Pious Picketing – Portraits of the Most Hated Family in America

07 Mar Pious Picketing – Portraits of the Most Hated Family in America

On 23 January 2011, The Westboro Baptist Church paid a visit to Salt Lake City in order to picket Jews, Episcopals, Mormons, the Sundance Film Festival & a high school. While photographing and filming the picket party at St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral in Salt Lake, I had a moment to speak with Fred Phelp’s daughter, Shirley Phelps-Roper.  She agreed to bring her group to my photo studio for a quick 20 minute portrait session.

The image below is of Pastor Fred Phelps’ granddaughter Jael Phelps. The images in this gallery speak to the ability of religions to convince otherwise normal people to do strange and, in this case, hateful things.

View the entire gallery and / or license images here.

To see my earlier post on their protest which features a musical mini-documentary on the WBC, click here.

23 January 2011, Salt Lake City, UT - Jael Phelps, member of Westboro Baptist Church and Granddaughter of Pastor Fred Phelps; daughter of Paulette Phelps & Jonathan Phelps. According to the church, she "Supports WBC's testimony to Doomed America in various capacities as needed."  The Westboro Baptist Church has become notorious in the United States for picketing the funerals of fallen US soldiers.  Their claim is that god is punishing America for allowing gay rights. - Photo Credit:.Dan Morris/Sipa Press (Dan Morris)

  • John
    Posted at 16:24h, 08 March Reply

    Relevant W.B.C.-related context which is worth re-posting here:


  • John
    Posted at 14:28h, 08 March Reply

    Who knows? Maybe in 10 years or so the W.B.C. will guest host S.N.L.
    Just think of the skits!… 😀

  • Christina
    Posted at 09:03h, 08 March Reply

    These have a great contrast and discomfort to them, with the big friendly smiles beside the horrible messages of hatred and bigotry. Very interesting:)

  • John
    Posted at 23:02h, 07 March Reply

    I’d like to thank you folks at the Westboro Baptist ‘Church’ for evolving your organization into the world’s most effective group for LGBT rights advancement. 😀

    BTW. Re the pedantic abomination of Leviticus:

    Google: Think homosexuality is “wrong”?


    “The United States of America should have a foundation free from the influence of clergy.” ~ George Washington

    “All national institutions of churches whether Jewish, Christian or Turkish, appear to me no other than human inventions, set up to terrify and enslave mankind, and monopolize power and profit. … My own mind is my own church.” ~ Thomas Paine ‘The Age of Reason (1794)’

    “The world is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion”. ~ Thomas Paine

  • Anti Fred Phelps
    Posted at 16:49h, 07 March Reply

    There’s a shocker. This church is so backwards on the damn bible it isn’t funny. Time to take them down America and have their protected church status revoked and have them listed as a cult!

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