IMPORTANT: We won’t be demonstrating at 5 PM. The organizers made the decision that it wouldn’t be effective in the dark.
Our midday demonstration went well. Lots of folks who came to the early morning session were back, and there were new faces as well. I got to spend some time chatting with actor Glenn Shadix, who gave a moving account of his experience with “reparative” therapy on Thursday night. Wayne Besen continued to document the event, and I expect we’ll see footage soon on the Truth Wins Out website.
We smiled and waved as conference attendees left for lunch, and we got lots of smiles and waves in return — so many, in fact, that we speculate they were coached to be nice. Not so nice was the guy inside a bus bearing the name Amnesty Baptist Church, with the tag line “The Last Baptist Church”. He informed us over the bus loudspeaker that “God doesn’t make mistakes. God doesn’t make a man queer.” Yes, but what about the women?
One poor kid drove by us over and over, back and forth (we were on a public street, but it basically served as a long driveway for the church hosting the conference). He was hunched forward, gripping the steering wheel, looking terribly stressed. I thought he might persuade himself to stop and talk to us, but he never did.
Several of the local news stations sent reporters, so there should be some TV coverage this evening. I don’t know if we changed any minds today, but if even one family thinks twice about trying to “pray away the gay”, that will be a good thing. Thanks so much to everyone who gave their time to organize and participate!
The Jefferson County sheriff’s deputies who directed traffic today couldn’t have been any nicer. The Hoover police department, on the other hand, did not cover itself with glory coming out to clear a taxpayer-funded parking lot because the Hoover Board of Education didn’t want to “take sides” by letting us park there. And someone apparently contacted Lakeside Baptist Church, located around the corner from conference host Metropolitan Church of God, because orange cones appeared sometime this morning across the entrances to both of its (otherwise empty) parking lots. Christian hospitality at its finest…
More pictures below:
Some midday protesters
Singers from Covenant Community Church
Bob Palmatier, Equality Alabama Board Chair
Blocked parking lots at neighboring Lakeside Baptist Church