An open letter to the Westboro Baptist wannabes

If you haven’t seen the crazy Westboro Baptist wannabes standing by the Heth clocks with their children, consider yourself lucky. This group comes to campus almost weekly to spread the word of the Bible in the most insane, cult-like way. They specifically target Radford University because they’re behind a couple years and think we’re still the out-of-control party school we once were. Dear Westboro Baptist wannabes,

On Thursday I, along with my fellow students, stood in the rain from roughly 2 to 5 p.m. We were face-to-face with your group, which seems to be unnamed, as you spewed your religious bullshit by word of mouth. Along with the three adult men of your group, there were a number of small children, a wife, teenage girls, and a newborn baby. It was about 50 degrees outside and rainy all day, which made the conditions unfavorable for such small children to be outside for hours on end.

You held your signs, listing the groups that would be thrown into the imaginary lake of fire. You held your little black Bibles with the word “REPENT” printed in plain white. You yelled at students, including myself, whom you called a “Jezebel.” Virtually any woman who spoke up to your ringleader (the short chubby guy with the anti-porn hat) was called a Jezebel and told to get in her place. Although you claimed that you “loved us” and were only here to save our sinners’ souls from a horrible eternity, we all see straight through your facade.

We don’t know what makes you think we’re an open audience, or that you’re going to change anyone’s mind. If you haven’t realized, it’s 2015 and people aren’t easily scared by threats of hellfire and brimstone. College students these days are more like likely to be atheists now than in the past and therefore, your shouting and threats are going in one ear and out the other.

Photo By: Camden Lazenby

The people I feel for the most in this situation is your poor, brainwashed family. You use them as an example in order to push your shitty agenda. At one point in your protest, you allowed your son to stand up on a footstool and spew your religious nonsense. Students were just about as kind to him as we were to the adults. The youngest adult male in your group openly admitted he hadn’t gone past the third grade. I’m assuming, since your children were present on our campus during typical grade school hours, that your children are homeschooled. I can only imagine their curriculum doesn’t include a drop of factual science.

At one point as your ringleader stood on his footstool, his wife came and whispered to him. The ringleader then announced to the crowd, “See, men, this is the kind of woman you need– a woman who will submit to you.” I can only imagine the amount of brainwashing that had to take place for that woman to be okay with someone talking about her like a dog. You also told me directly that I needed to find a “Godly” man, but that I would have no luck here at Radford–poor me.

Since World War II, women have been taking leadership positions in the home. When their husbands were away, they took up jobs to keep the family afloat. After their husbands returned, they realized they didn’t mind working and being breadwinners, and many men allowed and encouraged their wives to keep working. Women in 2015 aren’t submissive dolls for you to order around and impregnate every chance you get. Marriages these days aren’t defined by a man and woman in a relationship where the woman is expected to keep quiet and do what her husband says. Marriages these days consist of same-sex, mixed race, heterosexual and various other identities combined with one simple commonality: love and respect for one another.

I don’t know why you’re so insistent on coming to our campus. It’s your First Amendment right to come here to talk about whatever you want, but don’t be offended when we talk back unfavorably. The thing that’s so unique about Radford’s community is that we stand up for each other. When you called me a Jezebel, there were several young men around me who would have loved to step over your (illegal) barrier and knock you down from your footstool. By the way, you essentially calling me a whore doesn’t make you a saint, which you claimed to be several times.

If God were real, and I don’t believe he is, he’d probably not be too happy with you. Believe it or not, I used to be a good, Bible-obeying Christian who walked through life afraid to make a wrong step and displease my overlord. As I recall, the Bible calls good Christians to bring people to God. Your group is doing nothing but making people turn from the church with their middle finger in the air. Groups like yours, you Westboro Baptist wannabes, are the reason so many have chosen to turn their backs on the “kind word of the Lord.” Also, I think you missed out on the bit from the Bible that says “only he who is without sin may cast the first stone.” Because you’re not a saint, I don’t believe you have the right to invade our campus with your hate-speech to judge us for having sex and drinking beer.

You repeatedly say in your rantings that you’re here to save us, yet how many people have actually approached you seeking the Lord? I’m guessing that number is an absolute zero. Obviously your methods aren’t working, and no minds are being changed. There isn’t a place for you here, so why not move on to another audience who will be more captive?

So, please keep returning to Radford. Keep spewing your bullshit and watch as it pours in one ear and out the other. We’ll all be here with our signs in hand, holding pugs over our heads and chanting obscenities. You’re doing nothing but creating a day party for us, where we will continue to support our fellow students, be proud sinners and applaud at your departure.


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