DAILY GRINDER: Anti-Gay Protesters Crash SundayOUT! Party at the Piazza
Anti-gay protesters showed up at yesterday’s SundayOut! Equality Forum party at the Piazza. It was weird. They misspelled the word “pedophile” on one of their protest signs (Note to anyone there: Was this on purpose as some sort of, say, irony?). If not, sure, you could say, “I’ve seen words misspelled in your newspaper, and on this blog, asshole!”—which is probably true. But you’ve got to imagine, if you’re in charge of making just one sign with 4-5 words on it, you probably want to make it count.
Anyway. I saw someone describe the protesters on Twitter as the “God Hates Fags” folks, a.k.a., the Westboro Baptist Church. They were not that. Rather, they were the Speak: Truth Project, a missionary group whose website claims Christians are either “missionaries or imposters.” Think of the Westboro Baptist Church with a website that features young people with Christian rap names. Seriously.
The group split into two packs. One stood at the corner of Germantown and 2nd Streets. The other, larger, louder group (equipped with a megaphone) stood outside King’s Oak Bar, essentially screaming back at SundayOUT! attendees who felt like arguing with a brick wall.
I spoke with a woman who stood at the corner of Second and Germantown Ave. She held a sign reading “Homosexuality is a sin” on one side, Leviticus 18:22 (“Do not lie with a man as one lies with a woman“) on the other. I did not record the interview, but can essentially sum up what she said.
She claimed she was not there in hatred. In fact, just the opposite: she was praying for the thousands who showed up at the Equality Forum, and for the millions of homosexuals across the earth who don’t know any better—because if they did, they’d stop being gay. She refuses to accept that people are born gay and related being gay to an addiction, like drugs. And like a drugs, one can get over being gay with the right treatment. In this case, prayer. She claimed homosexuality was like any other sin. And she can relate: She said she, too, once dealt with a sinful existence, but found God. Surrender yourself to Christ, then, and you can and will hang out Speak: Truth Project in heaven, someday.
I asked her about the recent tussle brought up by Dan Savage, when he claimed Christians claiming homosexuality is a sin are being disingenuous because the Bible also forbids eating shellfish and says slavery is OK. Her claim was that the Bible notes differences between moral and ceremonial requirements. Moral ones are the important ones. Homosexuality = moral. Shellfish = ceremonial.
They were handing out cards reading “The Rainbow Promise” all about handing your life over to God. And according to the group’s website, they’re gearing up for the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte. They’ll be at the Olympics, too.
Five Philadelphia priests will be permanently barred from the ministry, said Archbishop Charles Chaput on Friday. Seventeen more cases remain under review. Chaput said the last year has made the church “humbler, wiser, and a more vigilant guardian of our people’s safety.”
Philadelphia City Council says they want to collect back taxes on deadbeats. Oh! Oh! I’ve heard this one! It ends with nothing happening, right?
The civil trial in the summer 2010 duck boat accident is beginning.
A duck boat got stuck in the Delaware River yesterday and was dragged back to shore. Everyone was OK.
Natural gas drilling brought in $3.5 billion in gross revenues for drillers in 2011.