A homophobic street preacher tried to bring his hate to a queer neighbourhood. It seriously backfired
Queer folk in Vancouver, Canada protested against an anti-LGBT+ preacher in the best possible way: By draping themselves in rainbow flags and blasting out Lady Gaga songs.
Anti-LGBT+ preacher David Lynn, founder of Christ’s Forgiveness Ministries was due to speak in Vancouver’s West End, home to much of the city’s LGBT+ population, on Monday (August 31).
He often uses loudspeakers to make sure his message was heard, and previously preached “repentance” to LGBT+ people in Toronto’s gay village.
In response to his visit, a “Dance Against Hate” protest was organised by Alternative Pride Vancouver.
As the local queer community blared “Born This Way” by Lady Gaga and waved rainbow and trans Pride flags, Lynn arrived late and was surrounded by police officers who protected him while he addressed the crowd with a microphone.
His message of hate was drowned out by the music and chants of “go home!”
Queer demonstrators said police had failed to protect them.
Speaking to CBC News, president of LGBT+ organisation PFLAG Vancouver Colin McKenna said the community has been dealing with hate from anti-queer preachers in the area for months.
“The police have done very little, if anything, about it, which includes enforcing noise bylaws,” he said.
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McKenna said he and other LGBT+ people in the area decided to host the “Dance Against Hate” event to bring a message of peace and love, and to send a message to law enforcement authorities in Canada.
“They’ve left us unsafe for months and unfortunately, at his point, we’ve had to take it into our own hands,” he said.
“We have to make a statement and make sure the city knows that the police know we’re not putting up with it anymore.”
Vancouver police told the news outlet that they protected the preacher in an effort to maintain peace.
“The VPD monitors any demonstrations to prevent criminal acts from taking place while ensuring the safety of the protesters, the public, and the police,” constable Tania Visitin said.
One person was arrested at the protest after he allegedly spat on another person.