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Commentary :: GLBT/Queer
fred phelps in mass: what are we gonna do about it?
23 May 2005
http://boston.indymedia.org/newswire/display/37029/index.php

Right there. It has a whole list of his itinerary. (yup, this is the guy from godhatesfags.com).

Turnout for the anti-nazi action earlier this month was great; I'm a little dismayed to not be hearing anyone getting ready to present a similar reaction to this guy, who is no more of a fringe character than billy roper and whose platform is no less virulent. Heterosexism is as much part of modern fascism as anti-Semitism if not more so.

I unfortunately won't be around to organize, but I hope someone does.

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Agreed
23 May 2005
although i don't think it would be appropriate to confront this as 'antifa', i definitely hope other boston-A's will come out against this guy.

someone just needs to put out a call to action for it.
Re: fred phelps in mass: what are we gonna do about it?
23 May 2005
i'm not so great at writing calls to action, but a large number of progressive and radical students will be showing up to the event at brookline high school. if someone writes a call, maybe focus on specific places rather than a general, since he is going to be in like 20 places.
Re: fred phelps in mass: what are we gonna do about it?
23 May 2005
I'm not so sure I'd say it'd be inappropriate to go as antifascists in solidarity with protestors--if there's a tactically sensible plan. On one hand, WBC is even more fringe than a lot of the nazi groups. On the other hand--god damn, have you seen their politics?

** "All nations must immediately outlaw sodomy (homosexuality) & impose the death penalty!"
** "Thank god for Sept. 11 - A small foretaste of God's wrath against a nation that embraces sin - Shall there be evil in a city, and the Lord hath not done it? (Amos 3:6)"
** "So, the word "fag" refers to people who sin like the Sodomites did. It not only refers to homosexuals, but also refers to people who support homosexuals (see Romans 1:32), and people who engage in all other relatively "lesser" perversions (like impenitent premarital sex and adultery, including the adultery of all of you divorced-and-remarried "born again Christians")."
** "The only true Nazis in this world are fags."
** "[T]he only true Jews are Christians. The rest of the people who claim to be Jews aren't.... As evidence of their apostasy, the vast majority of Jews support fags."

Phelps and co. are crazy enough to alienate a lot of right-wingers with their thank-god-for-the-space-shuttle-disaster type political lines, but they're also a vanguardist fragment of a much larger theocratic movement in the US. They call the religious right "in general, lukewarm cowards."

By the way, known local white-supremacists stood with them and held their signs the last time they came here (to Cambridge, last year). We can say hi to them too.
Re: fred phelps in mass: what are we gonna do about it?
23 May 2005
"although i don't think it would be appropriate to confront this as 'antifa'"

why? as q.a. #1 points out , homophobia is even more crucial to modern american fascism than anti-semitism was. talkin christian fundamentalist, 700 club, john ashcroft, flushing qurans down the toilet style fascism and their sympathizers in high places, most of whom strongly support israel. if boston can muster 100s to confront those white revolution jokers surely we can do better for this.
Re: fred phelps in mass: what are we gonna do about it?
23 May 2005
I have the feeling that none of the folks with antifa in their name have any idea what fascism really is. Somehow they have the idea that anyone who's politics on race, gender, or sexuality are different than theirs (and yes, phelps is crazy) is a fascist. Sure, fight racism and homophobia, i'll be right there with you, but don't call it fascism, and don't ignore the real fascists if you do.
Re: fred phelps in mass: what are we gonna do about it?
23 May 2005
Instead of bitching about whether this is an Antifa matter or not, how about we organize?
As for Lowell and Dracut, I've contacted many people, as so have others who are involved in various leftist organizations. On that note, let's also not turn this into another "Green, Red, Anarchist, Progressive" bitch fest. Everyone needs to come together for this one, if only for an hour or so. As an antiauthoritarian, I don't believe anyone should "take charge" of a demo, but rather get everyone from their respective groups/communities, and be there to give this guy hell.
Hah?
24 May 2005
Please define "heterosexism?? Is it on par with the "gay agenda"?
Re: fred phelps in mass: what are we gonna do about it?
24 May 2005
Heterosexism is the assumption that everyone is heterosexual until stated otherwise. It's not as extreme as homophobia--prejudice against homosexuals. People who have heterosexist assumptions aren't necessarily prejudiced against gay people--in some cases, they can be very supportive of gay rights. It's just that they carry around the unthinking assumption that someone is straight until they've been corrected. I think it's something that even the most gay friendly person falls into occasionally--hell, I've seen gay people fall into it. The problem is that heterosexism can create a somewhat alienating atmosphere. Think of the whole idea of coming out of the closet--you have to announce you're gay, because otherwise people will assume you're straight. Well, why should we make assumptions about others' sexual orientation? I hope this sheds some light on your question.
"heterosexism"
24 May 2005
I was using this word to refer to homophobia, heteronormativism and the whole complex of assumptions and attitudes directed at any sexuality other than het , in our culture.
Stand Up To Anti-Gay Bigots! Protest Fred Phelps June 5th!
24 May 2005
STAND UP TO ANTI-GAY BIGOTS AND DEFEND GAY MARRIAGE!
PROTEST FRED PHELPS!

FRED PHELPS WANTS TO BRING HIS ANTI-GAY HATEFUL MESSAGE TO BROOKLINE HIGH'S GRADUATION ON JUNE 5, 2005. WE HAVE TO ORGANIZE TO STOP THIS DISGUSTING NUT JOB WHO PROTESTED MATTHEW SHEPARD'S FUNERAL AND IS NOW ON A MISSION TO DISTURB HIGH SCHOOLS ACROSS THE COUNTRY WITH PROMINENT GLBT GROUPS WITH HIS HATE-FILLED PREACHING. HE TARGETS MASSACHUSETTES BECAUSE ONLY HERE HAVE SAME-SEX MARRIAGES BEEN LEGALIZED.

IF LEFT UNOPPOSED, PHELPS' HATEFUL WORDS CAN ONLY INSPIRE HATE CRIMES AGAINST GAYS IN OUR COMMUNITY AND BUILD CONFIDENCE IN THOSE WHO WANT TO HARM AND SILENCE THOSE WHO WANT EQUALITY FOR ALL. IN ORDER TO PREVENT THIS AND DEFEND THE GAINS WE WON THROUGH THE LEGALIZATION OF GAY-MARRIAGE, WE URGENTLY NEED TO ORGNAIZE NOW.

PROTEST PHELPS: SUNDAY, JUNE 5, 11:30am, BROOKLINE HIGHSCHOOL
HELP ORGANIZE: Come to a planning meeting to help organize the June 5th protest this SATURDAY, MAY 28, 4pm, at Northeastern University, Dodge Hall, Room 450 (Take the Green Line to 'Northeastern')

FOR MORE INFORMATION: e-mail protestphelps (at) yahoo.com or 781 551 6649
Re: fred phelps in mass: what are we gonna do about it?
25 May 2005
no but seriously why isn't this an antifa matter? why not, uh, just confront it as antifa?

i don't really understand. phelps is fringe, but anti-homosexual tendencies, including violent ones, are not, and i'm sensing a pretty clear rise of homophobic people and groups in this country.

i don't see why it would be innappropriate for any group to protest phelps, let alone the anti-fascist group
Re: fred phelps in mass: what are we gonna do about it?
25 May 2005
Nobody disagrees that Fred Phelps is a lunatic and a jackass who needs to be opposed. The major disagreement here is on methods.

I don't want to see a repeat of the Billy Roper protest, with the pigs protecting the assholes and the chief jackass telling the mainstream media that it was a success.

I'm going to make a couple of suggestions, and if you agree, put the word out. If you want to criticize my suggestions, more power to you. Criticism is a fundamental ingredient of a solid education. We learn by trial and error.

1) Show up in mass numbers at the Brookline event, but if you can make it, hit up Lexington, Lowell, and Dracut as well. It's better to have 2,000 at Brookline High and 100 at each of the pther places than a mere 300 at each event. Concentrate on numbers, one mass showing and several smaller ones.

2) Leave your personal agenda at home for this one. No socialist, communist, anarchist, anti-zionist, anti-fascist, workers' rights, or immigrants' rights propaganda. Those are all important topics, but the point to make is anti-GLBT discrimination. I promise that there will be plenty of other opportunities to get that message out. However, we need to focus on the matter at hand.

3) Less cute little rhyming chants, more street theatre. Let's face it, "hey hey ho ho insert cause here" is a little too cliche. If you have lots of good street theatre, the mainstream journalists will be so busy running around and trying to get it all in, they'll forget to take a picture of phelps or to give him an interview. Get creative, have fun. Come up with something that's eye-catching, provocative, and original. Give the MSM something more to write than just "A bunch of people waved signs and rainbow flags while chanting some inane bullshit and Fred Phelps said that he had alot of fun."

I don't get very many opportunities to look up indymedia, so please have the courtesy to email me any criticism of my suggestions.

Solidarity! Power to the People! and all the rest of that commie drivel.