"He was a hero and he was the love of my life." - Albert Snyder, Matthew's Father
"...The family of Lance Corporal Matthew Snyder, US Marine Corps, has begun this civil lawsuit* against Mr. Phelps and certain members of the so-called Westboro Baptist Church to bring an end to the reign of terror and abuse that they inflicted upon the grieving families of US service members killed in defense of our nation. Using innocent children to deliver their twisted message of hatred and fear, the defendants in this suit have sought to attack the memory of our departed heroes, to strip their loved ones of their dignity, and to use abuse and intimidation as a tool for preventing surviving family members from reaching closure over their loss.
It is the sincere hope of Mr. Al Snyder, Matthew’s father, that this suit will spark similar legal actions against Mr. Phelps wherever he seeks to inflict harm upon the memory of our heroes and their families. If you feel strongly that such actions should be stopped, please consider a donation to help offset the legal expenses of bringing this suit..." (source)
I am assuming this is the reason a court has ordered Matthew's father, Albert Snyder, to pay $16,000 in legal fees to Fred Phelps(D) and his Westboro Baptist "Church." Not that even one of the three articles I read gave any background to the story... So we'll surmise Snyder brought the suit claiming carrying "God Hates Fags" signs outside of the funerals of soldiers and Marines that were killed in Afghanistan and Iraq exceeds the boundaries of free speech. I think we'll also have to guess that he lost the suit and has to cover the defendant's legal costs.
"I don't think I'm going to be writing a check until I hear from the Supreme Court," Snyder told Fox News on Tuesday. "I'm not about to pay them anything."
The two-page decision supplied by attorneys for Albert Snyder of York, Pa., offered no details on how the court came to its decision.
On Friday, Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit ordered Snyder to pay $16,510 to Fred Phelps. Phelps is the leader of Topeka's Westboro Baptist Church, which conducted protests at Marine Lance Cpl. Matthew Snyder's funeral in 2006.
Attorneys also said Snyder is struggling to come up with fees associated with filing a brief with the U.S. Supreme Court.
The decision adds "insult to injury," said Sean Summers, one of Snyder's lawyers. (source)
Though I do believe the First Amendment gives Phelps and his crew have the right to hold their disgusting signs... If this poor man, that has already lost his 20 year old son to OIF, has to pay that vile Fred Phelps one cent...ugh, it's too horrible to even consider isn't it?