fundamentalist protesters gathered outside of Silverton,
Ore.'s City Hall Monday to protest its transgender
mayor, residents of the city came out to
counterdemonstrate in support of their mayor, Stu Rasmussen.
protesters from Fred Phelps's controversial Westboro Baptist
Church stood spread out on North Water Street, standing on
American flags, hoisting signs in the air that read
"God Hates You," "You're Going to Hell," and "Fag
Media Shame." They traveled through the state on
Monday, first landing at Portland State University,
and the Swedish, German, and Finish consulates in the
Portland area before heading south to Silverton.
About 150 people
came together, facing them on the opposite side of the
street to counter-protest, according to TheOregonian. Their signs read "My Love Is Bigger
Than Your Hate" and "We Love Stu."
As the four
protesters stood defiantly on the street, Silverton
residents young and old, some cross-dressing
themselves, came out to support their mayor.
the 16-year-old daughter of the Topeka, Kan., church's
founder, said the group was there to protest an
"I don't expect
for it to sink in, but it's our duty to come out here
and preach to these people because they're so proud of
having a transvestite mayor," she said. "It's
disgusting. And where was it? Was it Isaiah?
Deuteronomy? About it being an abomination?"
former mayor of Silverton, was returned to that office by
voters earlier this month in a race against incumbent
Ken Hector. He dresses as a woman but still identifies
as a man. (Michelle Garcia, The Advocate)