Fred Phelps is trying to get a monument built to Matthew Shepard's death in Casper, WY:
In response to Casper's new historical monument plaza, an anti-gay pastor in Kansas has renewed his request to have his own monument in town.
In a letter to the Casper City Council on Monday, the Rev. Fred Phelps of the Westboro Baptist Church restated his intentions to build a monument in Casper, the home of slain gay University of Wyoming student Matthew Shepard.
Fred tried to do this a few years ago, and the only thing I remember about the incident is that The Advocate's article on the matter quoted Casper city manager Thomas Forslund, who was the father of a friend of mine who was dating another friend of mine, and I felt really famous. Bet you all didn't know I was hanging out with celebrities before I started working on this blog, haha.
Anyway, Phelps's monument would be full of hate, as is his MO:
Phelps said he would be willing to make his monument resemble the six others and would include a picture of Shepard and the engraving: "MATTHEW SHEPARD, Entered Hell October 12, 1998, at age 21, in Defiance of God's Warning: 'Thou shalt not lie with mankind as with womankind; it is abomination.' Leviticus 18:22."
It sounds like the city will reject the idea again:
Mayor Kate Sarosy said she had not received Phelps' letter Monday evening and said she would speak with the city attorney and the other council members.
"Mr. Phelps' message is full of hate and not in the spirit of the monument plaza," Sarosy said.
I'm sure they'll howl freedom of speech, but until they build a monument to my life in that town, Fred's just going to have to accept that not just anyone can decide what sort of monument gets built in Casper, Wyoming.