Coming soon:

That nutty Phelps family goes on the warpath against the Middle Kingdom. Chinese eyebrows are raised.

By Andrew Leonard
September 26, 2007 10:50PM (UTC)
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Not content to inflict their psychosis solely upon the country of their birth, the crazy family of the Rev. "" Fred Phelps has trained its sights upon China. Danwei brings us the news that Shirley Phelps-Roper, Fred's daughter, somehow came across an article by China Daily columnist Raymond Zhou, in which the author took issue with homophobic statements by a Chinese movie star.

After reading the opinion piece, Phelps-Roper, who operates her own "Dear Shirley" blog, in which she specializes in raining down hellfire upon the "ignorant questions" of "Bible-illiterate simpletons," wrote an e-mail to Zhou.


Some excerpts:

The very day that Godless China decriminalized the filthy manner of life of the homosexual, they brought wrath upon themselves. God hates China and all her perverse people!

China is doomed! China is and will in greater and more shocking events see the wrath of God upon their doomed rebellious heads for their disobedience to the commandments of God!

But you Raymond have a never-dying soul! If you have any interest in it, you will shut your blasphemous mouth and read every word on the;; and watch the excellent videos of three kinds on the page and coming soon,! GET A BIBLE RAYMOND, crack and read it every day - OBEY the commandments of your God and beg HIM for forgiveness with a sincere heart, or you are going to hell and there is NOTHING you can do about it! Have a nice day!

Some might question why How the World Works would shine any kind of light at all on the insanity of the Phelps clan, since attention is so obviously what they crave. But Zhou posted the e-mail, along with a translation, to his own blog, and I was curious to see what his Chinese readers thought of this sui generis dose of Americana.

Some rough translations.

  • "Could this woman be using reverse satire? How can it be that according to my logic, the more I look at it, the more crazy it is?"
  • "Too ridiculous."
  • A recommendation to view a BBC clip on "The Most Hated Family in America," available on YouTube.
  • "The legalization of same sex marriage will be a giant step forward for civilization."

The words "same sex marriage" cannot be found in any of my 25-year-old Chinese dictionaries. As I puzzled out that sentence, it occurred to me that I had never encountered the phrase back in the days when I was regularly reading and translating articles in the Chinese press.

That is what we call progress. No wonder the Phelps family is so agitated.

Andrew Leonard

Andrew Leonard is a staff writer at Salon. On Twitter, @koxinga21.

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