The candle flame gutters. Its little pool of light trembles. Darkness gathers. The demons begin to stir.On Memorial Day, Americans honor the men and women who died while serving in the Armed Forces. As Lincoln noted in his Gettysburg Address, “the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain.”
- Carl Sagan
As the son of a World War II veteran, the task before me this Memorial Day weekend was therefore clear. An independent Baptist preacher from my home town (Maiden, NC) recently suggested genocide as a solution to the “homosexual problem” -- perhaps in jest, but he has yet to unambiguously repent for using these words. In response, over 1,000 people gathered on the lawn of the Catawba County Justice Center in Newton, North Carolina on Sunday. The protest was organized to provide a message of love and tolerance in response to these hateful words. Some say it was the largest protest in the history of Catawba Country.
A Georgia preacher and counter-protestor told the Hickory Daily Record that "the preachers that hate these people are at home." I suspect Martin Niemöller would agree on this point. But there were no restless dreams and no one walked alone in Newton on Sunday.