The Kansas-based fringe group plans to stage anti-Semitic and anti-gay demonstrations in Brooklyn and Manhattan on Monday - and counterprotests are expected.This is the same despicable church that protests US soldiers, sailors, and Marines who have died in the line of service because they consider gays to be immoral and against the Bible. Along the same lines, they consider Jews to blame for the spread of all manner of immoral and unethical actions in their view.
Fred Phelps and his band of rabid bigots will set up shop outside Jewish schools and a synagogue in Kensington and Midwood, in Brooklyn, Hebrew Union College in Greenwich Village, and a gala for a gay and lesbian support group in Tribeca.
Drew Tagliabue, executive director of Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG NYC), said his group plans to ignore Westboro's presence.
"They manufacture these controversies," he said. "They do it for publicity and attention."
Assemblyman Dov Hikind (D-Borough Park) plans to attend counterprotests in Brooklyn - where Westboro says it will preach that Jews are destined for hell.
"This is a fringe group. These guys are crazy and the schools are nervous," Hikind said.
"I have to be there. There's a lesson to be learned that there are haters out there."
Outside Chabad of Kensington on Ocean Parkway, members were horrified by Westboro's plan.
They're entitled to their opinions and to express them, but I can just as surely call them freaks who have misinterpreted the Bible and ignore the messages of love and tolerance contained therein.
Others covering the moron-a-thon: L Magazine, Gothamist, Media Matters.
As if that isn't enough, the group has taken upon itself to appropriate the Ozzy Osborne song Crazy Train, which has sent Ozzy into a tizzy. It's not without a certain amount of irony that Osborne is taking a church to task for showing intolerance and hatred.