“The Laramie Project” tells the story of Matthew Shepherd, a gay student who was killed in 1998. It was scheduled to open on Friday. Only one demonstrator showed up and left after being heckled by the crowd of counter-demonstrators.
The move to ban the Phelps follows another ban. Geert Wilders was denied entry for his anti-Muslim views. He was deported immediately when he flew into London.
Kansas City.com reports:
“Both these individuals have engaged in unacceptable behavior by inciting hatred against a number of communities,” a U.K. Border Agency spokesman told the Times Online, the online site of The Times of London. “The government has made it clear it opposes extremism in all its forms.”
The authorities were forewarned that the pair was planning to come to the protest after reading about it on the Phelps website. The website has a press release issued about the play as The Guardian reports:
“God hates the Queen Mary’s College, and the fag-infested UK, England [sic] and all having to do with spreading sodomite lies via ‘The Laramie Project’, this tacky bit of cheap fag propaganda masquerading as legitimate theatre.”
Phelp’s daughter was not happy with the ban. The BBC quoted Mrs Phelps-Roper about the decision to ban her and her father from entering the UK would “bring great wrath upon your heads”.
The church is monitored by the Anti-Defamation League.