You may have heard of a group of extremists called the Westboro Baptist Church. These are folks that picket and protest at military funerals. Their actions are simply deplorable. Follow their logical to a very illogical end. They say that soldiers are dying because God is angry with our tolerance of homosexuality in this country. Signs are displayed at these funerals that say "God loves dead soldiers" or "God hates fags." I am unable to make the leap from end to end because this is not a war for or against homosexuality. Until recently, the military did not openly support homosexuality.
Just this very morning the Supreme Court upheld a ruling that their protests are protected speech. This is where I have a problem. Truth be told, I have TONS of problems with this. Let's look at all that is wrong here and maybe find possible solutions.
- The only reason these folks have the ability to speak their minds freely is because our military and government has fought and died over and again to protect and sustain the values of United States of America. Let them live under an oppressive rule that censors them like Iran or China... or North Korea, Libya, Saddam Hussein's version of Iraq, Taliban led Afghanistan, Pakistan and countless other countries.
- Is it not the constitutionally protected right of the family to bury their military family members based on their religious preference and having Westboro wackos present interrupts that?
- Can I use my freedom of speech to be rude and inflammatory to strangers and insult them? Can I use that freedom to degrade someone else? That impinges on their freedoms. Does Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness sound familiar?
- If it's untrue, that's the end of the line. If I speak it, it's slander. If I print it, it's libel. They believe it to be true. That is the magic of faith. The recipients of their message may believe differently and should not have their moment of morning subjugated by overbearing people who are louder.
I don't believe that just because they are 1,000 feet from the building it is ok. I do not believe that unrefined speech is ok because the topics are matters of public import. Chief Justice Roberts, you have failed today in this decision. Justice Alito, on the other hand, had a wonderful sentiment, "In order to have a society in which public issues can be openly and vigorously debated it is not necessary to allow the brutalization of innocent victim.
That brings me to another point. If these cuckoo birds from the Westboro Baptist Church, which incidentally is not connected to any other Baptist Church and does not fall in line with Baptist leadership and is comprised of mostly one extremely large family, want to be mad at the military member, so be it. It's stupid and uncalled for and I don't get it, but fine. At what point did the grieving family earn these attacks?
Finally, let's look at choice. I speak about choice often. I speak about accountability for one's own actions as well. People choose to leave their home countries and nations of origin every day for greener pastures and better opportunities. Never is it people leaving from here. When is the last time a Connecticut family said, "We just can't take this anymore, let's risk our lives to sail to England." People literally do anything to get here or die trying. We must be doing something right. We are not without our problems, I get it, but people from all over the world come here to get their lives on track. We can come here or go elsewhere.
With that said, Westboro Baptist Church, its leaders and its members, here is a message to you. If America is angering God and you don't wanna be caught up in the wrath... feel free to SHUT UP AND GET THE FUCK OUT!