Community Tragedies

Any time the Westboro Baptist Church threatens to picket, the Patriot Guard Riders get many requests for help from the community. While the origins of our organization can be traced back to a concerted effort to block the WBC, the Patriot Guard Riders are not a counter-protest group.

Our mission statement is very specific and with few exceptions civilian events do not meet that standard. As much as the WBC disgusts us, we cannot be the anti-WBC and show up when they do. Our main mission is to attend the funeral services of fallen American heroes as invited guests of the family. To be seen as counter-protesters would be detrimental to that mission. 

We are essentially an 'honor guard' for fallen heroes and attend every active-duty, veteran Military as well as first responder funeral we are invited to. The WBC being present does not change the way we honor these heroes other than the  placement of our flag lines. We turn our backs to them.

Our advice to those who are targeted by the WBC is to ignore them. What they want is confrontation and publicity, so any confrontation only fuels them. Physical attacks will only put your money in their checkbook. Local Law  Enforcement has become very adept at keeping them contained and typically away from mourners. Unless the local Law Enforcement is contacted by them, odds are they will not even show up. They publicize their pickets to enrage the community into rash acts and further publicize their idiocy.

The WBC publicize many protests that do not materialize as they are really very few in number.  Counter-protests always have the opposite effect from the intended consequences, they actually create more upheaval instead of peace. The best of intentions often go wrong in counter-protests.  The Patriot Guard Riders refer to the WBC as "UGs" (uninvited guests).  When you invite yourself to counter-protest, you also become an UG.  As much outrage as people feel, you should always respect the wishes of the grieving family.  It is very rare for them to wish members of the community to organize against the WBC.  We find that in conjunction with Local Law Enforcement, they always ask people to stand down.