Jim Hoft of the conservative blog, Gateway Pundit
Over the past week, St. Louis-based political blogger Jim Hoft, a.k.a. Gateway Pundit
, has caused a bit of an Internet stir by referring to Fred Phelps and his batshit-insane Westboro Baptist Church as a "left-wing cult."Left
How could you possibly label a gay-bashing, abortion-hating, Obama-loathing group as left wing?
It all began with the arrival of the Patriot Guard Riders
in Newtown, Connecticut (site of the December 14 school massacre).
The PGRs are motorcycle enthusiasts who gather at fallen soldiers'
funerals to act as a buffer of compassion between mourning families
and the Westboro lunatics who protest there (they protest because the believe God punishes American tolerance of homosexuality by making soldiers
die; you're correct, they're the worst people in the history of history).
When the Westboro faithful added the funeral of Sandy Hook Elementary principal (and
hero) Dawn Hochsprung to their protest schedule, the PGR noticed and came
to Newtown. Turns out the Westboro folks never even showed up.
The Cochrane Times
ran the story anyway. Hoft picked it up and wrote
on Gateway Pundit the following headline: "Bikers Turn Out to Protect
Newtown Mourners from Left-Wing Westboro Cult." Not just any bikers,
mind you: Hoft called them "conservative" bikers. So to him, this was a
bunch of conservative good-guys protecting the funeral from lefty
Fox Nation picked this up
in turn, followed by Gawker
, where writers argued that the Patriot Guard tends to resist political affiliation.
Fair enough. But how can Hoft refer to Westboro as left-wing?
true that founder Fred Phelps ran
as a Democrat in Kansas during
several Democratic primaries during the 1990s (he always lost).
This is how Fred Phelps and Westboro feel about President Obama
However, Phelps' condemnation of homosexuals and abortion run exactly contrary to the views of the American left. In addition, Phelps' flock at Westboro has referred
to the Democratic standard bearer (President Obama) as the "Anti-Christ."
So I asked Hoft: Outside of Fred Phelps' party affiliation, what makes him left-wing?
response: "I wrote that because the media is trying to make him a
rightwinger. He's not. He's a Democrat. Most of all he's crazy."
Correct, he IS crazy. But opposition to abortion and homosexuality are, irrefutably, rightward stances.
himself appears to be a conservative, so we asked him for his own views
on homosexuality in general, and on gay marriage in particular. (We
weren't sure, because he doesn't engage in much punditry on Gateway
Pundit; he usually just copies-and-pastes from sources of interest, as bloggers do.)
Hoft's response: "I support civil unions. I don't support radical gays who crash church services or are abusive."
Well, okay. (Although I must plead ignorance: I'm not familiar with those latter folks, nor their supporters.)
I also asked Hoft about why he runs posts about gays getting threatened with execution
in Libya and condemned
in Iran. All Hoft told me was: "I try to speak out for the persecuted gays in the Middle East."
out for international gay rights? Support for civil unions? Sounds like
Jim Hoft of Gateway Pundit stands quite a bit to the left of Westboro
Wouldn't call him "left-wing," though.