7-Year-Old Defiantly Stares Down Homophobic Preacher During LGBT Festival

First grader Zea Bowling makes a powerful stand,

Paul Tamburroby Paul Tamburro

You know you’ve been a good parent when your 7-year-old daughter is willing to stand up for the equality of others, and that’s exactly what first grader Zea Bowling did when faced with a homophobic preacher during an LGBT festival in Ohio.

The video depicts Zea standing silently, holding out a rainbow-colored flag while a preacher bellows his rhetoric about the world giving her pain, heartache and divorce in front of her. Bowling’s statement led to those in attendance high-fiving and fist-bumping her for her efforts, in what is a fantastic example of youthful optimism and love standing up against withered, misguided hatred.

I get that these preachers likely do believe that they are helping out these people by trying to convert them to their myopic idea of what is right and what is wrong, but any empathy that could potentially be had for a man turning up to an LGBT festival with the sole intention of being a party pooper is lost when you take a moment to let the hypocrisy sink in. It’s very rare that, in these dour times of war, conflict, and institutionalized racism/sexism that we get to celebrate love. The ruling that all 50 US states will now allow same-sex marriage is a victory for love, and if “God is love,” then why the fuck would he have a problem with it? Surely he’d just be like, “aw, that’s nice,” before attending to more pertinent matters such as helping rappers get Grammy awards.

Ryan Bowling, Zea’s father, described the reaction to the girl’s actions, saying: “People actually cried. I almost didn’t film it. It was pretty powerful, and I was trying not to be in my phone. Somebody I didn’t know sniffled pretty loudly, and I realized I might be missing something kind of important.”

Watch the video below: