Meadville, PA – A President Trump-hating school board member, whose social media posts greatly upset parents in the district and caused him to be removed from all committee assignments, has announced that he’s running for two local offices in the next election.
Disturbingly, Glenn Tuttle’s most recent social media timeline is peppered with countless anti-law enforcement postings that have evoked real concern in his community.
Fraternal Order of Police Lodge # 97 President Gregory Beveridge took umbrage at some of the more offensive memes Tuttle posted, and released a letter addressing his candidacy on Monday.
“THIS is not acceptable!! We do understand the constitution and the bill of rights along with freedom of speech. With that in mind, we are entitled to our opinion as well,” Beveridge wrote. “This person is a public figure. He is a member of the Crawford Central School District board. He has also recently announced his candidacy for Meadville City Council and Crawford County Commissioner running on the Libertarian party.”
“On his wide open facebook page he posted this ‘meme.’ This is his opinion of Law Enforcement, so be it. This union has Police officers stationed in the MASH/MAMS campus and another officer that helps to provide a positive experience in all Crawford Central elementary schools. Not to mention our K9 unit that has made countless visits to ALL the Crawford Central Schools all while now being the punchline for his ridiculously twisted sense of humor,” the letter continued.
“We generally don't care to engage in social media battles but this one in particular has bothered many of my fellow officers and their families. An elected school board member and current candidate for additional elected offices SHOULD be held to a higher standard. And if this conduct is the best he can display in a very public forum....... Then all we can do is hope that the voters speak loudly come time for elections,” Beveridge wrote.
Glenn Tuttle was elected to the Crawford Central School District Board of Directors as a Republican in 2013, and re-elected to a four-year term in 2015, The Meadville Tribune reported.
After President Donald Trump’s election, Tuttle announced that he had become a Libertarian.
Then he began regularly engaging in hateful anti-Trump diatribes on social media, including calling for the President’s assassination, which greatly upset parents in the school district and other school board members.
When he was asked if he was a racist in the comments on one of his posts, Tuttle’s response set off a firestorm of criticism.
“Only towards the trailer trash KKK supporters that make up Chump’s support base,” Tuttle replied. “I can’t wait to see the stats as his welfare leeches finally die. Best thing ever. #notmypresident #MAGA with a clean head shot.”
That comment was one of three Tuttle posted in a five-minute span that reiterated various versions of the “clean head shot” remark, The Meadville Tribune reported.
Despite outrage from the other members of the school board, Tuttle continued to spew offensive social media posts as the board removed him from all of his committees and liaison assignments within the community.
“It is clear to me and your fellow Board members that your reprehensible comments on social media have understandably proven very detrimental to the Board and the Crawford Central School District,” school board President Jan Feleppa wrote in a letter to Tuttle in February of 2017. “The Board believes that you can no longer effectively serve as a Board member.”
But there’s no way to remove a school board member from office, according to The Meadville Tribune.
Despite efforts of a Facebook group called “Remove Glenn Tuttle” with more than 700 members, Tuttle has maintained his seat.
“Believe me, we tried,” said Eric Henry, a parent of students in the Crawford school district who started the anti-Tuttle Facebook page. “Short of him being convicted of a felony, there’s nothing in the law that allows a school board member to be removed.”
Henry told Blue Lives Matter that Tuttle has been a lesson to the county on more thoroughly vetting candidates, even when they’re running unopposed.
He said Tuttle’s chances of winning a county commissioner or city council seat are slim, because there are very few Libertarians in Crawford County.
“It’s the chaos and havoc he wreaks in our county that’s so damaging,” Henry told Blue Lives Matter. “He just loves the attention.”
He said that Tuttle’s anti-police stance has been very concerning to members of the community.
“We love our police officers – they’re great to us. And when we saw that he was going to run for City Council and essentially be one of the people in charge of the police department…” Henry said with disbelief. “This guy voted against having school resource officers in schools!”
Despite the blowback he received in the small northwest Pennsylvania community, Tuttle didn’t see the controversy over his social media posts as a reason to resign from the school board, or to tone down his rhetoric.
“There’s no change in my position,” Tuttle told The Meadville Tribune. “I’m still on the board and I’m just hoping that one day this’ll clear over or at least if something productive can come out of it, there’s a silver lining.”
While there was nothing that could be done to remove Tuttle from the school board, it was considered unlikely that he would be re-elected should he choose to run in 2019. So the now-Libertarian candidate has set his sights on loftier goals.
Tuttle has announced he is running for Crawford County Commissioner and a seat on the Meadville City Council, The Meadville Tribune reported.
While the law does not allow him to hold both elected positions at the same time, there’s no rule against him running for both seats simultaneously, according to Crawford County’s attorney, Keith Button.
Tuttle has one platform for both campaigns and it’s rooted almost entirely in the decriminalization of marijuana with a healthy dose of criticism for law enforcement, according to The Meadville Tribune.
The announcement of Tuttle’s multiple candidacies sparked fresh concern over his ongoing inappropriate Facebook posts which seem to alternate between vitriolic memes and posts that alternately celebrate killing cops and criticize law enforcement as an institution in general.
While his anti-cop postings have met with some pushback from followers even on his own page, there’s no expectation that Tuttle will tone down his rhetoric for the new campaigns.
After all, he refused to back down when his actions forced him into a lame-duck position on the school board for the last two years of his term.
“If my disparaging social media comments get more people involved in deciding the future of our students, then all of our Facebook trolling will have meant something,” Tuttle told the school board and a group of angry parents in February of 2017, according to The Meadville Tribune.
“Seeing too few who care about enough to even run for office is far more offensive than any comments any of us have made on Facebook,” he told the assembled group. “The expectation that I should [censor] myself will not occur.”
The FOP president’s letter to Tuttle had a far more tolerant tone to it than the rhetoric of the double candidate, and the last paragraph displayed significantly more understanding of public service than the school board member demonstrated over the past two years.
“In closing, don't worry Mr. Tuttle. You will cross paths with Law Enforcement again at some point. I do know that regardless of how little you value our lives....We will provide professional service to you just the same as anyone else,” Beveridge wrote. “After all we are public servants and are held to an obviously higher standard than you are capable of reaching.”
Blue Lives Matter contacted Tuttle for his comments for this story, but he has not responded.