God Hates Fags church will picket lesbian student’s graduation
The Westboro Baptist Church has announced it will picket the graduate of lesbian student Constance McMillen, who challenged her school’s anti-gay policy.
The Kansas-based church, which has achieved notoriety for picketing the funerals of dead soldiers, is vehemently homophobic.
In a press release, it said: “[We] will picket the graduation of Itawamba Agricultural High School to remind the parents, teachers and students of this nation that God said ‘Thou shall not lie with mankind, as with womankind, it is abomination’.
“This generation has been raised to believe that they can live for the devil and still go to heaven, that God has no standards and the biggest lie of all – that God loves everyone.”
Ms McMillen took her school to court last month after she was barred from attending prom with her girlfriend.
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The judge ruled the school had violated her right to freedom of expression but did not force it to reinstate the cancelled prom, as an alternative “inclusive” one was said to have been organised.
However, the 18-year-old student said earlier this month that she and her girlfriend had been sent to a “fake” event with only a handful of other students, while her classmates enjoyed an event held at another venue.
Westboro Baptist Church is currently in a legal fight with the father of a dead soldier whose funeral it picketed.
Albert Snyder’s son Matthew, a marine, was killed in Iraq and his funeral was held in 2006 in Maryland.
However, the church picketed the funeral with banners saying “God hates fags” and “Thanks God for dead soldiers”.
Mr Snyder originally sued the church for $5 million for invasion of privacy and emotional distress.
But when a lower court ruled their freedom of speech was protected by the First Amendment, Mr Snyder was told he must pay their legal fees of $16,500 (£11,000).
He has now decided to challenge the decision in the Supreme Court to win the original $5 million reward.