Christians setting a bad example

Every year, Minnesota Atheists participate in the gay pride event in Minneapolis — they don’t go in to make “conversions”, but to show support for our fellow citizens. There is no flaunting of trophies afterwards, no singling out of gay folk who Suddenly! Turned! Atheist! because of our godless proselytizing, because that’s not what it’s all about. In particular, the purpose isn’t to steal attention from the real goals of the event, which are all about equality and rights for same sex couples.

I expect there are also liberal Christian groups that participate as a show of support, rather than as an attempt to convert. But that’s not the case for Trinity Works, which sent evangelical teams to Twin Cities Pride, and afterwards bragged about bringing 80 people to the Lord (knowing how these groups play fast and loose with the numbers, they probably just got the Christian gawkers to reaffirm their prior beliefs).

Another devious ploy: they set up a free corn feed booth. It was a bait-and-switch, offering corn and serving loathing instead.

Trinity Works held a corn feed at 11th Street and Hennepin Avenue along the Pride parade route. According to OutFront, the support team had to counsel dozens who mistakenly thought it was part of Pride activities. “Pride-goers who went in, assuming it was LGBTQ-friendly, were surrounded by Trinity works people who said they would burn in hell because of their sexual orientation,” OutFront’s Monica Meyer said in a statement. “Our support team counseled more than a dozen people who unknowingly went in and left the corn feed shaken, crying and traumatized.”

I bet a lot also left furious and upset — emotions that aren’t part of the intent of the event.

I don’t get how people who are so into dictating other people’s proper sexual behavior can simultaneously be so into rat-fucking.


  1. raven says

    Xians never, ever miss a chance to demonstrate the complete intellectual and moral bankruptcy of their religion!!!

    It’s OK though.

    The two most powerful forces for atheism are:

    1. Fundie xians. When xian became synonymous with hater, liar, moron, crazy, terrorist, hater, and sometimes killer, a lot of people didn’t want to be one any more. Including me.

    The fundies created the New Atheists and create more every day.

    2. The bible. What a kludgy horrible collection of ancient mythology, lies, and obsolete morality that is.

  2. raven says

    1. My impression is that the fundies are getting uglier and more vicious. They own the Dark Side of our society.

    Makes sense, people leave on the basis of best and brightest first.

    2. The uglier and more vicious they get, the more of us there are.

    3. This is what has happened so far. US xianity is losing 2-3 million people a year.

    4. Whether this trend will continue remains to be seen. It should, but the Dark Side and organized hate, has its attractions for some subset of humans.

  3. Becca Stareyes says

    Just like how PZ suspects most of the ‘converts’ were folks reaffirming their affiliation, I suspect such tactics are also a matter of making sure the waverers don’t leave; when you see that your ‘community’ is horrible to outsiders, it’s a lot more tempting to just fake that Everything Is Fine. (It’s also hard to get the support that lets you feel like you can leave; I suspect that one reason young folks leave in higher rates is that schools and colleges let them meet outsiders more easily than old folks. Hence, homeschooling and Christian colleges and generally walled gardens.)

    Well, that or it’s the same thing Fred Clark notes: that when you equate ‘immoral’ with ‘gay’, you make being ‘moral’ really easy (if you are straight). No need to be kind, charitable, or any of that, just praise Jesus and avoid gay sex and abortions*. Never mind that this attitude hurts gay folks and women.

    * Which is pretty easy for a straight cis-man.

  4. spamamander, internet amphibian says

    I just attended my first Pride, taking my daughter and her girlfriend. The description of that booth just left me feeling literally sickened. Thankfully I saw nothing like that in Seattle; there were a handful of dedicated protesters at the parade who were given a beautiful, non-angry verbal beatdown by popular drag queen Mama Tits. Really the only “negative” was disappointment for my daughter that asexual people weren’t included as much as they might be.

    I just can’t imagine deliberately showing up to such a positive venue and hurting people in that manner. My daughter likely would have just shoved her way out of a booth like that, as a rather determined atheist she finds bible bashing annoying.For people who are still coming to terms with their sexuality or their faith though, it would be devastating to be confronted like that. Save us all from xian “love”.

  5. beergoggles says

    Is the atheist pride parade float just a Minnesota thing or does it happen in other cities? I’ve been going to the Boston Pride Parade for over a decade now and have never noticed any atheist representation in the parade at all. I think it would be great outreach and bridge building to reach out to the LGBT community mainly because nearly all the lesbians and gays I know are recovering from their religious upbringing.

    If there isn’t an atheist pride group, maybe I should start an FSM float? Asking people if they have been touched by his noodly appendage should go over quite well I am guessing.

  6. samihawkins says

    I remember seeing an Athiest group’s booth when I attended my first pride in Houston this year. I was only at the festival for about an hour, but from what I saw they were far more popular than the Log Cabin Republican tent across from them.

    I don’t remember seeing any protesters at our pride, though this being Texas I’m sure they were there. My only complaint was that they’d set up all the booths running down one of Montrose’s narrow streets and it was so packed you couldn’t really wander around, their were just two disorganized lines going opposite directions that you had to slowly shuffle down.

  7. says

    I like pointing out that since they define heaven as spending eternity around a bunch of self-righteous, uptight, nosey prudes with an authoritarian complex, and hell as “doing what you want instead of what you’re told to,” that I’d choose hell, please, if I believed in either.

  8. glodson says

    I cannot stand that video. These people are just so happy about sharing their shitty message. And I feel an odd mix of anger and pity. I pity them because they’ve been sold this idea that their mythology is so great that they’ve been deceiving themselves. Even if you managed to get their heads around the idea that they are doing harm, they’ll rationalize that it was for the greater good. And they’ll say they just acted as God instructed them, believing this to be humility.

  9. says

    These wonderful Christians are praising God because they attended gay events and some people gave them phone numbers. I think some of them are in for surprises.

  10. anteprepro says

    Anti-gay Christians continue to be horrible human beings. And liars.

    I’m betting that using creationist math, when they say 80 people, they mean half-convinced one person, and then three-quarters convinced a goat.

  11. busterggi says

    Let me say that had I been there the cob from my corn would not have been disposed of in a trash can.

  12. says

    How dreadful is it that I’m hoping you just mean “I’d litter and make them have to clean it up later, ha ha!” and not making the implicit rape joke that it sounds like, busterggi?

    I think it’s rather dreadful.

  13. lochaber says

    uh, what’s a ‘corn feed’?

    That sounds like something more applicable to livestock then people.

  14. rrhain says

    You overlooked the cherry on top of this shit sundae: They claimed that by doing so, they would cure the “converted” of AIDS.

    One of the words we got out of this outreach, the Lord really wanted to demonstrate his goodness to this community by releasing healing of HIV and AIDS, so we believe we’re going to see people healed of HIV and AIDS and we’re just, we’re carrying that word of the Lord into this outreach. And that will be part of our training just praying with boldness for the releasing of healing power and then sending them back to their doctors literally after praying for them. ‘Here’s what I want you to do: go to your doctor, get tested for HIV or AIDS and when you come back negative, you’ve got a decision to make whether you’re gonna serve the God who just healed you’ and then give them some gospel materials that they can take with them and encourage them to call on us and let us know and I’m confident that we’re going to have people healed of HIV and AIDS that are going to be contacting us. The funny thing is Jesus healed the 10 lepers and only one came back to acknowledge him so there may be 10 that get healed but only one come back, you know. This is a strategy that God wants to use so the very fruit of their sin is what he wants to, like, take away to show them his kindness and his goodness. I mean it’s just totally Jesus. I mean it’s like totally his way so we’re excited about that.

    They weren’t just being rude. They were actively endangering the lives of others.

  15. says

    Some of the outreach workers posed as medics and evangelized to people who sought assistance.

    What. The. Fuck.


    Yeah, “corn feed” sounds very livestock orientated, but

    People were invited to come inside the corn feed to have corn and water, but when they sat down to eat, two Trinity Works outreach workers would hover over asking them about Jesus and being LGBT.

    Er, I don’t know, either. I find this so odd that I feel that I may be insulting some cultural thing with my bafflement. What form does this corn take? I could probably go for a fresh ear, but I’ve never heard of this sort of thing.

  16. says

    Only a bunch of religious people would think that asking people to pray with them or praying for those that are sick could feel that they have done something to help.

    As for the deceptive proselytizing, they should be completely ashamed of their actions. They should have been open and honest about their motives. I am also curious if this is legal?

  17. Stardrake says

    For those wondering–a Midwest-style corn feed usually means handing out ears of roasted or boiled sweet corn, (maize) with butter (or a butter analogue) and salt available. Properly done, it’s quite tasty. Whether these brainweeds got even that much right is an open question–I wasn’t there, but I doubt they did. That would require competence….

  18. Lofty says

    I’m guessing “corn feed” is the practice of fertilising the corn fields with the bodies of unwed mothers and their children after they’ve been worked to death. So it’s long pig with a whiff of brimstone.

  19. ck says

    anteprepro wrote:

    I’m betting that using creationist math, when they say 80 people, they mean half-convinced one person, and then three-quarters convinced a goat.

    Or maybe eight people allowed them to screech at them while eating their corn, and they’re pretty sure the bird that swooped in to clean up the uneaten corn was successfully persuaded to give up the gay bird lifestyle and accept bird Jesus into its heart. That totally equals eighty people.

  20. says

    I love how they use the word “just” to play down what are extraordinarily invasive actions and statements. Like “I just said to them, why don’t you leave the lifestyle and come to Jesus?”

  21. qwerty says

    Oh, crap, I missed a chance for free corn by mowing my lawn on Pride Parade Sunday.

    It seems most, if not all, pride events are often attended by the “holier than thou” folk who want to spoil the party with their visions of hell. The sad thing is that most, if not all, of these people are gay or lesbians in denial as they want to believe in the Lord and to be saved.

    I did see August Bershire at the pride festival who cheerfully gave me one of the “Get out of hell free” cards he carries.

  22. chigau (違う) says

    The sad thing is that most, if not all, of these people are gay or lesbians in denial as they want to believe in the Lord and to be saved.
    [citation needed]

  23. says

    @15, CaitieCat, getaway driver

    How dreadful is it that I’m hoping you just mean “I’d litter and make them have to clean it up later, ha ha!” and not making the implicit rape joke that it sounds like, busterggi?

    I think it’s rather dreadful.

    I’m fairly sure that cramming an ear of corn in someone’s nose is not rape. (Or the old Robert Benchley line about “you can stick that telephone handset into your ear”.) So there are other options to imagine, here.