Fred Phelps is dying. Peacefully, I might add since he’s in hospice care. Many of my Facebook friends here in Kansas have been pretty vocal that they hope he suffers (I’ve only cracked one joke. I hope his funeral is picketed). Me, personally, I think he’s suffered enough.
For those of you not familiar with Fred Phelps, he’s a hatemonger mainstay right here in the heartland. The monster that is Westboro Baptist Church is his creation. It’s the church that thinks it’s cool to picket military funerals, concerts and anything else that they can protest (they even have a published schedule on the internet that I refuse to link to because I will not promote their activities). The headline on their website actually says, “God Hates Fags,” which I think is completely despicable. Of course, the site also says that God hates Islam, the media, the world and that Jews killed Jesus so you have to take the gay-hatred thing with a grain of salt. Apparently, these people hate just about everybody and everything.
Hate takes a lot of energy. It takes a great deal of anger and commitment over the years to create an organization based on the passionate dislike of others. To cultivate an environment where a group of people think it’s normal and acceptable behavior to declare that hatred out loud in a public arena. I’ve often wondered what they do to some of these young kids that I’ve seen on protesting. What do they tell them to make them think that the Golden Rule is wrong- that we should never treat others as we want to be treated? Whatever the message it must be powerful, because the things the church members (and I use this loosely because I have a hard time using the word “church” with these people) say and do are wrong on so many levels.
So, Fred Phelps. I think you’ve suffered enough. I think you’ve been suffering your entire life. So filled with hatred, vile thoughts and disgust that you’ve already missed out on any of the joy life could have brought you. I’m almost 100% certain that you’ve spent over 50 years so filled with abhorrence that you’ve had a miserable existence. One you’ve deserved and if there is an after-life, you’ve secured your place.
Right now as you lay dying, I hope there’s a massive picket line right outside those pearly gates. There aren’t signs filled with slurs, just all the people you’ve hurt over the years blocking your way to get into heaven. You see Fred Phelps, there’s no place for you there. Yours is in hell.