“You do greatly err, not knowing the power of God; and, you do that against your own interests. It is a great kindness to have God’s prophets in your land.”
Oh no, you mean a learned prophet with a hotline to god was denied entrance to the UK because of us nasty heathen gays. I was so looking forward to them sharing their (ahem) wisdom. I guess I’ll have to visit a BNP rally now to recieve the message of kindness they wanted to share. For shame!
I trust that Peter Twatchell and the unfailingly hypocritical, facist-loving, Gay Humanists will be suitably vocal in their outrage at this announcement; otherwise they will be … erm … hypycrites :)
In the meantime, the rest of us can rejoice at this most sensible, and entirely consistent, announcement.
I think it’s a pity they are banned. Looks like the UK is now a place where freely expressing an opinion is no longer allowed. I don’t like either the Phelps or Geert Wilders but seeing as neither engage in or encourage violence they should be allowed to say whar they like.
Please do NOT refer to these people as ‘fundamentalist Christians’ – there is absolutely nothing Christian about their beliefs, behaviour or opinions.
Hurrah – another success for the slow creep of authoritarian oppression.
Our language is already censored by the insidious control of political correctnes.
If I stand outside the houses of parliament with a placard I will be arrested under terrorist legislation.
If I photograph a policeman I can be arrested.
Banning these people creates a precedent so that soon stopping all protest, and specifically anti-government protest will seem harmless and acceptable.
Please, Vulpus_rex, we’re not talking about a simple protest here. We’re talking about people inciting hatred on our streets. I wish these vile creatures were dead, but banning them from entering this country is the next best thing!
Vulpus – by that rationale you’d have no problem with a BNP rally being allowed in Basingstoke. Where do you draw the line with free speech? Nuremburg rallies?
Free speech isn’t a simple matter of “Freedom of speech = good, oppression of free speech = bad” as the freedom to oppress other groups is part of that. Anyone who’s spent enough time on these boards will understand that. That’s why freedom of speech is always a philosophical sticking point, because as well as individual freedom, it also allows one group to oppress another by disseminating hatred. It’s not all black and white. Each case needs to be evaluated on it’s own merits, but then that leads to other philosophical problems…i.e. who decides what’s acceptable?
I’m not too worried about their statement that God hates the UK. According to their nasty little site, godhatestheworld.com , God seems to hate just about every country whether they have gay rights or not. At least, the ‘God’ that exists in the Phelps family’s. I’m an agnostic, but if I wasn’t I’d be more tempted to have these people exorcised than listen to their evil hatred.
Yes, I see the point of view that says maybe we should have let them in and then shown them what decent people thought of their nasty prejudices, but there is a line for free speech and these people cross it every time they open their mouths. I don’t think they’d have come to the UK anyway – they’re cowards and bullies.
Another victory for rational, sane, secular Britain. Thank God we have a Labour government!
Phelps and his band of bigots are a waste of oxygen …
Send the Phelps family to Guantanamo.
Good on you UK border control. The enormous extremes that are a part of the Christian scene in the US are an embarrassment to the many well meaning, intelligent Christians that exist in that country and around the world.
Fred Phelps belongs in the category of insane and is delegated to the realm of crazies such as snake handlers. His obsession with homosexuality and the judgement of God reflects levels of poor mental health.
We all need to remember that the Westboro Baptist Church is nothing more than an incestuous Christian cult of about 100 members. The UK, Australia and any other country doesn’t need people like that. One wonders why they have been able to exist so long in the US. Possibly it’s the publicity we keep giving them. The gay community is many ways has created their celebrity status.
I do not view the BNP as some moral trump card that wins any discussion. The logic seems to be – I have linked your argument to the BNP, to continue to defend your position means you are supporting the BNP, you are therefore a racist, and therefore you are wrong. That process then ceases to be a discussion, and is more like cheap, psychological bullying.
As a legally constituted political party I think the BNP can hold their rallies wherever will have them. I also believe that at the same time I can turn up with a gang of my friends at the same place waving banners etc and let the BNP know they have a strong vocal opposition.
I do not understand your reference to Nurenburg Rallies – these were very carefully stage managed propaganda events. Imagine the terrible consequences for any individual who stood up at one of them and said “D’you know what? I’m not that keen on Adolf Hitler” – How then are these rallies an extreme example of Freedom of Speech gone wrong?
People won’t be so keen on restrictions on the right to protest next time they are trying to change something that they think is wrong and the police van turns up, they are bundled into the back and kept in a jail for 42 days under specious terrorist legislation.
I’ve seen this ‘people’ on TV and I’m sure their version of god even hates them, after all “God created Man in his own image”. Just allow them into the UK and there’ll be plenty of people available to make their stay a memorable one.
Vulpus – I’m glad you clarified your position. I wasn’t implying that you were pro-BNP, just that freedom of speech isn’t a straightforward issue. Admittedly Phelps doesn’t have the following Hitler did in 1938, but supposing he did? Where do you draw the line between acceptable public discourse and steamrolling all dissent? When does stressing a personal opinion about wanting to change society gain enough momentum to become a mandate to oppress any minorities you dislike. Who here is the oppressed minority? There’s a whole lot of grey areas here. Counter protesting is fine to a point, but when interest groups erode your basic human rights by mass dissemenation of propaganda and you object, what’s to stop them saying “I’m entitled to my freedom of speech?”. What’s true for us is true for them too, and that’s the knotty dilemma…
Let them come. They are pathetic. Border Agency should ban itself from entry to the UK!
Shame I was looking forward to kicking their asses
WHAT?!?! Still no pronouncement from Twatchell and the Gay Humanists? I wonder why? :)
Flapjack – does the following represent a fair summary of your questions?
If we allow absolute freedom of speech, then there is a risk that the opinions of one group of people that adversely affect the position of another group of people may gain currency and become adopted and put into practice by society at large.
So in this case, if we allow people like Phelps to have a voice, there is a risk that others may be persuaded he is correct and that at some point in the future I might have to climb back in the closet.
I believe this risk to be extremely remote, as perhaps naively I also believe the majority of the population of the UK just aren’t that stupid. Witness the relative lack of success of the extreme fringe political parties – they remain on the margins of UK politics despite lots of pulicity.
I do however believe that the public’s sensitivity to the stiffling of opposition is slowly being anaesthatised by a very controlling government.
I would say Phelps is the thin end of the wedge, however, illegal to take photographs of policemen type legislation make me think the wedge is already well established.
Come on guys, let him in, and keep him. We have had enough of him over here.
I note you inadvertently – but correctly, in my opinion – excluded YOURSELF from the list of normal people, Ivan! :p
Tolerance? I’d bet money that I’m more tolerant than you (and yes I have read Voltaire, thank you – and I understood it too….)I’ll be praying for you tonight.
Rory rory rosy…. how sad you sound when you attack a tireless civil rights fighter like Peter Tatchall. How loud have you shouted in the cause of gay rights?, and also what have Humanists done to rile you so, even gay humanists…….sounds to me that the very people you are so adamant at banning would be right up your street.Freedom of speech is just that, freedom of speech, and we must, while we abhor their speeches, fight to the death to allow them to say whatever they have to say. Otherwise we are no better.The moronic Jackie Smith is floundering about in the dark recesses of her own head and will never allow dissent. It is only a matter of time until the Soviet UK is in full flow. Then even your pitiful meanderings will be enough to land you in a police Re-Education center. Then you can call for a ban all you like……………These so called border police are nothing more than the first vestiges of facism and we will all suffer at their hands in the future. Mark My Words
For those cruel, uninformed people attacking the campaigners Peter Tatchell, OutRage! and the Gay and Lesbian Humanists – Brett Lock from GALHA and OutRage! has told me in regard to Westboro Baptist Church: “We must be careful about giving these idiots free publicity. They
pulled the same stunt 5 years ago – claimed they were coming to the UK, which generated protests, got loads of publicity, and of course they never left the USA!”.
Peter Tatchell and OutRage! and GALHA work very hard to combat the type of hatred. Just because Pink News hasn’t printed any statement that doesn’t mean to say we don’t care.
Ivan – Yes thankyou I have read Voltaire. Perhaps not all of it. You wouldn’t be a Voltaire reading fascist by any chance would you?
Ivan- Well you’ve already told us we’re living in a degraded environment and given a full round of ad-hominem insults to a bunch of folks you barely know, sounds like you’re pretty highly strung for a humanist.
Since what time you, “Flapjack”, decame “we”? Are you became schizo just now or being as such long time ago? I do not insulting anybody and only responding on comments from some stupids. Society full of stupids, unfortumnately. Yah, they are degraded and polluting the environment. But degraded creatures have possibility for enlightenment, and this the reason to communicated with them in order to help them out, if they wish, from their degradation. Sometimes it is necessary to say to the stupid the truth about his stupidity in order to make him strive for the intelligence.
Sorry for some mistakes. I was in the hurry to write…
Its a very good that the government has actually listened to us on these issues. But don’t forget that the goverment grants asylum and collaborates with extremely homophobic muslim clerics and christians.
Ivan- Take ten deep breaths, then write. How precicely am I and the OTHERS you insulted – (yes there were others, I’m not using a multiple personality disorder) degraded and polluting the environment?
Ivan, you are probably best keeping your opinions to yourself if all you are prepared to do is ridicule anybody that doesn’t see things from your perspective.
It’s quite simple: we have laws in this country that prevent the incitement of hatred. WBC made it quite clear from the outset that they intended to travel to the UK to incite the hatred of LGBT people. THAT is why our government has done the right thing and banned these freaks from entering the country in the first place.
We also have laws which outline that a public order offence can simply be a protest “which causes offence to somebody”. It is a prosecutable offence. I don’t think you understand that WE DO NOT HAVE FREEDOM OF SPEECH in this country. You cannot open your mouth, spew filth, and not expect any repercussions.
It is quite stupid that these laws we have created are sometimes enforced, but more often not. But you cannot possibly be up in arms when they are enforced.
Maybe you don’t fully understand the implications of allowing this man and his cult into this country – and not only that but the message it would send out if the government didn’t intervene. This is much more complicated than screaming “fascists”.
Just to clarify where things stand at the limits of free speech… I found this helpful summary on Wikipedia-
It seems Voltaire wasn’t the only writer concerned with the issue.
I wish we could ban them from our own country. :-(
is that just typical Slavic charm? – or is your medication wearing off again?!!!
A little perspective is called for, I rather think. Personally, I find WBC far too amusing to be really vile. How is it possible to take seriously a band of fantasists who describe the Crown Prince of Sweden as looking “slutty and gay,” and call Elizabeth II the “Queen of fags”?
They’re hardly a serious threat to anyone. Indeed, the only real harm they do, so far as I can see, is giving gay people an entirely misguided concept of what Christian homophobia really looks like. They are an engaging caricature of old-school hellfire bigotry, but these days the people you want to watch out for are the ones who croon platitudes about loving the sinner and hating the sin.
If only because of their extravagant eccentricity, I’m rather affronted that WBC have been banned from the country — I fail to see how half a dozen dizzy Kansans drunk on self-importance could possibly pose a credible threat (not that I actually believe they planned to come here in the first place, but I’d be pleased as punch if they did). I’m almost inclined to picket the theatre myself. More ominously, it is a little alarming that two controversial figures (however unpleasant their views) should be banned from the country in one week. The idea that Jacqui Smith gets to decide what ideas are expressible in this country and which are not frankly gives me screaming night-sweats.
No one living with hate may go to heaven
Actually rjb – I’m coming round to your way of thinking here. Although their politics is vile, and from his use of vernacular it’s safe to say Ignat perscribes to it, I don’t honestly think anyone from outside Westboro takes these clowns seriously. They are rather more of a flailing ranting freakshow exhibit… and a bad advertisement for homeschooling.
If they want to make muppets of themselves, bring it on.
Ivan, my “degraded environment”?? I look after and educate the disabled,people with special needs and those with severe behavioural problems… Or maybe your warped interpretation of the Bible tells you to hate THEM too?
I suggest you go back under your bridge, think about the vitriol and ignorance you are displaying, and ask yourself why you feel so compelled to attack people here. Your listing of the names of posters was particularly disturbing to me as a professional because it’s a sign of an aggressive, impulsive nature. I bet my psychological training that I could pick you out of a room of ‘normal’ people.
And you obviously don’t get my comment about you excluding yourself from the list of normal people – if you walk into a room and say “Only those two people are normal here”, you have – whether you intended to or not – excluded yourself from the list of normal people. Get it? It’s about seeing yourself in the world, rather than as the centre of it.
Hey, maybe that’s something you should practise in ALL areas of your life? I’m sure you won’t listen to a word I say because there’s no persuading some people, but I shall continue to pity you, stuck in your hatred and stewing in your own venom, unable to see the beauty of the world in all its variety.
@Patrick Peter Twatchell, POUTrage and the Gay Humanists don’t work tirelessly for anything other than their own very blinkered points of view. They are self-appointed and don’t give a shit about the communities they vacuously claim to speak for. Their sole purpose is to try to force those communities to agree with their twisted view of the world and that is why they are all generally viewed as being totally irrelevant, hypocritical and a laughing stock. We owe nothing to any of them.
@DavidQueer I pitty you for being so uninformed and out of touch. When did anyone ever listen to a peon like Brett Lock? Especially when what he is saying about WBC is made so hypocritical by what he was saying about that Dutch racist. I truly pity you for both listening to him and acting as a conduit for his verbal diarrhoea.
Banning people – especially the obnoxious and lunatic – from entering the country because you don’t agree with what they say does far more harm to society than they ever could.
Not only is this ban wrong, it’s very, very wrong.
‘Dutch racist’? really Rory, give me any evidence at all of racism by Geert Wilders.
Congratulations to Peter Tatchell for consistently speaking out on behalf of the oppressed. His latest statement infact, just shows up the stupidity of Islamofascism-enablers like the extreme left wingnuts Socialist Worker and others, who fawn over Hamas, while they go around kneecapping and murdering any Palestinians who disagree with them. Maybe Rory would prefer it if a totally unlelected body like the muslim council of Britain was left to speak for all people of Pakistani and Arab origin, and women, gays and non-believers from these communities can suffer in silence, while the PC brigade in whitehall turn a blind eye to ‘voluntary’ sharia kangaroo court judgements, honour killings and abductions. (how many women would ‘voluntarily’ ignore the advice of an imam’s judgement?)
As for the Phelps lunatic asylum sect, they never planned to come in the first place, and must be laughing at all the free exposure that hysterical people have generated within the gay community. I’d rather see the gay community become more activist and confrontational, because there are plenty of pentecostal and evangelical preahers in this country with views pretty simiilar to WBC. 24% of the UK population would welcome the recriminalisation of homosexuality.
So next gay pride, tell these placard waving nutcases what you think of their views and their ludicrous texts. And challenge the ludicrous Gay & Lesbian Christian movement who whine about ‘religiophobic’ atheists (an oxymoron if ever there was one), to justify why they venerate archaic texts that carry the mandate for and incitement to antisemitism, xenophobia, homophobia, oppression of women and slavery. Unless they are publicly prepared to rip out Deuteronomy 18, or Leviticus 13 for example, let’s see how they do arguing against Phelps on theological grounds, since WBC back everything up with bible quotes.
Above all, if you value your freedoms, stop treating religious beliefs with ‘respect’, and stop this relativist, Chomskyite garbage about secular democracy being just one alternative. And it’s people like GAHLA, the National Secular Society and BHA whose stand against the theocrats stands out like a diamond in a PC dunghill.
Peter Tatchell came every year to my universty LGB action week, he stood up and made a fool of himself with speeches that made the most preposterous and outrageous claims. I thought him an embarrasment to the community.
I forgave all of that when I saw him pounce on that tyrant Robert Mugabe and try to make a citizen’s arrest. He does at least stand up for what he believes in and isn’t afraid of direct action.
Ignat, perhaps you should engage your brain instead of mindlessly parrotting the Bible at us.
If you knew anything at all about the history of the Early Church, you would know that the Apostolic generation of Christians (including, of course the Apostles themselves) were expecting the imminent, apocalyptic arrival of the Kingdom of God.
That means they were expecting the “End of this World” in the first century.
The Kingdom never arrived. They were utterly wrong. They were deluded.
Yet, like their Hebrew forebears, they had the blasphemous audacity to put words into the mouth of God. False words. Lies.
They thought they could work God like a puppet. Like so many religionists today. Like you.
Gandhi rightly said: “There is no God higher than truth”
(If there is a God) those promoters of falsehood & delusion will get a very rude shock…
Think about it.
great result from the UK
I dont see the point of the US free speech – if you have got something nasty to say – keep it for yourself !!!!
Counter-protest was alright. By turning out even in the absence of WBC we effectively fired a warning shot. We showed that any such picket in the UK will be met with overwhelming opposition.
I’d consider that a success.
No Don’t let theses evil Westbore Baptist church come to the UK. As they are not true Christians and they mock the Lord to the People Where it says in the Bible that the Lord love everyone even thoses who purcute him. Fred Phelps is an evil Man and as a Pastor he will one day have to answer to God. Sp i urgentue you and the Govenment to Keep theses evil people out of our Country.