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Crime

Police charge anti-gay activist Bill Whatcott over homophobic leaflets distributed at Toronto Pride

Nick Duffy June 23, 2018

Anti-gay activist Bill Whatcott has surrendered to police in relation to homophobic leaflets he handed out at Toronto Pride in 2016.

Whatcott, a fundamentalist Christian, managed to infiltrate Pride Toronto in 2016 to hand out ‘condom’ packets with a nasty surprise.

The group were incredibly allowed access to march in the parade after paying a $100 fee to register the ‘Gay Zombies Cannabis Consumers Association’, distributing ‘condom’ packets to the crowd.

However, they didn’t actually contain condoms – but rather anti-gay messages and pictures of prolapsed anuses printed on small folded-up bits of paper, encouraging gay people to repent.

The group of activists dressed up as ‘gay zombies’ (Bill Whatcott)

The messages read: “Natural law is clear, homosexuality is incompatible with human nature. Disease, death and confusion are the sad and sordid realities of the homosexual lifestyle.

“The ‘Gay Zombies’ are concerned about the spiritual, psychological and physical welfare of all potential homosexual pride attendees, so we want to give you this accurate information and encourage you to abstain from the homosexuality.

“The rejection of true marriage is also in direct opposition to God’s law and it is our duty to warn you that those who choose to rebel against the God who created them, do so to their eternal peril.”

Whatcott self-surrendered to police in Calgary yesterday (June 22) after a warrant was issued for his arrest in relation to the incident.

He surrounded himself with supporters as he turned himself in, according to the Toronto Star, telling the crowd, “I have absolutely no apologies to make.”

A fake condom containing the anti-LGBT message (Bill Whatcott)

Whatcott also allegedly distributed further anti-gay leaflets to the crowd.

He was charged with distributing hate literature, police confirmed.

Bill Whatcott dressed up at Pride in 2014

Out Liberal politician George Smitherman, who has previously brought legal action against Whatcott, told Daily Xtra: “It sounds like what I would characterize as a great step in further exposing this hate-spewer for what he truly is.

“[The flier] is so reprehensible in its approach, both in terms of disgusting stereotypes that it relies upon and also the tactic of directly attacking the political supporters of our community.

“I think that it’s necessary for our community to protect itself against people who have evil intentions.”

The activist was previously tried on a mischief charge in 2014, for refusing to leave the University of Regina, Saskatchewan, where he had been distributing “graphic” hate literature without permission

However, Whatcott was found not guilty by Judge Marylynne Beaton of the Regina Provincial Court.

On that occasion the judge ruled: “I find that the purpose of (their) attending the University of Regina was to communicate information and their actions were passive and non-aggressive. The university’s response was disproportionate to the peaceful distribution of flyers.”

More: Gay, LGBT, Pride, Toronto, Toronto pride

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