Marcus Schroeder: A 19-year-old in Wisconsin, Arrested for Sharing the Truth in Love
Late last month in Watertown, Wisconsin, a drag queen event for families attracted attention for included the “opportunity” for children to dance with drag queens. Performers dressed in lingerie and danced sexually suggestive dances in front of little children, who were invited to give them one-dollar bills.
Outside of the event, on a public sidewalk, a 19-year-old Christian, Marcus Schroeder, was reading from the Bible’s Galatians 5, “But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love. For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: Love your neighbor as yourself.”
Following orders from city leaders, local police arrested several people. But they didn’t arrest drag queens for dancing in front of and luring children. Instead, they arrested the Christians who were reading Scripture, praying, and sharing the truth in love.
Wisconsin law forbids individuals from causing a minor to view or listen to “sexually explicit conduct.” Under that policy, the police could have lawfully arrested the men dressed in lingerie. Instead, they arrested three Christians inside the park where the drag queen event was being held because they were praying and talking to attendees. Those three were released with warnings.
Later, they arrested Schroeder, handcuffed him, and detained him for one to two hours. They charged him for “amplification without a permit” and resisting arrest. Rather than warning him and telling him to stop using the microphone, they grabbed the one in his hand and handcuffed him, causing his muscles to tense. This is what they defined as “resisting arrest.”
Sadly, this is yet another example of government leaders not adhering to the First Amendment of the Constitution, which allows citizens to exercise their freedom of religion and speech. Instead, the police arrested the Christians and allowed the drag queens to illegally engage in sexually explicit conduct.
Interestingly, this “Pride in the Park” event in Watertown did receive national media attention. But it wasn’t because of the unconstitutional arrests of the Christians. Instead, it was because Neo-Nazis also attended the event. This caused Wisconsin governor, Democrat Tony Evers, to say, “LGBTQ Wisconsinites deserve to be treated with dignity, decency, kindness, and respect just like every other Wisconsinite, and they deserve to be safe being who they are without fear or threat of shame, harassment, intimidation, or violence. I will continue to support and protect them.”
Does Evers also believe that Christians should be “treated with dignity, decency, kindness, and respect” and “deserve to be safe being who they are without fear or threat of shame, harassment, intimidation, or violence?”
Not surprisingly, many in the media like to link Neo-Nazis with conservative Christians, “right-wing activists,” and Republicans. However, nearly everyone agrees that Nazism is wrong and evil. Schroeder even addressed this evil four days after the Pride event, at the Watertown city council meeting. He pointed out that the reason that Nazism is evil is because it doesn’t value human beings and promotes the murder of innocents. “People have worth and value” — a teaching that Jesus clearly taught his followers.
Christians should be encouraged and motivated to follow the example of Marcus Schroeder and the other Christians that were arrested in Watertown. Rather than just complaining about the downfall of morality in our country, they willingly went to this event for children and spoke the truth in love. Schroeder told The Sentinel, “What good is it if we pray that the children are protected from the drag queens if we don't actually show up and do something to protect them, and do something to fight against this culturally? ... If we truly say we love our neighbor as ourselves, it’s important to actually go out there and act like it.”
Schroeder said at the city council meeting:
“I’ve sat down and had hours of discussions with LGBTQ activists. I completely understand the other side. I want to understand the other side. But drag queens twerking on kids in lingerie is unacceptable, and that’s something that we have to notice as a culture. We can have our disagreements, but there comes a time when we have to understand that we are all going to stand before God one day, and we’re going to have to give an account for what we have done with the children in our society, the innocent minds and the children who deserve to be protected.”
Christians who follow Jesus’s teaching should expect continued pushback from our government and the culture as fewer and fewer Americans have a biblical worldview, let alone follow natural law or care what the Constitution has to say. However, that doesn’t mean that we should give up. We should continue to share the Good News of the gospel, seek to do God’s will, transform our government and culture, and glorify Him in the public square.
As Jesus said:
“Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.”
“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven (Matthew 5: 11-16).”