Mary Lou Bruner spent much of her working career as a kindergarten teacher where she helped to shape young minds. The damage that she did in that capacity is likely incalculable.
Ms. Bruner, aged 69, is now retired, but she wanted to keep her hand in the Texas educational system - so this year she ran for a seat on the notorious Texas Board of Education - and damned near won.
The retired teacher openly encourages parents to home-school their children because "that's the only way you can control what they are taught." She apparently felt that if she could gain a seat on the Texas Board of Education, she could have a hand in controlling the information that makes its way toward student minds.
Ms. Bruner has many colorful and unique beliefs herself, and she enjoys posting them on Facebook. She is convinced, for instance, that President Barack Obama worked as a gay prostitute during his drug-addicted youth, and that as President, Mr. Obama has had her investigated for letting the world know about his immoral past. She also believes that school shootings are somehow connected to the teaching of evolution in public schools.
She has also characterized the Boy Scouts of America as a "homosexual" organization.
(Can you say "nuttier than Ted Cruz, Greg Abbott, Rick Perry, and the whole Bush family all eating Payday candy bars on Billy Carter's peanut farm?")
Mary Lou Bruner is so bizarre that in another life she could have been Donald Trump's mother.
The election was close. Ms. Bruner won the most votes in a March primary, earning 48% of the total vote. Had she reached 50%, she would have been elected, but falling short of that she had to face an opponent in a special runoff election earlier this week - an election which she lost.
After that defeat, the Texas Freedom Network, an organization which had collected and publicized Ms. Bruner's Facebook craziness, said, "Texas escaped an education train wreck tonight."
Even with Mary Lou Bruner's loss at the polls this week, it is still unlikely that students in Texas will be confronted with any significant challenges to education based on Biblical teaching and Fox News orthodoxy during this millennium. If they want more, they will likely have to move out into the real world - or be home-schooled.
And there is undoubtedly little clamor for real change in Texas classrooms. Ignorance, after all, is bliss.