Free Speech

What Do You Do With the "God Hates Jews" Kooks?


The nut sandwiches of the Westboro Baptist Church made their way to a Holocaust museum this week in Richmond, Virginia, where locals organized a counter-protest that drowned out the "God hates Jews" gang. Times-Dispatch columnist and beloved Coen Brothers character A. Barton Hinkle used the occasion to make the case against "hate speech" prohibitions:

Wait, what?

[S]aying "God Hates Fags" does not change the legal status of gays and lesbians. Nor does it interfere with their ability to go about their day. It is not legally binding the way contracts are; it carries no real weight in the world. Nor does it, as some would-be censors suggest, lower the social or moral standing of the object of the hatred. Again, hateful messages today lower the standing of the speaker. How much social cachet attaches to membership in the Ku Klux Klan? How much community respect would you get parading around in a T-shirt with a photo of President Obama bearing the legend, "Uppity N*****"? Not bloody much.

Whole thing here. Steve Chapman made a similar point, using the same example, back in January 2006. Also, here's Penn Jillette!

NEXT: Jim Bunning Collapses in Late Season of Baseball, Senate Careers[*]

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  1. God loves everyone except libertarians;-)

  2. How much social cachet attaches to membership in the Ku Klux Klan?

    Spoken like a man who’s never had his world view turned upside down by a guy wearing a sandwich board.

    1. uh…

    2. Bravo.

  3. I want a “GOD HATES YOUR TEARS” t-shirt.

    1. What about GOD IS YOUR ENEMY? A+, Phelps. A+.

    2. I also want a ‘God Hates Your Tears’ T shirt. I looked for a ‘God hates Fags’ one a while ago, but couldn’t find one.

  4. Just because I’m the Prime Mover doesn’t mean I had a fun childhood. If you were alone in the universe for 13 billion years, you’d develop some maladaptive psychosocial behaviors as well. So take your self-righteousness to Buddha, you ingrates.

  5. How about a Galt Hates Moochers shirt?

    1. I’d buy that one!

      1. Obama probably has a plan to put union screenprinters to work making those shirts using leftover TARP funds.

        Cost per shirt: $9,347.12


  6. Once more I’d like to point out that the “Westboro Baptist Church” is basically the Phelps family with maybe one or two other hangers on.

    I don’t miss the denomination I grew up in but seriously, there are very few people in it who agree with Phelps’ message or the way he expresses it.

    1. One of which is a documentarian who went in to do a film and got converted. He was a bit of a twat.

    2. And that’s because the Baptist church itself is incredibly loosely organized. It has voluntary conventions, but it’s not top-down organized.

      People used to more organized religions may not understand that.

      1. Did you mean to write “People used to more organized coherent religions may not understand that”?

        1. Oops!

          Did you mean to write “People used to more organized coherent religions may not understand that”?


  7. Saying God hates fags may not change much. But showing up at someone’s funeral and yelling that they died because God hates fags does cause a lot of emotional harm. I really wish someone would just burn the damn church to the ground with everyone in it.

    1. John-

      As stubby pointed out above, this is a very small group of people. They covered this on the local news last night and there were less than 10 Westboro “congregants” (looked like about 5 or so). I’m not even sure they have an actual church.

      1. They are basically an inbred family. They are all related. And they do have a church in Topeka if I am not mistaken. The funny thing is they only show up at funerals in nice rich white liberal places. They never show up in small towns where the populace would kick their asses and no one would see a thing.

    2. That is their goal. They wait for people to punch them and then sue. If you burned the church down, that just allows for a bigger lawsuit.

      1. That’s why God made sniper rifles.

      2. Dead men make less attractive plaintiffs.

    3. Saying God hates fags may not change much. But showing up at someone’s funeral and yelling that they died because God hates fags does cause a lot of emotional harm. I really wish someone would just burn the damn church to the ground with everyone in it.

      If one of those creeps is foolish enough to enter the cemetery during the funeral…

  8. Kansas is on a roll.

    Trying to outlaw fake pot.

    Topeka changing its name to Google.…..027253.htm

    And these guys are always around.

  9. These people are an elaborate trick, right?

    1. Yes, but unfortunately the joke is on religious people who aren’t dumbass bigots.

      1. Yeah, but that’s a pretty small contingent.

        1. Sick burn. But really, most religious people are not dumbass bigots.

          1. Yeah, I know, but the reply was lying right there. I had to use it.

  10. “Why do we want the assholes to love us?”

    1. I agree with Penn, that’s just a great quote.

  11. If they are ever near me, I would make a sign that says the following

    Mark 11:12-14

    1. No! Figs are excellent! God can’t hate them!

      1. Note that the verse doesn’t say anything about fig newtons.

          1. Blessed are the cheesemakers!

    2. I remember that passage… makes Jesus look like a whiny little brat, dunnit?

      1. Not really, considering the fig tree is symbolic of Israel.

      2. Except that it was meant to indicate that Jews would be cursed for not accepting Jesus, even though they had no choice because their non-acceptance was necassary to create the good/evil paradigm in which Jesus would become, well, Jesus.

    3. brilliant.

  12. Along the lines of the Obama t-shirt, I was in the parking lot of a Gander Mountain right after the election and saw a bumper sticker that said:

    Fuck Obama!

    I have a picture of it someplace. So you may not get much social cachet, but people are doing it.

    1. Man, if that’s what it said verbatim, that’s just hilarious. You wouldn’t think someone could fit views that sophisticated on a bumper sticker.

      1. That was it, exclamation points and all. I just wondered where you go to get that printed. Do you go down to Jimmy’s House of Racist Screen Printing? Or do you go down to Chinatown and get the Asian guy who just doesn’t care? I mean, yeah, you can get the DIY printer paper, but I’m guessing anyone this sophisticated has issues with high tech devices like a printer.

    2. I was in a CostCo parking lot the other day, and there was a poor man’s version of a monster truck with a Georgia flag (confederate flag) and an Iron Cross sticker on it. This was in Seattle. I figure the dude was using the Iron Cross as a cipher for a swastika, but it was particularly funny because you just never see anything like this in Seattle. I saw him driving out, and his girlfriend was fat, so he’s already getting what he deserves.

      1. You just know that guy has a meth lab.

      2. Georgia flag (confederate flag)

        The 1956-2001 old Georgia flag, then? You know, the flag they had until they finally elected a Republican governor?

        1. This reminds of a fun bit from The Onion from 12 years ago:

      3. The Georgia hlag isn’t the Confederate flag.

      4. i’ve always been fascinated by confederate flags outside of the old confederacy. why do i gotta see that shit in Wyoming or California?

  13. Westboro Baptist Church are effective attention whores.

    1. The Whore of Westboro:

      Revelation 17:5

  14. Is this a real “church” or just a clever way of avoiding taxes?

    1. It is not even remotely real.

  15. Pretty sad when you actually think about it, God hates no one.


    1. I hope this wasn’t the real anonymity bot. Otherwise, anonymity bot is both a better philosopher and more compassionate entity than Fred Phelps. Ouch!

      1. Although, to be fair, setting Fred Phelps as your bar is pretty damn generous. I imagine a microbial parasite is a better philosopher and a more compassionate entity than Fred Phelps.

      2. My keyboard, attached to nothing, is a better philosopher than Fred Phelps.

    2. I spoke with the God of Anon Bots once. He was making an instructional video when he had to kick the ass out of a purple, tentacled monster that tried to bust up his LoLz. He mentioned having a strong displeasure for Harley riders. Wow! LOL


      1. This, on the other hand, is not the real bot.

    3. I know for a fact this isn’t true.

      1. How could you know, man? Where you there?

  16. I don’t hate Jews, I just persecute them for my own amusement. Pretty much like I do to everyone else, come to think of it.

  17. There is a very good reason the founders saw fit to include protections for free speech in the Bill of Rights; its manifold benefits are clearly not self-evident.

    1. I agree with Penn. I feel better about America’s adherence to the 1st amendment when I see Phelps’ people with their stupid signs.

  18. ——————
    2 Kings 2:23-24

    1. No, no, NO!
      The relevance of 2 Kings 2:23-24 is that God loves bald men. On that I believe we can all agree.

      Then he went up from there to Bethel; and as he was going up the road, some youths came from the city and mocked him, and said to him, “Go up, you baldhead! Go up, you baldhead!” So he turned around and looked at them, and pronounced a curse on them in the name of the LORD. And two female bears came out of the woods and mauled forty-two of the youths.

      1. God must be so conflicted about Michael Stipe.

        1. Just think what David Cross does to him.

          Malkovich must have gotten a waiver.

      2. I thought it was a warning to chavs.

        1. Perhaps just slow chavs. I mean, my God, how could two bears chase down 42 youths? Obesity epidemic? Whatever happened to “When chased by bears, you don’t have to be the quickest, just not the slowest”?

          1. You did notice in Airplane the pamphlet of famous Jewish athletes, right?

            1. And what about people who shave their heads? Does God recognize them as poseurs

      3. Must one be completely bald, or can does pattern baldness count?

        1. Insult a guy with pattern baldness, and God sends a ferret.

  19. I went to catholic school and no one can argue that Catholicism is not the most dreary of the major Christian sects…

    Yet even they pounded in the Jesus love everyday.

    Thank you good night and be sure to tip your waitress.

  20. You know, a well placed IED would solve most of this problem.

    1. I would never deign to make martyrs of these turds.

      1. I prefer the public mockery counter-protest like these < a href=””>folks.

          1. Wait, does that count as getting Rick Roll’d? My ex-girlfriend, a Kodak ESP 9 . . . what a freak, did that to me once. Notice how she’s my ex. That’s how I roll. LOL


      2. I can’t imagine anyone actually making him a martyr, figuratively, not literally.

        Just how hillbilly mongoloid would you have to be?

  21. ‘What Do You Do With the “God Hates Jews” Kooks?’

    I have a few suggestions, inspired by this song.

    ‘What Do You Do With the “God Hates Jews” Kooks?’
    ‘What Do You Do With the “God Hates Jews” Kooks?’
    ‘What Do You Do With the “God Hates Jews” Kooks?’
    Early in the morning?

    Knock him on the head with a lead menorah,
    Knock him on the head with a lead menorah,
    Knock him on the head with a lead menorah,
    Early in the morning.


    1. Way hey and up she rises.

      1. Each and every morning!

  22. The person that first comes to mind on a discussion of god-crazy fanatics is John Brown.

    A local story here in central coast CA is the suspension of a UCSB student for leaving a noose at the library. The student describes the matter as just playing with knots and a string. The PC-crazed university administrators saw the dark hand of lynching in this idle pastime.

    John Brown was lynched by a government sanctioned mob on December 2nd, 1859.

    1. I thought that was San Diego, not Barbara.

      1. Yeah. It was in the local news here, but it was UCSD, not UCSB.

  23. God doesn’t hate fags, just the real flamers.

    1. I believe that’s correct. So you gays remember – never walk with arms akimbo.

  24. When one of my sons was playing youth soccer at age 8 or so, they voted on team names. “Flamers” lost by two votes.

  25. What Do You Do With the “God Hates Jews” Kooks?

    Give their children polio.

  26. Hey Phelps, if God hates Jews, then how is it that we own your sorry ass?

    1. I think you’re confusing jews with the chinese.

  27. The best part was the signs that some of the counter-protesters displayed. One had a sign saying, “I LIKE PIE.” The Times-Dispatch interviewed him and he said he figured “everyone likes pie,” so nobody would disagree with his sign.

    Another one had a sign saying somethign like, “I ACCIDENTALLY MADE THIS SIGN.” And another had a sign saying, “THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID.”

    That’s how you deal with shitheads like these Phelps freaks. Show them how meaningless they are.

    1. I liked the girl with the “I was promised donuts” sign. And “God Hates Flags”.

  28. About all you can do to then without being counterproductive is to laugh at them. The funny absurd counter protest signs are great.

  29. How is it Phelps has not been gang sodomized by a prison-raised gang of violent militant religious homosexuals?

    If Phelps ever has a demonstration near me, I intend to show up with a lawn chair, crack open a beer, start handing the demostrators singles, then begin jerking off.

  30. Please tell us that this “church” is not tax-exempt.

  31. There’s definitely some traces of Anonymous in some of those signs. Incidentally, I hear God Loves Delicious Caek.

  32. God bless the Westboro Baptist Church for not backing down in the face of wickedness and Godless adversity. Jesus didn’t die on the cross so you can wallow in your favorite sin like a pig in poop. Poop still stinks and homosexuality is still an abomination, so choose this day whom you will serve … God or Satan. If God, then repent.

    1. You, madam, are a filthy ignorant fool, and exactly the type of woman the devil loves the most.

  33. What you do with people like this is you put up with them.

    Until they directly threaten your life or the lives of those you love.

    Then you put a stop to them. Quickly and humanely. In self-defense.

  34. Back when I lived in Indiana, I used to see these kinds of people on our courthouse lawn. Turns out they were part of a cult that was being used by a con-artist lawyer. The idea is to have the people make such a big racket that when the police would come to remove them, they would later sue the county or the city for infringment upon their first right amendment. Unfortunately, they would end up getting rowdy, thus not truly “peacefully assembling”. It’s one thing to see people who believe in God make a buck off His name, it’s another to see screwballs running His name into the dirt. Read your word, it says God can not look upon sin, it nevers says he hates the actual people. And please don’t mix hate with righteous judgement. It was out of his love for the generations and generations of people who would have been born only to go straight to hell that caused him to enact judgement upon Sodom and Gomorrah. Basically, it’s better to have not been conceived, then to have been born at all.
    Here’s something to mess with your thinking. Where sins is, grace abounds in greater measure.
    Ever think that God is not trying to keep people out, it says that the angels rejoice in heaven everytime someone comes to Accept Jesus as their personal lord and saviour, basically Jesus is the fall guy for their own sins. It’s weird to think someone else would pay for your problems in life, but you gotta believe. Oh yeah judgement comes to the house of God first. So you hypocrite “Christians” better start loving people for who they are and who they can be. Me included, I have gay friends who need Jesus just as bad as I need Jesus. We all need Jesus, stop judging start loving (agape)

    Christians start loving like Jesus loved, egnostics get in or get out make up your mind and stop straddling the fence faith is a choice, athiests sorry, but your in a bad spot, and you don’t care that you don’t care. And you’ve made an infinite choice based upon finite evidence. The only problem is that if Christians started acting like Christ, you might actually come to believe that there is a God and that He through his people would extend His love towards you.
    Those who come to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.
    Find out who Jesus is, not was, but is. Who is Jesus, Jeshua, the prince of peace, the annointed one, emanuel, God with us.
    Faith is a choice, every body has faith in something. Everybody. An item that could be described as a what, like rock or a statue, might have the power to save me but has no will to do so ,because it is an inanimate object. My will is great, I can think of great, and terrible things. But I, in and of myself, have no power to stop my aging and will die some day. But a being that could be described as a what and a who. That would have the power or ability and will to save me. To that entity, I owe my life. Jesus (word of god made flesh), he was a what that was made into a who. Dude he’s not only got the power to save us all from ourselves, he has the will to do so. Just accept it. Simple.

    In his service.

    Ps skeptics, I didn’t put words into God’s mouth, he put His words into mine.

    Ooh ooh, tell me another religion that would tell me to turn the other cheek if I were struck upon. Twice.

    Where the leader of the religion, never killed a person on his whole life. And never committed nor condoned violent acts yet was filled with rage only for one thing. Not the love of a woman, nor the deceit of riches, but for his fathers house.

    Follow the Leader, not the Family. Make your decisions for yourself based upon the Word, not the idiots who say they “believe” but wouldn’t pee on their own father if he were burning.

    Wow sorry for all that.

  35. Ooh ooh and where as I might disagree with the approach and/or content of Penn Jillette, because he gets me to think about things. Of course whereas some people judge the Bible against the things that happen in life. I judge the things that happen life against the Word of God.

    Oh the bible wasn’t meant to be a happy go lucky hey guys believe like me book. It’s a hard story of raw creation and wills conflicting and lots of bloodshed and pain. And a bloodshed to end all pains. And how one who is fortunate enough to experience this life can get back into sync with this creator who happens to be raw love in action. That’s the bible. Not boring, but powerful. Able to change the lives of crack addicts and prostitutes, middle aged business execs, and soccer moms.

    Have a good one,

    1. Oh didn’t get to finish a sentence, I do like penn Jillette, because he makes me think.

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