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Inveniemus aut augemus!
Instead of showing up to counter-protest them, and risking a confrontation (again, what they may be exactly hoping for), take the tour at Graceland. Walk right past them and ignore the filth they spew while spending your money to support a great cause/attraction in the Mid-South. If you want to fight back, use your wallet instead of any weapons that could cause hurt or worse. Take the tour and don't even acknowledge their presence. They want people looking in their direction.
As a native of Topeka, KS, who lived in the same zip code as WBC, and went to Topeka West High with one of Fred's daughters (who was a very pleasant, amicable person away from the compound on Huntoon Avenue), and someone whose home church (Faith Lutheran, 17th & Gage) was protested as a gay church regularly by WBC, I have lived through a lot of the so-called "reverend" Fred's antics over the years.
I, too, doubt highly as to whether or not they'll show. They have made a habit in several years of announcing their presence, and then conveniently not showing. (About 10 years ago in Memphis when Matthew Shepherd's mother was supposed to speak, if memory serves.)
The absolute BEST thing to do - IF they show - would be to make sure not one person shows up to notice them except for the police/sheriff department. They are a family of lawyers who are just begging for someone to attack them for litigious purposes. Do not give them a reason to continue. Please ignore them and let their spotlight wither and die. No martyrdom for Fred. No reason to continue if the attention is withdrawn. Let them blather with all their hatred to be recognized for what they truly are. Fred is nothing but a bully and is NO ambassador for Christ, period. Anyone who could/would actively terrorize his family with abuse and pain, drive members of his family away from home and the Christian faith is an abomination against the love of God.
Nate Phelps speaks
The pressure that environmentalists put on oil companies is the same pressure the consumers of that oil should put on oil companies: if you are going to make your money by drilling the oil and selling it to consumers, you should make certain that you are able to protect the environment - both the environment that you are pumping it from and through - from either small leaks or gigantic catastrophes. According to reports, BP and the people involved in making sure the rigs pumping the oil are safe were not concerned with either situation, and 11 people died as a result.
The people to blame here are not the environmentalists for putting pressure on oil companies, thereby supposedly causing us to remain entrenched in Arab oil. The only people responsible for that are Americans. Car, truck, semi, SUV driving Americans. In short: you and me. Every time we turn the key to the vehicle we are driving to get to where we want to go right now (we're Americans, remember?) we are contributing to global warming and/or climate change. The only time things will ease up in the Middle East is when - after much change in technology and habits come about and the American driving public re-thinks its own driving and fuel habits - the price of oil drops to 10 cents a barrel because it is no longer needed or wanted. Blaming environmentalists for the problem when you contribute to it every time is going the very wrong direction. Want to know where the problem lies? Look in the mirror... the rearview mirror.
As a member of the public, I want "shit" like solar power and windmills. It is past time to have more of them, and - more importantly - to start thinking more about them and systems like them. Well past time, indeed. Our addiction to foreign oil must end and soon. I do not want to have fossil fuels running things. We can and should be doing better than "drill baby drill" at this or any point in our future. Oil's future is limited. Solar and wind is not.
By Micaela Watts
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