Imagine if we took votes on what people could believe in, speak about, or who people could love? That doesn’t sound fair at all, right? People who support gay marriage know what I mean. That’s why when I read almost 250,000 people had signed a petition on the White House website to legally label the Westboro Baptist Church a hate group, I actually had a problem with the petition. While I agree with the point, Fred Phelps and his church are way off the crazy scale, just imagine if you were on the wrong side of popular opinion. As much as I dislike the Westboro Baptist Church, this petition shows why we shouldn’t let rights be put up for a popular vote – PERIOD.
Here is the text of the petition:
This group has been recognized as a hate group by organizations, such as The Southern Poverty Law Center, and has repeatedly displayed the actions typical of hate groups.
Their actions have been directed at many groups, including homosexuals, military, Jewish people and even other Christians. They pose a threat to the welfare and treatment of others and will not improve without some form of imposed regulation.
I agree with the point of the petition. Fred Phelps and his church are not good Christians – they aren’t even good people. Westboro Baptist Church should be considered a hate group based on their actions over the years.
However I have a problem with putting these things up for a vote, like this petition, even if, as in this case, it really doesn’t mean anything more than an opinion poll.
Just imagine if you, or what you believe in, was on the wrong side of one of these petitions. What if your neighbors could vote on what you can say, do, or who you could love??
That’s right, it happens now like when eleven states passed laws to ban gay marriage in 2004.
It sucked right? It was sooooo unfair right?
Then why try to do it to someone else no matter how much you despise them.
I believe in due process not a popular vote when it comes to restricting rights or shaming people or groups. If Westboro Baptist Church breaks the law then prosecute them or put them on an official hate group list but not because a large number of people want it. Do it based on their actions and current law.
Rights put up for a popular vote is the wrong kind of democracy.