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Rev Fred Phelps

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OPINION
October 16, 2003
Re "Intolerance Chiseled in Stone Hits City Hard," Oct. 12: I'm pleased that the good Rev. Fred Phelps has made it his mission to torment the memory of gay murder victim Matthew Shepard. His hateful, venomous ramblings illustrate how bigotry is a form of mental illness, and those suffering from it are in dire need of psychiatric help. Of course, in order to receive help, one has to first acknowledge that he has a problem. Somehow I feel that Phelps is too far gone to be redeemed. Blake Simpson Joshua Tree
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OPINION
November 6, 2003
Re "Let Matthew Shepard Rest," Nov. 3: I am appalled that any person, let alone a pastor of the Christian church, should feel so much hate regarding someone not conforming to his interpretation of the Bible. He quotes the Book of Leviticus in the Old Testament, but he should keep in mind when and by whom that book was written. How does he know where Matthew's spirit has gone? And what happened to "judge not that ye be not judged"? It is this type of fanatical hatred that fuels violence in our world.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 19, 2001
Re "Santana Graduates Remember Classmates," June 15: I was touched by the photo of Mari Gordon-Rayborn sitting among the graduates waiting to accept her son's degree. The students at this school have been changed forever. The innocence of youth was erased on March 5. A day of celebration, of excitement, of looking forward, was marred by the Rev. Fred Phelps and his gang of self-proclaimed saviors. As a gay man, I have followed his petty tirades and disruptions of funerals, commitment ceremonies and the like.
OPINION
October 16, 2003
Re "Intolerance Chiseled in Stone Hits City Hard," Oct. 12: I'm pleased that the good Rev. Fred Phelps has made it his mission to torment the memory of gay murder victim Matthew Shepard. His hateful, venomous ramblings illustrate how bigotry is a form of mental illness, and those suffering from it are in dire need of psychiatric help. Of course, in order to receive help, one has to first acknowledge that he has a problem. Somehow I feel that Phelps is too far gone to be redeemed. Blake Simpson Joshua Tree
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 24, 2000
Perhaps Shawn Hubler ("Why Was My Church on the Side of the Homophobes?" March 20) needs to realize that the Catholic Church's energy and donations to preserve the institution of marriage between man and woman (a union that produced her life and that of her gay friend David) is just as legitimate as the small, but vocal, homosexual movement's contributions to fight it. Prop. 22 won an amazing 61% majority, proving that people of all beliefs will no longer sit back and allow the covenant of marriage to be distorted to accommodate the whim of those who demand to have it their way. LINDA DAVILA Cerritos Hubler's column reminded me that there are still religious people who speak up for dignity, fairness and justice.
OPINION
November 6, 2003
Re "Let Matthew Shepard Rest," Nov. 3: I am appalled that any person, let alone a pastor of the Christian church, should feel so much hate regarding someone not conforming to his interpretation of the Bible. He quotes the Book of Leviticus in the Old Testament, but he should keep in mind when and by whom that book was written. How does he know where Matthew's spirit has gone? And what happened to "judge not that ye be not judged"? It is this type of fanatical hatred that fuels violence in our world.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 24, 1994
Re "Law on Disrupting Worship Draws Fire," Sept. 15: As the moderator and founder of the Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches, the largest organization touching gays and lesbians in the world, I read with interest the article concerning the new law that doubles the penalty for disrupting a church service. I am a gay Christian who is delighted with the action of our Legislature. I'm just at a loss as to why the Rev. Lou Sheldon of the Traditional Values Coalition claims this will "level the playing field," as though fundamental Christian churches have been the only groups targeted by protesters in California.
NEWS
November 16, 1999 | STEPHEN BRAUN, TIMES STAFF WRITER
From his perch on a cracked sidewalk, the Rev. Fred Phelps looked upon his handiwork and found it was good. The Kansas preacher brought his traveling theater of hate here for two days last month to flay a most unlikely sinner: Christian evangelist Jerry Falwell. Burly white supremacists from Texas bellowed at Falwell from sloping lawns across the street. Phelps' daughters trilled "What a Friend We Have in Jesus" in sweet, ethereal voices.
NATIONAL
January 30, 2006 | From Times Wire Reports
At least five Midwestern states are considering legislation to ban protests at funerals in response to demonstrations by the Rev. Fred Phelps and members of his Westboro Baptist Church, based in Topeka, Kan. The church has been protesting at the funerals of soldiers killed in the Iraq war because they say the deaths are God's punishment for U.S. tolerance toward gays.
NATIONAL
March 9, 2006 | From Times Wire Reports
A small church known for its anti-gay protests said it would still picket on the day of soldiers' funerals but wouldn't violate new state laws that limit when and where such demonstrations take place. "We obey the law," said Shirley Phelps-Roper, a lawyer and member of Westboro Baptist Church of Topeka, a fundamentalist congregation headed by her father, the Rev. Fred Phelps.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 19, 2001
Re "Santana Graduates Remember Classmates," June 15: I was touched by the photo of Mari Gordon-Rayborn sitting among the graduates waiting to accept her son's degree. The students at this school have been changed forever. The innocence of youth was erased on March 5. A day of celebration, of excitement, of looking forward, was marred by the Rev. Fred Phelps and his gang of self-proclaimed saviors. As a gay man, I have followed his petty tirades and disruptions of funerals, commitment ceremonies and the like.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 24, 2000
Perhaps Shawn Hubler ("Why Was My Church on the Side of the Homophobes?" March 20) needs to realize that the Catholic Church's energy and donations to preserve the institution of marriage between man and woman (a union that produced her life and that of her gay friend David) is just as legitimate as the small, but vocal, homosexual movement's contributions to fight it. Prop. 22 won an amazing 61% majority, proving that people of all beliefs will no longer sit back and allow the covenant of marriage to be distorted to accommodate the whim of those who demand to have it their way. LINDA DAVILA Cerritos Hubler's column reminded me that there are still religious people who speak up for dignity, fairness and justice.
NEWS
November 16, 1999 | STEPHEN BRAUN, TIMES STAFF WRITER
From his perch on a cracked sidewalk, the Rev. Fred Phelps looked upon his handiwork and found it was good. The Kansas preacher brought his traveling theater of hate here for two days last month to flay a most unlikely sinner: Christian evangelist Jerry Falwell. Burly white supremacists from Texas bellowed at Falwell from sloping lawns across the street. Phelps' daughters trilled "What a Friend We Have in Jesus" in sweet, ethereal voices.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 24, 1994
Re "Law on Disrupting Worship Draws Fire," Sept. 15: As the moderator and founder of the Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches, the largest organization touching gays and lesbians in the world, I read with interest the article concerning the new law that doubles the penalty for disrupting a church service. I am a gay Christian who is delighted with the action of our Legislature. I'm just at a loss as to why the Rev. Lou Sheldon of the Traditional Values Coalition claims this will "level the playing field," as though fundamental Christian churches have been the only groups targeted by protesters in California.
NATIONAL
March 12, 2008 | From Times Wire Reports
The state Supreme Court effectively ended a law banning picketing at funerals, ruling in Topeka that it was unconstitutional for legislators to require a court to uphold the law before it could be enforced. That "judicial trigger" was intended to prevent the Westboro Baptist Church from collecting damages from the state should it successfully appeal the law. The measure was passed in response to the sect's picketing of military funerals. The Rev. Fred Phelps and his followers claim U.S. combat deaths are God's punishment for the nation's tolerance of homosexuality.
NEWS
February 9, 2000 | From a Times Staff Writer
A Baptist minister who gained national notoriety by picketing the funeral of a gay hate-crime victim in Wyoming plans to bring his message opposing homosexuality to Orange County next month. The Rev. Fred Phelps said he will bring 20 picketers to Laguna Beach City Hall on March 20 to protest a city policy on hate speech. He also plans to picket the Crystal Cathedral, which he condemns for what he says is a policy of accepting gays and lesbians, on March 19. Phelps, 70, is pastor of the Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, Kan. He organized a protest at the 1998 funeral of Matthew Shepard, a gay University of Wyoming student murdered because of his sexual orientation.
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