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Thread: Phelps clan does their evil schtick at funeral for Senators' KIA nephew

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    Thumbs down Phelps clan does their evil schtick at funeral for Senators' KIA nephew

    WOLF CREEK By the time the Chinook helicopter with the huge American flag streaming beneath it passed slowly over the ranch here, the protesters and their vile signs were gone, leaving Marine Cpl. Phillip E. Baucus to be put to rest in peace.

    A July 29 suicide bombing in Iraq's Al Anbar province killed Baucus, the nephew of U.S. Sen. Max Baucus. He had been married less than a year.

    Every death is a shame, but even more so when one is so young and so intelligent and so vibrant and has so much to offer," said Anthony J. Preite, director of the Montana Department of Commerce, who attended the funeral.

    He was among more than 500 people who drove from across Montana and neighboring states to attend the funeral at the sprawling Sieben Ranch, owned by his parents, John and Nina Baucus.

    Baucus' status as a nephew of a U.S. senator also drew the attention of the Topeka, Kansas-based Westboro Baptist Church, whose members picket military funerals around the country. They believe the troops deserve to die because they fight on behalf of a government that, according to church beliefs, does not adequately condemn homosexuality.

    Other groups have started staging silent counter-protests. On Sunday, Tom and Colleen Broeker of Great Falls took part in one here at the turnoff leading to the ranch.

    "We are here to support a poor, young kid who had to die too young and whose family deserves a peaceful funeral," said Colleen Broeker.

    Across the road, four members of Westboro Baptist including 20-year-old Megan Phelps-Roper, daughter of its founder, the Rev. Fred Phelps held up signs at the turnoff leading to the ranch.

    "Thank God for dead soldiers," read one. "Soldiers Die, God Laughs," read another.

    "They have a constitutional right to be here," sighed Lewis and Clark County Sheriff Cheryl Liedle, whose deputies were out in force Sunday.

    "We're out here to make sure that nothing untoward happens to anyone, particularly to members of our community, and to keep the peace and tranquility for an honorable soldier," she said.

    A procession of pickup trucks driven by well-dressed people with stony faces kicked up clouds of dust as they sped past.

    "That's right. Don't even look at them," yelled Roy Banks, 54, of Helena, a disabled veteran. He was among about 15 people, including other veterans and members of church groups, who gathered to form a peaceful counter-protest to the Westboro Baptist contingent.

    The church's actions spurred a measure, signed into law by President Bush on Memorial Day, that prohibits protests at or near national cemeteries. Baucus voted for the Respect for America's Fallen Heroes Act, hence Westboro's presence at his nephew's funeral, according to Westboro attorney Shirley Phelps-Roper. About 26 states have enacted similar laws, she said.

    "What he got for his trouble ... is a dead nephew," Phelps-Roper, another of Phelps' daughters, said in a telephone interview.

    At 2 p.m. sharp, when the funeral was to begin, the members of Westboro Baptist packed up their signs and left. The helicopter rattled into view a few moments later, the flag fluttering from its belly.

    At the protest site, a bearded man holding a flag of his own tilted his head skyward, a tear tracing a path through the dust on his sun-reddened cheek.

    Those at the funeral remembered Baucus' more lighthearted moments. Family members who recalled a scatterbrained youngster seemed surprised when Baucus' fellow Marines spoke of a supremely well-organized recruit, according to funeral pool reporter Charles S. Johnson of Lee Newspapers.

    "He didn't become a hero when he died. He was a hero before then," said Baucus' older brother, John. He faced his brother's casket and raised his hand to his forehead.

    "I'm saluting my brother and my hero. I'll miss you."

    And the "free spirit, almost irreverence," of which his uncle, Max, spoke was on display at the end of the funeral. After the other ceremonies the 21-gun salute; the presentation of the folded flag to his widow, Kathy; the bugled "Taps" and "Amazing Grace" on a bagpipe; the doves released by the Marines there was one more, a Baucus family tradition that was Phillip's favorite.

    There was a loud bang and a lot of smoke. An anvil flew through the air, landing about 30 feet from a car. The Baucuses send anvils flying at family events and on holidays. They used to use one pound of gunpowder to accomplish the feat; Phillip insisted up on two. That's what was used Sunday.

    Some two hours after the service began, the pickups began their procession back toward the highway. As they left the ranch, they passed a sign taped to a fencepost. It bore a single word:

    "Honor."

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  2. #2
    Elite Member Sojiita's Avatar
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    Default Re: Phelps clan does their evil schtick at funeral for Senators' KIA nephew

    If there is a God it really needs to send some lightning bolts down and kill those Westboro pieces of shit!
    Don't slap me, cause I'm not in the mood!

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    Hit By Ban Bus! pacific breeze's Avatar
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    Default Re: Phelps clan does their evil schtick at funeral for Senators' KIA nephew

    I don't hear any right-wing types complaining about their actions. Their silence on Phelps and his minions has been overwhelming and speaks volumes.

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    Gold Member Delphinium's Avatar
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    Default Re: Phelps clan does their evil schtick at funeral for Senators' KIA nephew

    Actually they've been quite roundly condemned as not representing Baptists or Christians in general. They are sadly quite misguided.

    Her vocabulary was as bad as, like, whatever.

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    Hit By Ban Bus! pacific breeze's Avatar
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    Default Re: Phelps clan does their evil schtick at funeral for Senators' KIA nephew

    I haven't seen, heard or read anything about them being condemned. But I am glad that they have been.

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