Video: Westboro Baptist Church faces counter protest at LA high school over tolerance of gay pupils

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a pink background.

A video has appeared online which shows a massive counter-protest against the adamantly homophobic Westboro Baptist Church who were demonstrating outside an LA high school because of its tolerance of LGBT students.

According to reports, the Westboro Baptist Church, commonly known as the ‘God hates fags’ church, turned up to Santa Monica High School on Monday to protest against what they said was tolerance of gay students.

Students at the school staged a massive counter-protest, and YouTube user Ben Ross posted clips online of the events that ensued.

Accompanied by John Lennon’s song, Give Peace a Chance, the video eventually shows the Westboro protesters leaving to calls from the pro-LGBT crowd to “go back to Kansas”.

The church had previously protested the Academy Awards, but appeared to be leaving at the end of the video.

Speaking to KCAL news, Steve Drain, a Westboro member said: “The moral compasses of these children have been broken at the hands of their parents, their teachers, and their preachers from the cradle.”

The anti-gay protesters held trademark signs saying “God hates fags” and “thank God for AIDS”.

“Our students understand that everybody has the right to their First Amendment rights, and so be it,” Maria Leon-Vazquez, vice president of the Santa Monica Unified Board of Education said.

“But we, in this particular city, we really understand that their is no room for hatred and bigotry, so the students decided that they had to make their point this morning.”

The school district also sent out a letter to the community expressing its “unwavering commitment to teach tolerance, acceptance and compassion for others,” reports the LA Times.

Earlier this month, two granddaughters of the founder of the adamantly homophobic Westboro Baptist Church,  quit the organisation, and expressed regret at “inflicting pain on others” whilst still members. 

The church infamously attempts to picket the funerals of those deemed “fag-enablers”, including military funerals for US service members.

In a strange turn of events in December, the Ku Klux Klan stepped in to counter a protest by the Westboro Baptist Church, at a military funeral.  

The church had also announced that it intended to picket the funerals of the children killed at Sandy Hook elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut to worldwide outrage.

Also in December, the hackers collective, Anonymous, continued its battle with the church, and claimed to have changed the desktop background on its spokeswoman’s computer to gay porn, and filed a death certificate on her behalf, stopping her from using her social security number.