The always controversial Westboro Baptist Church just earned itself another critic, but this one is only a few feet tall and her chosen method of protest is pink lemonade.
On June 14, five-year-old Jayden Sink held her first "Pink Lemonade for Peace" event on the front lawn of the famed Equality House—a rainbow-wrapped home located directly across the street from Westboro headquarters in Topeka, Kansas.
Equality House belongs to one of the founding members of Planting Peace, an organization dedicated to spreading good will. The brightly colored home opened its doors this March in an effort to stage a peaceful counter-protest to the hatred and fear-mongering perpetrated by the Westboro organization.
When Jayden learned that WBC compound belonged to people who were spreading hate, she came up with the idea to stage her own peaceful protest in the form of a pink lemonade stand. The five-year-old wanted to raise money to put towards “spreading messages of love and peace.”
With a sign that read, "Pink Lemonade for Peace: $1 Suggested Donation,” Sink wasn’t expecting to raise a massive amount of money, but hundreds of dollars were handed over to her that day as a multitude of people showed up to chip in. She’s since started a complimentary online fundraiser as well—and it currently tops out at over $5,000.
But even though their opponent was a five-year-old girl, that didn’t stop the WBC from attempting to obstruct Jayden’s efforts. They reportedly tried to get police to shut down the lemonade stand, and when that didn’t work, they shouted obscenities.
While that level of vitriol is not new for Westboro, they may be especially intolerant of opposition as of late; just a few weeks ago, one of their websites was brilliantly hacked by an activist who goes by the name of JESTER. The WBC had set up a website attacking victims of the Oklahoma tornadoes for being "sinners", but shortly thereafter, JESTER turned that site into a donation page for viewers to fund the state’s recovery efforts.
Jayden’s protest is obviously far less sophisticated, but no less meaningful. Her altruistic nature may due to the fact that the kindergartner has the activist gene—her father Jon, is the founder of the philanthropic organization, FRESHCASSETTE-Creative Compassion.
Like most dads, he's probably proud of his daughter for a host of reasons, but we're guessing that watching her become a champion of love and peace might just have made it his best Father's Day ever.
Related stories on TakePart:
- Society & Culture
- Arts & Entertainment
- Westboro Baptist Church
- pink lemonade