You know, it isn’t every day that the worst people in the world contact you directly, and when it happens, it’s important to consider all potential courses of action before you respond.
By “the worst people in the world,” I’m of course referring to the Westboro Baptist Church, the despicably homophobic and antisemitic hate-mongering “religious” group led by Fred Phelps and comprised of about 40 members, most of whom are relatives of Fred Phelps. Earlier today, the WBC’s Twitter account responded to a Riot post from last week called, “Sweet Thing of the Day: New York’s Carmel High School named two boys ‘Cutest Couple,”” with the comment “Bleh! What hatred!!” along with this lovely image:
Truly lovely, right? Totally mature and insightful. Here are 7 ways I could respond to the WBC, if I wanted to take their weak and super gross-tasting bait:
1. By bringing up the design flaws of that image. Four different fonts? Yellow, red, and orange? Can we point Fred Phelps in the direction of a color wheel, or is that just too gay for him? If spreading hate is the WBC’s occupation, after all, you’d think they could at least hire an intern with a working knowledge of Photoshop. Wouldn’t you want to go into the workforce with “godhatesfags.com” on your resume?
2. By pointing out that WBC has attacked a pair of teenagers, two kids who by all accounts seem exceptionally sweet and thoughtful, which is just about the least sympathetic kind of behavior imaginable. But what can you really expect from the group that threatened to picket the funerals of the Newtown shooting victims, literally in an attempt to protest babies?
3. By tweeting a giant middle finger back at them.
4. By attempting an amateur diagnosis of Fred Phelps’ myriad mental disorders. Sociopath, borderline personality disorder, narcissistic personality disorder, chronic asshole syndrome?
5. By tweeting two giant middle fingers back at them.
6. By pointing out that by cult standards, Westboro has a rather unimpressive following. Charlie Manson, Marshall Applewhite, and L. Ron Hubbard would positively scoff at Fred Phelps.
7. By tweeting 100 giant middle fingers back at them.