Q&A with Fred Phelps Jr. of the Westboro Baptist Church

By Jocelyn Lee and Laura Bleeke

How do you feel about the response to your protest against CHS?
I love [the response from CHS]. It shows how far gone this country is. And it puts a spotlight on what we’re saying.

What message are you trying to send to the high school?
[We’re sending] the Bible message that sodomy will destroy our nation like it did Sodom and Gomorrah. The last great sin before the flood, according to Jewish historians, was same-sex marriage. That just shows where this country is going. It’s finished; it’s just a matter of time.

Why has the WBC chosen to protest CHS?
We go to high schools all over the country, but Clayton has been on our radar. We get emails from people about activities in the school, and we get requests from all over the country, so we try to keep all that information and if we’re going to be in a certain area, that’s where we go.

What is a typical day for you? How often do you protest?
I’m an attorney, so a typical day is working. I probably protest two to three times a week…. I’ve been to all 50 states.

Is protesting effective for you?
We’ve gone to the whole world to preach, so the whole world knows about this little church.

In what ways have people reacted to your protests in the past?
We’ve had varied responses [from high schools]. They had a riot alert once in Omaha, Nebraska. The students were out of control and the officers hadn’t done an adequate job of preparing.
What this country is doing is raising, as a general rule, children who are utterly, completely ignorant of the Bible, are amoral, have no fear of God, and of course that’s a sign of the last days. And I say that as a group – I’m not referring to you specifically. There’s always going to be some good things in there, but as a group that’s what is going on in this country. That’s why reports can’t keep up with the crime rates and the politicians can’t build enough prison cells.

Why do you think many people are resistant to your messages?
Christ said that in this world many people will hate you. They don’t want truth. I graduated from high school in 1971 – those were the good old days. This was not even on the radar. I’m a civil rights lawyer, and I was a delegate to the Democratic National Convention in 1988. I got up and gave a speech, because that was when this issue started surfacing. And somebody yelled out at me, you’re a civil rights lawyer, why are you [doing this]. I said the Bible doesn’t say it’s an abomination to be black. Thou shalt not lie with mankind as with womankind. It is abomination – what the Bible says is the filthiest, most depraved, most debauched… I can’t think of enough adjectives to describe that behavior, that activity. It kills the body, and it destroys nations.

Check back tomorrow for more on the Westboro Baptist Church protest and response!