Many odd scenes and bizarre events — both legal and illegal — have been reported at Occupy Wall Street protests across America. The presence of a live nativity scene can now be added to the list.
Videographer Benny Johnson was curious to see how Occupy D.C. protesters at McPherson Square would react to the presence of a nativity, so he headed down, camera and plastic baby Jesus in hand, to see. Johnson edited, funded, filmed and narrated what amounts to an entertaining — and telling — experience.
“What happens when you put a nativity scene in the middle of an Occupy camp?,” Johnson asks during the clip’s introduction. As the video opens, two actors (Mary and Joseph) can be seen next to a manger housing the central figure — baby Jesus. In front of the couple is a sign that reads “Occupy Christmas,” along with a Bible verse (Luke 2:17-20).
The response from the Occupiers was diverse. ”This ain’t a church, man,” one guy said. Another protester could be heard asking, ”Is that legal?” Yet another person, clearly responding to him said, ”No check — go check.”
Early on in the clip, a man with a bandanna covering his face, has a strong reaction as he addresses the actors in the nativity (starts around the :40 mark).
“I wouldn’t get up here and start preaching Islam to people.” he said. “I wouldn‘t because it’s not my place. It’s not your place either.”
Later, the same guy appears again and explains why he’s opposed. ”I’m a follower of Islam. I just think it’s in bad taste,” he explains. “The atrocities of the Christian faith…ravish humanity.”
Johnson later asks, “If 76% of Americans identify themselves as Christians, as a populace movement wouldn’t the Occupy Movement be for a nativity scene?” Another protester chimes in, saying, ”It goes against what our Founding Fathers created in this country.”
But not everyone was negative regarding the nativity’s presence. Another protester expressed his surprise to the opposition, saying, ”I think it’s beautiful. I think it’s right on time. Christ is the reason for Christmas. I don’t know why [the other protester would] be offended.”
Watch the entertaining events and commentary, below: