Don’t Fall For Phelps

July 20th, 2010 by Kyle

Well, Spider-fans, as many of you now know, the infamous Westboro Baptist Church, headed by the equally infamous Fred Phelps, has decided to go to San Diego Comic Con to make trouble. Responses have ranged from outrage to appeals for donations to causes that would likely annoy Phelps, but I’d like to make my own suggestion for a response here:

Ignore them. Completely and utterly.

The thing is, these people are not serious people, and should not be treated as if they were. All they are is an IRL version of internet trolls. And like all trolls, what they thrive on is attention. Trolls aren’t afraid of being argued with. Just the opposite – starting a “flame war” is the whole reason they do what they do. If, on the other hand,  everyone just totally ignored them, eventually they’d go crawl back under whatever rock they came from. So stop complaining about them. Stop worrying about them. Stop thinking about them. But most of all, stop talking about them. Not even to say how much you don’t like them. Don’t talk about them on your blog. Don’t mention them on Twitter. Don’t join an anti-WBC Facebook group. Don’t comment on online stories about them. Don’t join a counter-protest against them in San Diego. Don’t give them what they want. Don’t play their game. Don’t get trolled. Starve them of the attention they crave and let their little group die on the vine.

And yes, I realize I’m violating my own advice right now. But I’m trying to use whatever voice I have here to stop this before it gets out of hand. So from this point on, I’m never going to mention Fred Phelps or the Westboro Baptist Church again. And neither, dear friends, should you.

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