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[personal profile] freeptop
Wow. This is actually the most logical explanation of Fred Phelps and the so-called "Westboro Baptist Church" I've ever seen. It makes far too much sense to not be accurate. Which only makes Phelps and his family even more reprehensible.
http://www.kanewj.com/wbc/

(Stolen from [livejournal.com profile] ls56)

Date: 2011-01-15 12:45 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ef2p.livejournal.com
Interesting theory but it doesn't hold up to the sniff test.

Sniff 1) If the author was indeed a journalist, he would have a list a lawsuits filed by the WBC instead of just insinuating them.

Sniff 2) Google Search 'Westboro Baptist Church Lawsuit'. If the WBC was making money by suing people left and right, there would be information about it online. Lawsuits are a matter of public record. A quick skim of the search results show lots of people suing WBC and WBC suing for the right to protest but no mention of significant awards of money.

Date: 2011-01-15 03:17 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] freeptop.livejournal.com
It can be very difficult to find records of older lawsuits when the current ones have tons of articles and blog posts and what-not to fill the searches, but your points are still well-taken.

In any case, even if the motivation is incorrect, the notes about his tactics are still dead-on. He's very definitely out to manipulate others, and try to stay just on the side of the law that benefits himself.

No matter what, the man is reprehensible, though.

Date: 2011-01-15 03:34 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] freeptop.livejournal.com
I did a little more digging. One thing worth noting is that it usually isn't the church initiating the lawsuits. It's one of the Phelps family. And not usually Fred Phelps himself, since he's disbarred.

One notable quote:
""We won't argue our case in the press, we'll argue it in court," Polikov said. "They're filing so many actions and requests, there's no merit in addressing each one individually."

Phelps-Roper has had some success with her lawsuits over the arrest. A federal judge last month permanently stopped the state's flag mutilation law from being enforced. Also last month, the city of Bellevue agreed to pay Phelps-Roper a $17,000 settlement in exchange for her dropping a lawsuit she had filed against the city."

http://www.kansas.com/2010/08/10/1440330/phelps-roper-files-suit-against.html

(bolded emphasis added by me)

On the flip side, it does look like the Phelps have crossed the line that the article claims they scrupulously stay onside of:
http://www.splcenter.org/get-informed/intelligence-report/browse-all-issues/2001/spring/a-city-held-hostage/fred-phelps-timel

At this point, I'm more inclined to think the con is just to get his name in the press. He's getting money from somewhere, and he's clearly spending all his time on these activities, so even if it isn't coming from lawsuits, it's got to be coming from somewhere.

(reposted with correct brackets... *sigh*)

Date: 2011-01-15 06:25 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ls56.livejournal.com
it is useful to note that the Phelps kids who have left the church and family behind state that the family lives off their court settlements.

and there is last year's Supreme Court case, which is about a guy suing WBC, but their understanding of the law is explained during their argument.

http://ls56.livejournal.com/584737.html

Date: 2011-01-15 02:48 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] vanessasquest.livejournal.com
Definitely agreeable argument. Anyhow, how's little Caitlyn, Erik, and Kathy? ^_^ You must be the happy papa right now, yeah? ^_^ Also- what size is Caitlyn, I think you get a chance to check email more than Kathy, she hasn't gotten back to me just yet.

Date: 2011-01-15 03:07 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] freeptop.livejournal.com
Caitlin is doing fine, Erik is adjusting, but mostly doing fine, and Kathy and I are exhausted, still trying to figure out how to help Erik with his adjusting, but otherwise doing okay, I suppose...

As for what size Caitlin is: she's around 6lbs right now, and somewhere in the vicinity of 19.5" (she hasn't been measured in over a week, at this point ;) ).

Finally, you would be correct in thinking that Kathy hasn't gotten to check email much recently!

Date: 2011-01-15 03:13 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] vanessasquest.livejournal.com
when I say size I mean baby clothes size.

Date: 2011-01-15 03:19 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] freeptop.livejournal.com
Ah! Sorry, father brain is scrambled as well ;)

Best bet is "Newborn" (though that can be difficult to find), though that tends to still be large on her. She's a tiny little creature! We're pretty sure she's still too big for clothes made for premature babies, though. She's just in between sizes right now (unfortunately, she's in between two sizes that are smaller than most babies apparently are, considering the lack of newborn-sized clothes to be found...)

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