Saturday, November 13, 2010

Brody's Notes... Westboro Baptist Church Is A No Show At Suburban DC Maryland High School

By Brody Levesque (Bethesda, Maryland) NOV 13 | According to staff writer Cody Calamaio for the Maryland Gazette Newspapers, a scheduled demonstration by the Topeka, Kansas based Westboro Baptist Church, against a performance of the play The Laramie Project at Richard Montgomery High School in Rockville, Maryland ended before it began.
Calamaio reported:
Nearly 100 people who showed up to counter a protest planned by Westboro Baptist Church waited outside of Richard Montgomery High School for over an hour Saturday afternoon, but nobody from Westboro came. The church is known for picketing at the funerals of U. S. service men and for holding anti-homosexual protests.
The Westboro website,, reported that church members would protest between 1:15 and 2 p.m. Saturday. School officials and City of Rockville police were on site in preparation for any protest or counter-protest, but the colorfully dressed crowd, many holding signs such as "Gay is OK," remained docile and trickled away when their opposition never came.
The award winning play presented by the Montgomery High Black Maskers Drama Club,  opened last night, and was performed today in an afternoon matinée and an evening performance. Written by Moisés Kaufman and members of the Tectonic Theater Project, the play draws on hundreds of interviews conducted by the original theater company with inhabitants, company members' own journal entries and published news reports about the community's reaction to the 1998 murder of University of Wyoming gay student Matthew Shepard in Laramie, Wyoming. It is divided into three acts, and eight actors portray more than sixty characters in a series of short scenes.
Calamaio also wrote that local resident Hillary Harris, 23, of Gaithersburg, Maryland told him that she had dressed in colorful clothing and jewelry to mock Westboro's message.
"We're here to counter act their stupidity with love and silliness," Hillary Harris said. Even though church members did not show up, Harris said she thinks the counter-protest was important. "We're still doing something that we believe in," she said.


Desmond Rutherford said...

"We're here to counter act their stupidity with love and silliness," Hillary Harris said.

Now that is effective, positive activism.

Extremists don't understand love and silliness and they are disarmed by them.