In what may be the most offensive and worst holiday idea ever, a man who identifies himself as a Christian minister planned a haunted house themed around the Pulse nightclub shooting of June, 2016 to be unveiled this week. The Windy City Times reported on the horrible incident and the planning that led up to the now-canceled event.
The event page promises, "You will walk in 10 Rooms and encounter individuals who will make choices. The choice is life or death; sin or salvation; heaven or hell."
It goes on to talk about morality, saying "Once you enter there is no looking back- it's time to face the consequences of your actions..."
The implication that the Pulse room was intended to illustrate consequences is an extremely worrying one, a feeling shared by others. Nat, an observer who reported to the Windy City Times who wished their last name to remain unknown, pointed out, "Whose moral choices are we talking about? Is it immoral to just want to go out and be with your friends and dance?" 49 people were killed in the deadly attack and many others injured.
If it wasn't bad enough that the haunted house seemed to be blaming the victims of the Pulse shooting for being shot, the attraction was being held at a local public elementary school. Chicago Public Schools said on October 28th that the event would not be held there.
THE ROOM IS OFFICIALLY BANNED! As of Friday, 7:17pm. There will be no show. Sorry for the inconvenience. if you... https://t.co/2e1pz9zkK0— Playwright Tyrone (@TyroneTappler) October 29, 2016
The haunted house apparently also planned to feature a room showing a "botched abortion," and a room depicting the Charleston church shooting of 2015. According to the Eventbrite bio for Tyrone Tappler Productions, the message of all Tappler's shows and events is that "There’s hope in any situation." Assuming this hope is based in the Christian theme of salvation from your sins, this haunted house was taking some heavy swings at a multitude of human rights.
Tappler took to Twitter after the event was called off, saying "They don't know I'm a trailblazer," and citing God's hand in the cancelation of the event.
They dont know im a Trailblazer....— Playwright Tyrone (@TyroneTappler) October 29, 2016
GOD IS POURING DOWN ON............ ON THE ROOM REALITY HOUSE MINISTRY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!— Playwright Tyrone (@TyroneTappler) October 28, 2016
Good morning..i hear this ringing in my spirit. "God will inconvenience himself and inconvenience you..just to protect you!!!!!!"— Playwright Tyrone (@TyroneTappler) October 28, 2016
There has been no statement concerning whether or not the haunted house will continue at another location or if ticket sales will be reimbursed.
Campaigns like these do not help the image of American Christians who say they are tired of being called bigoted. Perhaps, in the same vein that American Muslims are called on to condemn the actions of a few terrible people from their ranks, American Christian communities should take it upon themselves to denounce people like Tyrone Tappler and set the record straight.
Banner Image Credit: Twitter, @gaycivilrights