(OMAHA, Neb.) – A member of the notorious Phelps family of Topeka, Kansas was arrested today in Nebraska, for suspicion of contributing to the delinquency of a minor. The Phelps operated the virus-ridden Website godhatesfags.com and the Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka.
Shirley Phelps-Roper was taken into custody for allowing her 8-year-old son to stomp on an American flag. Hundreds of people packed Bellevue streets Tuesday morning to pay tribute to a firefighter and soldier.
The anti-gay group pickets military funerals and memorial services with the intentional purpose of disturbing the mourning families trying to lay their loved ones to rest.
It is hard to believe, but it is true, and it is possibly one of the single most shocking occurrences in our country.
The group has visited Oregon on more than one occasion, Peaceful Defenders Louder Than Unwelcome Hate Group (VIDEO) but their visibility seems to be dipping in recent months.
In today’s event, the Phelps group was on hand to picket a service for Specialist Bill Bailey who was serving in the National Guard in Iraq when he was killed by a roadside bomb.
According to an article in the Topeka Capitol Journal, Police said the group to which Phelps-Roper belongs had a permit to protest 300 feet from Spc. Bailey’s funeral.
Bellevue Officer Joe Gray, who made the arrest, says Nebraska law states that it is a Class 3 misdemeanor when a person “intentionally casts contempt or ridicule upon a flag by mutilating, defacing, defiling, burning or trampling upon such flag.” The law was passed in 1977.
He told the newspaper, “It appears the adults weren’t stepping on the flag because they knew it was a violation of the law. But they allowed the children to go ahead and do that.”
The actions of the hate group exceed obscenity by almost any standard, but the woman who was arrested, Phelps-Roper, says she believes she has the right to use the flag as a symbol, and said Nebraska’s law is outdated.
She says their group is going to challenge that statute, and says it statue should have been repealed.
The Nebraska police officer seems almost apologetic in this statement, Gray said the arrest wasn’t personal and has nothing to do with his beliefs. He said he’s simply doing his job.
“It’s state law, so we were enforcing the laws of Nebraska,” he told the Capitol Journal in Topeka.
The hate group’s actions extend far beyond the realm of free speech. The preach pure hate and they set out to damage the emotional well being of mothers, fathers, husbands, wives and children as they scream about how, “God is killing these soldiers because our country is in moral decay.”
They actually say that God is killing the Americans in Iraq and Afghanistan because our country condones homosexuality. The most popular theory is that they perform the most outrageous acts hoping to receive an injury that they can turn around and wage a civil rights violation lawsuit over.
The family travels long distances to hassle families. But their somewhat greasy appearance was completely backed down from attending the service for Tommy Tucker last summer. Crowds gathered to meet them, and one member said no violent act occurred because they knew not to show up.
These people are more than bad, their actions are potentially damaging for grieving families, and it is great to learn that one of them was finally arrested for abusing a child, which they frequently bring to their protests to use as a shield that ensures their own protection.
I always get emails from the Phelps clan when I write these stories, and I have been called names you would never believe. Oddly, when you face an opponent as wrong and rotten as this group, the abusive language almost takes on a soothing quality, probably because it is always most important, as the “Rage Against the Machine” song tells us to “Know your enemy,” and if there ever was an enemy of the decency in the world, it is the congregation of the Topeka, Kansas Westboro Baptist Church.