Counter-protestors outnumber hate group


Rayne Rekoske

Approximately 90 counter-protestors came in support of students at Maize and Maize South each. Each school only had three to four protestors.

Casey Loving and Rayne Rekoske

A planned protest against the LGBT community of Maize backfired on those involved as it turned into a much greater show of support and affection. 

A group of counter-protestors gathered in front of the school parking lot today to share messages of encouragement in contrast to the protestors who were placed in front of the Maize Career Academy. The counter-protestors were approximately 90 strong; there were three protestors.

The same hate group rallied at Maize South, garnering similar results. There, their four protestors were met with a similar number of counter-protestors as Maize.

A majority of the counter-protestors were gathered under Parasol Patrol, a group dedicated to shielding children and young adults from seeing the hate group’s messages. Play has decided not to name the hate group to not assist in the spread of its propaganda. 

“We come out and we stand in between kids and hate,” Parasol Patrol co-founder Eli Bazan said at Maize South. “We’re always there.”

Several of the counter-protestors gathered were in costumes, dressed as superheroes there in the service of the students.

“I hope this shows that there’s a lot of people who want to see more positivity in the world,” one of the counter-protestors dressed as a superhero said. He didn’t want his name used. “Everybody has the chance to be themselves and be happy. Hopefully we get more of that.“

Students and graduates of the district were gathered with the anti-protestors to show their approval of the school and community.

“A lot of my friends are in the community and I support it,” Maize graduate Lakin Thrasher said. “Everyone should be able to be who they are no matter what.”

The hate group has protested schools in the state and nearby before, and the song remains the same: they show up in small numbers and their voices of hostility are drowned out by those of support.

“They always only have four to six protestors on their side,” Parasol Patrol co-founder Pasha Eve said. “We always outnumber them.”