The “Christians” of Soulwinner Ministries International showed up on UNC-Chapel Hill’s campus yesterday to demonstrate as part of its “Save Our Students” project, in which the fundies travel to colleges around the country to proselytize (64 campuses in 27 states).

These fundies came out to demonstrate against the homos, who as we all know, are putting the Homeland at risk. Late yesterday I received an email and a photo from Blender EM, whose friend was at The Pit, when the demonstration occurred.

Hi Pam,

Today, September 11, a group called Soulwinner Ministries International showed up to spread their anti-gay hate at the popular student area at UNC – Chapel Hill called The Pit.  They were talking about how gays were a threat to “National Security.”  The fact that they spoke out today, on September 11, was not an accident.  But they were here last Thursday, too, and the student publication called the Daily Tar Heel has an article about it.

From the article:

Michael Venyah, founder of Soulwinners Ministries International, said he and others from the organization were told to leave campus or they would be arrested for trespassing.

Venyah and the others had set up signs next to the Student Union and Lenoir Dining Hall and began to preach against homosexuality, masturbation and premarital sex.

The group held signs with provocative messages, such as “Homo sex is a threat to national security” and “Satan says that God loves everyone.”

More from her letter — and what happened in The Pit — after the jump.The University police said the group posed a threat to campus safety after exchanges  became heated between the students and the Soulwinner group. The spokesman for UNC-CH’s Department of Public Safety, Randy Young said the religious fundamentalists were asked to leave — “Our officers, on a case-by-case basis, will look to protect free speech up until the point the University’s operations are compromised or individuals’ safety comes into question.”

E.M. continues:

In the Pit, students reserve tables and times to advertise their clubs, etc.  They shouted “Lesbians” at an all female A Capella group (the group is not a gay-identified one).  And they apparently yelled “slut,” “homo,” etc. at people passing and even went up to tables and harassed the students there, asking the students if they were gay and saying that they were going to go to hell.

It seems like this is happening a lot these days in Chapel Hill.  Someone attacked me because I’m gay, and things like this ‘demonstration’ are frightening.  This is all very disturbing.  These ‘demon-trators’ like “the Pit Preacher” are coming to campus frequently, spewing hate (the Pit Preacher goes to a lot of campuses and was kicked out of the Pit recently).

She went on to say that a gay male student was walking on campus minding his own business on his cell phone. He passed some frat boy types, who started mocking him.

It was horrible.  I didn’t know about what had been going on at the Pit at the time this happened, but I wonder if the anti-gay preaching has sparked some homophobia on campus.  I would love to work at UNC-Wilmington some day, but I chose not to even consider it because there is this really out spoken anti-gay bigot there (Mike Adams [who also bleats at Clown Town Hall — Pam]).  It’s sad to see that this sort of proud bigotry is gaining a strong voice at UNC-Chapel Hill.  Some days you see so many instances of racism, sexism, and homophobia…the hatred can be overwhelming.

If you hear more about this story, it will be because the ministry is already bleating about being silenced. Michael Venyah — “They said they couldn’t guarantee our security, but there was no threat to security. We were just preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ. Some people will oppose; some will agree.”

Perhaps Soulwinner should have gotten a permit before showing up. Venyah does say that he’s going to show up again today.

Personally, unless people were threatened with physical violence, the police should have let the demonstration run its course. In this bleeping hot weather, the Soulwinner fundies would have eventually wilted, like the laughable lone demonstrator with a bullhorn that showed up to the NC Gay and Lesbian Film Festival this year.

[I didn’t get a snapshot of him this time; I did at last year’s NC Pride (left, click to enlarge).]

It was hilarious — this guy was spewing twisted scripture and the usual homo-hate. Festival attendees laughed, brought him bottled water and some even stood next to him and had friends take pictures of the pathetic spectacle.  He must store that sign in his garage to pull out from time to time when he hears about LGBT-related events in town.]

Kate and I were out there between films and broke out into hysterics when he suddenly stopped screeching, got on his cell phone, spoke briefly to someone, then hung up and began bleating without missing a beat.

It was so hot that day that he didn’t last very long.

Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding