Church promotes hate, causes student uproar
April 17, 2008
It is no secret that I am very liberal in my political views. It is also no secret that I accept everyone as they are. Another thing that I don’t hide is the fact that I am not a very religious person.
I was raised Catholic. I attended Sunday school classes until I was in middle school, but I was never confirmed nor do I attend church regularly.
I have not retained a lot of what I learned there but I do remember the emphasis on God’s infinite love for all of his creations. I believe that God creates all of his children with love and with purpose.
I also believe that He made us all different to test us, to test our compassion, our tolerance and our ability to treat one another as equals.
Last week, 1,000 UW-Stout students rallied against people from the Westboro Baptist Church when they showed up with signs and saying that the students who died in the fire were killed because America is evil.
The church has two Web sites that are dedicated to how much hate God has for us. They claim that “God hates fags” and that “God hates America.”
What the Westboro Baptist Church says about God hating “fags” is not only hurtful; it’s totally backwards. God doesn’t hate. He loves. He loves all his children equally.
I applaud Stout for standing up to the fools who think that they have the right to judge other people as if they were the Almighty himself.
Why do people feel the need to judge one another? I know I do it too but it’s not like I make a Web site about how completely disgusting Ugg boots are or how lame and outdated American Idol is.
Everyone is entitled to their opinion but they are not entitled to attack other people for being who they are, believing what they believe or making the decisions that they make.
I sincerely hope that every campus across America takes Stout’s example and forces ignorant people like those from the Westboro Baptist Church off of their campuses and out of their cities and towns until they have nowhere to go.
We need to stand together against hatred and ignorance. We need to stand together for acceptance. We need to stand together for peace.
Let Westboro Baptist Church and others like them know that we hear what they’re saying and that we disagree.
Let them know that what they say is wrong.
Megan Leoni is a student at UW-River Falls.