There was a time in the not-so-long-ago past when activists were more willing to take action, sometimes violent action, against those they felt were at fault in some way. But for the past decade or so it has seemed that more peaceful and non-violent tactics have prevailed. But ever since the Occupy Movement took hold last year, it seems that people have been rediscovering their passion for physical involvement.
Most recently, we told you about a group of ACT UP protestors who teamed up with a group of Occupy Wall Street members who were recently arrested for their actions. But another group in Oregon went even further in their attempts to gain attention and protest the homophobic policies of a conservative church in southeast Portland and smashed 100-year-old stained glass windows, according to local news sources.
Allegedly, six vandals dressed in black broke in and caused the damage to the Mars Hill Church. The Seattle-based church is known as unwavering in its beliefs that gay people are sinners.
“It saddens us that some folks feel they had to vandalize our space to be heard. But we wish them no ill will,” lead pastor Tim Smith told the local media.
Others in the LGBT community used this as a teachable moment and helped clean up the mess. As Rev. Nathan Meckley, of the gay-friendly Metropolitan Community Church, said: “The fact that we are actually meeting with one another and know one another, I feel, sincerely, that we are beginning to understand one another in a completely different way.”
We don’t know who they are. Only that they say they are Queer.
Mr. Enemabag Jones
Exactly. Any time I hear about stuff like this, I immediately think black ops.
They probably did it themselves to stir up more hatred against our community. Anything to get the flock to dig deeply into their pockets, now that the Red Scare is over. The Church should be ashamed of itself for having been snared into politics by faithlessness. If, indeed, it was our community that damaged they’re windows, it is shameful. I’m suspicious that it is more game playing. I have zero trust in Religious organizations, none. They’ve proven themselves unwise and worldly. Separation of Church and State has never been more relevant. I hope whatever money they’ve procured off of our backs will help them replace their material loss.
If gays are doing this they should quit. We shouldn’t stoop to the level of the churches. They want to play the games of hate, let them, by being better then them it will look better for all of us. But it wouldn’t suprise me if they did it themselves and blamed it on gays.
This is completely pointless and it just gives all LGBT people and our political causes for equality a bad name.
I’m not going to say I support acts like this but I certainly understand them. Look at the anti-gay violence in this country and this world every day while self-righteous “Christians” like these sit in their pristine prayer-palaces waving their shitty old book around, encouraging it by their words AND their anti-gay deeds. Aww, they got their wittle windows bwoken! Cry me a fucking river.
I think we could have done a better job of smashing windows than that.
That ‘crack’ operative team just nicked them?
Any adult who follows a religion created by polygamists and slave-owners is mentally unstable to begin with – a definite sign of emotional and intellectual immaturity.
Let’s see. There are two facts. One, that a window was broken. Two, that someone sent an email saying that claiming the vandalism was the work of a gay rights group.
I seriously doubt that any serious gay rights group would be that stupid. To be _for_ equal rights, people first must have some understanding of things like law and equality. The people who are opposed to equal rights, are usually the ones who resort to violence. It seems much more likely to me that someone just wants to _blame_ the local gays.
The police can track the email, if they have the requisite technical knowledge. Every ISP keeps server logs for at least some period of time.
Let’s let the police do their jobs… and refrain from jumping to any conclusions.
I believe the “church members” did this themselves and are pointing the finger at the gay population. Something stinks about this worse than durian in Indonesia.
I like that people immediately question the validity of this, despite the fact that I believe the church building is a registered National Landmark, and the if the church did this themselves they would have to pay a heavy fine, even get kicked out or possibly arrested. Somehow I doubt if it was a gay rights group that got vandalized you people would be questioning its validity (that recent cruise debacle in Dominica is a great example of this kind of hypocrisy).
Aside from that, even though I hate Mars Hill, destroying priceless architecture certainly isn’t the way to go about things. Though that’s also the architecture fan in me talking.
@Steve: Just because a group (supposedly) wants equal rights doesn’t mean they wont resort to violence. I quick scan throughout history will tell you that.
This continued militant anti-theism, such as Danny’s comment, just keeps making me more and more disenfranchised with the mainstream gay community.
It really looks more like a bunch of kids chucking stones at the windows. If somebody wanted to do real damage, they would have, not that half-assed job pictured.
@Steve: The email can’t always be tracked. Nowadays there are so many ways to dodge detection. It could have been sent from a Starbucks. They’ll be able to trace it to the Starbucks, but won’t be able to tell who sent it. Free public wifi makes things like this impossible to track down.
Sounds like a “victimization scheme” by the church, to drum-up support.
But isn’t sauce for the goose, sauce for the gander. Couldn’t happen to a nicer group.
Mr. Enemabag Jones
This continued militant anti-theism, such as Danny’s comment, just keeps making me more and more disenfranchised with the mainstream gay community.
Hey sunshine, no one’s holding a gun to your head. You’re free to leave anytime you want.
Mr. Enemabag Jones
What Bailey said.
This was not done by any member of the GLBT community. I want to believe that someone in our community would NOT do something like this. We are trying to move forward this only pushes us back even further. I want to believe that this was done by some kids or some people trying to make things harder for the GLBT community. It allows the church and the people of religion to still fear and feel hatred towards the GLBT community instead of love and knowing how we really are. Hopefully they find the people that did this!!
Let's be real here
Mr. Enemabag Jones, what’s your point? Get help for your rage issues. Not all LGBT people hate Christians or organized religions/spiritualities. There are a lot of LGBT people who are Christian or who do subscribe to a religion/spirituality.
Religion is poison. Its superstion and ignorance society would be better without. Let relegious imbecels fear militant queers, the nonsense promoted by these churches has had a free hand to guide society for too long. I don’t regret that some windows got busted, only that the vandals left the church standing.
When Queerty does stories about gay people, it insultingly and falsely calls them “queer” or “LGBT.” Now, when there is a story about vandalism allegedly caused by a group of self-identified “queers,” Queerty calls them “gay vandals.” Fuck you, Queerty.
@Danny: This isn’t meant as a defense of anything but just out of curiousity would you please name for me a religion anywhere in the world whose early adherents didn’t practice slavery in one form or another. I’m merely trying to decipher the logic behind your comment. Thank you, I appreciate your prompt attention to my query.
@Bailey: No, not if you look as the actual relative size of the building and the physics behind stained glass windows. This would have required a group of people chucking something, or one damn strong person.
@Let’s be real here: The anti-theism definitely isn’t my only reason for disenfranchisement, and “Enemabag” is a perfect example of why. If I remember correctly, he’s violently biphobic and transphobic. Then again, I suppose you can’t exactly expect maturity from somebody with the handle “Enemabag”, now can you?
@infidel: Yo dawg, I got a friend I think you’d like to meet. His name is Vladimir Lenin. And honestly, if that’s the kind of argument you’re going to use, I can bring him up. Consider this: Of the 1763 wars listed in the Encyclopedia of War, only 123 (6.83%) have religion as their cause. Without the church, most scientific advances wouldn’t have occurred (consider that the majority of most scientists up until very recently had often been Monks, including the man who originally proposed the Big Bang Theory). And just in case you’d like to bring up Godwin’s Law, no, most churches, and certainly not the catholic church, didn’t support the Nazis. The Vatican came out against it, and were promptly told to shut up by the Allies. Oh yeah, and Jesus disregarded Leviticus, and Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed due to inhospitality and the fact that half the population wanted to rape angels disguised as humans.
The more you know!
@Aaron: THANK YOU!!! Well written!!!
@Aaron: the relative size of the building doesn’t matter. It’s a rock thrown at a window. You can clearly see the lead indent from the thrown object in one of the pictures. Apparantly you don’t under inertia. Rocks break glass. There is nothing magical about stained glass that prevents in being broken when a rock is heaved at it. While the lead design prevents the spread of damage, it doesn’t make glass impervious you douchebag!
I don’t believe gays did this at all. I think it was churchy trolls trying to make us look bad. Gotta love those loving christians.
A young gay church-member and his friends got tired of the hate that their priest has been spewing – hence the black hoodies, stone throwing with no huge damage – pretty much the signs of a teenage prank.
@J Stratford: Hmmm maybe. But at any rate, it is time for some Queer Supremacy. Tired of being under the thumb of religious nuts.
I want the sources of this gay, 6 member seal team. It doesn’t seem like they broke in at all… and we all know queens can get in the backdoor.
Call it what it is… kids throwing rocks.
@Bailey: Gay or not, it was a harmless prank, like so many countless harmless pranks by teenagers. Just something else ridiculous for the nutballs to cry persecution over, as they busily persecute us.
@Mark: Yeah, but durian at least tastes good, noting good comes from christianity
I think this was either a teenage prank or someone framing gays. Sad thing is this will be all over the media as “those intolerant gays” but I would bet if they did find out it was someone other than a gay rights group you will not hear that on the media.
This wasn’t a harmless prank… it’ll cost (per the article and video) thousands of dollars to repair it. And worse it will feed their persecution complex which will take much longer to repair.
But from my view, the most important thing to take away from this isn’t just about non-violence but respecting belief. Just as we want churches like these to respect our right to be married before the law (a civil matter), we have to respect their belief that being gay is a sin (a religious matter). Now what they do with that belief is a different matter. In other words, they can think I’m a sinner all they like as long as they respect my right not to be discriminated against and especially my right to be married to my partner before the law.
I’ll probably be pilloried for this but I even believe they have the right to politely tell me that I’m sinning according to the teachings of their faith, much in the same way as they have the right to go out into the streets and proselytize. But just as with a Jehovah’s Witness at my front door, when I tell them in return that I’m an atheist and am not interested in following their faith, their response has to be “ok” and we politely end the dialog there.
Now it’s my belief that all religions are just a bunch of fairy tales with social events but if it makes them happy and they don’t hurt anyone, they have their right to believe in whatever they like.
I do not respect their beliefs. They are based on ignorance and notions of the supernatural.
@Adam: I do agree with you 100% and I do NOT condone what was done, whether it was by a gay rights group or whomever. But you have to remember these people are doing more than just “coming to our door and telling us we are sinners”. They pass legislation that effects us in many ways all based on THEIR freedom.
Saying a nonviolent movement like OWS as inspiring violence is a bit counter intuitive. On one had we have people who sit peacefully despite taking pepper spray to the face in a line and on the other you are saying they inspired violence and property destruction.
Here is the text of the email sent by “Angry Queers” claiming responsibility for the vandalism:
“Message:: in the morning of April 24th, angry queers smashed out the windows of Mars Hill Church in Southeast Portland. Mars Hill is anti-gay anti-woman. Mark Driscoll, Mars Hill’s head pastor, said that women be subservient to their husbands and gay people are a cancer. This action was taken in memory of Mark Aguhar, a trans femme of color artist from Chicago who killed herself a month ago. We also hold in our hearts Paige Clay, a transwoman of color who was found murdered in Chicago on April 16th; all other trans women who have been murdered by this cissexist, femmephobic, racist, transmisogynistic society. Children who are forced to attend Mars Hill are indoctrinated in hateful dogma that teaches them their natural desires are an abomination that will damn them to hell. Dan Savage’s “It Gets Better” campaign does nothing in the here and now for queer kids trapped in abusive home or religious settings. And it never got better for Mark, Duanna, Paige, Agnes, Deoni, or the countless other trans women who are regularly murdered. When Mars Hill moved to town, “representatives” of the queer community from the Q Center met with officials from the church in order to have dialog. What we have to say to the Q Center is this: FUCK YOU, you don’t represent us. You prioritize social peace and the bourgeois aspirations of rich white cis gay people over the more pressing survival needs of more marginalized queers. he only dialog we need with scum like Mars Hill is hammers through their windows.”
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Vladmir Lenin rocks!
You know what, that church building may be over 100 years old but the Mars Hill congregation as formed around pastor Mark Driscoll is less than a decade old. And what a “prize” biblical scholar he is, obsessed with “masculinity,” “proper” gender roles for women, and of course the evils of LGBT people. Mars Hill just BOUGHT that old building and personally I think that if you’re really interested in the “preservation” of stately old churches that should extend to WHO you sell them to. Otherwise why not sell the Sistine Chapel to the Westboro Baptist Church if they have the dough, or one of those “white power” religions?
I don’t approve of damaging historical buildings but it IS just a building and what’s inside it is very very ugly.
What I’m sick and tired of is churches like this, “Christians” like Mark Driscoll perpetrating (via their rhetoric & political activism) and encouraging very real violence against gay people then when they’re challenged falling back on the old “Hey, we’re CHRISTIANS! We’re all about love!” bullcrap. You don’t GET to be a scourge on other people’s lives, actively try to limit and take away other people’s rights, then pretend you’re Mary Pickford, just a poor, put-upon victim when someone hits back!
Mr. Enemabag Jones
@Let’s be real here:
Where did I direct “rage” towards organized religions/spiritualities?
Mr. Enemabag Jones
The anti-theism definitely isn’t my only reason for disenfranchisement, and “Enemabag” is a perfect example of why. If I remember correctly, he’s violently biphobic and transphobic.
I’m fairly certain you’re thinking of someone else. Unless you can provide comments I’ve left backing up your absurd statement, you’re just talking out your ass.
As I wrote before, if you’re so disenfranchised by the gay community, then you’re welcome to leave us. No one’s holding you hostage here.
are you guys fools? It was a group by the name of Queer Angels. The LGBTQ community protested this church last oct. Some in our community have been doing stuff like this for decades. This only hurts our cause and we should be denouncing it, but we don’t..we play ignorant.
I am of two minds here. On the one small hand I say peace non violence etc etc. On another hand I think of all the people who have been personally destroyed by churches and their flock. If the church should remember the saying. “You reap what you sow” when you preach hate and foster and feed it. That hate will only serve to destroy you. The only ones who can prevent this from ever happening again is the church. I
Oh I understand. But if we frame the argument as one of respect, we respect their right to their religious beliefs and they should be respecting our right to marriage under our beliefs… it kills their persecution complex. We’re not forcing their churches to perform the ceremonies but similarly they shouldn’t be forcing others to abide by their beliefs. In other words, turn the religious freedom argument against them by showing that it’s them persecuting others for their religious beliefs (being gay isn’t a sin, women do have a right to choose, and that altar boy isn’t asking for it).
Did you see Dan Savage give a speech on bullying and call the bible “bullshit” and when kids walked out, he referred to them as pantywaists?
It was the Southpark bullying episode come to life! The bully bullying.
Now we need South park Jesus to confront Dan Savage: “What’s a matta gay boy? Gay boy gonna cwy??”
Er I meant the anti-bully bullying. Thanks a lot Savage. It’s all over the news.
Let's be real here
@Enema-My bad I meant that comment to Danny.
Texndoc Dan Savage has been a bully, know it all who knows nothing, and conceited media whore asshole for decades.
Those of us in Seattle and the Pacific Northwest know that Dan Savage is an opportunistic parasite who will not hesitate to throw you under the bus if you don’t fit into his vision of right wing Log-cabin-lite conservative politics. The It Gets Better campaign does nothing to empower queer/LGBT youth. in fact, we are seeing a whole generation of LGBT kids make these videos and then kill themselves, while Dan Savage tells them to pull themselves to up by their bootstraps and he profits off the dead by hawking his self-help books and reality TV show on MTV. what we need is action and strategy, a battle plan to help LGBT kids survive, and deal directly with the homophobes (for example, how to file a complaint and lawsuit against your school district) and not snake oil charms like the It Gets Better media sham.
Dan Savage only started the it gets better project not to actually help LGBT youth all while practicing his right wing bigotry and hypocrisy of being transphobic, biphobic, and ra cist; but to self promote and get a reality TV show on MTV.
I agree Davey Wavey this does give LGBT people a bad name. Now ultra-conservative Christians will just blame LGBT people for church vandalism or think that we all want to destroy religious/spiritual places of worship.
I also agree that Dan Savage is a bully and that he’s nothing but a biphobic and transphobic media whore.
Those Christians did this themselves and came up with some silly story about gay men in black robes.
This church is famous for their anti-gay stunts. This is just another one. Shame on Queerty for repeating the absurd story.
Yeah, here are Dan Savages “awful” words about Christians.
‘People often say that they can’t help with the anti-gay bullying acts because it says right there in Leviticus, it says right there in Timothy, it says right there in Romans, that being gay is wrong,’ Mr Savage said.
‘We can learn to ignore the bullsh*t in the Bible and what it says about gay people.’
He compared dogmatic acceptance of anti-gay teachings equivalent to adhering to verses about slavery and eating shellfish, two issues that have been reinterpreted in modern day.
I agree with EVERY word of his statement. As usual it seems to be the hysterical harpies of the transgender movement who are piling on Dan Savage because he’s used the word “tranny” before. The fact remains that Dan Savage has done more for gay visibility and acceptance through his column than these complainers will EVER do by wielding Political Correctness as a cudgel to silence everyone who doesn’t fall into lockstep not just with their positions but their “approved” vocabulary. Have you tried Midol? It might make you a little less cranky.
dan savage is a parasite. He’s a monster. He makes things so much worse for us. No all Christians are homophobes but guys like Savage creates homophobes…shit sometimes i think i am a homophobe and im gay. He is making a killing from it gets better BS. And he charges thousands for speeches..one of these days a queen in high heals is going to kick him in the nuts! Good!
Way to go, gaybies! You’re steadily earning your “terrorist” status among the mainstream. Keep it up—how else will you get EVERYONE to hate us?
Every social movement has a more militant wing and a more moderate wing. Think Black Panthers versus NAACP. Actually, the militant wing in almost all cases helps the cause of the moderate wing. People are more willing to listen to the moderate wing because they seem more level headed than the militants. Studies have shown that militant groups actually cause increases in funding for moderate groups.
No. 14 · Riker wrote, “@Steve: The email can’t always be tracked. Nowadays there are so many ways to dodge detection. It could have been sent from a Starbucks. They’ll be able to trace it to the Starbucks, but won’t be able to tell who sent it. Free public wifi makes things like this impossible to track down.”
Not exactly. If I use (for example) gmail from a coffee shop, the records on Google’s server will still show that someone who has my password sent it. If they set up an account for one-time use, tracing it will be a lot harder, but not necessarily impossible (e.g. if the account is created with a web-based interface that using cookies for tracking purposes).
The best bet is to use an off-shore account, where a subpoena is problematic. While they could do that in principle, keep in mind that the sort of person who would resort to this type of petty vandalism is probably not the smartest guy in the room.
Re No. 42 by someone claiming to be Davey Wavey: you need a citation for the statement “It was a group by the name of Queer Angels.” Aside from the web page this comment appeared on, Google didn’t turn up anything for a search for “Queer Angles” Portland church vandalize.
So, how would you know that this particular alleged group was responsible (or that the group even exists)?
Wait …….isn’t this Queerty?? Why hasn’t someone on here blamed blacks for this act of violence??
It is irresponsible to mindlessly repeat, as “The Advocate” did, that a “gay rights group” caused this damage. There is a generic email address that is not the name of any gay rights group from which an email was sent taking responsibility.
Why would this article here perpetuate such sloppy reporting?
@Texndoc: That would be funny, seeing as Jesus was gay. They could make a butch Jesus, have him sing songs about Daddy Dick, the nickname of love for the one above, you get the picture.
my bad the group is ANGRY QUEENS. It’s all over the news. They were queer…
ACT up F*CKED up.
@Davey Wavey: Why was the email addressed Angry_Queers? If they were Queer Angels the email would have said Queer Angels.
@Texndoc: That is not what he said you darn lair, you need to stop being such a quisling! What he said was this
““We can learn to ignore the bullshit in the Bible about gay people — the same way we have learned to ignore the bullshit in the Bible about shellfish, about slavery, about dinner, about farming, about menstration about virginity about masturbation,” he told the young students. “We ignore bullshit in the Bible about all sorts of things.””
I find it funny that people in our community refuse to believe that people in our community are capable of such things like vandalism in churches and still blame it on some conspiracy.
Face it guys, we have idiots in our band of merry troopers just as the other team has idiots (Westboro Baptist).
Glad you find it funny. I however do not. With the persecution that we have faced our lives I would hope that we would all stick to peaceful and more educated ways to get people to understand and accept us. I realize that’s a tall order since yes even in the gay community there are complete fucking idiots. One can hope for the best though.
No. 64 · Chuck wrote, “I find it funny that people in our community refuse to believe that people in our community are capable of such things like vandalism in churches and still blame it on some conspiracy.”
Let’s just say that some of us will not believe that the name someone uses on an email address has anything to do with reality, and so far, the culprits have not been arrested, Until there is an arrest and it is determined that the culprits are part of some fringe gay group, it is reasonable to be skeptical – i.e., to simply state that we don’t know who did it nor anything about who did it. While it could be some crazy gay guys, it could also be some crazy homophobes trying to get gays blamed for it. Unfortunately, what’s lacking is any reliable information about who did it.
@Chuck wrote, “I find it funny that people in our community refuse to believe that people in our community are capable of such things like vandalism in churches and still blame it on some conspiracy.”
I find it funny that some people so quickly jump to the conclusion that gays are to blame. In the past, gays have generally been very (VERY!) good at being “nonviolent”. The haters are the ones who have very often resorted to violence. (Hence, the term “gay bashing”.) Sometimes, they have even tried to blame gays for the things that they, themselves, actually did.
Until the investigators find some proof, and some individual is arrested and a trial is held, we simply do not know.
@Shannon1981: You rang?
Let’s see, do you want church burnings, individual murders, mass-murders, lynchings, or genocide? How about all of the above. Because that’s what these fucking monsters deserve.
This church got what it deserves, and if there really is a just, loving God, there’ll be more attacks like this, worse ones, and those responsible for our oppression will reap what they have sewn tenfold.
When innocent people are being systematically oppressed, violence is the only answer. Queer Supremacy Now!
@Queer Supremacist: The only monster here is you, my friend.
It’s a good thing your kind die it pretty fast – just look at what happened to the Black Panthers and Nation of Islam.
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