The Westboro Baptist Church hit a new low yesterday, when spokesperson Shirley Phelps-Roper announced the hate group’s plan to picket outside of Sandy Hook Elementary School because God or gay people or something. We’re not going to link to her tweets, because f*ck her, but we will commend the idea of a Reddit user, who yesterday wrote: “Westboro Baptist Church says they will be present at the funerals for the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre. Let’s counter their protest by forming a silent blockade during the funeral processions!” Very practical, but Anonymous had a different idea, though with the same intentions:
On Sunday, [Anonymous] posted the names and addresses of members of the extremist Westboro Baptist Church after the hate group announced plans to picket Sandy Hook Elementary school in Newtown, Conn., where 26 people were gunned down Friday.
Anonymous posted the following two messages on Twitter on the weekend: “Dear WBC Site Admin, you should really work on securing your personal infos. Er, too late…”
Earlier, it tweeted: “It’s so nice of #WBC to provide the internet with a list of their twitter handles..”
The list of the church members, which also includes email addresses and work numbers, can be easily accessed on sites like armywtfmoments.com. (Via)
Anonymous has occasionally gone over the line in the past, but in this case, they’ve got our full support. They also started a petition on the White House’s website to classify Westboro as a hate group.
Once you’re done (hopefully) helping to further demolish any power or influence Westboro might have, it’s worth reading writer Liza Long’s personal essay that she published on Friday called “I Am Adam Lanza’s Mom” that’s since gone viral. In it, she discusses having a “mentally ill” son and why we shouldn’t just be focused on changing our nation’s gun laws; it’s also “time to talk about mental illness.”
No one wants to send a 13-year old genius who loves Harry Potter and his snuggle animal collection to jail. But our society, with its stigma on mental illness and its broken healthcare system, does not provide us with other options. Then another tortured soul shoots up a fast food restaurant. A mall. A kindergarten classroom. And we wring our hands and say, “Something must be done.”
I agree that something must be done. It’s time for a meaningful, nation-wide conversation about mental health. That’s the only way our nation can ever truly heal. (Via)
Read the rest of it here.