On our way to Thanksgiving, we stopped in Topeka, KS. We wanted to take the kids to the Brown vs. the Board of Education National Historic Site. Our children will hopefully grow up in a world with less hate and more understanding. But it hasn’t been long enough. These issues aren still present, especially this year. I hope what they saw, heard and learned here will stay with them. That they will more fully understand the horrors of bigotry and racism.
The rangers at this historic site where absolutely wonderful. I feel like their attentiveness and desire to teach greatly enhanced our experience there.
Next we stopped at the Westboro Baptist Church. Here we added another lesson to the lessons of racism and hate…
Before coming to Topeka, we had learned a little more about the Westboro Baptist Church. What we began to understand is that the members did not form a church to promote hate. In fact, they as members truly believe that they hate no one. It is God who hates homosexuality not them. They are only delivering God’s message. Similar to the idea of “hate the sin, love the sinner.” They formed their church as a restoration to what the Bible taught. Their deepest desires are to be absolutely true to the word of God – the Bible. They are orthodox and fundamental Christians. They are attempting to follow the Bible literally and are successful in doing so. Their messages of hate are just messages they are repeating from the Bible. And so in turn, we learned to be understanding of the “haters” even thought we are appalled by the hate. We also better understand the complex and precarious nature of fundamentalism and orthodoxy.