A little more than a month ago, the Westboro group came to Columbia, Mo, on a weekend I was working.
That’s where I stopped writing this blog post in November 2009. For whatever reason, I didn’t want to keep writing about the “Westboro group stops here again,” Columbia Daily Tribune.
But I’ve kept coming back to my website and kept seeing this unfinished draft, so, to avoid this post smelling worse than it does, I’ll briefly finish what I started.
We all know the Phelps crew. And we probably all dislike the Phelps crew. They stomp on our flags. They say ludicrous things at sensitive times. And they do not care what we say or think about them.
We all know that. What struck me about the Phelps gang is how well they understand the game, how well they know what they doing. To the news reporters covering them, the Phelps crew was as kind as can be.
To the people shouting at them, the ones arguing and cussing to no end, the Phelps crew shouted back, unwilling to take such insults without a comeback.
We bother them because they bother us; their actions appall the good in all of us. But when we shout and pay attention to them instead of blocking their access or getting in their way like the successful anti-protesters, we play their game, the one they’ve been playing for years and the one they know better than us: the game of insults.
And we lose every time.