By Jenny Beck
The Westboro Baptist Church visited sunny California this February with picket signs and a determination to make a difference in the community. And indeed they did, at 8:30 a.m. on a Monday morning. While students slept through their alarms and stood in line for B-Plate smoothies, the protesters stood their ground a mile away near the Public Affairs building.
The twenty students who were actually awake made their way over to campus with signs of their own, outnumbering WBC twenty to six. We’ve all taken a history class. Women’s suffrage, Martin Luther King, the Boston Tea Party – they all got it wrong. Quality over quantity. Clearly an intimidating mob of six with clipart posters is the best approach to making a statement. While Dr. Eggman held up his “Sin and Shame” poster for all to see, the morning commuters feared the chaos occurring at the university. For a campus so flooded with human rights advocates, it is both impressive and horrifying that they gathered the attention of a whopping twenty students.
Anyone interested in serious political discourse should take a look at the WBC website. In 2008, a twelve-year-old boy with an iFunny account created their classy URL, godhatesf*gs.com – yes, this really is their domain. The site contains quality doctrinal information for the interested fire and brimstone researcher who seeks poorly developed interpretations of the Bible. LGBTQ+ members, military veterans, even the Easter Bunny – any individual is welcome to sink into a cozy chair and listen to the prophecy of their coming destruction.
The WBC members do not receive enough credit for their redfaced stubbornness. Their church is located across the state in Kansas, where morale has skyrocketed after a recent superbowl win. With the powers of Jesus and American football on their side, these brave souls traveled across the country to share their beliefs with young, sinful college students. Perhaps they sought a break from the cold, or a nice beach to relax after a tiresome thirty minutes on Hilgard. Still, it seems a small price to pay. Certainly a three hour flight to California is a worthy journey for the select few who won’t be joining the rest of us on the trip to hell.
Universities across the Southern California region felt the significance of this movement as WBC sent a few brave souls to our USC rivals. On the other end of the unholy city, Trojans laced up their Yeezy’s and confronted six more WBC heroes, including one unfortunate child who missed his hundredth day of school pizza party for this righteous occasion.
Although the Westboro Baptist Church was heavily criticized for its outrageous worldviews, these protesters stood as a symbol of democracy by exercising their freedom of speech, even though literally nobody was listening. One must wonder whether James Madison simply could not fathom the upcoming mental decline of some modern idiots when he wrote free speech into the constitution. Still, the WBC members knew they were doing righteous work. They were spotted at dinner that night, celebrating their noble success with mozzarella sticks and root beer at the local Applebee’s.