Update: It sounds like this didn’t actually happen, and that WBC is using Twitter to manipulate the media. NJ.com reports:
Star-Ledger reporters on the scene said access to that area had been restricted all day, and confirmed no active protests were occurring in the place depicted in the photograph.
Westboro Baptist Church threatened to Whitney Houston’s funeral today. Shocker.
You may recall when they said they would picket Steve Jobs’ funeral. Then Penn State football coach Joe Paterno’s. While covering Twitter reaction to Whitney’s funeral today, we stumbled across some tweets from old Margie Phelps, a top member of the church, spreading god’s hate:
MT @700club: Whitney Houston, Jesus, &the Battleground http://t.co/Ys8LqUAk
Amazing YouTube featuring @AbiWBC singing “God Will Always Hate You,Whitney,” & tons of Westboro signs.
@RHS76: For those bitching about people who are watching the Houston funeral should keep in mind that Westboro is picketing there too.MT
All NJ & all who came to lie about Whitney’s Godless life saw these beauties!She’s in hell! #NoWordsByCelebsChangeThat twitter.com/MargieJPhelps/…
— MargiePhelps (@MargieJPhelps) February 18, 2012
MT @markymarc24: RT @PowerfulHER #Occupy counter-protesting Westboro @ Whitney Houston funeral.
@BET see these lovelies?
Such fun singing to @OccupyWallSt
This picket is rocking the house! @NJ_News http://t.co/37Kl46wR
MT @Pennyvane10: @occupybot @PowerfulHER @heratylaw
Occupy will prolly be arrested while Westboro allowed to stay.
You lose!We shaking’ the NJ sidewalk up in here!
MT @ChefRoble: I got a kabillion dollars says Westboro Baptist Church can’t sang like that!
Here are some things she’s been retweeting:
@njdotcom Westboro Baptist church, known for flamboyant hate speech at funerals, targets #WhitneyFuneral http://t.co/cQcOXqI6My story on
#WBC at #Whitney Houston Funeral, right next to New Hope Baptist Church. They were made to move further back. http://t.co/DTOGoXYe
#WBC (the ‘God Hates Fags’ people) is on the ground @ #WhitneyHouston funeral in Newark.Their signs are everywhere. http://t.co/ALNdJVL6
OccupyWallStreet is counter-protesting Westboro @ Whitney Houston funeral, carrying blank signs & blocking Westboro’s line of sight.
Clearly they love the attention. We’re not helping that any, but they’re going to get it regardless. People should know what these people are doing.
Interestingly enough, Kevin Costner (Whitney’s co-star in The Bodyguard), who spoke at the service, said that one thing he and Whitney had in common was that they both grew up in the Baptist church. Much of the Twitterverse is talking about how the funeral is bringing everyone together, spreading god’s love and whatnot.