A school trustee candidate running for one of five spots in Kamloops said she wants to ban certain books from school libraries and shared content on Facebook claiming Satan invented all genders other than male and female.
Jennifer Rowse, 35, is a Tobiano resident standing for public office in Kamloops as a school trustee. She moved to the area from Abbotsford last year and her two children attend public elementary school in the city.
Rowse has been endorsed by Take Action Kamloops, an anonymous group of people who were opposed to the vaccine mandates and previously staged “Maskless Mondays” at the Real Canadian Superstore, during which they would defy public health orders by refusing to don masks while shopping.
In an email to supporters, Take Action Kamloops called the SD73 board of education “public enemy number 1” and described Rowse as “a woman who refused to stand idly by and watch them mask her children, vax her children, she did not and will not stand for the perverted sexual debauchery that the education system has become.”
Rowse initially agreed to be interviewed by Kamloops This Week and later reneged, citing a distrust of media, but did include some information about her views in emails to the newspaper.
The trustee candidate provided a list of 10 books currently available in School District 73 schools she would like to see banned, including All Boys Aren't Blue, It's Perfectly Normal and The Hate U Give.
Rowse also took issue with sexual education being taught in SD73 schools, calling it and books available on sex and gender "sexual indoctrination."
Another campaign point brought up by Rowse in an email to KTW is that of transparency.
"Full transparency shows respect to all parents. Being honest and transparent builds trust and to be honest, I've got a healthy distrust for the government due to lack of transparency. This is a huge topic and I can chat about this for ages," Rowse said in her email, while twice declining KTW's invitation for an interview.
Rowse opposes SOGI 123, a curriculum component that teaches that everyone has a sexual orientation and gender identity as part of sex education in B.C. schools. SOGI (sexual orientation and gender identity) was adopted six years ago.
KTW had planned to ask Rowse about her views, including whether or she is anti-gay or anti-vax, as many of her own Facebook posts and shared posts appear to suggest.
One post shared by Rowse on Oct. 3, 2021, states: "God created man and woman. Satan invented all other genders."
Although her Facebook page has since been made private, KTW archived the page’s contents following early reports about the candidate’s views. The page showed many removed posts and several others flagged by Facebook due to misinformation. A Twitter account bearing her first and last name has also been suspended.
In a Facebook post on Oct. 4, 2021, earlier in the COVID-19 pandemic, Rowse suggested creating segregated schools — for masked/vaccinated students and for unmasked/unvaccinated students.
"Hear me out. .. two schools .... one for the masked/vaxxed and one for the unmasked/unvaxxed. The 'government' pays for both with our tax dollars," she wrote.
In a reply to another Facebook user who questioned whether her idea is similar to concentration camps, Rowse said: "I get what you mean by concentration camps ... but as it is right now, the one side is trying not only to force their beliefs on their own families, but they are now telling us that we have to believe what they do.”
Rowse also posted content from the right-wing American political action group Turning Point USA and from David Icke, a well-known British conspiracy theorist who critics allege to be an anti-Semite and Holocaust denier, and someone who popularized the theory that 5G cell towers cause COVID-19.
In emails to KTW, Rowse said she and her entire family are vaccinated "except for one” and denied the label of anti-vaxxer, contrary to other media reports.
Rowse also appears to have been influenced by American politics in other ways, including another piece of content she shared in September 2021, in which called Prime Minister Justin Trudeau "True-Douche" and claimed the country's election, which had just concluded, was "another bullshit election, sponsored by the commie left-wing George Soros douche bags."
Soros, a notable Hungarian-American billionaire and Holocaust survivor, is often put at the centre of right-wing conspiracy theories.
Rowse is one of 10 candidates running for school trustee in Kamloops. Five trustees will be elected in the city.