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My Conservative friends cannot understand why LGBT people are against free speech. This is what I tell them.

Reverend Fred Phelps of Westborough Baptist Church knows the boundaries of free speech. The people in his congregation stand well within those boundaries when they protest against Gay rights. Because the church wants as much publicity as possible, its members tailor their message to be as offensive as possible. Resistance against them leads to lawsuits that they inevitably win, thus getting the church more money so they can spread the word that God Hates Fags.

Dan Cathy, Chief Operations Officer of Chick fil-A, is playing a similar game. By making his stance a free speech issue on exactly the same sentiment as Fred Phelps of Westborough Baptist, he is making good money for his corporation. Here is his statement about Gay marriage and the damnation of the USA:


I think we are inviting God’s judgment on our nation when we shake our fist at him and say, "We know better than you as to what constitutes a marriage." I pray God’s mercy on our generation that has such a prideful, arrogant attitude to think that we would have the audacity to try to redefine what marriage is all about.

What is the difference between the Bible-based homophobia of Cathy and Phelps? Nothing.


Reverend Jeremiah Wright made a parallel claim about God damning America, but for a different sin: the oppression of the powerless. Reverend Wright (and Barack Obama by association) was condemned as anti-American. Cathy is praised as a Real American, even though he, like Wright and Phelps, says that God will punish our country.

The difference between the three? Wright feared God’s righteous anger for crimes against Black folks. Cathy and Phelps say God will punish us for giving Gay people rights.

But Cathy and Phelps are not identical in every way. Cathy’s corporation has donated some 5 million dollars to supporting organizations that actively spread a gospel of Gay-hate. Some of those organizations have even recommended physical and psychological coercion to convert Gays to Straights (in other words, torture). They called for LGBT people to be rounded up and kept in camps, and assisted homophobes in other countries as they sought to pass laws that would punish Gay people with prison and execution.

Phelps, on the other hand, has the gall to protest the deaths of public figures and US soldiers as "fag enablers." As bad as Westborough Baptist is, Cathy and corporate Chick fil-A are worse because nobody outside of Phelps’ congregation takes him seriously, while thousands of Christians unwittingly encourage Cathy to continue spreading his ignorance, and contribute good money to Chick fil-A, which in turn will finance hate groups.

If my Conservative friends think it is wrong for Phelps and his clown show to protest funerals, they should understand why the LGBT community has similar (and eminently more valid) sentiments concerning Cathy, Chick Fil-A and that grand media whore, Reverend Mike Huckabee.

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