TOPEKA, Kan. - If you live in Kansas, chances are pretty darn good that you've heard of psychotic homophobe, religious cult leader and all-around a-hole freakazoid Fred Phelps.
You may not, however, have heard of his son, Nate Phelps. Nate is the 6th of Fred Phelps' 13 children. Rather than follow in his father's footsteps and stay with his family clan, Nate chose to leave home at 18 and has never looked back. He denounces all of his family's homophobic beliefs and, through lots of thoughtful contemplation, is an atheist.
What's sort of shocking--as if there's anything about the Phelpses that can't be called "shocking"--is that Nate shines a light on the secretive Phelps compound and reveals the chilling physical abuse he and his siblings endured while growing up, both at the hands of their father and each other--at their father's direction. You can read some of Nate's story on his website. He's also busy writing a memoir.
Nate Phelps will be returning to Topeka for the first time in many years to speak at the Topeka Performing Arts Center on Saturday, April 24 at 2 p.m. Admission is free. The event is cosponsored by the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science, the Metropolitan Community Church of Topeka and The Center LGBT.
Additionally, Nate will speak at the 3rd annual Million Fag March, an annual rally to protest the outrageous antics of the Westboro Baptist Church. The Million Fag March will take place at Gage Park Amphitheater in Topeka on Saturday, May 1st at 2 p.m. Rest assured that you don't have to be gay or lesbian to attend the march.
You can bet the Phelpses and the Westboro Baptist Church will be protesting both events. Let's give Nate our full support.