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    Posted July 22, 2010 by
    San Diego, California
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    San Diego Comic-Con

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    San Diego "Refudiates" Westboro Baptist Church Protesters


    CNN PRODUCER NOTE     gailpowell, a member of The Rock Church in San Diego, counter-protested the Westboro Baptist Church with a group of about 200 outside Comic-Con. The WBC was protesting Al Gore and the 'false idol worship' of Comic-Con. Powell shouted back things like 'Lady Gaga is not a whore' and 'Pastor Miles is not a whore,' she said.
    - zdan, CNN iReport producer

    I am a member of The Rock Church in San Diego. Last October, Westboro Baprist Church came to our Church and protested us with signs that said "You are Going to  H-ll," and "Your Pastor is a Whore!"  All of this because we have a strong Military Outreach Ministry and that offended the Topeka sign-wavers, who make a habit out of protesting military funerals, among other hate crimes.


    Well-that didn't sit too well with me. When I read that WBC was planning another visit to San Diego in order to protest Al "Whore" Gore and the "false idol worship" of Comic- Con, I knew I had to take a stand. I put together a protest sign and got ready for a showdown.


    This morning I knew better than to try and park close by the Convention Center so I hopped the San Diego trolley and got dropped off right in front of all the action at Comic-Con. Immediately heading down to the Manchester Hyatt Hotel, I found a couple of protesters already there waiting and soon enough a Westboro posse showed up. The San Diego Police Dept. kept us on opposite sides of the street but their protest soon fizzled since Al Gore switched hotels and was not at the Hyatt. The WBC group soon moved on.


    I sent a runner up the street with a cell phone to call back and tell the rest of the group where the WBC turns up next. Sure enough, they were right across the street from the Comic-Con entrance so off  we went. As we were treking up West Harbor Drive, a group of curious people just sort of feel in behind us. When they learned that we were planning a counter-protest to the Westboro Baptists, a surge of people grabbed cardboard boxes, tore them up and grabbed Sharpies to fashion their own crude signs! It was an awesome display of righteous action and soon our little crowd swelled to nearly 200 people!  The San Diego Police did an admirable job of keeping everything under control but I noticed some cops were having a hard time keeping a straight face when I would yell over them at the WBC: "LADY GAGA IS NOT A WHORE!"


    Yes-Comic-Con is Nerd Central. It is full of wacky characters and the kind of people who probably still live at home in mommy's basement.. But outside on the streets of San Diego today was a civics lesson par excellence! This sleepy little navy town doesn't take too kindly to a bunch of Mid-western dis-respecters coming on our turf and dissing Al Gore and comic books! Refutiate THAT, Westboro Baptists!

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