RELIGION
12/18/2012 07:33 am ET

David Pakman, Westboro Baptist Church Spar Over Picketing Of School Shooting Funerals (VIDEO)

Radio and television host David Pakman offered the Westboro Baptist Church 30 uninterrupted minutes of air time on his program if the controversial group agreed to call off picketing the funerals of the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings.

In a segment on Pakman's program, The David Pakman Show, that was published to YouTube Dec. 17, Margie Phelps-Roper, a spokesperson for the WBC, said that the group planned to picket the funerals of the children that died in the shooting.

"Wherever we can put these signs up, including those funerals, is what we'll do," Phelps-Roper said in the segment, referring to the signs with anti-gay slogans that the WBC is known for displaying at the funerals of U.S. soldiers and people with AIDS.

The group had also threatened to picket a vigil for the victims of the shooting on Sunday.

Watch the full video of the segment here.

The host offered airtime in exchange for dropping the pickets, telling Phelps-Roper that his "goal is to keep you and your signs away from the funerals of these kids in Connecticut."

Phelps-Roper would not respond to Pakman's offer other than to say that she would "float the proposal."

Pakman noted that he might regret his offer in the long run, and that his viewers might not agree with the compromise. The host said that he'd contacted the Westboro Baptist Church's public relations person and that the group was considering his proposal.

The controversial, quasi-religious group, which is known for its anti-gay politics, is currently the subject of two separate petitions on the White House's website. One demands an IRS investigation of the WBC, and another seeks to have it legally recognized as a hate group, thus stripping it of its tax-exempt status.

The Westboro Baptist Church is also currently the focus of a campaign by hacktivist group Anonymous, which hijacked Phelps-Roper's Twitter account, took down its website and posted personal data of WBC members on the Internet.

What do you think of David Pakman's offer? Let us know in the comments.

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