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Activist of the Day: Chris Pesto


Chris Pesto, a junior drama major at Syracuse University, felt uncomfortable when he saw Open-Air Campaigner evangelist Michelle Deferio standing on campus with her anti-gay sign, so he decided to create a bit of his own drama:

Writes Pesto: "This woman was wearing a ankle-length corduroy skirt, which, as we all know, is a fashion nono. So, in order to make her feel uncomfortable, I stood next to her and held a sign that said Corduroy skirts are a sin! I don’t think I have ever drawn so much attention in my life. SO many people asked to take a picture with me, I got laughs, high fives and there were the few that even cursed off the woman standing behind me. As I drew interest to what was going on with myself and the woman with the hateful sign, I started to draw a crowd that stood with me in support. Before I knew it I had 100+ people holding signs for gay rights asking people to honk their horns to support. I was interviewed by a news station, and more than 5 student organization papers, and the post standard of syracuse."

(via slog)

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  1. Excellent!

    Posted by: Michael W. | Nov 30, 2009 5:37:50 PM

  2. he should have added, "silk can set you free!"

    Posted by: Ted | Nov 30, 2009 5:54:44 PM

  3. love this kid! and kudos to the group of cool people that surrounded him and supported him.

    Posted by: casey | Nov 30, 2009 5:58:12 PM

  4. Amen!

    Posted by: Rich | Nov 30, 2009 6:03:50 PM

  5. That just made my day. Laughing at bigots with there Jeebus signs and their contempt for others drives them nuts.

    Posted by: elcamino | Nov 30, 2009 6:27:02 PM

  6. Yay!

    Posted by: hall | Nov 30, 2009 6:44:12 PM

  7. Making a valid point with humour is always more effective than scolding! What a great funny/bitchy response in defending civil rights. It gets rid of the anger-- I just feel puzzled and a bit saddened by this woman, and maybe he's made her think too. This guy is awesome.

    Posted by: Derek Pearce | Nov 30, 2009 7:20:16 PM

  8. Love it!
    In the same vein as my fav bumper sticker:
    Honk if you love cheeses

    Posted by: jessejames | Nov 30, 2009 7:30:41 PM

  9. Chris Pesto is awesome!!!! Totally made my day.

    Posted by: Chuck | Nov 30, 2009 7:36:50 PM

  10. The best bit is corduroy is actually a sin. Look it up- Leviticus (same book that condemns homosexuality), Chapter 19, verse 19:

    "Do not wear clothing woven of two kinds of material."

    Corduroy is made from wool and cotton.

    Posted by: Clifw | Nov 30, 2009 7:49:51 PM

  11. Yeah, he probably "made her think." Made her think that all her stereotypes about bitchy gay fashion queens are true. I don't care, make fun of them all you want, but they're not going to come around that easily.

    Posted by: Dave | Nov 30, 2009 7:53:52 PM

  12. hate the skirt, not the wearer!


    Posted by: raphinou | Nov 30, 2009 8:31:33 PM

  13. I LOVE the grin on his face and LOVE his idea and LOVE how he was able to win over all those people.

    There's just nothing at all not to love about this story. lol

    Posted by: sparks | Nov 30, 2009 8:47:08 PM

  14. What religious text says Corduroy skirts are a sin? Answer: None. Nothing says that Corduroy is made of two fibers put together (go to Wikipedia). Corduroy is a PROCESS for making a particular kind of fabric, not mixing two sorts of threads or fibers together. Corduroy is genearlly made from 100% cotton.

    This guy is really showing his knee jerk stupidity (I have no fear of political correctness). The woman can at least point to some religious text to support her claim (whether one agrees with it or not is immaterial in this SPECIFIC instance).

    So this guy is just bitch slapping her cuz she's bitch slapping Gay folks. Let the bitch slapping begin.

    Posted by: Sargon Bighorn | Nov 30, 2009 9:15:29 PM

  15. seriously, WHY are people like "Dave" and "Sargon Bighorn" even alive? you were probably rooting for the other contestants in Little Miss Sunshine. i almost feel sorry for how pathetic and twisted your lives must be. almost, not quite. just die on the outside now to match your 'innards.'

    Posted by: casey | Nov 30, 2009 9:27:46 PM

  16. Interesting, Sargon. Another interesting point: did you know that sometimes when people say or write things, they aren't speaking literally?

    Sure, someone else above cited Leviticus, but it's *possible* that this queen was just talking about a "fashion no-no." Not any religious texts.

    Oh wait, that's exactly what he said he was doing!

    Posted by: Paul R | Nov 30, 2009 9:34:34 PM

  17. @Sargon dude..... corduroy skirts ARE a fashion sin.........

    Posted by: Don | Nov 30, 2009 9:35:37 PM

  18. Heh… Just goes to show you that not only are we queers happier and more creative, we’re wittier and funnier, too! The best (and most effective) reaction to authoritarian control freaks and/or Mary Moralist busybody gawd-botherers is to get people to laugh at their preposterous nonsense — it removes their power. Good on you, Chris Pesto!

    Posted by: Nathanial | Nov 30, 2009 9:42:25 PM

  19. I love this guy.

    Posted by: JeffNYC | Nov 30, 2009 9:48:52 PM

  20. I take exception! This feeds into the false meme that homosexuality is a choice! After all, it was "her" (and I use the pronoun loosely) choice to wear that...thing...and it could correct that "sin" by changing its clothes-- implying that gay people can just change their sexual orientation just as easily.

    But at the same time, I'm just kiddin'. Good on the kid for reaching out in one of the best ways. People don't want to feel bad about their part in oppressing a minority--so make it fun for 'em to change. If you vote for marriage equality, you'll get a car or a sundae! Feed that big fat sloppy sweaty smelly pig slob that is the american electorate by incentivizing equality.

    Posted by: TANK | Nov 30, 2009 9:50:31 PM

  21. ROFLMAO!

    Posted by: NYSmike | Dec 1, 2009 12:28:34 AM

  22. The irony is that Corduroy (a mixed blend), really IS a sin according to Leviticus 19:19

    Posted by: FloridaSqueezed | Dec 1, 2009 1:13:06 AM

  23. Makes me glad I converted my cordie skirt into a table sham! Thank you Jesus!

    Posted by: Eric | Dec 1, 2009 1:46:06 AM

  24. I've known him since we were 9 years old! He's adorable... i'm so proud of him for doing this...

    Posted by: Robert | Dec 1, 2009 2:24:27 AM

  25. @ Sargon bighorn : dude, seriously, lay off the carbs ! This guy is an original and he just shot her down.

    Posted by: JackFknTwist | Dec 1, 2009 4:37:23 AM

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