Gay Rights Activists in Iceland Have Found the Perfect Way to Protest Evangelist Franklin Graham’s Festival

Franklin Graham, the son of Reverend Billy Graham, has done everything in his power to tarnish his father’s legacy by associating his family’s name with homophobia. Last year, he used his dad’s image and name to urge North Carolinians to vote against same-sex marriage. Earlier this year, he told an interviewer that “there’s no way you can have a family with two females or two males”:

When the Supreme Court ruled in favor of gay rights recently, Graham expressed his disappointment about that, too:

It was God who created and defined marriage, and any person or institution that attempts to redefine it is ultimately challenging Him.

So what do you do when he plans a huge festival in your city?

Well, a group of pro-LGBT-rights protesters in Reykjavik, Iceland — where gay marriage has been legal for a few years now — have come up with a brilliant way to fight back against his event there next month:

In a social media-fueled protest against the avowed anti-gay-marriage evangelist, Iceland residents are reserving hundreds of tickets to Graham’s sermons with the intention of leaving the seats empty.

The tickets were free, you could reserve up to four at a time (or more, if your group had 20+ people), and gay rights supporters appear to have gotten to them first :)

The site where you could reserve your tickets now says this (translated):

Order tickets online has been put on hold. Bedi is sorry, working on solving the case and arrangements will be announced soon. Please be patient while.

Love it. The tickets were “sold out” as of last Friday and there’s no indication from the Graham crew that they plan to give away more.

Shortly after tickets became available Wednesday, users on Facebook, Twitter and Reddit began spreading the word that protesters were reserving seats for the event, but not planning to show up. Protesters say the goal is to leave the controversial Graham with an empty venue when he appears at Reykjavík’s Laugardalshöll arena next month. One Icelandic software developer, Elvar Thormar, wrote on Facebook that he’d reserved 500 tickets.

I can’t wait to see pictures from the event. Graham is in for a wonderful, silent surprise if he thinks Iceland natives will be receptive to his bigotry.

(Thanks to Thor for the link!)

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.


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