After Ireland passed marriage equality in May, J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter series joked about how cool it would be for Gandalf, from Lord of the Rings, and Dumbledore to get married there. But she didn't know that she was about to make history, yet again. A few days after Rowling's tweet, the Westboro Baptist Church tweeted back and said they would picket the wedding if the two fictional characters actually could get married, according to BuzzFeed. Her reply was so badass that it spurred a wedding between Dumbledore and Gandalf on Sunday. Now, the luxuriously-locked duo will live happily ever after in magical matrimony.
The "wedding" was a show between two local actors who were dressed as wizards, according to Mashable. Even better, it took place at the Equality House in Topeka, Kansas, which is right across the street from the Westboro Baptist compound. Aaron Jackson, the founder of Planting Peace, the company that sponsors the Equality House, told the Huffington Post that the tweets inspired him to make the wedding a reality in order to raise money to combat the hateful messages spread by Westboro Baptist Church. Thanks to Rowling's brilliantly managed mischief, this wedding will live on as both an epic feat for book lovers and as a measure of support for the LGBT community.
Jackson told The Huffington Post that when Equality House staff read "the battle" between Rowling and the Westboro Baptist Church, they connected with what she said on many levels:
The Equality House was founded to take a stand against the hurtful words and actions of hate groups like the WBC. People often question why we even mention them, and Ms. Rowling’s words were spot on. We must actively stand up to hate and ensure that LGBTQ youth understand that they have a broad platform of love and support in this world. ... We are delighted to be hosting the Dumbledore and Gandalf wedding and stand with them in the face of bigotry and celebrate equality for all. The WBC won't have to go too far to picket this union. They can look out their front window.
The wedding was equal parts funny and serious, as it played with jokes about characters and places in both novels, but it also shared the serious threats that still exist against the LGBT population — threats that organizations like the Westboro Baptist Church won't give up on. A video posted to YouTube by KGNC News Now recorded the wedding officiator's speech:
May the love in our hearts always grow as we are united as one family beyond muggle and magic, dwarf and elf — beyond all divisions. ... May our hearts and minds grow so that we may create a world where teens are not kicked out of their homes for being gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, or queer, which is the case of nearly half of the homeless youth in the United States. May we create a world where no one feels driven to harm themself simply for being who they are as is evident in the American suicide rates of 4,600 youth suicides a year. May we create a world where all people are affirmed in their existence, respected, and accepted. May this fun, symbolic, rather silly wedding here today be a glimmer of hope towards a brighter tomorrow to come.
The wedding served as a bit of light in a world that can be quite dark, echoing some of Dumbledore's own great wisdom: "Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times, when one only remembers to turn on the light."
Images: KGNC News Now/YouTube