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Equality House opens across from anti-gay Westboro Baptist Church

A rainbow-striped Equality House has opened in Topeka, Kan., near the Westboro Baptist Church, home to one of the most notorious anti-gay groups in the country.

Westboro has long been led by the Rev. Fred Phelps, who, along with relatives and members of the Christian church, pickets funerals of U.S. soldiers and stages anti-gay demonstrations.

Now the Phelps’ clan has a new neighbor – those of the Equality House, a Planting Peace project.

A statement on the Planting Peace website said, “For too long, the Westboro Baptist Church has been targeting the LGBTQ community with messages of hate and discrimination. Often, protesting American soldiers’ funerals and organizations that support equality. This faction preaches extremism in our communities and directly targets our youth. To combat their messages of hate and to support equality and anti-bullying initiatives in schools and in our community, Planting Peace has established the Equality House in Topeka, KS.

“Located directly across from the Westboro Baptist Church, the House is a symbol of equality, peace, and positive change. The house, which is painted the colors of the Pride flag, will serve as the resource center for all Planting Peace equality and anti-bullying initiatives and will stand as a visual reminder of our commitment, as global citizens, to equality for all.

“We invite you to support our movement and encourage you to donate today to these equality and anti-bullying initiatives.”

The Planting Peace Facebook page has had more than 1,000 people “like” the house.

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