The phelps family (a long, confused rant ) la gasolina

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Before I start here’s a bit of a disclaimer. I’m sorry if the order that I’ve written this in makes no sense and I though usually I wouldn’t go out of my way to make someone uncomfortable by talking about the things wrong with their religion, I hope that should anyone from the Phelps Family see this, they get really super offended.

I’ve been watching Louis Theroux and have got to the episode about the Phelps Family, aka the majority of The Westboro Baptist Church (I’ll refer to it as WBC to save time) and I’m genuinely shocked. I knew they were bad but I had no idea how horrendous they were – for example showing up and screaming “God hates America/fags” at soldier’s funerals. I think it’s really highlighted the lengths that people go to to prove to their God that they love their religion the most, and as an atheist I did it most peculiar and quite unhealthy.

Shirley, the main spokesperson now-a-days (or back whenever this was filmed) literally claimed that being gay was against the adultery commandment because apparently married men have affairs with gay men. When challenged about anything, there seems to be a lot of literal finger pointing and speaking over an opposing opinion. Two girls out of Shirley’s ELEVEN children claim people hate them at school, even though they’re “really nice” they say, just before saying that they tell their peers that they’re going to hell whilst one is wearing a t-shirt reading “god hates fags”. Though admittedly the girl wearing it seems far less enthusiastic than her sister and seems to want to cover it over. To me it’s clear that these children are being alienated from their peers because of their beliefs, or rather the beliefs of their grandfather that have been passed down to them.

Later on a girl living in her own home claims that anyone who doesn’t believe in the Bible is going to Hell. This is a topic that often plays on my mind as when you replace “Bible” with any other book or word it becomes absolutely ridiculous. Anyone who doesn’t believe in Twilight is going to Hell. Anyone who doesn’t believe in pickles is going to Hell. It’s absolute nonsense. On the off change that God should happen to exist, again the likelihood of that being slimmer than a single strand of hair, I doubt God’s going to send you to Hell if you’ve lived a decent life and been a good person. For any normal person at least half of the Ten Commandments aren’t something you need to actively try to remember to do/not to do – for example not stealing things or murdering people, which has led me to thinking anyone in the WBC would happily bludgeon any gay person. It’s also left me wondering what their views are on the currently LGBT movements, that could be an interesting rabbit hole. Circling back to my point, their idea of religion seems to be that everything written in the Bible must be taken that bit further to the point it becomes offensive and it seems that their small group is the only group that perceives Christianity the way they do. This begs the question – are they the only ones going to Heaven? Are the seven and a half billion people alive today all going to Hell? Minus a group of around thirty that are all OBVIOUSLY going to Heaven? And what about the one hundred billion people before us? Are they all in Hell, seeing as they wouldn’t have believed in this poisonous strand of Christianity as it wouldn’t have been around when these people died? If so, Satan sure does have his hands full!

Moving on to my next point of mental discussion. There’s an interview with a man who relocated his family, whilst he was a documentarian, from Florida to the part of Kansas where the WBC is and sort of fell into it. When asked if he hated gay people before joining the church he replied “no, course not” in a way that can only be described as chipper. This leads me to believe the church is actually some sort of cult. It seems to fit different definitions given “a system of religious veneration and devotion directed towards a particular figure or object” from Google’s dictionary and “a social group defined by its religious, spiritual, or philosophical beliefs, or it’s common interest in a particular personality, object or goal.” from Wikipedia. I think it’s very clear that the WBC have cult like features, from clearly brainwashing this man to over-worshipping God to even non family members calling to leader/creator “Gramps” (his daughter calls him gramps too). Though they haven’t sacrificed anything/one to God and don’t seem to be prancing around the woods naked (presumably because that’s too gay for them), it’s pretty clear to me that at LEAST the younger generation of the family have been (or were because I think he’s dead) brainwashed by Gramps’ evil words and beliefs, and have therefore turned into a cult.

I hope that’s all made sense. I’m going to stop there because I don’t want this post to be really far too long, however I thought this was a topic worth bringing up on this subreddit due to it being highly controversial )in terms of highlighting the absolutely worst of religion) and still an ongoing issue that no one seems to care about stopping. I get the feeling that some kind of amendment stops them from being arrested on some sort of slander, hate speech or verbal harassment charges. I’d love to have a discussion about this topic with people!