My hat is off to the city of Brandon, Mississippi. In fact, the entire country should offer this town of around 16,000 a giant salute. In case you haven't heard, this is what happened the Westboro Baptist Church in Brandon, Mississippi...
Staff Sargent Jason Rivers was killed in Afghanistan. Thankfully, the Westboro Baptist Church had to brag about their plans to picket. Brandon, Mississippi also made plans. As usual, the Westboro Baptist Church showed up to picket the funeral of this American hero. They were met with a healthy helping of good old fashioned southern hospital.
One of the Westboro Baptist Church members spouted off in a local convenience store before the funeral. Someone beat him up. The police arrived immediately, but no one at the store had seen a thing. Doing their jobs, the police took statements, short statements, from potential witnesses. Of course, it only gets better.
Back at the hotel, members of the Westboro Baptist Church found themselves stuck in the parking lot. Cars were parked around their cars and the Westboro Baptist Church members couldn't leave. Once again, the police were called. They, once again, got there to help the Westboro Baptist Church as quickly as possible. The owners of the cars couldn't be found (they were probably at the funeral which was starting shortly) and the cars couldn't be moved. The Brandon police called the wrecker services in town. Brandon was a busy town that down - not a single wrecker could make it out to help them for a few hours.
Despite this, members of the Westboro Baptist Church did get to the funeral. It was a great stroke of luck that they did show up because the police were there as well. The police, instead of paying their respects to Staff Sargent Rivers, thought it would be best if they took additional statements from the Westboro Baptist Church. Seeing that they wouldn't be in town long, this was so kind of the police department. No the church members wouldn't have to travel from Topeka, Kansas back to Brandon to give their statements.
No one from the Westboro Baptist Church was able to picket the funeral.
This is the exact type of southern hospitality that the Westboro Baptist Church should get everywhere they go! It is a shame that the man was beaten up (violence should be a last resort), but at least the Brandon Police were taking care of it. They even made arrangements with the terribly slow wrecker services to get the cars moved out their way. And, seeing that the Westboro Baptist Church is a non-profit organization, the Brandon Police didn't want them to have to spend additional money on a trip back so they covered their bases while the members were in town.
"I love seeing a town show Westboro that Americans will not put up with the way they treat people and that these soldiers deserve to be treated with respect," Mandy Robinson, Associated Content writer stated.
It will be hard for the Westboro Baptist Church to single out Mississippi they way they have targeted Oklahoma - seeing they were treated with such kindness there. I'm sure the disbarred founder and leader of the Westboro Baptist Church will try to find a way to sue the city of Brandon. That is, after all, what he does. Other than the assault on one of his members, no laws were broken. They did all they could to take care of that incident as well as everything else that happened to the Westboro Baptist Church in their town. They can't be blamed for the wrecker services being behind and running late. And, the statements from the Westboro Baptist Church members had to be taken before they left town.
Few things in life can make me smile more than knowing someone is shown some good ol' fashioned southern hospitality. Especially when they deserve "special treatment" as much as the Westboro Baptist Church does!