The infamous idiots of the Westboro Baptist Church, who always know a good media-attention-whoring opportunity when they see one, are turning their homophobic attention to the entire tech sphere next month and will be bussing their band of protestors all over Silicon Valley and San Francisco on August 12. Much like the magical thinking that led them to protesting military funerals because the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were God's retribution for our nation's embracing of homosexuality, or something like that the Kansas-based church founded by the late Fred Phelps is now connecting "social media" and "media platforms" of all sorts with "mountains of false doctrine" and "paedophile [sic] grooming."
As Valleywag quips, "The enemy of these lunatics is everyone's friend," noting that having the Westboro Baptist clan touring the campuses of Facebook, Google, and Apple, and the S.F. offices of Reddit, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter is "the quickest way to make the tech industry look hella sympathetic."
Below is their rather aggressive itinerary for August 12, which they likely will not achieve, since, as a friend of SFist points out, it doesn't seem to take into consideration peninsula rush hour traffic. And, as you may recall, they enjoy drumming up press attention for their antics but don't always follow through they didn't even bother showing up the day gay marriages resumed in S.F. last June. Also note that though they suggest there's a new URL for this project, GodHatesTheMedia.com, it doesn't look like their web consultant has quite pulled the site together yet.
Some of the quotes from their official picket schedule are downright hilarious, so I'll share. It's especially funny that even though they say "Google is our friend," they will be picketing Google.
"Mark Zuckerberg uses every ounce of his ingenuity to find new ways to cram sodomite propaganda down everyone's throats."
"WBC thanks God for GooglePlex where creative minds are developed to further WBC's preachments! A search for Westboro Baptist Church on Google reveals nearly 1.2 million results at any moment. They have awesome colorful images of WBCers faithfully picketing. Although the picture of the church building definitely needs to be updated! Can you get someone on that?"
"Steve Jobs had a HUGE megaphone. Every time he called for the press, the press came running. Each of those press-calls should have been used to sing the praise of God. He wasted every one of them."
"Each time you hard-hearted rebels against God that work for Twitter abused or misused any little servant of God that came, with hat in hand to get help when your fellow rebels stole our accounts or when those that you are like-minded with came and whined about our Gospel, and you, in fine technocratic style, knocked us off the internet for a time, YOU SHOULD NOT HAVE DONE IT!"
Fred Phelps died in March not long after the church he founded had excommunicated him for, allegedly, trying to tell its members (most of whom are related to him by blood or marriage) from his deathbed that maybe he'd been wrong and they all needed to take a "kinder approach." At the same time, daughter Shirley Phelps-Roper was removed as spokesperson and ersatz head of the church, and she's been replaced by church elder Steve Drain.
We look forward to them probably not showing up at all. After all, California is far, and expensive.