Posted by: shannynmoore | August 13, 2010

Homer Town Hero

Joseph Lapp II has posted his take on the Homer News

Kathleen Gustafson: a real hero

After Kathleen Gustafson raised a banner above the docks saying “World’s Worst Governor” during Sarah Palin’s visit to Homer, she became the object of a great deal of scorn and vitriol all across the Internet. Kathleen’s bravery, her unwillingness to hold back from saying what she believes and her constant support of this community made her my hero long before there was a “Kathleen Gustafson is my hero” group on Facebook.

Now that videos have begun popping up on conservative blogs showing Kathleen acting in the show “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” that she directed here in Homer last year, I wanted to let everyone know that, yes Kathleen put on that show, she bought the rights with the “energy bonus” that Sarah Palin tacked onto our PFDs during her failed vice-presidential bid, and she gave the money the show raised, over $5,000 in total, to support the excellent work the Kachemak Bay Family Planning Clinic does providing some of the best services of its kind in the entire country.

While conservatives from outside are busy attacking Kathleen, I hope that Homer’s conservatives and liberals alike will have her back for the years of service she’s given to this community. Kathleen Gustafson should be a hero to all of us.

I agree. I haven’t been in touch with Kathleen but have many emails from people asking how they can thank her. I’ve never met her. I asked her if she’d want to come on the radio with me to talk about her exchange.  She said, “No. Everything I needed to say I said to her face and I’m done.”

I have a deep respect for her conviction, courage and ability to let things go.

The Pier One Theatre was founded in 1973 and I had a summer run of Angry Housewives in 1988 that I’ll never forget.  So many of us learned to love theater in that evolving building.

The Kachemak Bay Family Planning Clinic is amazing.  It is remarkable a town the size of Homer has such a professional and compassionate resource.

I’m sending them donations in Kathleen’s name.  Here is a link to Pier One and another to KBFPC if you care to do the same.



  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Brandon David Wilson, Richard Jensen, Leland Collins, Peggy, BookMD and others. BookMD said: RT @shannynmoore Homer Town Hero: Kathleen Gustafson who told Sarah Palin "Worst Governor Ever" Please R/T […]

  2. Kudos to Ms. Gustafson for using her right to free speech in such a memorable manner. It’s a shame that someone in the Palin party didn’t feel the same way when they tore down the “World’s Worst Governor” banner.

  3. Kathleen Gustafson…is she a real hero? You bet she is…because it takes cojones (to take a word from Sarah Palin) to stand up to a celebrity like Sarah Palin.

    Especially when she has her goons with her that tear down signs that do not go along with the Sarah Palin program.

    I give a big Baby Boomer “thumbs up” to the “David of Homer” (Kathleen Gustafson) who stood up against the Goliath of Republicans (Sarah Palin).

    Hey Kathleen, run for Mayor of Haomer. If Sarah Palin can do it you can too and if Levi Johnston thinks he can be Mayor of Wasilla, you can be Mayor of Homer…

    You are my hero Kathleen because you are a teacher and because you stood up to Goliath!

    Southern smiles and world peace,
    ~The Baby Boomer Queen~

  4. Hi Shannyn, I went to Homer News with the link you provided and this isn’t there. I then went to the main site and still didn’t see it. Any chance Palin’s people also tore this banner of free speech down?

    • I saw it yesterday in the “letters to the editor” section.

  5. I watched the video. Did Palin’s goons even have the right to take down the banner?

    I can tell you many across the country are on her side on this issue.


    • Why no pics of the bots taking down the banner? Why were no charges filed? Why is no one going after this crime, if it happened? Why the silence about this and all of the noise about the eye rollery? If this crap happened then it needs to be reported and prosecuted. Step up folks of Homer.

      • Listen for Billy Sullivan’s explanation on the Shannyn Moore Show podcast from last Monday. It’s on itunes. First hour.

        • thanks Shannyn…

  6. Kathleen Gustafson did what even people in Palin’s own party are afraid to do and say. Kathleen is a national hero !!!! Did you notice the eye roll of Palin’s when Kathleen said she was a teacher.

    Isn’t it amazing that when people other than Repubs use their constitutional rights it suddenly becomes not ok.

    The idiot Palin is the poster child for ignorance,evil, hate and fear thanks to John McCain. There have always been hate groups in our country but before the little tart was let out of her box those people knew to keep their thoughts and actions to themselves. She made it ok for them to come crawling out from under their rocks and now we have this hideous Teabagging Republican party. The main stream Republican is gone, If they win, we all lose !!!

    Please sarah, step onto a chunk of ice and float away…………you’ve had more than your 15 minutes. You are ignorant and mean. What were you thinking, John McCain ????

  7. I nominate Kathleen Gustafson for the first annual


    ____X___ Kathleen Gustafson

    _______ Sarah Palin

    • Hello RatFish…I second that nomination…
      ~The Baby Boomer Queen~

    • Can non-Alaskans vote on this? Kathleen has my vote from here in Massachusetts.

      Yes, it takes strength to stand up to the class bully, and Kathleen showed strength and grace as she did: she never stooped to SP’s level.

    • Amen. Kathleen has showed what a truly strong woman is. As for the eye-roll thingie, Palin just proved again what a big baby she really is, and her disrespect for others continues to shine through. Go, Kathleen!


    I think this link should take you directly to the letter quoted.

    It’s tough to stand up to the class bully, and make no mistake, that’s exactly how Sarah and Willow acted towards Ms. Gustafson. Kudos to Kathleen!


    That’s me clapping for Kathleen!


  10. Kathleen*~~ Sheer Class~~~

  11. I noticed that it wasn’t a “mama grizzly defending her cub”, but a “cub” defending her mama during the exchange….

  12. I’ve know Kathleen for at least ten years, worked with her on various theater projects. I have found her to be intelligent, witty, compassionate, perceptive, and a whole slug of other positive adjectives. I am not surprised at her taking this action; I wholeheartedly admire her for it.

  13. Oh, yeah: she doesn’t require anyone’s approval to form and hold an opinion!

  14. This incident is a microcosm of Sarah, her family and her supporters treatment of critics. Belittle them by disregarding them as ‘H8ers.’

    It was shrewd to use the power of the Governor’s Office to label their concerns of ethical lapses and demonstrated cases of abuse of power as ‘frivolous.’ Not only that, but call for harassment – “I hope that the publicity-seekers will face a backlash from Alaskans. . .” – Palin Chief of Staff, Mike Nizich said in a press release distributed by the governor’s office.

    Read more:

    Sarah has a history of using her underlings and now her national visceral following to intimidate, bully and sully the names of anyone that questions the qualifications, record and actions of a know-nothing, do-nothing populist spokesmodel.

    As Alaskans, as Americans, we have a right to not go with the flow and let this self-proclaimed Mama Grizzly represent Alaska or issues of national interest.

    In a normal America with rational political discourse, Kathleen Gustafson would remain a no-name individual utilizing her right to speech against a former half-term quitting Governor. But when it comes to Sarah Palin, nothing is mature or respectful.

    Mrs. Gustafson became the target of Teabag discontent. Her life, her livelihood, her weight and looks became public fodder for attacks.

    I don’t think Sarah or any of her supporters have realized yet that though she and Kathleen ‘had a lot in common’ that is the point, anyone can have issues with Sarah Palin and they don’t have to be a progressive or a liberal to feel it.

    Mrs. Gustafson showed supreme class by making her case which had NOTHING to do with Sarah’s so called politics, and not rising to the sarcastic and immature level of the Palin clan.

    It was disconcerting seeing Todd and the bodyguard dart around like sharks trying to intimidate and silence this unarmed and calm citizen.

  15. Sarah Palin is a “BULLY” not a “Mother Grizzly.”
    Has everyone forgotten how she treated her x-brother-in-law? Katherine Gustafson was no different.

    She is infamous for sweeping dirt under the rug…but the day will come when she will not be able to I just hope and pray that it is before she runs for the oval office and it pushes her out of the running.

    She uses and abuses power and this is the worst kind of politician that there is.

    Her responses have become canned and memorized so that she does not mess up with her “home-style candor” any more.

    If you can not tell it, I am NOT a Sarah Palin fan.

    I was hoping for more when a woman finally received the notoriety and acclaim that Sarah Palin has gotten. We as women are badly represented by Sarah Palin.

    She does not represent me as a regular American or me, as a women.

    ~The Baby Boomer Queen~

  16. Shannyn, thanks SO much for posting this, here and at The Mudflats (and I’m guessing at HuffPo too, though I haven’t checked).

    Kathleen is my hera! (No, that’s not misspelled.)

  17. Yesterday i saw someone walking down pioneer with a “worst governor ever” tee shirt. Now must look to find one!

  18. Just found on HuffPost: How to deal with Sarah Palin:

  19. Wow! Must ask my Homer friends where to find one of these!

  20. Get your “Sarah Palin Worst Governor EVER” T-Shirts Here…

    Southern Smiles and world peace

  21. Interesting comment from PalinGates:

    I haven’t gotten through the 900 comments here yet 😉 so hopefully this is not a repeat. Here is the Wikipedia entry for “fitna” — a word I was not familiar with:

    Fitna (Arabic: فِتْنَةٌ‎) is a 2008 short political film by Dutch parliamentarian Geert Wilders with his view on the religion of the Islam. Approximately 17 minutes in length, the movie shows selected excerpts from Suras of the Qur’an, interspersed with media clips and newspaper cuttings showing or describing acts of violence and/or hatred by Muslims. The film attempts to demonstrate that the Qur’an motivates its followers to hate all who violate Islamic teachings. Consequently, the film argues that Islam encourages—among other things—acts of terrorism, antisemitism, violence against women, violence and subjugation of “infidels” and against homosexuals and Islamic universalism. A large part of the film details the influence of Islam on the Netherlands. The film was published on the internet in 2008.[1][2] Shortly before its release, its announcement was suspended from its website by the American provider because of the perceived controversy.[3][4] It stirred a still continuing debate in The Netherlands as well as abroad,[5] and a criminal prosecution.
    The Arabic title-word “fitna” means “disagreement and division among people” or a “test of faith in times of trial”.[6] Wilders, a prominent critic of Islam, described the film as “a call to shake off the creeping tyranny of Islamization”.[7]

    Interesting that Sarah (or her Twitterer) “knew” this hate-filled, intolerant, divisive word, when she barely can put a sentence together in middle-school English.

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