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Lexington Police intervene to prevent violence against David Parker at rally in Lexington

Angry pro-gay counter-demonstrators including public officials & local liberal clergy gather to intimidate Parker & supporters.

Officers determine Parker's physical safety threatened; tell him that situation is too "incendiary" for on-the-scene TV interview; escort him from area.

Police protection. Police surround and detain David Parker (in light pants and olive sports coat) as officer at right calls superiors.  They determined that violence could erupt against him, so they escorted him back across the street.

Interviews go on without Parker. After David Parker leaves area, pro-gay activists continue to surround TV cameras as School Committee Chairman Helen Cohen (center, in purple) is interviewed, as police direct traffic. Note young children with signs lined up behind her. 

(Links to more photos below.)

LEXINGTON, MA - SEPT 6, 2005. Lexington Police were forced to protect David Parker, fearing for his personal safety, when hundreds of angry pro-gay activists, including Lexington public officials and local liberal clergy, gathered to counter-demonstrate against parents and supporters of David Parker who were holding a rally on historic Lexington Battle Green.

Lexington boasts that it is among the most "tolerant" and "welcoming" towns in Massachusetts, but a wave of intolerance and hostility met a group of parents who had peacefully assembled to air a grievance.

The parents had secured a permit and had come together to express their outrage over the continuation of a no-trespass order by the Town of Lexington against David Parker, banning the parent of a 6-year-old from all school property. Parker made national news when Lexington school officials refused his request to notify him when adults were discussing homosexuality or transgenderism with his son in kindergarten.

At least 200 pro-gay counter-demonstrators supporting his ban from school property first gathered at the nearby Visitor's Center, and then lined Bedford Street (bordering the Battle Green) with anti-Parker signs and slogans.

Participating in the counter-demonstration were Helen Cohen, Chairman of the Lexington School Committee, and Tom Griffiths, a School Committee member. Also identified in the crowd were Jeanne Krieger, member of the Lexington Board of Selectman, Rabbi Howard Jaffee of Temple Isaiah, Rev. Judy Brain, Pastor of Pilgrim Congregational Church, and Rev. Bill Clark, Senior Pastor of the First Unitarian Parish in Lexington.

As the Parker supporters lined the other side of Bedford street and held their signs, it seemed that the anger of the pro-gay activists increased considerably. One Parker sign-holder was spat on as he walked past a 12-year-old girl. Insults were hurled.

As one witness observed, "You could see the look in their eyes, even the kids. It was eerie. They really can't stand us, as if we're polluting their town just by being here."

After Parker had finished making his speech to his supporters, a few local TV stations set up across the street near one of their sound trucks to conduct some interviews, and the pro-gay group converged on the area. Parker walked over with his lawyers, but when he got there he was almost immediately surrounded by uniformed Lexington police officers, who soon ordered him back across the street, away from the area, and did not allow him to be interviewed, even off camera.

As Parker described it later, "The police felt that once the cameras were on it would get 'totally out of control' and could become 'incendiary' and they weren't willing to take that chance and be accountable for this." Parker said that the police felt strongly that he would be in danger, so they made calls to their superiors, and that the decision was made not to allow him to participate in the TV interviews. So he was escorted back across the street, away from the area.

Parker said he asked one of the officers, "Do you really think that these people are this out of control?" and the officer answered, "Yes." Parker responded, "Our people would never do that."

However, as a result the TV reporters interviewed various people opposed to Parker (including Lexington School Board Chairman Helen Cohen) but only a short interview from one of Parker's lawyers was done.

More photos:

Parker Rally. Organized by local Lexington parents, people came from across Massachusetts. It's so outrageous that the town continues to ban David Parker from all school property. This is strictly an act of intimidation and harassment. They are arrogantly trying to disrupt Parker's life and make him an example to other parents who might want to demand their rights guaranteed under the Massachusetts Parental Notification Act.
Click here for Parker Rally photos.

The counter-demonstration. Despite that fact that the Parker rally was publicly announced and this was done through emails, blog postings, phone calls, etc., this was about twice as big. It's utterly amazing how obsessed the pro-homosexuality crowd is, and how enraged they are that a parent challenges their proselytizing in the public schools. You've got to see this.
Click here for counter-demonstration photos.