Westboro Baptist Church members are a nasty little pack of human-shaped smegma. There is, it appears, no limits to their hate, to their fear-fuelled protests in the name of God.

They’ve thanked their God for September 11, for IEDs. They’ve waved banners that say “God hates fags” and “Thank God for dead soldiers”. Their mutant brains somehow link every tragedy in the world to homosexuality.

They are somewhat obsessed with gays.

And they picket funerals. Because their God, apparently, wants them to torment bereaved families.

They threatened to attend the Newtown funerals and vigils, to target the community in its raw grief for its children.

This, they say is “to sing praise to God for the glory of his work in executing his judgment.” God sent the shooter to punish the innocent because Connecticut legalised gay marriage, you see. They wrote:

The blood of the Newtown dead is on the hands of every preacher, teacher, parent & leader of Connecticut. How many more of your children will you sacrifice to your filthy fag marriage?!

And they wrote a lot more that doesn’t bear repeating.

It’s no surprise that people feel just a little violent towards these dregs.

But should Anonymous – or, to be specific, some members of the nebulous group Anonymous - have given out their personal information?

Members allegedly released home addresses, mobile numbers and Social security numbers for leading figures of Westboro Baptist church.

Twitter quickly suspended one major account with more than 800,000 followers, telling them it was for posting other people’s private and confidential information.

Once something hits the World Wide Web, it’s out there.

There’s only one reason you’d publish someone’s phone number. There’s only one reason you’d publish someone’s address. No one will be sending Christmas cards.

As repulsive as the Westboro hate mob are, Anonymous should have stuck to what they do best, disrupting their online activities, sabotaging their websites, even naming and shaming them – because those evil little Jesusfreaks are already naming and shaming themselves.

But not telling people, all those people in a land rife with weaponry, where to find them. Not perpetuating the hate. Not, potentially, creating martyrs.

Half the battle, here, is in keeping the high moral ground.

Twitter: @ToryShepherd
Comments on this post will close at 8pm AEDST.

Most commented


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    • George says:

      12:42pm | 20/12/12

      I wonder if the Italian bloke knew what smegma was before he made Smeg appliances?

    • Joe says:

      04:24pm | 20/12/12

      This is the fruit of Incest.

    • Matt says:

      12:47pm | 20/12/12

      Disagree with you there Tory.  The point of releasing their information was an attempt to disrupt their daily activity as well.  They successfully lodged a death certificate for Shirley Phelps, for example.. People already knew who they were and where they’re from before anonymous released their information.  And their activities from yesterday actually managed to stop the WBC from protesting outside the New Town funerals.. And I really don’t think it’s possible for Anonymous to do anything, I repeat, anything, to lose the moral high ground..

    • Troy Flynn says:

      02:00pm | 20/12/12

      I’m surprised they haven’t been wiped out for protesting soldier’s funerals. You are talking about grieving people with legitimate access to assault weapons.
      If they had attended New Town funerals, I would foresee another shooting massacre being committed right there and then, on them.
      I’m still hopeful it will happen. As for creating martyrs, that wouldn’t matter if the whole cult was taken out.

    • Bertrand says:

      02:53pm | 20/12/12

      The people whom God hates the most are those who can’t use Google. I also think it appropriate to picket those peoples funerals (unless they can’t use it because they have no hands, or something similar).

      For those beloved by God, you would know that the Westboro Baptist Church did not post these things on Twitter. Rather, their Twitter was hacked by a teenager called Cosmo (or Cosmo your God). He also downloaded gay porn onto their Tivo and had their internet disconnected.

      This guy also hacked anonymous’ twitter feed earlier this year.

      It is not like this isnt publicly available infomation (it is on wired and The Atlantic).

    • TONYKEYWEST says:

      03:41pm | 20/12/12

      you just dont get it ALL you do is manage to HELP spread the message of the WBC with every tweet, every comment , every slur , slander and insult you bring attention to the message. Oh and btw its waaaaaay too late to talk about the high road. WBC has sucesssfully exposed the american public as hypocritical lowlifes.

    • DaveinPerth says:

      06:57pm | 20/12/12

      @TONYKEYWEST - Is it even POSSIBLE to slander the WBC ?

      Is there anything that could be said about these mouth-breathers that could lower their standing in society ?  It’s a bit like adding, “Oh, and by the way, Hitler never flossed.”

    • Craig says:

      12:51pm | 20/12/12

      Anonymous isn’t about the high ground.

      There’s a good reason why, it has been demonstrated again and again that those who take the ‘high road’ end up being undermined by those on lower roads.

      Anonymous isn’t interested in politely opposing Westboro - as other groups have done ineffectually for years, they seek to destroy Westboro, using the same tactics Westboro has used if necessary.

      Only commentators sitting in ivy towers a long way from the front line can advocate a ‘high road’. Although in practice they frequently fail to practice what they preach.

    • Troy Flynn says:

      02:08pm | 20/12/12

      Annonymous is a threat to the media with their ability to seriously affect web sites and servers. Westboro, by comparison would probably consider computers and the internet, “the spawn of Satan”, and would not have the influencial reach that Annonymous has.
      Maybe that’s why Tory seems to consider them the greater evil.

    • Shane* says:

      12:51pm | 20/12/12

      The thing about the Westboro Baptist Church is this: It’s freaking tiny. There are fewer than 100 members, mostly from a single extended family.

      Giving them media oxygen (not you, Tory, but examples like the YouTube above) do nothing more than give them a reason to continue.

      Starve them of that oxygen and they’ll die out.

    • Chris L says:

      01:13pm | 20/12/12

      That interview with Brand was hilarious! I don’t think it would have helped the church at all.

    • HC says:

      01:26pm | 20/12/12

      I don’t think they’d die out, it’s like the old saying goes; If a tree falls in the woods and no one’s around to hear it does it still make a sound?

      If no one pays attention to WBC they’ll still exist just nobody will care and if anything they’ll just step up their efforts to piss everyone off.

      That said Craig is right, any morally questionable activity is still far higher moral ground than the ground these hate-filled worms inhabit, with perhaps the only exception being throwing the entire family in to the sun while we picket at their funerals.

    • Matt says:

      02:41pm | 20/12/12

      You obviously don’t know much about the WBC.. They’re not interested in the attention, they’re just interested in spreading their beliefs.. The only reason they’re getting media time is due to their methods.. Their methods aren’t a product of the attention they’re getting, so starving them of media time won’t change anything.

    • Borderer says:

      03:08pm | 20/12/12

      Starve them of that oxygen and they’ll die out

      I like where your head is at if you only ditched the metaphor….

    • Testfest says:

      03:08pm | 20/12/12

      Chris L

      Wait. Russell Brand did something that was funny?
      Must have gotten somebody to write it for him.

    • Angry God of Townsville says:

      12:55pm | 20/12/12

      Westboro was founded by a democrat candidate Lawyer who lost. They make their money by attending these funerals and then suing anyone who then impinges on their first amendment rights. They should be viewed as false flag Christians because their behaviour goes against all tenets of the church. They represent the extreme edge of the Freedom of Speech discussion and are almost comical in how they have tried to besmirch good Christians with their operations.

      The more you observe their behaviour the more you think that they are not actually honest in their motives.

    • Chris L says:

      01:20pm | 20/12/12

      Maybe we’re being Poe’d.

      That said, people have done worse for their deities.

    • Bear says:

      01:36pm | 20/12/12

      Fail! (trying to associate Ultra conservative Jesus nuts with ‘the left’)

    • Borderer says:

      01:37pm | 20/12/12

      Given they are protesting funerals of people who’s comrades are suffering varying degrees of PTS, are trained in various forms of killing (armed and unarmed) I’m quite surprised they’ve survived this long.

    • paul says:

      01:51pm | 20/12/12

      False flag Christians? Its America. You ever heard of Zionist Christians these crazy evangelical nutters spitting on Jesus’s words and supporting total carnage throughout the middle east in the belief that a certain criminal 150 years ago suddenly interpreted the Bible correctly.

      The reason the Christian identity is dying is because the world sees the Republicans and there American brood as representatives of Christianity. They are to Christians what Al- Qeada is to Muslims.

      Priests keep saying where are all our youth disappearing to while they deliver a sermon explaining to there members why Palestinians deserve to be treated like dogs.

    • subotic has no honest motives says:

      02:17pm | 20/12/12

      Their Anti-Jewish hip-hop video was ironically funny…

    • Angry God of Townsville says:

      02:46pm | 20/12/12

      Bear, read up on Fred Phelps, conservative republican he is most certainly not. Look how they gain their income, look to who was their early supporters.

      They have played a tune to enable hatred of the Church by their acts and actions. A smarter man would look for real reasons behind their activities, he would look to real motives rather than accept the “Ultra conservative Jesus nuts” line run out.

      I am agnostic (like the ironic nickname I use), I do not go to church, but I defend it based on the overwhelming good it has done, that is why I looked up the WBC and was disgusted by their acts, their deceptions and their horrid lawsuits to fund more disgusting displays. Look beyond your satisfied prejudices for the real story.

    • Levi says:

      02:53pm | 20/12/12

      Bear….Yeah just like the left tries to blame Republicans for Richard the Lionheart and the 3rd crusade. Pfft door swings both ways. There’s idiots on both sides. Case in point, Bob Brown and Tim Flannery.

    • Jay2 says:

      05:17pm | 20/12/12

      The last paragraph is an understatement, the first I heard of this ‘church’ was when I was sent a link to their ‘discussion forum’. Disturbed and deranged comes to mind, especially when the subject matter came to children.

      No, I couldn’t care less if these particular individuals were left feeling angry and vulnerable by their public exposure excep,t that with people like that, you never know what they are capable of, because they do seem devoid of self control and morals.

    • Howie says:

      12:56pm | 20/12/12

      The people of the Westboro Baptist Church are despicable. I really don’t care what happens to them. The Louis Theroux episode on them made me quite angry and they deserve whatever they get.

    • Carolyn says:

      01:29pm | 20/12/12

      I thought Mr Theroux was waaayyy too gentle and soft with them. As he was with the neo-nazi mob. I was shouting at the television urging Louis to dig deep and give it ‘em! Alas, to no avail…..

    • andye says:

      01:34pm | 20/12/12

      Everyone who wants to comment on them should watch both the original and return Louis Theroux episodes because (a) Louis Theroux is f***ing brilliant, and (b) because it is an amazing insight into their, erm, “minds”.

      They seem to be living out a self fulfilling prophecy where the government will expel them from the USA and they will end up in Israel or something and then the Jews all apologise for killing Jesus. I think it only gets weirder after that. They have this kind of wide eyed cognitive dissonance when faced with any logic and its so sad to see how the kids are getting brainwashed. The ones that escape seem to come out much more normal and sane.

    • hawker says:

      02:49pm | 20/12/12


      You’re missing the genius of Louis. His very demeanor disarms people, and we get to see more of what they’re really like. For me, that’s what makes his documentarys so compelling.

    • Onlooker says:

      12:56pm | 20/12/12

      I am a non believer , but for life of me i can’t see anything God Like about some of these whacko churches. If I did believe in God I would be afraid to die in case I had to spend eternity next to them. In my opinion many of these Church people do more harm than good

    • Sundress In Sydney says:

      01:26pm | 20/12/12

      Nice post Onlooker.  I am a believer, but not a church attender, and I also think these people do more harm than good.  The problem is people like to point to these crackpots as an example of christianity.  A bit like pointing at Charles Manson as an example of non-christian.

    • Arnold Layne says:

      01:40pm | 20/12/12

      As a believer I feel exactly the same way.

    • T says:

      01:58pm | 20/12/12

      Thanks Sundress - good comment.
      I’m a believer but I go to church. I say that like I’m at AA - as if it’s a problem I have. I’m just as normal as the next person but idiots like this pop out every now and again and then I have idiots asking me where my banner is??

    • waynevan says:

      04:38pm | 20/12/12

      As a Christian I think spending eternity with the WBC crowd is the last thing I’m expecting.

    • The Microbiologist says:

      01:15pm | 20/12/12

      Aaaah, ideology, its what makes humans as a species so fascinating to observe and study.

    • Sundress In Sydney says:

      01:16pm | 20/12/12

      How sad that people as sick and twisted as these Westboros, with such a tiny congregation, can cause so much hurt and distress.  I just can’t understand them at all.

    • Audra Blue says:

      02:55pm | 20/12/12

      A virus is tiny too and can cause much hurt and distress. 

      It seems the smaller something is, the more damage it can inflict.

    • subotic the placard kid says:

      01:23pm | 20/12/12

      Behead all those who insult the Anonymous Religious prophet?

    • Troy Flynn says:

      02:26pm | 20/12/12

      Shouldn’t that be “Anonymous Religilous prophet”. Behead all those who insult Bill Maher. smile

    • subotic the anonymous placard kid says:

      03:52pm | 20/12/12

      Aaaah Troy, if only you could see the things that don’t get passed by the Mods on here…

    • Meph says:

      01:24pm | 20/12/12

      Since the core tenets of the christian faith are things like “love thy neighbour”, “judge not, lest ye be judged also” and other similarly themed catch cries, they can hardly call themselves christian.

      Normally I don’t hold to the extremist approach of anonymous, but exterminating cockroaches is a noble goal.

    • Mr. Jordon says:

      02:53pm | 20/12/12

      I think that applies to the entire Christian Right not just those nutters..

    • the phantom says:

      01:35pm | 20/12/12

      The ironical thing here is that these Westboro Baptist Church wackos will burn in hell for their sins

    • Dan says:

      02:14pm | 20/12/12

      Yeah Phantom, but it would be great to punch them in the face before they got there.

    • subotic *old jungle saying.... says:

      02:14pm | 20/12/12

      The more ironical thing is “the phantom” has now entered the realm of religious comment.

      If I was Lee Falk I’d sue you.

    • S says:

      01:55pm | 20/12/12

      The Louis Theroux epsisode made me feel sick and angry. These people are evil and twisted.
      As a believer I’m annoyed that people like this exist out in the world and misrepresent people who have their own beliefs about god.
      And I also agree with Shane* as well - don’t give them the attention that they seek. Kind of like the Simpsons song when all the advertisements turned into monsters “just don’t look”...if only it were that simple!

    • spell check on the Punch says:

      02:09pm | 20/12/12

      I have no real problem with Anonymous taking action in this case because the Westbro Baptist Church members and their actions are so reprehensible they defy credulity. But here lies the problem; what if the moral compass was not so precise, what if there is an issue with vague or blurred moral points of view? How can we let Anonymous make our moral choices and give them free rein to do what they do?

      So, why I have no sympathy for Westbro, and I applaud Anonymous for taking them on, I cannot condone vigilante style justice.

      Recently Anonymous called for action against the two radio presenters who pranked the London hospital. Suicide is tragic, but accusing the presenters of a crime and laying the entire blame for a person’s choice to kill themselves, and then going viral with a call for action without any evidence or context to back up their agenda is reckless. 

      We have police and courts to deal with these types of idiots. Ignore their rhetoric and let irrelevance be their deserved fate.

    • Troy Flynn says:

      03:16pm | 20/12/12

      spell check on the Punch says: We have police and courts to deal with these types of idiots. Ignore their rhetoric and let irrelevance be their deserved fate.
      Tell that to the victims of crime advocates how effective the courts are these days, and ignoring Westboro does not work. It’s hard to ignore a group who turns up to your relatives funeral and starts spouting the bile we have come to expect from them.
      Then if you try to have them removed, they sue on freedom of speech grounds and WIN to boot!

    • subotic just gives in says:

      02:19pm | 20/12/12

      Half the battle, here, is in keeping the high moral ground.

      But half the fun is taking the piss out of these oxygen thieves.

      And Tory, you know you want to….

    • Mike says:

      02:22pm | 20/12/12

      You forget that these were also the same people who disgustingly, mocked the death of the legendary Heavy Metal singer, Ronnie James Dio (he passed away from cancer).

      Ronnie, through his music, gave pleasure to thousands of people the world over and inspired or worked with other people to do the same (and took part in “Hear n Aid” that raised money for charity) - working with people like Iron Maiden and Judas Priest.

    • Mark says:

      02:41pm | 20/12/12

      Well, there you have it. Recessive mutations really can dominate a breeding group.

    • Fed Up says:

      03:20pm | 20/12/12

      Just because you say you’re a Christian doesn’t mean you are one….they are NOT.

    • KJ says:

      04:18pm | 20/12/12

      I wonder if they picket the funerals of their own congregation


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