When about six members of the Westboro Baptist Church showed up outside a California high school to hold an anti-gay protest, a crowd of several hundred students and local residents gathered nearby to rally for equality in the face of hatred.
On Monday, outside Santa Monica High School on Pico Boulevard in Santa Monica, Calif., Westboro Baptist Church members assembled with signs reading "God H8s Fags" and "You Eat Your Kids" to protest the school's affirmation of LGBT students, according to the Los Angeles Times.
According to their website, Westboro intended to target “brutish teachers & hateful parents" who "have broken the moral compass of this generation" and have doomed the nation by "embracing sodomy.”
In response to Westboro's picket, the district's Board of Education penned an open letter to the community last week reaffirming their “unwavering commitment to teach tolerance, acceptance and compassion for others," the L.A. Times notes.
And on Monday, hundreds of students and members of the Santa Monica community showed their support by congregating across the street from the Westboro members for a rally of their own, according to the Santa Monica Mirror.
They waved rainbow flags, held hands and carried signs reading "God Cares for All Creation," "Ain't Nobody Got Time for Hate" and "God Hates People Who Say They Know Who God Hates."
The amazing response was recorded and uploaded to YouTube.
Maria Leon-Vazquez, vice president of the Santa Monica Unified Board of Education, said that there is no room for hatred in their community.
“Our students understand that everybody has the right to their First Amendment rights, and so be it,” Leon-Vazquez told CBS Los Angeles affiliate KCAL-TV of the Westboro Baptist Church protest. “But we, in this particular city, we really understand that there is no room for hatred and bigotry, so the students decided that they had to make their point this morning.”
California State University, Fullerton's paper, the Daily Titan, reported that the picket was swift. Westboro only stayed from 7 a.m. until 8 a.m. and then retreated.
[h/t Gay Star News for the find.]