Worth a Second Look
This story just infuriates me. There are so many things that are just wrong with these people. There is an old curse that applies to them. They should lose all of their teeth except one, and that remaining tooth should have a toothache.
Actually my real wish is more graphic but…
5 States Consider Bans On Protests at Funerals
Proposals Aimed at Anti-Gay Demonstrations
By Kari Lydersen
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, January 30, 2006; Page A09
CHICAGO — At least five Midwestern states are considering legislation to ban protests at funerals in response to demonstrations by the Rev. Fred Phelpsand members of his Topeka, Kan.-based Westboro Baptist Church, who have been protesting at funerals of Iraq war casualties because they say the deaths are God’s punishment for U.S. tolerance toward gays.
Though the soldiers were not gay, the protesters say the deaths, as well as Hurricane Katrina, recent mining disasters and other tragedies are God’s signs of displeasure. They also protested at the memorial service for the 12 West Virginia miners who died in the Sago Mine.
“The families weren’t able to bury their loved ones in peace,” said Kansas state Sen. Jean Schodorf, who has proposed legislation. “We felt pretty strongly that we needed to do something about it.”
Kansas already has a law banning demonstrations at funerals, but Schodorf said the existing law is vague and hard to enforce. The proposed bill would keep protesters 300 feet away from any funeral or memorial service and ban demonstrations within one hour before or two hours after a service.
Legislators in Illinois, Indiana, Missouri and Oklahoma are looking at similar bills. Proposed legislation in Indiana would keep protesters 500 feet from funerals, and make a violation a felony punishable by a three-year prison term and a $10,000 fine.
State Sen. Anita Bowser said she thinks the demonstrators are hoping to provoke a physical attack so they can file a lawsuit.
“These people are not gainfully employed, so they’re waiting for someone to do battle with them so they can go to court and win,” said Bowser. “They want a big liability case to pursue. I don’t think they actually give a diddly wink about the arguments they’re making, but they’re clever individuals trying to make a fast buck.”
Shirley Phelps-Roper, Phelps’s daughter and an attorney for the church, said if legislation passes, the group will challenge it in court. “Whatever they do would be unconstitutional,” she said. “These aren’t private funerals; these are patriotic pep rallies. Our goal is to call America an abomination, to help the nation connect the dots. You turn this nation over to the fags and our soldiers come home in body bags.”
Fortunately there are many different people working to stop these jackasses. One of these groups is called the Patriot Guard.
Patriot Guard Riders Mission Statement
The Patriot Guard Riders is a diverse amalgamation of riders from across the nation. We have one thing in common besides motorcycles. We have an unwavering respect for those who risk their very lives for Americaâ€™s freedom and security. If you share this respect, please join us.
We donâ€™t care what you ride, what your political views are, or whether youâ€™re a “hawk” or a “dove”. It is not a requirement that you be a veteran. It doesn’t matter where youâ€™re from or what your income is. You donâ€™t even have to ride. The only prerequisite is Respect.
Our main mission is to attend the funeral services of fallen American heroes as invited guests of the family. Each mission we undertake has two basic objectives.
1. Show our sincere respect for our fallen heroes, their families, and their communities.
2. Shield the mourning family and friends from interruptions created by any protestor or group of protestors.
We accomplish the latter through strictly legal and non-violent means.