After five separate petitions with nearly 675,000 signatures demanded that the White House legally recognize the Westboro Baptist Church as a hate group, the White House responded last Tuesday by telling organizers it does not maintain a list of hate groups, and attached a map showing that most of the petition’s supporters were densely concentrated in two areas—Kansas, the home state of WBC, and Newtown, CT. Isn’t that nice of them?
One of the petitions pointed out that the church “is better-known for homophobic displays, suing people and picketing funerals than for providing Christian care to a community,” while another calls it “a threat to the welfare and treatment of others and will not improve without some form of imposed regulation.”
But “hate group” status wasn’t the only motivating factor behind the petitions—reports show that more than 260,000 of the signatures were in support of revoking the church’s tax-exempt status.
White House officials also reminded petitioners that Barack Obama signed a 2012 law that restricted defamatory protests within 300 feet of military funerals, and added:
“That all said, we agree that practices such as protesting at the funerals of men and women who died in service to this country and preventing their families from mourning peacefully are reprehensible.
Moreover, one of the remarkable things about this set of petitions is that it shows just how strong the bonds that unite us can be. Together, we’re more resilient than those who would try to drive us apart.”
United we stand, divided we fall without results, right?