WBBM780 (Chicago): (h/t OK)
An anti-gay religious group known for protesting at the funerals of American soldiers killed in Iraq is planning on appearing at services for those killed on Monday as well.
The Topeka, Kan.-based Westboro Baptist Church (WBC), which is not affiliated with any national Baptist organization, announced plans to protest at victims' funerals only hours after 32 people were killed in the worst mass shooting in U.S. history. They also may protest at other events on the Virginia Tech campus.
The organization, founded and led by Fred Phelps, believes the United States has condemned itself to destruction by accepting homosexuality and other "sins of the flesh." Phelps' daughter, Shirley Phelps-Roper, said the Virginia Tech teachers and students who died on Monday brought their fate upon themselves by not being true Christians.
"The evidence is they were not Christian. God does not do that to his servants," Phelps-Roper said. "You don't need to look any further for evidence those people are in hell."
Cho Seung-Hui, the Virginia Tech student responsible for the killings who took his own life after the shootings, was sent by God to punish those he killed, and America as a whole, for moral decline, said Phelps-Roper, while adding that she believes Cho is also in hell for violating God's commandment to not kill.
"He is in hell," Phelps-Roper said. "But he was also fulfilling the word of God."
The level of hatred necessary to act this way towards any human being, but especially families that have been through such a horrifying experience is unspeakable in its evil. Jesus weeps for you, Phelps.