When the Westboro Baptist Church a known hate group protested a transgender child at Brookwood Elementary in Leawood, KS Wednesday, September 11, 2019, the response to this abhorrent act on of all days 9/11, became the real news. The entire town patriotically and empathetically rallied in the children’s defense truly honoring the day. Parents, citizens, and teachers alike spoke up and showed up with unconditional love and acceptance for every child.
This was a perfect response in this era of divisive Anti-LGBT Anti-Immigrant Trump Doublespeak which has enabled school shootings to become an almost everyday occurrence.
“It actually has turned a negative into a positive,” one parent told Fox 4 KC. “I know our school is wonderful, and I felt so much support personally and to see band together and turn it into one of hope is wonderful.”
While the school community walked to school together, others from the larger community lined the way, showing their support for the child and everyone at Brookwood Elementary.
The exemplary reporting by FOX NEWS purposefully didn’t mention that the Westboro Baptist Church did show up but was kept at a respectful distance while under the watchful eye of a dozen police officers. The school district wanted to keep the event low-key and personal and positive.
Patriot News reported that many parents brought donuts and picnic blankets to share in an effort to make students feel loved. Teachers blew bubbles for younger students. Brookwood families observed the event and tried to keep the environment on the field and playground inclusive, joyful and calm.
However, in front of the school stood dozens of police officers keeping an eye on a handful of Westboro Baptist Church members protesting a Brookwood fifth-grader who is transgender.
On the other side of the crosswalk were groups of supporters, anyone from Brookwood parents to students from The Pembroke Hill School, waving blue-white-and-pink transgender flags and holding signs that read “Transgender rights are human rights.”