The father of a Marine whose funeral was picketed by anti-gay protesters from a fundamentalist Kansas church filed an invasion-of-privacy suit against the
It is believed to be the first lawsuit brought by a soldier’s family against Westboro Baptist Church of Topeka, Kan., whose members routinely demonstrate
at military funerals around the country.
Albert Snyder of York, Pa., the father of Lance Cpl. Matthew A. Snyder is seeking unspecified damages. The younger Snyder, 20, died
March 3 after an accident in the Al Anbar province of Iraq. He was buried in Westminster, Md.
“We think it’s a case we can win because anyone’s funeral is private,” Snyder lawyer Sean Summers said. “You don’t have a right to interrupt someone’s private
Members of Westboro say the military deaths in Iraq are God’s punishment for America’s tolerance of gays. They typically carry signs with slogans such as
“God Hates Fags” and “Thank God for IEDs,” a reference to the roadside bombs used by insurgents.
The church has inspired dozens of state laws banning funeral protests, including a Maryland law that did not go into effect until after Snyder’s memorial.
Shirley Phelps-Roper, a spokeswoman for the small congregation, said it is the first time Westboro has been sued by a soldier’s family. “We were exercising
our First Amendment rights,” she said.
I’m glad the father is taking a stand in this way.
For God’s sake, someone needs to.
These people are loose cannons who need to be fought against at all costs.
I don’t care what your views are, protesting at funerals is totally inappropriate.
That’s why you have rallies.
Then, we can film you, post the videos all over the ‘Net and the media, and call you crazy and laugh at you.
That’s us exercising *our* first amendment right.
HT Sto The ACLU.