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It is morally permissible for people to protest at the funeral of any member of the WBC.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/17/2014 Category: Religion
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 556 times Debate No: 49331
Debate Rounds (4)
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Votes (1)




It is morally permissible for people to protest at the funeral of any member of the Westboro Baptist Church once they die.

First Round is acceptance. Second Round is for arguments. Third Round is rebuttals. Fourth Round is further rebuttals, explanations, and conclusions.


I accept your debate.
Debate Round No. 1


Great. Thanks for joining. Here is my argument.

The Westboro Baptist Church is one of the most inconsiderate, fundamentalist, close-minded groups of people that currently operate in the entire world. They show up on the world stage and wave signs around that say incredibly vulgar things like, "God Hates Gays" "Thank God For AIDS" "Thank God For IEDS" "God Killed Your Sons" "Pray For More Dead Soldiers" etc. I'm sure you get the point. Whats even more disturbing about their protests is that they do them at the funerals of soldiers and publicly known homosexuals. How inconsiderate and horrible of a person must you be to shove your fundamentalist dogma into the lives of people when they are going through such emotionally difficult times?

Homosexuals take the brunt of these villian's abuse. They exploit specific passages from the Bible and use them to justify their misguided crusades. I wonder how many young people have cut themselves or even committed suicide under the tyranny of fundamentalism spearheaded by the ignorant fools of the WBC. It is heartbreaking to say the least.

Soldiers also take a large swath of the WBC's attention as well. What a horrible and difficult time it must be for the families and friends of our brave soldiers as they do the bidding of the leaders we the people elect. This is no argument about whether or not it is just for our soldiers to be fighting and building infrastructure in other countries. This argument is about the insanity that surrounds the reasoning the WBC uses in order to protest these soldier's funerals.

Even though the WBC gets a lot of attention because of the context of their demonstrations, they will not win. We will not let them disempower people who might be scared of identifying as homosexual, and we will not let them disgrace and abuse our brave young people and their families who sacrifice their time, energy, and even sometimes their lives for our greater good here at home. At every WBC demonstration there have been people who have made their own signs saying admirable things like "Support LGBT" "Support our troops" "God loves sinners" "God forgive WBC" "He that has no sin cast the first stone." It is messages like these that show the world how we whole heartedly disagree with the WBC and find their short sighted, close minded, and heartless messages about Christianity and Jesus to be abhorrent.


First, let me make it very clear that I absolutely despise the West Boro Baptist Church. For me, this is not a referendum on the actions of the West Boro Baptist Church. I would completely agree that they deserve to be picketed at their funerals for all of the pain they have cause. But the question is, are we to sink to their level? In addition, would it not just bring more attention to their cause if we are to picket their funeral? Should we not show restraint even to the most horrid of people to show that we are above them, and that we are fighting hate with love on this Earth?
Debate Round No. 2


The question zkolodny asks to me is basically, would protesting at the funerals of the WBC just be sinking to their level?

I would say not necessarily, and in this case no. Protesting has been the main point of mass expression in American culture since the United States began. Whenever people want to make a point about something, they protest. Take for instance the Anti-Vietnam protests, or the Civil Rights protests, or even the recent Tea Party and Occupy protests. People protest because they want to make a point. In the case of the WBC that point is, it is ok to be gay. You are not going to Hell. The point is also that we support the soldiers (even though we don't necessarily support the war).

But what if we act indifferent? What if we do nothing? Is this even possible? Is it possible to be emotionless when a person says that your dead brother or sister is in Hell because of their service? Is it possible to be cold as stone in the face of a sign that says, "All Gays Go To Hell" when you in fact are gay? I say no. We are all humans who have emotions, and being indifferent to such hateful people is unhealthy and unnatural. I say we can stand by our fellow people who are being emotionally harassed by lunatics who hijack Christianity. I say we can tell the WBC and the world what we really think and we don't have to feel ashamed.

Now I want to add a small addendum. I understand that there are some members of the WBC who are not necessarily as active or have the freedom to decide for themselves if they want to identify with their family's beliefs. I'm talking about the children and young people. I don't think we should protest their funerals if they were to die tragically. However I think it is right and just to protest the funeral of their leader, Fred Phelps, because of all the hate he has spewed and cult he has garnered from his enthusiasm.


I am not arguing that we should not protest the WBC. In fact, I believe that there should be counter protests to their protests to their protests (if the families of the deceased wish so). I also believe we should protest their offices and their homes. However, to protest their funerals is a clear sign of vengeance, as we are just doing to them what they did to us. What does that achieve?
Debate Round No. 3


"I am not arguing that we should not protest the WBC."
"we are just doing to them what they did to us. What does that achieve?"

Your points are in conflict here. You think it is ok to protest against the WBC, yet at the same time you don't think that doing the same protests that the WBC are doing is a good thing? I seriously don't understand your point. They treat hundreds of families with no respect at their funerals, yet of course you think its ok to have protests at the same funerals the WBC is protesting? If protesting at a funeral is not right, then obviously protesting against the WBC at a funeral isn't right.

I have made clear and concise arguments throughout my message. Zkolodny has tied my thought process up in knots by claiming its good to protest at soldiers and gay people's funerals, but its not ok to protest at WBC funerals. How is that logical?

No, its not logical. I say it is imperative that we demonstrate to the WBC that we support gay people and military personel. In fact its our duty as human beings to tell these misguided people that they are completely and utterly wrong in their beliefs.

Thanks for debating with me Zkolodny


Let me make it clear that I never claimed that the WBC's actions of protesting at funerals were good. I have made my position clear that protesting the WBC's offices, their protests, and their houses was an ethical means of protesting the WBC. My point is that protesting the WBC's official's funerals was pure revenge, unproductive, and unethical. In reality, I have a lot in common with my debate opponent. We both despise the WBC and wish to protest them. It is just the means we disagree on. I believe we should protest their actions, but not their funerals, which would constitute pure revenge. Thank you for debating with me.
Debate Round No. 4
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Vote Placed by Wylted 2 years ago
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro never got around to explain why protesting at a WBC funeral was morally permissible. The closest he came is saying it should be protested, because he protested funerals. If pro is saying it is immoral to protest at funerals so we should protest at his funeral, it seems contradictory. Pro pretty much admitted protesting at funerals is wrong and though he tried to justify it in this circumstance, he still failed to show why it was morally permissible. The straw man arguments at the end, didn't help pro's case either.