My laptop malfunctioning was the best thing that has happened since I got to college. No, really. No sarcasm.
Our tech center is in the campus library, so I had to go through the front entrance in order to stop panicking about my laptop (It took seventeen seconds to fix). But there were a few guys outside with signs promoting Jesus. Actually, they weren’t promoting Jesus; they were just being dicks. So I snapped a photo and fixed one of their signs. It was their least offensive sign, for anyone curious. A whole board was dedicated to a “woman’s place”
Yup, these guys came to a college campus and started preaching about how EVERY woman trying to get an education there was doing something wrong. They were preaching during the Bi Visibility event, making us choose between our priorities. Self discovery and affirmation, or trolling the fuck out of a set of sign wielding dildos. (Credit to whoever came up with that insult; I just overheard it. If all of that doesn’t make you question their judgment, they were preaching to a campus full of teens and twenty-somethings that lust is a sin.
I ran back to my dorm to drop off my laptop and grab some cash, then asked at the Student Center if I needed a permit to counter them. The intern at the desk had no clue, so I made assumptions in my favor. Then I bought a white board from the bookstore, uncapped my inky weapons of war and got to work. When I was finished, they were no longer outside of the library.
As I was slouching back to my dorm in defeat, I saw a yellow sign on the top of the hill. I took a detour so that I didn’t have to pass through the crowd and jumped up onto a wall with my sign. One side said, “June 26th, 2’15 My family won. THEY LOST” and the other said “I am proof of the gay gene”
Almost the second I got my footing, someone passed below me and handed me a business card for our campus BDSM club. They kept handing them around to the crowd, and someone gave one to the preacher, who couldn’t be bothered to look up from the only book he’s ever read to see what it was and pocketed it.
I talked to the crowd around me, met a few new friends, one of whom was Pagan and explained her concept of Hel to me (not a typo, it’s spelled that way for her). A few people smiled at my sign, and one squad even shouted me down for getting my sign before they got theirs. They came back later with more signs and we all lined up on the wall together.
One guy took a few seconds to talk to the guy, got nowhere, and came back with a rainbow flag as a cape. A woman that lives in my hall came back with her own rainbow flag and calmed everyone down long enough to tell them off for being at this counter protest instead of donating to UNICEF, who was collecting donations about a hundred meters away.
At one point, the Dean of Students (who my parents met during move in day and who was seemed incredibly psyched about their wedding) stepped in to make sure we weren’t about to get violent. I took the few seconds of silence as she walked away to propose a pretty girl who was one of the loudest there. I stood right in front of the preacher, got down on one knee, and said, “I don’t have a ring, but I have this marker. Will you marry me?” She said yes and drew a circle on her ring finger, and I did the same, and for the rest of our protest I introduced her as my fiancé. I think I might have confused a couple of people because there were some very sincere rounds of “congratulations”, but no, I’m not really engaged. Although I’d marry her in a heartbeat if she wanted me to.
I was pretty proud of my campus at that moment. We had some good slogans and a lot of support. When someone brought up the fact that this campus is our home now, not just our school, and that their presence was an invasion of our space, we started up a chant of “This is our house” to back it up. The guy with the rainbow flag started rapping out Same Love. We did a couple shouts of “Love wins” before realizing our mistake and changing it to “Love won”. There was an older guy there for a justice group who started a round of “Hell you talking bout” and when the preachers were getting into women being submissive to their husbands, I asked if I had to be submissive to my wife. I never did get an answer, so if someone’s familiar with Christian mythology, I’d love to have a discussion.
As I was getting ready to leave, a couple of students stopped me to ask if they could take my picture for a class. Not only am I taking the same class, I’m taking it at the same time and with the same professor, but it’s a huge room and had this protest not happened I might have gone the whole semester without meeting these folks.
Yeah, these guys were obviously your stereotypical clueless preachers. They even sang the “Blood of Jesus” song from the Jaclyn Glenn video. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B0SP0SL7mJ0) I forgot to get their card, so I’m not sure where they came from, but there are rumors that they’ll be back next month. If so, then the Street Preacher Chronicles: KSU edition will continue this semester.