Westboro protestors picket several Milwaukee area churches
Charles Benson, Shelley Walcott. Video by tmj4.comvideo
MILWAUKEE - Outside the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist in downtown Milwaukee, Picketers from the controversial Westboro Baptist Church were on one side of the street, a counter-protest on the other.
On the sidewalk near one of Milwaukee's landmark catholic churches, the daughter of inflammatory Westboro Baptist Church pastor Fred Phelps held up her signs.
"We are at odds with every other church because they are falsely so-called church," said Rebekah Phelps-Davis. "They are not the church of the Lord Jesus Christ."
The church is known for its outspoken disdain toward homosexuals.
"They have the right to protest and we have the right to counter protest," a gay counter-protestor said. "But they are spewing hate."
Kansas-based Westboro targeted seven of high profile churches in Milwaukee and the suburbs, including Hales Corners Lutheran, the Basilica of St. Josaphat on Milwaukee's south side.
"We are across the street from a Catholic pedophile whore house,"
said Phelps-Davis of St. Josaphat.
Westboro is also notorious for protesting soldier's funerals.
"They protest the people who give them the right to do what they're doing and it does not make sense," said counter-protestor Carl Witkowski.
Another counter-protester, Chris Krasovich, said "We don't believe the way that they believe and their hatred and bigotry is not welcome in our community."
Those who attend the churches largeley ignored the picketers.
St. Josaphat parishoner Joseph Jeson said, "If they want to do that, that's their right, but I'm just going to go to my church and practice my faith."
The same Westboro group plans to picket outside Miller Park and the State Capitol later this week.