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Fred Phelps, Westboro Baptist church founder, dies at 84

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On March 20 USA Today reports that the founder of the Westboro Baptist Church, Fred Phelps, has died at the age of 84.

He has been in declining health for some time, and a family member told local media that he passed late Wednesday night in the hospice care he has been staying at. Phelps was known for his hate mongering and protesting at military funerals, and gay and Jewish events.

Phelps was also disbarred from the Kansas state courts in 1979 after badgering a witness that the state Supreme Court felt was a personal vendetta. Because of Phelps harassing antics and picketing funerals George W. Bush enacted a law in 2006 that banned protests up to an hour before a military funeral and all protesters had to remain at least 100-feet away. In 2012, President Obama took it a step further and made picketing at military funerals against the law up to two hours before and after the funeral as well as pushed back the limit that gave mourners 300-feet.

Many that have been affected by Westboro Baptist Church and Fred Phelps personally are rejoicing that he has finally passed, and they hope that his church will quietly dissipate now that their leader is no more. Westboro Baptist Church has been labeled as one of the most hated organizations because of their anti-gay, anti-semantic beliefs.

So far there has been no news about a funeral, or who would be allowed to attend.

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