includes the “Growth of Islam” chart by Bill Warner (Center for the Study of Political Islam). That’s when the Rochester Post Bulletin discovered the door hangings, and the Stewartville Sportsman Club backed out of their contract. Our team met with their board, but without convincing them to let us use their facility.
But we were not about to give up. Next I took my turn to rent a facility. The Cascade Town Hall just north of Rochester was suggested. I rented it as a “Pre-Halloween Family Event”, and added that I would be playing music. (you can type in Gary Froiland in YouTube and see some of my One-Man-Band videos). So we were able to rent the facility. We emailed people three hours before the event to give them the location, hoping that would keep protesters away. About 80 people came!
Late afternoon before the event, after Usama had arrived, he called the Rochester Post Bulletin and invited them to interview him. They jumped at that opportunity for a good story, but didn’t stay long enough to hear the heart of the message, but interviewed him, took some pictures and left. That was Sunday night, October 29th.
The next day the article came out with the front page news. Overall, it was a quite honest article. My name, Gary Froiland, is mentioned in the article, since I was the one who had rented the hall. They made it sound like I deceived them when renting, because I never mentioned we’d have a speaker, but that it was a “Pre-Halloween Family Event (the paper called it a “party”). The event was to start at 6 pm, and those invited were told that I would play music at 5:30 pm for those who came early. That I did, and then closed my half hour by leading everyone in the pledge of allegiance, and had a prayer. Then Usama did his nearly 3-hour presentation.
Now the story continues: Monday the article came out in the Post Bulletin, and my boss read it. My name was in the article, and when I got to work the next morning (at Ironwood Springs Christian Ranch, www.ironwoodsprings.com), the boss (Tracy Bashore) met me first thing and fired me for my involvement in an exposing Islam event. So I was out of a job because of our attempt at Freedom of Speech.
I was on the board of that Christian Ranch for 20 years, and the last four years have been a full-time employee. A job opening came up at Ironwood and they hired me for that position in June of 2013. As an employee, I cannot be a board member, so I went off the board at that time. So since June of 2013 I have worked full time at Ironwood.
Bob Bardwell (firstname.lastname@example.org) had founded the Ranch in 1976, and even though he’s very involved every day there, he gave the job of Director to Tracy Bashore (email@example.com). It was Tracy and other liberal employees at the Ranch who had a problem with my involvement with exposing Islam, and now that I was more public with it, he made sure it cost me my job. So I guess I don’t have any freedom of speech either.
A week before that, it was my turn to lead in devotions at the Ironwood Staff meeting (we have one on Tuesday mornings and Friday mornings). I had my devotions on Ephesians 6:12 and focused my talk and PowerPoint on Islam and how many of our brothers and sisters are being beheaded for their faith, and some of them praying “Oh Lord, let us be shot”, because they are awaiting execution by beheading, and are praying to die by gunshot instead. The devotions exposed Islam for those on staff who were ignorant. However, there are several liberals working there, and they were very vocal after my devotions about my “Hate” speech.
Tracy related how the Ranch has a good reputation in the community and some Muslims visit the Ranch from time to time, and he doesn’t want to insult them. So with my controversial devotions, and then a week later, my name in the paper having helped make the Usama Dakdok event happen, that was the last straw and cost me my job.
I thought you might be interested in hearing “The Rest of the Story”, so there you have it. I certainly lost my freedom of speech besides losing my job, but I would do it again. My desire is to be a patriot, and cleanse the path that our children will take from evil that lurks. If you want to talk personally to Bob Bardwell or Tracy Bashore, I included their emails above, and the main office phone number of Ironwood Springs Christian Ranch is 507-533-4315.