As Harlem’s now nationally infamous hate church continues to post racist and anti-gay messages, activists are demanding that the Landmarks Preservation Committee take action for illegal changes that have been made to the building. Leading the charge is Harlem historian Michael Henry Adams.
Among changes for which the church has been issued violations are installing the free-standing sign, replacing portions of the iron gates surrounding the building and removing a balcony and signage, all of which was done without permits. The lighted sign sits on a slab of polished granite with a giant cross atop. The previous sign was smaller. The violations were issued from May 2013 through June 6 of this year. Now Adams and his supporters want the city to take strong action against the church. “I’m doing this as a means of applying pressure to Landmarks,” Adams said after his protest. According to LPC rules, if corrections are not made after multiple violation notices and a hearing, civil fines of up to $250 per day, with a minimum of $5,000, can be issued for serious violations such as altering important architectural elements of a building. The LPC can also seek restraining orders and injunctions. The agency also has the authority to seek criminal fines that range from $500 to $15,000 per day.
Pastor James David Manning has taunted the activists to do their best, saying, “Let them take it up with Landmarks.”
RELATED: When the above message first appeared in March, lesbian activist Jennifer Louis Lopez rang the church’s bell to demand her stoning. They told her to come back later.