High school students, community stand up to Westboro Baptist Church

Bigots overshadowed by protest in favor of LGBTQ equality

Wilson High School, Washington, D.C., June 9
Photo: Walter Smolarek

On June 9, nearly 1,000 students and community members gathered outside Wilson High School in Washington, D.C., to stand up to the notorious bigots of the Westboro Baptist Church. Wilson High was targeted by WBC because the school was celebrating LGBTQ Pride, shortly after the school’s principal, Peter Cahall, came out as a gay man.

The progressive move by the school infuriated the bigots, who are well-known for their inflammatory, slur-ridden signs and confrontational choice of venues for protests. However, they were embarrassingly outnumbered by the overwhelming outpouring of support for LGBTQ equality. At 8:00am, a huge crowd had gathered outside the school for a demonstration led by students.

Wilson students ran through the crowd with a rainbow flag and held signs expressing their outrage at the Westboro protesters. Student leaders kept the energy high, chanting, “One, two, three , four, equality’s what we’re fighting for! Five, six, seven, eight, fight the bigotry, fight the hate!” and “When human rights are under attack, what do we do? Stand up, fight back!”

In the end, the anti-LGBTQ bigots were completely overshadowed by the actions of progressive high school students and their supporters – a very good sign for the future of the struggle for equality!

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