Another mass shooting and our nation once again mourns. This one was the worst because of all the little children murdered in cold blood. And right on schedule, before the grieving community can even bury their dead comes the usual arguments from both sides. We need more gun control! We need prayer back in schools! It's the violent movies! The breakdown in culture! Bad parents! The teachers should be armed! All guns should be destroyed.
So, what could POSSIBLY be worse than the political posturing during this time of grief? Well, the Westboro Baptist Church has decided to enter the fray. While parents are crying over their babies, Fred Phelps will be holding up his "God Hates Fags" signs, as if God would allow innocent children to be gunned down because there are gay people in the world. And to add to the craziness, the KKK will be counterprotesting the Westboro group. Did you ever think you'd side with the KKK on anything?
What media group is reporting this story? The Huffington Post. That makes it worse.
I know that the Westboro group has the right to do this. The Supreme Court ruled in their favor on this very issue. Here's what I want to know: Why is the Klan of all groups the only one standing up to them? Why does the Christian community not denounce them? You know why the media loves to cover this evil group of cretins? Because they call themselves the "Westboro Baptist Church." If they called themselves the "Friends and Family of Fred Phelps Whacko Hate Club" - which is what they are - nobody would pay them any attention. But the media just LOVES to publicize this group and seethe in righteous indignation because they can be assured of general public agreement (anybody out there think it's good to protest a soldier's funeral?) while painting Christians as being evil and intolerant. And bonus points for being right!
As a Baptist myself, I find is grossly offensive that this group calls itself a Baptist Church. They are not affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention. Nor are they affiliated with the Baptist World Alliance or any other recognized church. They are "Independent." Apparently, any whacko group can CALL itself a Baptist church whether they are or not. But when the average low information voter sees the name "Westboro Baptist Church" in the headlines, they assume it's a real church. And why wouldn't they? I haven't heard the SBC refudiate their protests, have you?
Somebody in authority needs to make it clear to the public that Christians do not agree with the "God Hates Fags" loonies. If we can't stop them from using the name "Baptist," we can at least make it clear that real Baptists think they're wrong. God loves everybody. God loves dead soldiers. God loves gay people. God even loves Fred Phelps, although I don't think He is really happy with him right now.
And God certainly loves these precious children that we're all mourning today.