Monday, March 24, 2014

Westboro Baptist Church Founder's Death Brings Out Class Acts

You probably heard that Fred Phelps, the founder of the Westboro Baptist Church died last week.  
Counter-protesters to the Westboro Baptist Church
offer a message of sympathy to the "religious" cult
 over the weekend.  

You probably also know the hideous group from their "God Hates Fags" signs and whatnot as they do their noisy, loathesome protests at military funeral, rock concerts, memorial services for gay people, where ever they can spread their, um, whatever you call it.

Their hate hurt, no doubt. But ultimately, nobody ever takes this group seriously, and the fun ways people have found to mock them are truly inspired, and always good for a laugh.

A lot of people have pointed out that Westboro has actually helped to advance the gay rights movement, because, fairly or not, it makes gay rights opponents look backwards, and a little hateful and a little dumb.

Plus the counterprotests tend to bring people together in solidarity.

I'm not dancing on Fred Phelps' grave, but I'm afraid I haven't been nearly as classy as some people in responding to his death, as you can tell by reading this blog post.

But I have to congratulate the classy ones, who show us how it's done.

Exhibit A is Judy Shepard.

Fred Phelps and Westboro first came to prominence when they protested at the funeral of Judy and Dennis Shepard's son's 1998 funeral in Wyoming.  The son, Matthew Shepard, was murdered in an anti-gay hate crime.

Judy Shepard was asked to comment on Phelps' passing last week. This is her perfect response:  "Regarding the passing of Fred helps, Dennis and I know how solemn these moments are for anyone who loses a loved one......Out of respect for all people and our desire to erase hate, we've decided not to comment further."

In Kansas City, Westboro held its first protest since Phelps' death outside a concert by the singer Lorde, said television station KSHB. 

As usual, a group of counter-protesters showed up. And in keeping with the classy response to the sad "religious" cult, the counter protesters held a big banner and aimed it in Westboro's direction. The banner said "Sorry For Your Loss."

The biggest loss for the Westboro group, and maybe our gain, is the fact they've drowned themselves in hate, which somehow transferred some measure of love to other groups.

The response by Westboro to the "Sorry For Your Loss" banner demonstrates how badly the sad group has lost touch with humanity.

Looking over at that Sorry For Your Loss banner, Westboro member Steve Drain said,  "I don't even know what they're saying."

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