A Christian group has been caught distributing anti-gay flyers which claim gays will end up in ‘a coffin’ during a council-run carnival.
Copies of the flyer ‘Ten Good Reasons To Get Stoned’ were given out at Saturday’s Gloucester Carnival, according to the Gloucester Citizen.
The leaflet claims that being gay causes “dire consequences beyond our control” in reference to the estimation that around 30% of male suicides in the US can be attributed to gay men.
It says: “The freedom to express the desires that they so passionately fought for has brought many out of the closet and into a coffin.”
— Ben Mosley (@BenMosley) July 26, 2014
The leaflet also claimed that it is better for your health to smoke marijuana instead of cigarettes, and that marijuana can be beneficial to health when smoked in moderation.
Leader of Gloucester City Council Paul James vowed to investigate the incident, saying: “Clearly it is not the kind of material that we want to be distributed in the city and we will be looking at whether the distributor is allowed to participate again.”
Robin Agascar MBE, who is a member of LGBT voluntary organisation GAY-GLOS, said: “People are allowed to have their say but the carnival was not the place.
“The statistics it quotes about suicides is because of people like this who make their lives hell.”
John Huggins, owner of LGBT bar The Westgate, said: “It is absolutely ridiculous that there is this level of hatred and ignorance in Britain in the 21st century.”
LGBT rights campaigner Peter Tatchell tweeted his concerns:
The leaflet’s creator Michael Virgo argued it was supposed to be ironic, saying: “The leaflet says that these sinful behaviours bring forth death.
“The leaflet lists some of the reasons which people give for doing wrong. I am not agreeing with them, but just quoting what people say.
“Most of the other Christians partaking in the event did not give out my leaflet, they were giving out a great variety of other Gospel leaflets.”