Fred Phelps and his posse of undermedicated gangsters for the LORD (or some PCP-addled version of the Christ Jesus) never met a display of religious intolerance they didn’t like. By now everyone’s aware of what’s gone on in Olympia, Washington–the stolen sign, protests and counter-protests and all that.
Reports the Spokane Spokesman-Review:
The emotional saga over religious displays at Washington’s state capitol grew even more bizarre today, as a controversial Kansas group requested permission to put up a sign titled “Santa Claus Will Take You to Hell.”
The Westboro Baptist Church, which spreads its virulently anti-gay message by demonstrating at funerals and high-profile events, wants the sign posted near a nativity scene and atheist sign at the capitol.
The sign claims that “God’s hate” is to blame for the weak economy, that Santa’s a child molester, and that the deaths of U.S. troops are somehow the fault of Santa.
But the WBCers (who more closely resemble Clostridia bacteria than the agents the body employs to fight them) aren’t keeping busy by making noise alone; as the almost-as-obnoxious Andrew Dice Clay used to say, “I been workin’. I got poiems.” The Seattle Post-Intelligencer‘s “BigBlog” includes the full text of the WBC’s message:
“You’d better watch out, get ready to cry, You’d better go hide, I’m telling you why ‘cuz Santa Claus will take you to hell. He is your favorite idol, you worship at his feet, but when you stand before your God He won’t help you take the heat. So get this fact straight: you’re feeling God’s hate, Santa’s to blame for the economy’s fate, Santa Claus will take you to hell.”
The Catholic League’s ever-virulent Wild Bill Donahue is barking about the mess–I’m surprised it took him this long–but as he’s not nearly as entertaining as the Phelpses in his own rabid and raging version of insanity, there’s no need to quote him.
As hilarious as this all is from 3,000 miles away, I’m betting that most city residents aren’t amused by the distractions and what can only be construed as bad publicity. Gregoire’s entire office must be apoplectic. But one good thing is going to come out of this: Not just Olympia but a lot of U.S. cities are going to recognize that religious displays in government buildings are not only a recipe for disaster, they are its main dish. I don’t doubt that Christians will blame the atheists for putting up their sign, since godlessness is already routinely blamed for far more impalpable and unlikely ills. But that’s fine; because the “there are no gods” sign was a new twist, maybe the tumult was indeed chiefly the atheists’ doing (not “fault”), but someone needed to give the nation a wake-up call as to the disastrously goofy consequences of not sticking to what Jefferson et al. had the foresight to pen into the law of the land some 230 years ago.
Point made, but will it be taken?