Australia | Religion

Pro-Gay Rally In Australia Ends In Violence After Disruption By Anti-Gay Protesters

A peaceful protest by marriage equality advocates in Adelaide Australia on the International Day Against Homophobia ended in violence yesterday after members of the Adelaide Christian Street Church disrupted the demonstration. 

Same Same has details:

Around 200 people met yesterday at Victoria Square, before the rainbow flag-waving procession moved off to Parliament House.

South Australian Legislative Council member Ian Hunter addressed the crowd, along with queer youth workers who said youth health and welfare was being threatened by the closure of service projects. Lesbian and Uniting church minister Reverend Sue Wickham conducted a marriage ceremony for ten couples.

Along the way, several members of Adelaide Street Church marched ahead of the colourful crowd, wielding huge signs saying ‘God hates sinners’ and quoting the Bible. They also attempted to drown out the marriage rally with their own announcements via loudhailer.

Protest organizer Jason Virgo witnessed a wheelchair-bound LGBT supporter get yanked out of her wheelchair by the Christian protesters:

Aus1“I heard reports of someone being punched by one of the street preachers and I know that a woman of the gay and lesbian community who wheelchair bound and a street preacher were struggling over a banner. The street preacher pulled it away from the woman, which obviously caused her to fall from her wheelchair. But instead of stopping there the Street Preacher kept pulling and this threw her to the ground.

“You would think someone who claims to represent god would stop struggling with this woman after she was thrown on to the ground.”

He adds: “I blame any violence on Saturday on the street preachers, they set out from the beginning to disrupt and antagonize people from the outset. Police removed two of the street preachers and no one from our community. I think that speaks for itself.”

A photo gallery of the event is here.

Watch a report of the incident, including an interview with the woman in the wheelchair, AFTER THE JUMP.

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  1. They aren't Christians. Anyone who cherry-picks the Bible and uses it as a weapon has never read it.....

    1 John 2:11
    "But the one who hates his brother is in the darkness and walks in the darkness, and does not know where he is going because the darkness has blinded his eyes."

    1 John 3:15
    "Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer; and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him."

    Posted by: CB | May 15, 2011 5:35:19 AM

  2. I searched the new testament, but I couldn't find a single example of Jesus hating anything. Even his temper tantrum in the temple is simply attributed to 'zeal'.

    Posted by: Go Galt. Please. | May 15, 2011 7:08:19 AM

  3. once again the **christians** reveal their true colors.

    Posted by: Danny | May 15, 2011 7:36:30 AM

  4. @ Go Galt. Please.: the story's even more interesting: people coming to the temple to offer required sacrifices were required to purchase from the vendors in the temple precinct; i.e., from vendors exclusive rights to sell such animals. As may be imagined from similar circumstances and settings in our own day, those vendors charged inflated prices for their wares. Even worse, pilgrims from more distant places were required to change their currency for currency accepted by the temple vendors in order to buy; and of course, the "money-changers" took a considerable cut (like they do at banks, the "cambio" and at American Express). It goes without saying that the administration of the temple got their cut from all of this. But the pilgrims had no choice--the law required the offering of the sacrifices. Jesus' rage is generally considered by scholars to be was directed at this extortion of money from the unsophisticated rural folk who came in to Jerusalem to worship at the Temple as the law prescribed.

    Posted by: Danny | May 15, 2011 7:49:11 AM

  5. They have lions at the Adelaide zoo. It's dinner time kitties!

    Posted by: Anastasia Beaverhausen | May 15, 2011 7:52:57 AM

  6. Everyday my hatred grows for all christians. The ones who sit silently in their pews are as guilty as the criminals unleashed on the street.

    Posted by: PatrickZ | May 15, 2011 9:17:57 AM

  7. I'm with Patrickz on this one. People like this are homegrown terrorists no matter which continent they live on. They preach hate, encourage and incite violence against the gay community. For followers of Christ it's sad that their best asset for winning souls is Satan and the preaching of eternal hell instead of the love and tolerance that Christ showed. I'm not even christian, I wouldn't want to be associated with such a thing these days. Put Christ back in christianity and I might consider it.

    Posted by: Randy | May 15, 2011 9:38:50 AM

  8. that sucks BUT good can come from it as long as australian media gives it a lot of coverage. People will learn of the hypocritical & evil xtianista jihadists and maybe (hopefully) start siding with equality

    In america the turning point on civil rights was average american viewers watching water hoses and dogs being turned loose on peaceful civil rights protesters. That shocked average america into siding with the civil rights movement

    Posted by: mstrozfckslv | May 15, 2011 10:24:15 AM

  9. @Danny Sometimes you have to stick up for your dad.

    Posted by: Go Galt. Please. | May 15, 2011 11:23:58 AM

  10. The problem I have with many protesters and demonstrators [and organizations], on all sides, is [especially in regards to protesters] you never really know who some of them are, and what their true motivation is. There are more than a few trolls and [paid] shills whose 'job' is to cause trouble. Some do this by infiltrating, even organizing, groups with agendas they in reality oppose. They then do and say stuff that make these organizations look bad. And there's plenty of faux drama to boot.

    Many well known especially 'protest' organizations and 'radical' organizations are HEAVILY infiltrated by their opposing sides, and by police and other intelligence agencies. Some are even started by them and run by them.

    What I'm trying to say is I like more clarity with who is really who, what really happened [with follow up; like did alleged assaults result in criminal legal action, anyone arrested, etc.,]. Who really are behind a lot of organizations, is their funding and expenses properly audited, who really are the people in front of and behind the camera [so to speak], etc., You can't take anything for granted.

    Posted by: ratbastard | May 15, 2011 11:25:11 AM

  11. I assume "Loudhailer" is a quaint Australian term for a bigoted loud mouth.

    Posted by: Joe in CT | May 15, 2011 11:35:38 AM

  12. @ratbastard Any protest group not focused on media attention and manipulation is by definition secretive. What is a nice normal protestor supposed to do? And will there be bottled water for sale nearby?

    Posted by: Go Galt. Please. | May 15, 2011 12:02:01 PM

  13. @go.galt.please.,

    You've twisted my words. Simply put:

    1) It's unclear who really runs, finances, etc., many 'radical' organizations.

    2) Some 'radical' [protest groups, whatever] organizations are infiltrated, even led, by dubious individuals with questionable backgrounds.

    3) Paid shills and true believer tools will create drama for the sake of drama. Same with trolls.

    What's so 'bad' about what I wrote above? It's all true.

    Posted by: ratbastard | May 15, 2011 1:12:18 PM

  14. ratbastard is correct on what he said

    though in america republicans have been exposed more than dems of at least wanting/trying to infiltrate groups on the other side and false flag violent protests to turn public opinion against them

    Posted by: mstrozfckslv | May 15, 2011 1:25:43 PM

  15. Throwing someone from a wheelchair would be at least an assault and battery charge, perhaps with criminal intent.

    Posted by: anon | May 15, 2011 1:32:48 PM

  16. Ratbastard is right, even if it is unfortunate... just look at how the US government was acting in the 60's/70's regarding things like Nixon, the civil rights movement, etc

    That being said, a street preacher that is a legitimate christian pulling a woman from a wheelchair onto the ground isn't something I would be surprised about based on some of the actions I've seen by actual confirmed christians..

    Posted by: madm@ | May 15, 2011 3:10:00 PM

  17. That first "street church" leader sure sounded like an American.

    Posted by: BobN | May 15, 2011 3:42:18 PM

  18. @ratbastard I agree with you. Especially point #3. These protest groups, whether they are pure at heart or morally bankrupt, have shifted the focus from protest itself to the media attention paid to the protest. I don't believe the feds are really worried about protesting itself. If they were, history says there'd be a lot more dead people. What we're left with is theater, with dubious motives and multiple payoffs on all sides.
    So, what does a person do? You're mad enough to protest. Maybe you're willing to risk a BS arrest. But when you show up down at Resistance-R-Us, you notice that there's a video camera, 3 phones and a fax machine for the media, but only 1 magic marker for the signs. And the unorganized groups are just that, unorganized. You don't know their ideology until after you've sought them out. You're more or less unable to rely on them for something as basic as water, much less a rally permit. Going by yourself and hoping for the best seems like the wisest choice, but it takes an awful lot of self confidence to pull it off.
    Perhaps one answer is technology. I don't know. We've seen Twitter "flash mobs", and we've seen the reaction. In Philadelphia, the police completely freaked out over them, vowing Zero Tolerance for the legions of school aged hooligans. In one instance they blocked off a major intersection ajacent to the U of Penn and laid in wait for a crowd that never appeared. But the last thing I heard, the mobs were actually improv dance troupe performances advertised through Twitter, and the real issue was the residual crowds of purpose-less children hanging around. I bet you can guess how big the city afterschool programs budget is when flash-mobbing is (err, was) a viable form of afternoon entertainment.

    Sometimes I dunna speak so good, but to me the above extruded verbiage says about the same thing as my earlier assault.

    Posted by: Go Galt. Please. | May 15, 2011 4:44:21 PM

  19. @GO GALT. PLEASE.,

    I agree, police infiltration is limited at best. This is really more of an issue of '....dubious motives and multiple payoffs on all sides.'

    As for the 'kids' problem in Philly: There's a similar 'problem' every day where I live when the 'kids' leave school and mope around for HOURS, mob small variety store to shop-life and intimidate people on the subways, buses, in certain neighborhoods, etc., Municipal and transit police here get pretty aggressive in combating this 'problem' but it should exist to begin with

    Posted by: ratbastard | May 15, 2011 5:00:40 PM

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