Fire At Westboro Baptist Church!
Actually, it was just Fred Phelps' garage!
I'm sure that when many people read that there had been a fire at Westboro Baptist Church, they screamed "Thank God!" Sorry, but no such luck. It was only his garage and the cause of the blaze is yet unknown. Of course, Fred's trying to turn it into a media circus, but, unfortunately, not many papers/TV/radio venues are very interested. Poor Fred. One six-line mention in a local paper is not exactly media frenzy.
At this point in time, I would like to mention something about organized religion monitoring their own. Yes, we know that Westboro is not a part of any Baptist convention and that Phelps and his family have been "denounced" by some mainstream Christian churches and groups.
But when will Christian churches organize themselves - non-denominationally - not only to denounce but to counteract WBC directly? Pat Robertson has at his disposal (supposedly) up to 500 legal advisers, many of them from his own Regent University. Surely they must be able to find a way of taking away Phelps' non-profit status? Yes, he's still fighting the results of a law suit (compensatory damages of $2.5 million - reduced from $11 million.)
And why hasn't the revered James Dobson gone beyond mere hand-slapping comments? It seems to me that the best way to get Phelps entirely off the scene is for churches to protest ANY media coverage of WBC. Yes, it's censorship, but to many people who still view Westboro Baptist Church as some form of religion, it would make many people realize that the media had better things to cover (I'd personally like to see more stories of kittens stuck in trees).
In other words, the best way to treat a Phelps situation is to make them IRRELEVENT. Not getting much press for a fire on the grounds of the church compound is a start.