- (Photo: https://www.facebook.com/ZombieingForOurTroops/photos)
The latest protest by the Westboro Baptist Church at a Seattle military base last week was met with a unique counter-protest – by people dressed as zombies.
The protests at the military base apparently happened last Friday, ABC News reported, outside the Lewis-McChord military base. The controversial Westboro group is known for protesting any displays of U.S. patriotism or authority, as members claim that God hates America for its acceptance of homosexuals and their lifestyle.
"When you goofy, unthankful, flag-worshipping (sic) fools decided that you would declare war against the Lord and against His anointed, you put yourselves in the cross-hairs of a raging mad God. We will come to tell you a few things, to wit," a statement from the group reads.
Communities have stood up to Westboro in the past by forming circles and human shields that protected funerals and other events the extremist group has wanted to picket – but few have gone to such a creative route as the Seattle residents.
"We wanted to turn something negative around, into something people could laugh at and poke fun at," said Washington resident Melissa Neace of the zombie counter-protest, where a number of residents dressed up in torn clothing and zombie make-up to make fun of the group.
"It was the easiest way to divert attention from something so hateful," Neace added.
The residents even launched a Facebook page devoted to the small counter-protest event on Friday called "Zombie'ing Westboro Baptist Church AWAY from Fort Lewis!" which turned out to be quite popular and gained several hundred "fans" supporting the eye-catching movement.
"I have decided that the most violent free way to protest back is simple... a zombie apocalypse. So I ask EVERYONE who is able to attend that day, please come dressed in your finest zombie outfit," a poster for the counter-protest asked.
"I come from a long line of military, including my husband. So if they're going to protest my troops, I'm going to protect my First Amendment and protest them," said counter-protestor Ashlee Nerad.
There were no reports of any violence during the event, in which eight Westboro members were counter-protested by at least a dozen zombie-dressed residents.
"We want to make sure everybody has the right to voice their message and exercise their freedom of speech," DuPont Police Department spokesman George Robinson said last week. "We want to have a peaceful event where nobody gets hurt, and to make sure the traffic flows smoothly and safely."