|Anti-Free Choice, Anti-Gay Blusterers Going Nowhere Fast
Fundamentalist 'Weekend Invaders' Suffer Major PR Defeat
Protestor outside Disney gates
Reuters estimated Saturday's Orlando GayDays crowds at 120,000. A vast contingent of Operation Rescue protesters had also been expected. The City Beautiful, its streets flying over 700 rainbow flags, had braced for another episode, the one it would play in the centuries-long ongoing saga that always stars misguided fundamentalist "Christians" forever marching as to war.
But the Great Battle that grim, annoyed "Christian" antagonists scheduled at Disney World against just-too-gay fun-lovers "fizzled" (that's how Orlando Sentinel put it) because, as Florida Today quoted the editor of Badpuppy's GayToday:
"These people are losing money from the bad publicity
They're playing the homosexual scare card to raise money. People are beginning to realize how dangerous these people are, just like Iranian fundamentalists. They want a theocracy where everybody obeys their sex rules."
"But," GayToday's editor is quoted, "there comes a time when people have to stand up-after such extraordinary repression-and say, 'This is who I am.' That doesn't mean copulating in the streets. It does mean holding hands."
Approximately 7 Operation Rescue protesters had appeared inside the Magic Kingdom Saturday, according to local newspaper reports, a far cry from the group's inflated estimates of the massive weekend support it led others to expect would materialize.
The tiny coven of invading zealots carried their "divine" messages under such banners as "Choose Jesus Over Mickey", in effect attempting to turn America's beloved rat into some kind of Satanic ally.
Significantly, no Orlando area churches are said to have lent their memberships to the anti-Disney effort. "They know which side local paychecks are buttered on," commented one Central Florida observer.
"The fundamentalists promised us a GODzilla performance at Disney and gave us bad imitations of a homeless Elmer Gantry instead," veteran activist Bob Kunst told GayToday, "We got plenty of new signatures for our Cayman Islands boycott and the Oral Majority-over a score of supportive activists-showed up to counter-demonstrate."
The Associated Press (AP) described activist Kunst as he carried a rainbow flag "calling attention to places" (the Caymans) "that discriminate against gays and lesbians."
CNN and many other TV and radio news outlets did interviews with the outspoken Oral Majority president, some listening carefully as he linked the Republican Party's "hatchet-man," Kenneth Starr, to the sexual witch hunt presently in progress throughout the nation.
From the New York Republican mayor's closing of all adult bookstores, theatres, and X-rated facilities in that city to the cowardly, censoring death-threats leveled at the personnel of the Manhattan Theatre Club (as it now once again dares to run 'Corpus Christi') Kunst points to what he says are poisonous waves coming too fast aground, meddling loonies trying to drown today's America in their frothy puritanical zeal.
Nationwide arrests where same-sex liaisons occur in lonely public parks and on beaches are, he says, on an upswing, and, he complained to one reporter, public park arrests have actually become endemic, giving hardcore criminals true reprieves-police inattentiveness.
If Friday's letters to the editor of the Orlando Sentinel were indicative, Orlando residents appear little bothered by rainbow flags or by the official permission given for them to grace the city's streets. "Why are some people threatened by little piece of cloth," asked one letter-writer, while another announced that "Prejudice under the guise of righteousness has no place in the heart of a Christian."
The Orlando Sentinel itself, however, editorialized against the city's officials allowing such placements of the flags.
Inside the Magic Kingdom many gay tourists wore red while a dozen Disney security guards trailed the fundamentalists. Overhead circled a banner-plane. The banner read: JESUS CAN SAVE YOU FROM YOUR LIFESTYLE.
Unfortunately for Operation Rescue and its fundamentalist cohorts, however, Jesus seems not to have saved the anti-Free Choice, Anti-Gay cause at Disney World.
The embattled small-town owner of nearby Melbourne's Aware Woman's clinic explained to the media that on April 15, 1989 Operation Rescue had "brought out to my small clinic 600 people
.Now, with Orlando and Disney as the draw, they have been unable to muster 100."
"That, to my thinking, is the most telling of all," she noted.