Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Students gather to protest Westboro Baptist Church members on campus

April 23, 2012

Community members and MSU students protest against members of the Westboro Baptist Church outside of the Union on Monday.

Photo by Julia Nagy | The State News

Editor’s note: This article was updated at 10:13 a.m.

About 50 students and community members held a counter protest against four representatives of the Westboro Baptist Church at around 8:15 a.m. today at the corner of Abbot Road and E. Grand River Avenue.

The Westboro Baptist Church is a religious organization based out of Kansas known for their anti-homosexual protests, a number of which are held at or near soldiers’ funerals. The representatives from the group on campus said they were protesting against homosexuality.

Fred Phelps Jr., a member of WBC who has been protesting for more than 20 years, said he loves students who practice their first amendment rights by protesting, but he is against what the college stands for as a whole.

“What these colleges are doing … is teaching the youth of this nation that it is alright to be gay, which is 180 degrees opposite of what the bible says,” he said.

The counter protesters, which largely were students, held signs in support of the LGBT community and acceptance of all people.

Communication freshman Cole Williams, who attended the counter protest, said he is happy that MSU has a chance to see what kinds of radical views of homosexuality exist today.

“I think it is a good cause, homosexuality should not be such a big deal anymore,” he said. “It is good for college campuses to see it — especially MSU — because it is so liberal. People need to see this kind of radical stance on a viewpoint so people can see there are problems.

“People should not be this hateful against other people.”

The protest lasted about 30 minutes and was peaceful, as the groups stood on opposite sides of Abbot Road.

Staff writer Isabella Shaya contributed to this report.

Check The State News tomorrow for a full story on Monday’s protest.

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