We have recently discovered that for the past six years, Saugus Union School District Trustee Stephen Winkler appears to have maintained a public profile on YouTube that displays a set of troubling interests, obsessions and viewpoints. This YouTube user, stephenwinkler, expresses admiration of Adolph Hitler and the Nazi Party, celebrates the abuse and mutilation of animals, has an apparent obsession with videos of small children riding animals. There are vulgar insults and threats directed at women and deeply racist rants and calls for the extermination of Muslims.
As of this writing, this YouTube account is active and publicly viewable. Indeed, it appears on the first page of a simple Google search for his name. We have documented much, but not all, of this activity posted over the six years in the event that the account is deleted. We have also established conclusively that this account belongs to the same Stephen Winkler, and that evidence is presented at the end of this piece.
Much of the material referenced below will be explicit in nature, and deeply disturbing. Because of Mr. Winkler's position as an elected board member of an elementary school district, we believe it's important to share this information.
What follows is taken from stephenwinkler's published activity on Youtube, it consists primarily of the videos he's liked/favorited. For the sake of brevity, these are just excerpts. You can follow the links to view the whole conversations. It's also worth noting that throughout the six-year history, some of these sentiments are contradicted. For example, the user will sometimes disavow racism or claim to love dogs. Sometimes these contradictory viewpoints will appear in the same comment.
Direct quotes of the user's comments are either in quotes and/or in italics and indented.
The story begins with a tweet and a since-deleted Facebook post where Winkler compared Saugus teachers to Nazis.
This is clearly meant as a dehumanizing insult of the worst kind, but this is also where things begin to get very strange. It turns out that the YouTube user actually has an affinity for the Nazi Party. Indeed, he's favorited dozens upon dozens of videos that glorify the Nazis and Adolph Hitler. His subscriptions include many Youtube channels dedicated to pro-Nazi and white supremacist videos.
"The chief difference between the ragheads and the Nazis is that the Nazis had the decency to declare war, while the ragheads attacked our twin towers without warning. That is a stab in the back! Decent people challenge you to a duel; they do not stab you in the back. The Nazis were decent; the ragheads are scum!The chief difference between the ragheads and the Nazis is that the Nazis had the decency to declare war, while the ragheads attacked our twin towers without warning. That is a stab in the back! Decent people challenge you to a duel; they do not stab you in the back. The Nazis were decent; the ragheads are scum!"
"Hitler was caring out the request of those people, who said, "let his blood be on us and our children." Always remember, Pilate said, that he is washing his hands of innocent blood. Then Jesus told the daughters of Jerusalem to "weep for their children." Jesus told them, that their descendents will pay the price for the shedding of innocent blood. That price was paid during the Second World War. Innocent blood was shed for innnocent blood. Glory to God for His Justice!"
Then in replying to someone who took offense to this:
"Your mommy taught you some filthy language. If I could, I would transport you into a concentration camp, for the name calling and what I would give you to breathe in there, would not pass for oxygen. Incidentally, I would have a special punishment just for your mommy, because she was negligent in your upbringing."
"I did not mean any disrespect to Hitler. I only wish, that he would have built up the German Navy to five thousand ships. On D-Day, there should have been so many German ships in the English Channel, that you could walk to France on them."
"My parents are long deceased; however, my paternal grandparents died in a concentration camp. I believe the Third Reich did the right thing in their situation. A country at war for her survival must demand unconditional enthusiastic support; they were unable to provide this and eternal justice was the consequence."
"When black youth stop the violation of our laws, than the police harassment of black youth will stop. Until then, support the police! Incidentally, I'm not opposed to the application of capital punishment by the police. After all, a policeman has the right to self defense. When black youth stop resisting arrest, then the death penalty will be avoided. Until then, the execution of black youth on the streets by our police will save me, the taxpayer, some money."
"Exodus, Ch.21; Leviticus, Ch 25; Deuteronomy,Ch 15; Luke, Ch 12; Ephesians, Ch.6; 1stTimothy,Ch.6; Colossians Ch.3. Justify both slavery and segregation. Rev. Alexander Campbell, founder of the Disciples of Christ, also is in agreement for the justification of both slavery and segregation. If you disagree, then complain to the Most High God, not to me."
"In the Book of Genesis, Ham, the descendent of blacks, disrespected his father, Noah. Canaan, the Son of Ham, was cursed to slavery by his father, Noah. I cannot change the Word of God nor alter his Law. Blacks have a mission in life…placing a black man into the White House is a sin against the Most High God"
"I despise a black in a presidential role, because this is not their proper role in life. They were not created for government nor for political leadership; they were created for service. I salute and honor all the hard-working blacks working as servers in our restaurants and on our airplanes. I thank you for the service."
"If I was president, then I would drop one hydrogen bomb on the enemies of Israel, everyday, until world peace was achieved. Harry Truman ended the war with Japan. I would end the war on terror the same way. I would keep dropping hydrogen bombs, until we ran out, then I would atomic bombs, until we ran out of them too. Muslims want war; then we should give it to them. I would do to Muslims, what Stalin did to them. Now there was a leader, you can believe in."
Young children riding small animals:
It's hard to know what to make of the obsession with videos of children riding animals. He's favorited over 150 videos of small children riding small animals like dogs, goats, and turtles. He also seems to have strong interest in very young female singers, as evidenced in his Youtube feed and his Facebook page.
The children are mostly prepubescent. Commenting on these videos with unsettling encouragement is his most prolific activity on Youtube, such as:
"Ride 'em Cowgirl! Yee Haw!"
"I also LOVE the saging and the bending of the back of the goat. MORE PLEASE!"
"Ride 'em Cowboy!"
In the comment threads of these videos, he's quick to attack people who take exception to the activity as being either a form of animal abuse, or otherwise creepy. This particular thread needs to be read in its entirety to be believed. Here are a few excerpts.
"If I was Hitler or Stalin, then ninilein 1505 would be placed in a concentration camp and what I would give you to drink would not pass for drinking water."
"My dear friend, I would not shoot in the brain, because what suffering is in that? However, we hang many of your comrades and they died by strangulation. The fun lasted twenty-four minutes."
"Incidentally, your anti-social comments shows me, that your mother was a whore, very pleasing to the Red Army troops."
"My pathetic language does not contain the "F" word and I do not participate in name calling, unless someone else does it first. Then I get angry. My father made sure, that two thousand died in the Treblinka concentration camp. These were not Jews. They were political prisoners, who disrespected Der Fuehrer. Now what did your father ever do for National Socialism? Heil Hitler!"
"The only sad piece of shit is your mother. I hope she will rot in hell. She should have got an abortion after being raped. Instead she got you."
"If you deny the existence of God, then you need to be gassed and burned. I understand that the Nazis are the best people walking the surface of this earth. I hope your death wil be a cruel and violent one."
On abusing dogs
Again, we apologize for the graphic nature of these excerpts.
"A puppy with a smashed in skull would, indeed, be a cute sight to behold. Incidentally, it was one of my favorite pleasures of my childhood."
"When I was a kid, I used to kill puppies too. Today, I do not break for dogs. Little kids might be the next one to invent a superbomb for the United States, so that we could rule the world with it. Just imagine, the terror of the Japanese, when we dropped the atomic bomb."
"I got sick and tired of stray dogs coming into my yard. So I hired a professional to collect a dozen copperheads for my yard. Now, instead of picking up dog droppings, I bury dead dogs. I'm a lot happier individual and I love my snakes."
Is this the same Stephen Winkler?
Through considerable research, we've been able to determine that Stephen Winkler, of the Saugus USD Board of Trustees, is indeed the user of this Youtube account.
Both Facebook and Google+ allow searching for accounts by the email address linked to an account. On both networks, a search of Winkler's verified email address, firstname.lastname@example.org, links directly to profiles under his name. The Facebook profile is the same commonly associated with him, where he is friends with many local officials and politicos.
His Google+ profile contains a link to the Youtube account, and vice-versa. These links are established by Google, and is not possible to do without a person owning the accounts of both services.
Winkler is serving his first term on the Saugus USD Board of Trustees. Elected in 2011, after receiving the endorsement of two local Republican clubs (several declined to endorse), his term runs until November 2015.
We will be following this story closely and will keep you updated as it unfolds. In the meantime, a group has set up Facebook page to share information this user's Youtube activity.
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Sunday, June 9th, 2013 at 7:24 pm
As an Evangelical Christian and a human being, I find this incredibly repugnant and sickening. There simply is no excuse for such hateful remarks from anyone, let alone a school board member. Is Saugus now facing the very real consequences of no one being willing to run for the board so many times in the past? This really points out what can happen when there is no election because no one decides to run.
Alpiner, this is the result of extremely low voter turnout, people being in such a hurry to vote against an incumbent that they don't check who they're voting FOR, and local organizations endorsing a candidate without a decent vetting process. Local voters need to recognize their own responsibility in voting a lunatic into office.
How could this much stuff exist for this long in public with no one finding it? Good grief. Do we not have ANY journalism left at the local level? Heck, even the most rudimentary opposition research during election time?
This could be fake. I just went onto my own Google+ and changed my email to somebody else's, and it works fine... it does not require verification. And if somebody made fake Youtube and Google+ accounts for him, they could link the two together easily, then change the outward-facing email address to be his known address.
Anonymous, so you think someone, six years ago, created a YouTube channel in Winkler's name, echoing the same themes that show up in lesser detail on his Twitter and Facebook accounts, in preparation for trying to make him look bad years later when he showed up in Santa Clarita on the SUSD Board. That person also went to all the trouble to make comments all over other users' boards for those entire six years. Right. Makes perfect sense.
Anyone can backdate easily and they do constantly on Facebook as well. This is an old time honored way of democrat/ liberal burning of houses. Just like they did in the Jim crow south..I've Been on the net and developed alot for the last 22 years. Don't tell me what cannot be done.
In August, he commented on this article http://www.signalscv.com/archives/71993/ the following: "There is a simple solution to this problem. One is capital punishment, not releash of the criminal. Two, the death penalty must be by hanging with piano wire, as you hang cattle. Three, may I suggest a military presence in our neighborhoods? Four, massive arrests of all past offenders out on parole. Incidentally, we did not have this kind of problem in the Democratic Republic of Germany." The Signal has since removed comments from this article. But it bothered me enough at the time to make a note of it.
In 1943, after the "July Plot" to overthrow Hitler, he ordered nearly 5,000 Germans to be hung in the streets, like cattle, with piano wire. It took all of this for me to put it together.
I have the misfortune of knowing the individual and with no wish to be slanderous I can say that what you see is what you get. He won his seat because of low voter interest, a non-campaign by a fairly competent incumbant and the full endorsement of the largest local political party who supported him solely because he took on their label. And no one has to slander Mr. Winkler, they just have to go to a Saugus Board meeting and listen to him. He won't spout the Nazi stuff there but he will make an impression.
I have spoken with Stephen Winkler and he indeed has a thing for the Nazis and Ronald Reagan. I thought, after having spoken with him, that he must be on the autism spectrum somewhere. He quotes scriptures better than anyone I know, it's what he says when the conversation lags. I agree with a previous poster that he most likely got onto the school board because of low voter turn out. He must also have passed background checks to be a sub in the school system and I think he also works as a tutor somewhere.
Having the party affiliation of "Republican" with a couple of local party endorsements pretty much will make you a shoe-in in SCV elections. The election of Mr. Winkler is not too different from the election of Mrs. Colley to the Newhall Water Board. Low turnout, an electorate who does not adequately research candidates and their positions, local press (other than this blog) that is unwilling to adequately dig into anything of substance and even more unwilling to take a stand other than to protect the status quo and local party politic results in this sort of thing happening.
He is no Republican. Ronald Reagan would gag on this guy. And it is time for the SCV GOP to do more vetting and distance themselves from people like this. It is also time for the people of the SCV to realize that school board members have more direct impact on their community than anyone in Washington or Sacramento. Local elections need to be taken seriously. Saugus is a great district, but how long will that last with such low voter turnout or no contested elections? Having lived throughout the state, I can personally attest to the fact that other communities take these elections very seriously. What is with the SCV? How many times does this have to occur before people wise up?
It is amazing to me that the Young Republicans in Santa Clarita endorsed this fellow. I would like to see this issue investigated further. Someone must have known that Winkler had a screw loose. A simple Google search would have shown a ton of red flags.
This what the voters get when they don't take the time to learn about who is running in our local elections. When you don't vote it is like an extra vote for someone you don't want elected. It iall about your vote: It does count. So don't go point to everyone else who did vote and say"don't blame me. I didn't vote for him".
Can someone working for santaclarita.com pass this on to the local LA TV affiliates? Or do you need someone in LA to help do so? This is a good job of rooting something nasty out from under a rock. Now we need some bright lights to shine on it and shrivel it.
Truley scary stuff. And, it appears that the Saugus Union School Board cannot take action because he was elected. That apparently means there would need to be a re-call election, perhaps added to the November 5 election that will elect/re-elect 3 board members, not including Mr.W who has 2 more years on his term. It the re-call is before that, the district would have to pay for the election.
I'm shocked at this news. I would not have seen anything about it if not for a FB post by the local radio station. I see from the comments that a person like this is only on the board because of low voter turnout. How do we get him OUT?! That's what I want to know, and participate in making it happen. I have no idea what it takes to be on the board of a school district or what it entails once you are on it, but if it meant getting this man out, I'd run in a hot minute and donate my time to the district. Having a 1st grader in the Saugus district I am very disturbed that this man has any voice, let alone one on my local school district.
I feel for you. I would not like it if my child was in the Saugus School District either. However it does seem quite easy for one to establish a pseudo-identity online. From what I have read, this has been investigated and the account has been proved to be Stephen Winkler's. This is awful.
Funny thing about reading all this and reading all the comments on here is that EVERYONE OF YOU are no different than this guy. ALL OF YOU watch and fall in love with the Miley Cyrus when she was young, im sure the older men in here watched A LOT of Tracey Lords before she was 18 (Perverts) and just look at all the teaches that are sleeping with or having inappropriate relations with students. Although I don't agree with anything this man has to say WE DO LIVE IN AMERICA and EVERYONE has their right to FREEDOM OF SPEECH. WE FIGHT FOR THAT RIGHT and the RIGHT TO BARE ARMS.
If you don't agree with this man vote him out at the next election but don't mess with his job and his family because he expresses himself in a way you don't agree with.
I don't know about everyone of us. I haven't lived here long enough to vote anyone out. All caps is considered yelling. Is that necessary? I believe in free speech and the right to bare arms. I don't follow all the celebrity talk on the internet. It is unimportant to me. Now, we won't like what everyone believes in. People who have jobs with children really should be careful what they what they express on the internet.
I agree with that as I have 4 children from Grades K -11th currently and I think teachers and adults that work in a place that works directly with children should be held to a higher standard but at the same time I feel in this Country right now we are quick to bash people for being themselves and speaking their mind when we don't agree with them no matter what they think, feel, or believe. We in America are ALL raciest in some ways, myself included.
Again there are a lot of twisted minds out there and you cant stop them all but like I read in a previous post and what I have seen in recent Local County and City elections, people just don't vote or they don't do the research on the people they vote for. In this day and age you can have a 10 y/o do research on anyone..lol Its easy they can find them on Twitter, Facebook, Google, Ect.. and you can read all about them. All you have to do is CARE.
It is disappointing that people don't vote, don't you think? Also, I have worked in a school and I was careful to never post certain things on the internet because students are impressionable and my beliefs may not be what their parents want them to learn. A certain level of respect is necessary.
I don't know if I would say that everyone is racist but I might say we all discriminate against something-it just might not be about race or religion. It could be like me. I am only racist against ignorance and stupidity.
Kevin, I've been on Winkler watch since Sunday night. I've read a lot of posts and screen shots of Winkler's online activity. The issue is much more than folks not agreeing with the way Winkler expresses himself. Winkler haas exercised his right to free speech in a most extreme way with racist and violent remarks. I think the evidence is pretty clear he has violated the bylaws of the Saugus Union School District regarding the behavior of a School board member. Because he's an elected official it's appropriate, and I think imperative, for folks to "mess with his job", in other words, to ask him to resign,and if he doesn't, to start the recall process. Thankfully, I haven't read any comments about "messing with his family." That would definitely not be appropriate.
Coincidentally, I too support the RIGHT TO BARE ARMS, especially in Santa Clarita with 100+ degree summer days. I'm also very big on spelling and grammar, but I doubt you and I would agree on the constitutional intent of the right to bear arms.
Gramer... lol I can take the jabs... I haven't really followed this to close but my comments come out of frustration of no one giving a F**k until its to late or putting people in political positions without doing any type of back ground check on them prior to voting for them. In this particular situation I cant say that I have seen anything that was done illegal but I would say morally unacceptable especially if the facts about him having a lot of "videos of kids" (pretty weird). The stuff about Hittler and his rants about other religions, IMO are just that. Rants.
My point is that if the guys a creep with kids, get him out of there ASAP, but if he just runs his mouth and thinks hes a BIG TOUGH GUY behind a computer screen and he voices his opinion (right or wrong) then who are we to judge on his beliefs. If hes not harming the children (mentally or physically)and doing his job up to the standards of the school board then lets not waste tax payers money and get him out when its time to vote.
While I agree that people have the right to bear arms, I still think there are a lot of people who should never ever be able to own a gun or get their hands on one. When you work for a school, you have to think before you act. You must consider policies and contracts that you have signed to work there. Forgetting important things like that only make me wonder how seriously a person takes their job.
I just noticed my typo, "haas". I apologize. Another thought on the right to bear arms. If the person responsible for the disturbing online actitiviy we've been discussing has access to guns, I would be very concerned.
A few typos here and there are not bothersome. We aren't turning in a report. There are so many people out there who have guns and should never have one. I had this one high school friend who grew up with guns in the home. The scary part was the father used to wave a gun at the kids whenever they were in trouble. I saw it once-I left quickly. I wish there was a better way to check the people who own guns. Some people are truly mentally unstable and should never ever have access to a gun. One of the big problems is that if a person has never had any brushes with the law, they will be able to get a gun. Another issue is improper storage of guns. Too many kids get their parents' guns. I do know some parents who store their guns very well-just wish more people were like that. I had a rifle when I lived very rural. I stored it and locked it. They didn't know where I stored it on purpose. I just wonder why some people have many guns. Why is that necessary? It scares me a little.
The news like channel 2 or 7 need to be called. Expose this Guy. This site wont alert anybody. It also needs to hit Facebook in a big way. Then you'll have no trouble getting this Guy out and into a mental facility.
Glad to hear this made ABC 7 and NBC 4 news reports. I would be curious to learn how this guy became an elected official without the slightest bit of media scrutiny. Now days, it seems to me like we have to be our own 60 Minutes crew... Where was the media when this guy was running for office?
Oh. How did o miss this
I have lived here over 25 years
Raised my family here. I'm so disqusted,how did he get nomination? Need to pay attention to that as well. I served with Judy Umeck for many years at Foster elementary PTA when our kids attended. I'm hoping to contact her and get involved.
Has only been in the news the one time? Eleven o'clock. Doesn't seem good enough. This Guy must be dangerous. I can't sleep I'm so upset. I usually know what's going on in our valley. How did I not know this?
Don't agree. The Gop of today is Not the Gop of yesterday. That simple fact that until the 1980s the kkk had parades on Lyons Ave. And the current Gop embrasses the kkk due to President Obamas election might add a clue here. I'm betting the two organizations that backed him knew what they were doing.
Please... You are starting to sound like the Tawana Brawley of Santa Clarita. :-) If there were any KKK marches in Santa Clarita Valley in the 1980s, don't you think long-term residents like me would remember them?
No. This town has great ways of making incidents disappear. I didn't see the parade but heard about it from friends later. I moved here in 1983. That year I had a cross burnt on my front lawn. That didn't make the signal either. I was implementable in having the southern cross flags removed from the chuck e. cheese next to k mart as well.
I am no stranger to being around KKK, Pro-Nazi individuals and those in the Arian movement. I find that kind of hatred scary. I wish everyone would view the world like my blind disabled son: he loves based on how nice the person is and appearance or religion doesn't matter.
My heart is heavy. I feel like a stranger in my home town. I used to be so active while my daughter was in school. I owned a retail store here to thirty years. Now retired, I've become lazy. I see my old Cohort Judy umeck has stayed active in our city. Proud of her,Mad at myself.
I am astonished at the slanderous article I've just read. There is nothing in this entire piece that proves anything. Anyone that is jerking their knees clean off of their body by buying into this so-called journalistic tripe and apparent lies should be ashamed of yourselves. All I see here is a political smear that is reprehensible.
How much closer do I need to read to understand and believe that none of this adds up. You racist liberals don't need answers, you need feelings and your ability towards reason is suspect at best. Btw your opinion based on knee jerks and a clear ignorance of how blacklisting works amongst the fascist tribes, aka liberal anti intellectuals is moot. Gawd you people are dense.
Mr Brayton, you come across as a very hateful man and it is not surprising you are defending a man suggesting hanging people with piano wire. YOU are naive to think anyone would (as was pointed out previously) maintained a false account for 6 years under someone else's name, using his email address, facebook account, consistently posting the same tone of comment, etc. It does not add up that anyone is responsible for the piano wire, etc. comments than one man linked to it all, the same Mr. Winkler. He has a right to his opinions and/or fetishes, but in my opinion his are ones that should disqualify him for public office such as a school board. You are blindly defending someone you likely identify as a fellow "non-liberal". You can have him in your camp, but take off the blinders and see that you are camping with and defending an admitted Nazi sympathizer.
It bothers me when people don't vote too. I unfortunately didn't move here in time to vote. I like to research everyone before voting. I take voting seriously. This way, I know that I have every right to complain.
Truly astonishing lockstep morons here. You have no idea what is true. The man is a Jew and his family were In Nazi Germany and so far everything he had said that I've read now shows that he hates national socialists, aka fascistic Nazis a.k.a. teachers union thugs...Anyone can make a YouTube channel and phony it...don't be naive. I don't even know this man but I know propaganda from 10 miles away. Grow up you pansy liberal jerks.
Good gawd Kelly if you don't know by now I refuse to educate you. Plus I am wasting my time even setting any of you straight on this ridiculous effort to hammer this man into the ground. I am certain the reason is strictly to "make him pay" for being against the fascist Nazi school board. And yes. They are all of that.