Lady Gaga Fans Battle Homophobes in STL: Does Westboro Deserve Counter-Protesters?

LADY GAGA:

On Saturday, Lady Gaga played in St. Louis, and the Westboro Baptist Church protested outside. We talked about her pre-show tweets warning her little monsters about the protests in Sunday Funday.

Now MTV reports that some St. Louis fans staged a counterprotest, bringing along signs saying things like “God Hates Figs,” “For God and the Gays,” and the extra-clever “Westboro Are Inbred.”As usual, they far outnumbered the original protesters.

Someone made this montage of stills and video from the event. It’s kind of like weird masterpiece theater at the beginning. If you want, skip to 1:50 for the video, which features a surprising number of boys in v-necks pounding Red Bull:

All this happened despite Gaga’s request that everyone just ignore them:

Do not respond to any of their provocation. Don’t waste your words, or feelings, no matter what you hear or see you are more fortunate and blessed than they are, and in your heart just pray for them. …Be inspired to ignore their ignorant message, and feel gratitude in your heart that you are not burdened or addicted to hate, as they are.

I’m with Gaga on this one. Westboro gets a crazy amount of attention, considering how few of them usually show up to protests. If everyone agreed to ignore them, they would just fade away. But that’s not human nature.

During the show (which I attended), she mentioned the “hate criminals” a few times, contrasting them with the Monster Ball. And despite her earlier requests to ignore the protesters, her post-concert tweet indicated that she was still happy with how things went.

LINDSAY LOHAN:

This morning at 8:30 a.m., Lindsay checked into jail. First she got her SCRAM bracelet removed at the Lynwood County Courthouse and then was taken to jail. Robert Shapiro bailed and was not her lawyer after all, leaving Lohan furious that he’d used her just to promote his Sober Living house.

During a brief hearing, Judge Marsha Revel said, “At this time, she will be remanded to serve her sentence.” Lohan stood, looking stern, and was cuffed behind her back. She was escorted quietly out a side door by four sheriff’s deputies.

As she left the courtroom, her father Michael Lohan said, “We love you, Lindsay.” Her mother Dina also was in court.

Despite the three-month sentence, legal experts say Lohan will probably serve between two weeks to a month due to the Sheriff’s Department’s long-standing policy of releasing nonviolent offenders early due to overcrowding.

ADAM LAMBERT:

Behind the scenes of Adam Lambert’s new photoshoot with Lee Cherry! FISTING POWER!

Behind-the-Scenes Video:

Sarah lives in Chicago with her partner and her big white Great Dane. She is a lawyer by day and a beer brewer/bread baker/knitter by night. She & her partner are currently learning how to grow their own food, and eventually they hope to move to a small farm outside the city. In 2009-2010, before jetting off to law school, Sarah was Autostraddle's Managing Editor.

Sarah has written 131 articles for us.

16 Comments

  1. i loved that thing that one guy in chicago had about collecting donations for pro gay charities during their protests, and then donating it in WBC’s name. it’s like actual do gooding, instead of protests (which normally never changes anything).

  2. I do agree with you, Sarah. The WBC is just this annoying little kid. We are grown. Therefore, we ignore them and their childish ways.

    It also seemed as if Gaga was still pretty upset at the concert because those signs directly addressed her. Was I imagining it, or did she seem to choke up when she was talking about how the monster ball is about love? IDK I was [redacted] so it’s possible that this was allllll imagined.

  3. I believe Gaga and various media outlets were right not to acknowledge Westboro in their reporting on the event. Perez Hilton did the same on his site. I vote not to even print their name!!!!

  4. Who me…lurker what?

    Sigh. I am serial lurker but I had to post on this one, if nothing else than to offer a counter point.

    I understand the desire to be above the crazy ass, brainwashing bullshit that is WBC. Turn the other cheek, be the adult in the situation, etc, etc.

    Except in this instance I get the warm and fuzzies at the thought of a counter protest…which is a strange sentence now that I read it.

    The WBC is gonna get media attention whether we show up for counter protests or not, they’re outrageous on purpose. It’s the same reason they show up at soldier’s funerals spouting their hate.

    So the bit of the video that I watched, um I have the attention span of a goldfish, tells me that our protest against WBC was classy, and adult like. I didn’t see any yelling, or hateful words being thrown out by our side, so you know what, I am all for it!

    There is something cathartic about standing up for yourself.

    I think there is also a real danger that when you ignore something like this that you almost give it tacit approval by not saying something.

    So our group acted like adults, stood up for themselves, and I bet there were some people in that audience who stood a little straighter. Watching our side tell WBC to stick it kept them from feeling ashamed about themselves for even a second.

    Having said that, Lady Gaga was super classy. I may be in love.

  5. i attended the stl counter protest, and im not exactly a lady gaga fan. i never heard anything of her asking people not to respond. the counter protest was arranged as a show of love and peace. and really, we were just protesting wbc’s particular brand of crazy (hate of a “gay america”), not their hate of gaga specifically.
    and yeah, i get warm fuzzies thinking of it myself. 🙂 as lady gaga said “hate left.” we outlasted and out-loved their asses.

  6. They protested Adam Lambert’s concert first! He tweeted a pic of a child holding a hate sign and simply said, *sigh* God doesnt hate! That for me did more than the rant Gaga tweeted! The night Adam tweeted that twitter was filled up with love for him and each other, it went on for days! When you hate a show it hurts, but when you hate a beautiful person, it really hurts, it shows just how much further we need to go in finally have acceptance in our lives! And to teach their children to hate like they did at Adam’s concert is abuse and they should be prosecuted! Plain and simple! How many 100s of years are we going to ignore the ignorance? It didnt help then, why will it help now? I say, show them we care, show them we want acceptance, show them we want love! Adam’s *sigh* showed me that! It showed me how much hate really hurts! 🙁
    BTW, gorgeous photo shoot by Lee Cherry of Adam!! He truly captured Adam’s beauty, didnt he? Love it!

  7. I remember what Adam tweeted the first time he got picketed at the AI tour for being a gay, Jewish man. People were worried about him and he tweeted that he was fine but that Love knew no color love new no hate, love knew no sexual orientation all is love. I thought that was a great quote.

  8. Westboro and their hate recently descended upon the Dallas area with a schedule of protests locations including the Dallas Holocaust Museum (which offered free admission that day, setting a new attendance record), the JCC (Jewish Community center), The Congregation Beth el Binah at the Gay & Lesbian Center, a catholic church downtown, and several other locations. I was able to attend the counter-protest downtown, and it felt really good to be DOING something instead of just seething at home. We all brought positive or funny signs, and a good attitude.

    Resource Center Dallas, which offers programs and services for the GLBT community, as well as individuals and families affected by HIV and AIDS, was smart and before Westboro was scheduled to arrive, planned a “Hell Freezes Over” campaign, using the Westboro visit to raise money for a new ice machine. The original idea was for people to donate money for every minute the Phelps clan protested, but I think they had raised a couple of thousand before Westboro even arrived in Dallas due to promotion of the fundraiser via social networking sites. If I remember correctly, their original goal was to raise $3k, and by the end of the protests, they raised $11k! That’s what I call making the best out of a bad situation.

    Photos from the protest I attended are here (green shirt/yellow sign is me!)My personal favorite was the “Save Banksy” sign. http://www.flickr.com/photos/ddoubleu/sets/72157624473775072/

    Some articles about the “Hell Freezes Over” campaign:
    http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcontent/dws/dn/religion/stories/070910dnmetprotests.1d00df5.html

    http://www.dallasvoice.com/hell-freezes-over-tops-10000-in-donations-collected-1032931.html

    http://www.dallasvoice.com/westboro-baptist-church-memorial-ice-maker-arrives-at-resource-center-dallas-1036105.html

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