Advertisement

Archive for Friday, February 20, 2009

United Kingdom bars Phelps clan entrance

February 20, 2009

Advertisement

— Britain’s government has banned anti-gay American pastor Fred Phelps from the country on the grounds that he worked to incite hatred, an official said Thursday.

Britain’s Border Agency said Phelps and his daughter, Shirley Phelps-Roper, would be turned back at the border if they attempted to enter the country — although it was unclear whether either of them intended to travel to Britain.

Phelps, who leads a tiny but fanatically anti-gay church in Topeka, Kan., is particularly notorious for picketing the funerals of U.S. soldiers killed in Iraq — deaths he believes are the result of God’s fury at homosexuality.

“The government has made it clear it opposes extremism in all its forms,” the border agency said in a statement. “The exclusions policy is targeted at all those who seek to stir up tension and provoke others to violence regardless of their origins and beliefs.”

Phelps’ Westboro Baptist Church issued a news release Thursday saying it learned about the decision from a British newspaper report. The church said in its release: “God hates the UK — Land of the Sodomite Damned.”

Church spokeswoman and attorney Shirley Phelps-Roper, a daughter of the pastor, said in an interview Thursday night that the British government did the church a favor because of the publicity created by the ban.

“We prepared ourselves to go over there and they took the burden off our backs,” Phelps-Roper said. “We don’t have to go there and stand on their ground for the word to get out. They do it for us.”

She said some church members still planned to try to enter Britain, but she wouldn’t provide details other than to say it wouldn’t be her or her father.

“All they did was create a huge door for the word of God to get through. The more they mess with us, we get the publicity,” Phelps-Roper said. “They don’t have any understanding of these things because they are Bible ignorant.”

A Border Agency spokesman said Phelps had called for protests at a play about the murder of a gay man due to be shown in the English town of Basingstoke, about 50 miles west of central London.

Comments

Gina Bailey-Carbaugh 5 years, 10 months ago

The more attention the media gives this group, the more power it gives this group. I watched the British documentary http://vodpod.com/watch/453706-louis-theroux-westboro-baptist-church . It was sad the lives their children are faced and that many accept that they will not marry or find that kind of 'human" love. Fred is looking old and feeble, but the light of hatred burns bright in his eyes.

Terry Jacobsen 5 years, 10 months ago

Too bad the UK didn't let them come over and then we could have banned them from returning. Sadly these people are seen as "Christians" by many people who do not understand that the "Phelps Family" is benefitting the devil far more than they are God.

katjok 5 years, 10 months ago

I'm all for free speech, but the thing that breaks my heart is when the little ones are out there holding ridiculous signs. They picketed Lawrence High and the students of Lawrence High got out there with their signs and stood their ground! I lived in Topeka for college, and never saw any action like that! Good job students!

Satirical 5 years, 10 months ago

Tumbilweed.... "Why hasn't this happened in America yet?"

Because we have something called the First Amendment. Even though the message is abhorent doesn't mean they don't have their rights (in the U.S.).

missmia 5 years, 10 months ago

Good for Britain- stop it before it even starts.

grammaddy 5 years, 10 months ago

I'm glad someone is taking a stand against them. I went to school with a lot of the Phelps' kids and believe me , this family is nuts. I recently watched a documentary on Rev. Phelps on HBO and was glad to see that a few of the kids had been disowned. They're probably better off, but what kind of "Christian" family disowns kids because they believe differently than others??! I also find it sad that people overseas only know Kansas as " the place where that crazy pastor and his family live".

kristyj 5 years, 10 months ago

They picket my church at least one Sunday every month. I take it as confirmation that I'm going to the right place.

There's one lady that sings at the top of her lungs, and I'm pretty sure she makes up the words as she goes. One of the lyrics was fraught with worldly influence however, "OMG you will cry as you burn in hell!" LOL, lady. I don't know if even Miley Cyrus uses texting acronyms in her songs.

hs_reader 5 years, 10 months ago

I wish they would go to the UK and then get arrested. Can't sue for rights they only have in the US.
when Free speech starts impinging on other citizen's rights, that when it becomes something else

Commenting has been disabled for this item.