Thursday, August 04, 2005

Worshipping Hate

This Just In -- God Hates Everybody

That’s right. God hates everybody. Including you. Maybe even especially you.

At least, according to Pastor Fred Phelps. You see, kids, reverend Phelps is perhaps one of the most extreme opponents of gay rights in the United States. He is also Pastor for Westboro Baptist Church, a rather charming group of people who maintain a number of websites, including www.godhatesamerica.com and www.godhatesfags.com.
Of course, this won’t be the first funeral protest for Phelps. In 1998 he forced his way into the public consciousness by protesting at the funeral Matthew Shepard, a gay University of Wyoming student who was beaten to death. His church has also picketed at the funerals of those who have died of AIDS.

Most recently, Phelps has promised to picket the funeral of Corporal Jamie French. French, 19, an Idaho native and a former cheerleader. Phelps feels little shame for his actions, calling her, “An all-American girl from a society of all-American heretics.”

Phelps has also claimed that, “Our attitude toward what's happening with the war is the Lord is punishing this evil nation for abandoning all moral imperatives that are worth a dime." Which, to judge from his actions, is basically denying the right of hateful, homophobic gay-bashers to beat homosexuals to death on the street. Charming. Absolutely charming.

“While we respect Mr. Phelps' right to protest, we would hope that he would respect the family and friends of this young person by not disrupting the memorial,” said Caldwell, Iowa police chief Bob Sobba.

Fat chance. The word “respect” has no meaning to people like Phelps. Nor do the words “shame”, “decency”, or “love” have any meaning.

Take, for example, this excerpt from his website: “[Westboro Community Church] rejoices every time the Lord God in His vengeance kills or maims an American soldier with an Improvised Explosive Device (IED). "The righteous shall rejoice when he seeth the vengeance: he shall wash his feet in the blood of the wicked" (Ps. 58:10).”
Phelps has rarely declined an opportunity to cry about the “hateful words and actions” directed at his church – including a bomb attack in 1999. But instead of understanding how he has brought hatred and violence upon himself, how does he choose to react? That’s right, with more hatred.

“When you fill the army with fags and dykes and spit in the face of God, you have sown the wind, and shall reap the whirlwind.”

Of course, hatred of this intensity is ‘spit in the face of god’, but don’t ever put that past Phelps. God makes an awfully convenient excuse for people such as this.
Unfortunately, it isn’t only gays and lesbians that face the wrath of Phelps’ hatred. His website also proclaims that Reggie White is in hell (because “he displays none of the traits of the “heroes of faith”, as they are listed in Hebrews 11) and Ronald Reagan is in hell (because “Men honor him”, as well as some swill regarding Rock Hudson… if you read it, you’ll be as confused as I am).

Of course, websites like www.godhatesamerica.com and www.godhatesfags.com (which proclaims “thank god for the London subway bombings!”) are full of nothing but lies and excuses. The truth is another matter entirely.

The truth about men such as Phelps is truly dark. The truth is that people such as Phelps claim to worship the Judeo-Christian god. But that claim isn’t the truth. Because the truth is that men such as Phelps worship at the altar of hate. They worship hate, because they understand nothing else.

If that isn’t idolatry, I don’t know what is. But there is one thing that I do know: whatever this hate-filled little weasel thinks is waiting for him in the next life, it isn’t what he thinks he is.

Because people like Phelps are filled with too much hate for heaven.

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