Former Westboro Protester Apologizes To Mother Of Slain Soldier
YAHOO.COM - A former member of the Westboro Baptist Church–a fringe group based in Topeka, Kan., that pickets soldiers' funerals–apologized to the mother of a 21-year-old soldier killed in Afghanistan on a talk show on Wednesday.
Libby Phelps Alvarez, the former Westboro member, apologized to
Sherry and Randy Wyatt for picketing the funerals of fallen soldiers
like their son on "Anderson Live" on Wednesday. Alvarez is the
granddaughter of Fred Phelps, the group's founder, and has recently left
the group. (Other members of the shrinking group have recently publicly defected as well.)
"I just feel sad ... and I'm sorry," Alvarez said. "I thought I was doing the right thing ... but I was just hurting people."
Westboro protesters set up picket lines outside funerals, holding
signs that say soldiers are killed in action as a punishment for the
existence of homosexuality. The Supreme Court ruled in 2011 that the
Westboro group has a First Amendment right to protest at the funerals.
"Our son died to ensure freedom of
assembly, to ensure freedom of speech, to ensure freedoms for those that
are white, black, gay, straight, rich, poor," Sherry Wyatt said to
Wyatt thanked her local community for showing up at her son's July 21
funeral in Columbia, Mo., to form a wall of support between her family
and any protesters. Wyatt's son, Sterling Wyatt, died July 11 in
Kandahar province from an improvised explosive device while on patrol, according to the Columbia Daily Tribune.
"We had thousands stand shoulder to shoulder in 105-degree heat," she
said. "We had businesses bringing in water, we had our American Legion
Auxiliary cooking hot dogs, we had people setting up health stations
because of the heat. That's community. That is church."
Wednesday, May 22 2013 2:57 PM EDT2013-05-22 18:57:24 GMT
KHQ.COM - Army Brigadier General Bryan T. Roberts is being investigated for adultery and for being involved in a physical altercation.More >>
KHQ.COM - Army Brigadier General Bryan T. Roberts, the Commanding General of the U.S. Army Training Center and Fort Jackson, located in Fort Jackson, S.C., is being investigated for adultery and for being involved in a physical altercationMore >>