Westboro Baptist member running for Kansas Board of Education

06/24/2012 5:00 AM

05/16/2014 6:50 PM

A Kansas state school board candidate who describes evolution as “Satanic lies” and wants to stop public schools from teaching the theory attends Westboro Baptist, the Topeka church known for anti-gay protests worldwide.

Jack Wu told The Topeka Capital-Journal that he decided to run for the

State Board of Education after learning that Democratic incumbent Carolyn Wims-Campbell

, also from Topeka, would otherwise be unopposed for a second term in the 4th District of eastern Kansas. Campbell supports the state’s current science standards, which treat evolution as a well-established, core scientific concept.

On a campaign


, Wu says he is a native of California drawn to the Kansas capital “after seeing the light of the Westboro Baptist Church.” Church members have staged anti-gay pickets for more than two decades, and they frequently protest outside military and other funerals.

Wu said he attends Westboro Baptist services and adheres to its teachings but isn’t a full, baptized member. He said his attraction to the church is unrelated to his efforts to unseat Campbell.

“She’s going to win my district without a fight?” he said. “I’m not going to let that happen.”

Church spokeswoman Shirley Phelps-Roper said Wu is an “acquaintance,” and described him as “just a friendly little guy,” though not a church member.


Join the Discussion

The Kansas City Star is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Terms of Service