Thursday, January 24, 2008

I hereby turn my back, AKA the last Fred Phelps post you'll get from me

By Diane Silver

Once again the Phelps family and their Westboro Baptist Church are going to picket a high profile funeral. (This time of actor Heath Ledger.) Once again people are outraged by what the Phelps family says.

This scene has been played out over and over and over and over again, and it will keep being played out until people do the only thing you can do when children throw a tantrum -- ignore them.

Even though every Phelps outrage brings a flood of visitors to this blog, I hereby declare my independence from that sad, sad family.

To my visitors wondering about the Phelps and how to stop them: Nothing WILL stop them, but you can turn your collective backs. When I liken the Phelps to children throwing a tantrum, I'm not kidding.

I live close to the Phelps in Kansas and have watched them for two decades. They -- and Fred especially -- are not only rage-a-holics, but they thrive on attention. Their entire goal is to get you to drop everything and look at them.

It's time to stop letting the Phelps win.

Join me. Meet the Phelps with turned backs and silence.

And if you really must learn more about them, look here. To see a debate between a Phelps family member, me and others, look here.


KJ said...

Touche, Diane. Consider my back turned.


Heidijayhawk said...

back has been turned for awhile. we attend st. davids. the more attention they have, the worse they are. amen sista!

Anonymous said...
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wekan said...

The Phelps have made me feel confident that if I do indeed end up in hell, I will be in great company.

Diane Silver said...

A comment was made earlier, and then deleted by the author, and silly me... I want to respond to that comment because I think it makes an important point. The gist of it was that we can't ignore the Phelps anymore than we could ignore Hitler, that in fact, you can't turn your back on fascists and expect them to go away. (Let me know, if I got that comment wrong.)

I agree completely with that. You can't ignore fascists and other frightening folk, just because they are frightening and uncomfortable to look at.

As I see it, we have to shine the spotlight on people like the Phelps. On the other hand, do we constantly have to give them a megaphone?

I think it's important for information about this group to be out there. I've written about the Phelps for years. If people want information on them, they need only search for "Fred Phelps" or "Westboro Baptist Church" on this blog. And to facilitate that, I'll soon post a permanent link to posts about them on my sidebar column.

But personally, I've simply had enough. The sad truth is that the Phelps -- for whatever reason -- are damaged people. They are adults acting as children throwing a tantrum. And like children, they will escalate as long as you give them attention. I simply won't do that anymore.

There may be a time when I write about them again, but certainly for today and the future I can see, I'm done.

I wish help for the Phelps; I wish hope for their children; I wish that they will someday learn that God is not an abusive father.