A small Baptist church in Virginia changed the words on its sign to read, “America: Love it or leave it,” in a move the pastor says is a political commentary on President Trump.
Pastor E.W. Lucas and his wife talked to a local news outlet about the sign, after it drew attention in the community and online. “I thought I was going to make some remarks regarding the situation in Washington,” he told an ABC affiliate. “It just came to me … ‘America, I love it. If you don’t love it, leave it.'”
This sign outside of an Appomattox church is drawing lots of support and criticism on social media. pic.twitter.com/huuLLO0jmF
— Valencia E. Jones (@vjreports3) July 17, 2019
He and his wife have been changing the words on the sign since 1979, when he founded the Friendship Baptist Church in Appomattox. “People that feel hard about our president and want to down the president and down the country and everything, they ought to go over there and live in these other countries for a little while,” Lucas added. (RELATED: Mitch McConnell Responds To Trump’s ‘Go Back’ Comments)
He told the ABC affiliate he decided to keep it up for awhile, since he has gotten positive feedback, but that in any case he’s not worried about hurting people’s feelings. “Preachers, by and large, today, are afraid they’re gonna hurt somebody’s feelings, and when I get in the pulpit, I’m afraid I won’t hurt somebody’s feelings,” he said.
Trump is wading through outrage this week after he tweeted that four freshmen Democratic members of Congress — Reps. Ayanna Pressley, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib — should “go back” where they came from. Three of them are from the United States.