In what has become the largest petition in White House history, 259,000 people have joined the online effort to label the Westboro Baptist Church a hate group.
The petition was created on the White House website after WBC members announced plans to picket a vigil for children killed in the Newtown, Conn., shooting.
Backlash came fast and furious.
Created on December 14, the hate group-labeling effort has 259,000 signatures, trouncing Texas' secession petition to become the largest in White House history.
Online petitions need 25,000 signatures before they are reviewed by the administration.
The petition to gain hate group status for WBC states:
“This group has been recognized as a hate group by organizations, such as The Southern Poverty Law Center, and has repeatedly displayed the actions typical of hate groups."
"Their actions have been directed at many different groups, including homosexuals, military, Jewish people and even other Christians."
"They pose a continued threat to the welfare and treatment of others and will not improve without some form of imposed regulation.”
While their nauseating actions have typically been protected by the 1st Amendment, hate group status would allow closer monitoring and potentially stiffer penalties.
No word back from the White House yet ... they seem to be besieged with online petitions, serious and otherwise, since establishing this online system.