Demonstrations in front of Buley
Josh LaBella – News Writer
For most of the day last Thursday, arguing could be heard in front of Buley Library.
A small group of religious people came to speak in front of the library. They carried signs saying
“Evolution is a lie” and “You’re all sinners.” Bobby McCreery, who was one of the speakers, said they were there to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ.
“To tell people that God, to love the world, gave his only begotten son so that those who believed in him would not perish and could have eternal life,” said McCreery. “We came here because we were in the area.”
McCreery said they had been getting reactions of all kinds. He referenced the Book of Acts and said “Some mocked, some said ‘we’ll hear you some more,’ and others believed and followed. He said 2000 years later man hasn’t changed, so they get the same reaction when preaching the Gospel.
Phillip McKnight, a Southern police officer, said from his perspective he saw people exercising their right of free speech. He said they were sent to make sure people protest peacefully.
“That’s all, because sometimes people are very passionate about some things and they tend to do things they’re not supposed to do,” said McKnight. “We’re just here to make sure everyone respects everyone else.”
Joshua Garcia, a recreation and leisure major, said he thinks a crazy man was on campus and that somebody needed to shut him down. He said Karns was screaming at them that abortion is horrible, homosexuality is a sin, and that the students were all sinners.
“He’s showing us aborted babies, telling us that evolution is a lie,” said Garcia. “Which is kind of attacking us in a way. It’s not a good thing for our campus.”
Garcia said the speaker wanted them to hear his side but didn’t want to hear their side. He said he had a sign that said ‘Social Justice Month, we accept everyone here. We are one’ on one side and ‘I sin, you sin, but we love you’ on the other.
Don Karns, the main speaker of the protest, said his group was there to talk about the love of God. He said he was allowing people to ask him questions and called the protest ‘an open forum.’
“People asked me questions about abortion, homosexuality,” said Karns. “According to the Bible those are sins against God. I did my best not to enter the realm of opinion but to stick with what the Bible says. The Bible is all what God has revealed as right or wrong.”
Riley Scheuritzel, a junior Spanish Major, said he saw the same group on campus last year and it upset him they were back. He said the group was spreading hate and telling everyone they were going to hell.
“Anyone that is not in there idea of what a perfect human is is going to hell,” said Schueritzel. “(They) were saying triggering words, provoking emotions out of people. I didn’t think that was okay and I will never think that is okay.”
Scheuritzel said he went to the student government association office and made a sign that promoted social justice and love. He went to the protest and stared at them in silence.
“Noise doesn’t come in volume. Noise comes in action,” said Schueritzel. “And I was the loudest one there. Because I was silent.”
Photo Credit: Palmer Piana