The Dallas Morning News
Flyer blasts school board candidate
Highland Park trustee hopeful criticized for supporting BLM
A political action committee distributed a flyer to Highland Park residents slamming a school board candidate for putting a Black Lives Matter sign in his yard.
The mailer seeks to contrast two candidates, Kelli Macatee and Doug Woodward, running for a seat on the board of the affluent, mostly white school district.
Underneath a smiling photo of Macatee, it lists “Christian Conservative Texan” and “Wonderful Wife and Mother,” alongside green checkmarks. Beneath Woodward’s photo are red Xs next to “New Jersey Liberal” and “Had BLM Sign in His Yard.”
Macatee said she was not involved in the creation or distribution of the flyer “in any way, shape or form.”
“I would never approve something like that,” she said.
Photos of the flyer shared with The Dallas Morning News show it was paid for by the Metroplex Citizens for a Better Tomorrow PAC. Monty Bennett, CEO of Ashford Inc.,
is the group’s treasurer, according to state filings.
Bennett declined through a spokesman to answer direct questions about the flyer. Instead, the hotel magnate issued a written statement.
“Everyone knows that the left-wing media’s bully culture is to twist whatever anyone says into making a conservative look bad and a lefty look good,” he wrote. “Everyone also knows that Kelli is the conservative and Doug’s the lefty in this race. There’s no point in countering the misrepresentations and distortions you will no doubt write in this article.”
Woodward did not immediately respond to a request for comment. He recorded a video on his campaign Facebook page addressing “personal attacks and misinformation.”
He said any assertion that he thinks teacher diversity is more important than teacher qualifications — as stated in the mailer — is “absurd.” On his campaign webpage discussing the issues, he includes, “I heard you had a Black Lives Matter sign in your yard last summer — true?”
“I did, indeed, have a sign in my yard briefly last summer which expressed compassion at a difficult time for all of us,” he writes. “If you are asking whether my response indicates a support of any political platform you may associate it with, the answer is categorically no and any suggestion otherwise is misinformed and irresponsible.”
Asked if she would display a Black Lives Matter sign, Macatee said that she wouldn’t “put a sign in my yard without knowing exactly what it means, what it stands for and what it represents.” She said she believes Black Lives Matter is founded on Marxism, which she said “will take any nation down.”
Though one of the Black Lives Matter co-founders said in a 2015 interview that she and another co-founder “are trained Marxists,” their work has grown to become a mass movement against racism and the police killing of Black people. A majority of American adults expressed at least some support for the movement, according to Pew Research Center.
Macatee and Woodward are running for the Place 1 seat in the May 1 election, to replace Jim Hitzelberger who is not seeking reelection.
She has far out-fundraised him, according to the most recent campaign finance filings. But Macatee returned a $10,000 donation from the Rowling Foundation, a nonprofit that seeks to “help proclaim the name of Jesus Christ throughout the world,” as first reported by D Magazine. Nonprofits are prohibited from contributing to political campaigns.
In a corrected filing, the campaign wrote, “The $10,000 amount from the Rowling Foundation was returned immediately upon awareness of the error.”
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