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Measure Man
03-20-2014, 04:47 PM
Good riddance!


Fred Phelps -- the founding pastor of a Kansas church known for its virulently anti-gay protests at public events, including military funerals -- has died, the church said Thursday.

The 84-year-old died Wednesday, according to the church's statement.

Phelps founded Westboro Baptist Church of Topeka, Kansas, in 1955 and molded it in his fire-and-brimstone image. Many members of the small congregation are related to Phelps through blood or marriage.

According to the church's website, it has picketed more than 53,000 events, ranging from Lady Gaga concerts to funerals for slain U.S. soldiers. Typically, a dozen or so church members -- including small children -- will brandish signs that say "God Hates Fags" and "Thank God for Dead Soldiers."

Under Phelps' leadership, Westboro members have preached that every calamity, from natural disasters to the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, is God's punishment for the country's acceptance of homosexuality. Phelps had advocated for gays and lesbians to be put to death.

Anti-gay preacher once fought for civil rights

In 2013, more than 367,000 petitioners called on the White House to legally recognize Westboro Baptist Church as a hate group. The White House called Westboro's protests "reprehensible" but said that "as a matter of practice, the federal government doesn't maintain a list of hate groups."

In 2011, the Supreme Court upheld Westboro's right to picket military funerals on free speech grounds. Congress and several states, though, have passed laws aimed at keeping church members at a distance from funerals.

Nathan Phelps, Phelps' estranged son, posted a Facebook message March 15 saying that his father had been excommunicated from the church. Later, though, Nathan Phelps said it was "unclear" whether his father had been expelled from Westboro.

readmore: http://www.cnn.com/2014/03/20/us/westboro-church-founder-dead/index.html

TJMAC77SP
03-20-2014, 05:09 PM
True Karma would be a massive demonstration at his funeral with all sorts of vile signs on display.....................................

technomage1
03-20-2014, 05:14 PM
True Karma would be a massive demonstration at his funeral with all sorts of vile signs on display.....................................

I thought the same thing. We really ought to picket his funeral as see how they like it when the shoe is on the other foot.

Measure Man
03-20-2014, 06:32 PM
I thought the same thing. We really ought to picket his funeral as see how they like it when the shoe is on the other foot.

I'm thinking a big gay BBQ.

AJBIGJ
03-20-2014, 06:48 PM
And no one cries...

Chief_KO
03-20-2014, 06:50 PM
Hey Fred, do you "feel the burn?"

fog
03-20-2014, 07:48 PM
We attended a funeral in 2007 for a soldier killed in action (name and location intentionally left out) and hate to say I thought if these folks were picketing, I would try to pick a lighter on the floorboard that "accidentally" fell and I would "accidentally" hit them when the car swerved. Not proud of these thoughts, but it is the truth.

Should we celebrate his death? I don't know. Part of me wishes he rots in hell. If there is a God, and I believe there is, maybe it is up to him to decide.

Maybe we should just enjoy the silence his death brings.

garhkal
03-21-2014, 05:27 AM
Na.. picket the heck out of his funeral.

Measure Man
03-21-2014, 05:42 AM
Heard his daughter on the radio that there will be no service, no funeral, no eulogy, no nothing...

AJBIGJ
03-21-2014, 11:33 AM
Heard his daughter on the radio that there will be no service, no funeral, no eulogy, no nothing...

I imagine that's to avoid what would inevitable result, true or not!

Greg
03-21-2014, 02:45 PM
Why? Why bother? Why bring more attention?

Rusty Jones
03-21-2014, 03:42 PM
There was actually an article I saw on my facebook newsfeed (I didn't read it), but the title indicated that Fred Phelp's son was saying that his father was actually excommunicated from WBC because he started to back off on the anti-gay thing a bit.

Is the world a better place without Fred Phelps? Not really... funerals of dead troops will still be protested by WBC long after he's gone.

LogDog
03-21-2014, 06:33 PM
Like most people, I found Fred Phepls and his nutty gang known as the Westboro Baptist Church disgusting to picket at anyone's funeral. However, I disagree that anyone should picket at his funeral, memorial, or at his grave. The best way is simply to ignore his death and show his followers they had no effect on changing anyone's mind by their demonstrations.

TJMAC77SP
03-21-2014, 07:09 PM
I suppose ignoring his death is one choice.

Or, conversely...................

3751

Chief_KO
03-21-2014, 10:19 PM
I received the following email from the Patriot Guard Riders (I am a member, though not very active):

Patriot Guard,

Let’s first remember our Nation’s true Heroes. Those brave men and women of our military and first responders who gave their life so that we may enjoy the freedom to express our differences. While it is hard to find anything good to say about his views or actions, we do give our condolences to his family during what must be a painful time for them. We take no joy in the sickness and death of any man. We do not celebrate the death of Fred Phelps. Patriot Guard Riders hope that Mr. Phelps somehow found the peace that seemed to elude him in life.

It is true that the PGR grew out of a response to protests at funerals. That's a fair statement. However, that was 2005 and the PGR quickly learned that there was something powerful in a gathering of Americans who would simply stand and hold flags and let a family know that they were not alone. That powerful thing became our mission.

We are neither a protest nor a counter protest group. We honor fallen Heroes and those who have honorably served this free America. The presence or absence of a protest does not alter that mission. If it not for this man and his family we might not have heeded the call to regularly honor the sacrifices of our nation’s true heroes and their families. Nor would we have come to know the brother/sisterhood that has become the Patriot Guard Riders.

TJMAC77SP
03-22-2014, 02:13 AM
I received the following email from the Patriot Guard Riders (I am a member, though not very active):

Patriot Guard,

Let’s first remember our Nation’s true Heroes. Those brave men and women of our military and first responders who gave their life so that we may enjoy the freedom to express our differences. While it is hard to find anything good to say about his views or actions, we do give our condolences to his family during what must be a painful time for them. We take no joy in the sickness and death of any man. We do not celebrate the death of Fred Phelps. Patriot Guard Riders hope that Mr. Phelps somehow found the peace that seemed to elude him in life.

It is true that the PGR grew out of a response to protests at funerals. That's a fair statement. However, that was 2005 and the PGR quickly learned that there was something powerful in a gathering of Americans who would simply stand and hold flags and let a family know that they were not alone. That powerful thing became our mission.

We are neither a protest nor a counter protest group. We honor fallen Heroes and those who have honorably served this free America. The presence or absence of a protest does not alter that mission. If it not for this man and his family we might not have heeded the call to regularly honor the sacrifices of our nation’s true heroes and their families. Nor would we have come to know the brother/sisterhood that has become the Patriot Guard Riders.

Interesting take on the ultimate contribution the Delta Bravo had on the country and its military.

Absinthe Anecdote
03-25-2014, 02:46 PM
Fred Phelps & the WBC protests were just a scam to entice a city or a municipality into violating their 1st amendment rights so they could file a lawsuit and reap settlement money.

All the people involved with the WBC are lawyers and it is actually a very small group of people. Who knows if they actually believed that crap they preached, I kind of doubt it.

It was engineered to be provocative and offensive for the sole purpose of baiting a state or local government into violating their civil rights.

I would use a word like con artist or scammer to describe Phelps before I would use a word like bigot. He might have been both, but the primary motivator was lawsuit money and not religious beliefs.

DocBones
03-25-2014, 03:42 PM
How many times did they win a 1st amendment case?

How many places did they go to, to do their vile picketing? How much was spent to get to those places, get hotel rooms (if needed), and to return from? Meals, on the road? How much was spent on the signage? How much was spent to get permits to do their protesting?

How many of the WBCers actually had jobs, since they spent a lot of time on the road?

As a side note, who did Freddie's hair?

DocBones
03-25-2014, 04:16 PM
From what I have read, SCOTUS handed down a victory for the legality of doing what Freddy and his Haters do. They got something around $43000. I couldn't find any more cases online, but my search was a short one.

As to the reason for doing what they do, y'all may want to look at this:

http://www.godhatesfags.com/faq.html

This is not a slur, by any means, on my part. These are the FAQs, as published by the Westboro Baptist Church.