In September I blogged about Fred J. Brehony who was killed in a motorcycle accident in route to the Willamette National Cemetery. He was a member of the Patriot Guard Riders (PGR) and riding to support a funeral for Howell “Hal” Birdwell (a U.S. Vietnam War Veteran).
Mr. Brehony was a U.S. Navy Veteran who served on a destroyer during the Vietnam War and deeply believed in the mission of the Patriot Guard. He was very committed to stand as a silent sentry at military funerals out of respect for vets and in part to protect families from potential protesters who would show up to cheer fallen soldiers.
Speaking of protesters inappropriate actions, I learned yesterday that the Westboro Baptist Church – you know them as group behind protests and the harsh treatment of families who are grieving the loss of their loved ones – have now turned their hateful focus on the Patriot Guards.
Here is the flier (.pdf) which organized the protest in Mulvane, KS and calls out the PGR. Below are the actual words from the flyer:
WBC WILL PICKET FAG-INFESTED & PERVERT-RUN MULVANE HIGH SCHOOL (1900 N. ROCK ROAD, MULVANE, KS), TUES., NOV. 30, FROM 7:15 – 7:45 AM
Mulvane, KS has the shame and dishonor of being the birthplace of the Patriot Guard Riders. This is a group of God-hating brutes who worship their great goddess the American flag & wave such flags outside the funerals of raging rebels, apparently thinking such vain idolatry can stop God. What foolishness.
God hates you, Doomed America, for what you have done to your children! Here is the COMMANDMENT from your god:
“And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. And thou shalt write them upon the posts of they house, and on they gates.” Deut. 6:6-9
You will not obey that simple commandment. Instead, you corrupt your children from the womb, so God has given you violent, freakish, worthless, brute-beast children. You hate your children, and as God continues cursing you, you will turn aside to eat your children.
GOD’S CURSE IS ON YOUR BRATS, DOOMED AMERICA!
If you’re not aware of the group – they believe that God is punishing the U.S. via soldiers’ deaths because our county allows homosexuality. Whether right or wrong we all have the right to believe what we want to think. No question. And I fully understand as citizens of the U.S. we are entitled to freedom of speech. But, don’t the families and friends have a right to some dignity, to peacefully morn their loved ones and have a sense of closure without protestors disrupting or showing disrespect?
I cannot understand what would make someone take comfort in protesting a funeral.
UPDATE: March 2, 2011 – The Supreme Court ruling yesterday upheld an appeals court ruling/decision that the WBC can continue to protest at military funerals unabated. Leaders of the church stated they would now “quadruple” the number of anti-gay protests at military funerals around the county. More information on CBS News HERE. The lead WBC lawyer was Margie Phelps, the daughter of Fred Phelps the pastor of the church. What a disappointment and I’m sad for Albert Snyder who sued WBC over picketing his son’s funeral.
Photo courtesy of Westboro Baptist Church, but used without their permission.