It’s been three years ago this month that the bad girl of the Westboro Church crowd deserted the group with her sister. This month, the New Yorker came out with a huge piece on how and why she left. The lead photo shows Megan Phelps-Roper posed in something with black straps with a tiny nose ring in one nostril. Obviously something’s changed big time.
We've reported on Westboro before, sometimes in the context of whether to cover their bizarre antics. One doesn’t decide to leave such a famous group – and one’s own family -- lightly, especially when you’ve been picketing the funerals of AIDS victims since age 5 and giving interviews since age 11. And lo and behold, we find that it was Twitter, of all things, that eased Phelps-Roper out the door.
From the middle of the story:
Phelps-Roper first considered leaving the church on July 4, 2012. She and (her sister) Grace were in the basement of another Westboro family’s house, painting the walls. The song “Just One,” by the indie folk group Blind Pilot—a band that C.G. had recommended—played on the stereo. The lyrics seemed to reflect her dilemma perfectly: “And will I break and will I bow / if I cannot let it go?” Then came the chorus: “I can’t believe we get just one.” She suddenly thought, What if Westboro had been wrong about everything? What if she was spending her one life hurting people, picking fights with the entire world, for nothing? “It was, like, just the fact that I thought about it, I had to leave right then,” she said. “I felt like I was going to jump out of my skin.” …