A street preacher in Seattle was arrested by authorities because they believed he posed as a public threat during an LGBT pride event.
A man who was preaching at a public park was arrested by Seattle police on Wednesday because authorities believed he was being a risk to public safety after reading a Bible aloud during an LGBT pride event. The man was identified as Matthew Meinecke, who is known as The Seattle Preacher on Twitter.
According to the Christian Post, Meinecke was surrounded by Seattle police officers as he read his Bible aloud in a public park where an LGBT pride event was being held. He was then arrested and fingerprinted at a police station before his release.
"[The Seattle Police Department] has enough resources to send 10 police officers to arrest a preacher reading his Bible in a public park. Because it's such a horrible crime now!" Meinecke declared on Twitter alongside a video of his arrest.
Police Say Preacher Posed a 'Risk for Public Safety'
In the video posted by Meinecke on Twitter, a police officer could be overheard saying that he and his fellow officers "can no longer stand by." The police officer claims that the street preacher posed a "risk...for public safety by remaining" in the public park. Meinecke informed the police officers that he did not want to leave because he was not "in danger."
Journalist Jonathan Choe with the Discovery Institute reported that as per Meinecke, he was at the Seattle Center "reading the Bible, not aggressively preaching, not stirring people up, not anything" but instead that he was the one being harassed by protesters and "people throwing things" and "vandalizing" property. The street preacher argued that the police's job was "not to silence" him but instead they were "offended by words," which was the "word of God."
Meinecke also posted a video showing one reproductive rights protester ripping pages off his Bible, telling him to "get the f--- out" and daring him to "forget about your imaginary fairy in the f---ing sky." The street preacher reported that he also saw "a bunch of naked people walking around...naked grown men around little children" during the protest.
Meinecke later shared a video online in which he lamented about how Seattle has become "a city full of crime," with "lawless homeless camps everywhere" and "assaults." He added that Antifa, the left-wing anti-fascist and anti-racist political movement has been "running the place" and instead of the police focusing their efforts on cracking down on violent protesters, they instead had "[arrested] a street preacher reading his Bible in a park."
LGBT Activists Clashed with Religious Folks in Oregon
In June, members of the LGBT community and their supporters were met with pushback when they marched and celebrated their freedom during a Pride parade in Roseburg, Oregon. According to News Review Today, members of Wellspring Bible Fellowship and other religious folk protested the Pride parade by sharing literature on megaphones and giving away flyers.
Pastor Rob Johnson of the Wellspring group said they were at the LGBT pride event to "preach the gospel" because they had a "a firm belief that that lifestyle, being gay and trans, is sinful" and that the Pride event was a celebration of that sin.