Flaming Cheerios backfire on General Mills marriage protestor - FOX 35 News Orlando

Flaming Cheerios backfire on General Mills marriage protestor

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The issue of same-sex marriage has prompted protests across the country, and a viral video of a botched demonstration outside General Mills headquarters is getting a lot of attention -- just not the sort its maker had hoped for.

When General Mills came out against a proposed constitutional amendment that would define marriage as between one man and one woman in Minnesota, protests sprung up outside the company's home base in Golden Valley. Even though the latest display to didn't quite go as planned, it's catching fire on YouTube anyway.

"I think it will help. We're trying to stimulate people to do something," Mike Leisner told FOX 9 News.

It's easy to see that Leisner is passionate about his religious beliefs.

"What we are saying is, 'Sodomy is wrong. Homosexuality is wrong. Adultery is wrong. Fornication is wrong," Leisner said. "God condemns it, and Christians need to come out of it. Period."

Despite his convictions, his latest attempt to get opponents of same-sex marriage fired up backfired.

"Looks like a blooper, is what it looks like," Leisner admits. "We had a great idea, and it got away from us a little bit."

Last week, the 65-year-old real estate agent had his son record video as he attempted to use a blow torch to light a bowl of Honey Nut Cheerios on fire. Instead, the box went up in flames, and laughter can be heard from behind the camera as the fire spread to the grass before Leisner and his crew fled.

"I was trying to light them as they came out of the box," Leisner explained. "It ended up, a bowlful caught on fire -- and you know the rest."

Since his son posted the video on YouTube earlier this week, Leisner's flaming failure has gone viral -- but it brought infamy rather than fame. In fact, it cost him his position at Greater Midwest Realty in Blaine and the Golden Valley Police Department is investigating whether he should be charged with a crime like arson or destruction of property.

Still, Leisner said there is more to his protest than meets the eye.

"When I run into someone, their looks are deceiving," he said. "I want to hear what they have to say, and sometimes, I'm pleasantly surprised. So, we'll see."

Leisner posted several other anti-gay videos online, but YouTube has taken them all down.

FOX 9 News contacted General Mills on this story, but the company declined to comment.

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