A number of Christian fundamentalists may have claimed that gay revelers in town for Southern Decadence somehow prompted Hurricane Isaac's dangerous weather in New Orleans last week. As it turns out, New Orleans has little tolerance for anti-gay rhetoric, too, as nine preachers were arrested for "suspicion of aggressive solicitation" on Saturday after yelling homophobic epithets during a Southern Decadence demonstration.
The New Orleans Times-Picayune identifies the preachers as Patrick O'Connell, 45, Rolando Igleasias, 31, Cesar Chavez, 22, Daniel Hoogerhuis, 26, Danny Guevera, 20, Larry Craft, 52, Montes Diego, 32 and Gary Brown, 33.
The men were found to be in violation of an ordinance that prohibits "any person or group of persons to loiter or congregate on Bourbon Street for the purpose of disseminating any social, political or religious message between the hours of sunset and sunrise," according to the publication. A police spokesman said the men were previously warned not to use bullhorns, but did not comply.
Justin Craft, 31, was arrested on suspicion of battery, resisting an officer and interfering with a law enforcement investigation. The Wisconsin Gazette reports that Craft allegedly punched a police officer who tried to confiscate his bullhorn.
Anti-gay resistance to the annual Southern Decadence celebration -- which the Wisconsin Gazette deems "a mashup of Pride, circuit party and Mardi Gras," and reportedly draws an estimated 120,000 LGBT visitors to the city each year -- are nothing new. Last week, one pastor went as far to suggest that Hurricane Isaac's arrival at the same time as Southern Decadence was "is a sign that God's patience with America's sin is coming to an end."
"The church, city and nation have not repented and the homosexual agenda is far worse than it was in 2005," Defend & Proclaim The Faith's Pastor John McTernan wrote in a blog. "New Orleans is still hosting Southern Decadence with open homosexuality manifesting in the streets of the city. It could be that God is putting an end to this city and its wickedness."
Rev. Grant Storms, known as one of the festival's most vocal opponents, was reportedly convicted of obscenity last month after being caught masturbating at a public park near a children's playground in 2011.
Earlier on HuffPost:
Pastor Worley: Gays And Lesbians Should Be Put In An Electrified Pen And Ultimately Killed Off
The pastor, identified on YouTube as Charles L. Worley of Providence Road Baptist Church in Maiden, N.C., condemns President Obama's much-publicized endorsement of same-sex marriage while calling for gays and lesbians to be put in an electrified pen and ultimately killed off. "Build a great, big, large fence -- 150 or 100 mile long -- put all the lesbians in there," Worley suggests in the clip, reportedly filmed on May 13. "Do the same thing for the queers and the homosexuals and have that fence electrified so they can't get out...and you know what, in a few years, they'll die out...do you know why? They can't reproduce!"
Pastor Suggests Gays Should Be Prosecuted Like They Were Historically
Ron Baity, founding pastor of Winston-Salem's Berean Baptist Church and head of the anti-marriage equality organization Return America, referred to homosexuality as "a perverted lifestyle" in a Sunday sermon before telling his congregation that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people should be prosecuted, Good as You is reporting. "For 300 years, we had laws that would prosecute that lifestyle," he is quoted as saying. "We've gone down the wrong path. We've become so dumb that we have accepted a lie for the truth, and we've...discarded the truth on the shoals of shipwreck!"
Pastor Sean Harris: Parents Should 'Punch' Their Effeminate Children
"So your little son starts to act a little girlish when he is four years old and instead of squashing that like a cockroach and saying, 'Man up, son, get that dress off you and get outside and dig a ditch, because that is what boys do,' you get out the camera and you start taking pictures of Johnny acting like a female and then you upload it to YouTube and everybody laughs about it and the next thing you know, this dude, this kid is acting out childhood fantasies that should have been squashed."
Pastor Slams Gay Marriage, Suggests Unions Between 'Person And A Beast' Could Be Next
Tim Rabon, pastor at Raleigh's Beacon Baptist Church, condemned states such as Massachusetts, Connecticut and Maryland which have already "re-defined" marriage to include lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) couples. As heard in this recording, Rabon asked his congregation, "What is stopping them from refining marriage from a person and a beast? We're not far from that."
Robertson Compares Polygamy, Bestiality And Pedophilia To Gay Marriage
Tony Perkins: 'If You Want A Military That Just Does Parades,' Allow Gays To Openly Serve
James Robison: 'The Enemy' Is Using 'Glee' To Destroy America
Newt Gingrich: Gay Marriage A 'Perfect Example Of What I Mean By The Rise Of Paganism'
Daniel Lapin: Gays Should've Been Quarantined To fight AIDS
Pat Robertson Advises Father To Seek Ex-Gay Conversion For Gay Son
Liberty Counsel Warns That Macy's LGBT Policy Could Lead To Rape, Sexual Assault