Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Dude?!? Wrong Side!!

According to a story just published on Fox 13's website which you can read here...

SALT LAKE CITY - The anti-Mormon backlash after California voters overturned gay marriage last fall is similar to the intimidation of Southern blacks during the civil rights movement, a high-ranking Mormon says in a speech to be delivered Tuesday. Elder Dallin H. Oaks refers to gay marriage as an "alleged civil right" in remarks prepared for delivery at Brigham Young University- Idaho, a speech church officials describe as a significant commentary on current threats to religious freedom.

WTF MAN!! Mormons aren't the victims here! Prop 8 was about taking rights away from same sex couples, not persecuting Mormons. Just because you don't agree with the the orientation of someone does not mean they're coming after you. Taking away your religious rights?!? If anything, you tried to take away their rights, and they're justifiably upset.

The article also touches on the Churches history with Blacks.

You see, up until 1978, black men could join the LDS Church, but could not receive the 'priesthood'. The Doctrine (and it was taught as doctrine, and still is by some) was that Blacks bore the mark of Cain, as a result of unrighteousness in a prior life. This doctrine came into being because Brigham Young, somehow confused his racist bigotry with revelation from God. It also meant Black men could not marry in LDS Temples, and was supposed to help prevent miscegeny. Miscegeny was actually punishable by death according to Young, and at least one man was murdered when caught meeting with a white woman in the early days of Salt Lake City.

So with that tradition of racism, somehow now Mormons can compare themselves to the unjust persecution levied at Southern blacks during the Civil rights movement?

Freakin' Hell Man!!!

In many ways this is similar to the LDS Church joining forces with the Catholic Church to try and promote Prop 8. In the past the LDS Church has referred to the Catholic Church as the Whore of all the Earth and the Great and Abominable Church referred to in scripture... And now these guys are your allies in the cause for morality?!

I still maintain the homophobic policies of the LDS Church are a marketing scheme to try and recruit more of the conservative, zealot types who are disenfranchised with acceptance of the LGBT community of other Churches.


  1. Hello, I found your blog while researching prop 8 a while back. I've read your posts from time to time and I can't really say I understand them, not being LDS. All I can say is you've got some definite issues with Mormons. I am a Catholic transplant to Utah from Connecticut and I don't know much about mormonism, but from your blog posts, I take it I should look elsewhere for an unbiased opinion on them.

    The reason I'm commenting is that ever since the prop 8 vote in California, I've never heard mormons maligned so much. I've read news stories about protests so filled with hate toward mormons I can't believe it.

    I haven't totally figured out where I stand politically, but I seem to lean left of most Utahns I know. I personally don't see a problem with gays getting married and I don't think I'd go so far as to compare the backlash against mormons to persecution against blacks, but from what I've seen I certainly consider mormons victims of intimidation by the anti prop 8 movement.

    I said I don't have a problem with gay marriage, but if the ability to marry is really a "right", I'm not sure it's one I feel the need to fight to defend. "Alleged civil right" sounds about right to me.

    If the majority of Californians decide, which they did, to define marriage as hetero only, case closed in my book. Nobody's taking anybody's rights away, and nobody deserves the backlash I've seen.

    You've got issues, dude. I won't pretend to understand them. Maybe I'd feel the same had I been mormon. But maybe you should spend more time working that out and less time bashing a church that you apparently still wish to be affiliated with on at least some level.

  2. Thanks for your comments Anonymous!

    Hey, have you ever heard of a place called Snowflake, Arizona?

    I started to respond to a couple of your comments, but realized it was going to take more than just a comment to respond. I'm working on putting my thoughts together though, and will likely publish them as a separate blog post, either on this blog, or on my other blog, where I deal more with my thoughts about religion and politics.

  3. I've never heard of Snowflake. Why do you ask? By the way, sorry about posting anonymously. I guess I should leave at least a handle if I'm going to have a discussion with you.

  4. Well... The only hit my logs caught on the blog last night, came from Snowflake, which would actually explain a lot of my initial impressions about your comments.

  5. I'm in Salt Lake City.

  6. OK, so you're from Salt Lake City, and you're a Catholic from Connecticut who knows very little about Mormonism.

    I guess my first question is... What motivated you to respond? To be completely honest, if someone wrote a post about an issue I didn't really care about, involving a religion I didn't really know about, I either wouldn't care, or else I'd simply write them off as a disgruntled kook.

    And second, exactly what kind of backlash have you observed?

  7. Let me be clear, I personally don't care about gay marriage. My casual interest is in the anti prop 8 response to the Mormon church's influence in the debate.

    I did know a few Mormons back in Connecticut, but they were very different people than the Mormons out here. For one thing, the family I knew back home was very liberal. As far as I can tell they were very involved with their religion, but they had nothing but criticism for "Utah Mormons."

    The reason for my interest in the LDS church is my discovery upon moving here that "Utah Mormons" are much different than I was led to believe. Other than this feeling that democrats must be evil I just don't see them as prudes living in the dark ages, as my acquaintances portrayed them.

    I'm only interested in prop 8 as far as this "backlash" is concerned with the Mormons. My employer is located near the LDS headquarters and my first week here was when there were a bunch of protests over prop 8. Then I read about the California theater guy who was forced out of his job because somebody found out he was Mormon and supported prop 8.

    To be honest my interest still is casual. It's your strange struggle with the mormonism that motivated me to finally comment. You're opinions or whatever parallel closely with those of the family I knew at home.

    If I'm not welcome in the discussion, I'll leave. I didn't mean to arouse such suspicion about my location and motives. Maybe that's got something to do with this big culture here that I'm nowhere close to understanding.

  8. Oh no, you're always welcome to the conversation, but your comment had me confused.

    On one hand you're taking the "I don't care about gay marriage" approach, but on the other hand you're using many of the excuses which mormons hand out on a daily basis to excuse their involvement in Prop 8. In particular your last comment about not bashing the Church and dealing with my issues seemed like it was right out of the Mormon Apologetic play book. It was almost word for word from a letter I received from my parents when they found out that I didn't agree 100% with the Church, and somehow interpreted that as "I hate them" and "I love Satan".

    But back to the topic at hand... I'm not sure if your examples qualify as horrendous backlashes though...

    The protests outside LDS HQ, the temples and other places of worship are entirely justifiable. The LDS Church is a religious organization which as long as I have been a member has always emphasized political neutrality... until this issue. By using Church resources (Financial and production of supporting media), using houses of worship in California to coordinate campaign efforts and having letters read from pulpits in CA, UT, NV, ID and AZ soliciting funding, the Church became a political organization, and in my opinion accepted with that decision, the fact that they would be targeted by proponents of same-sex marriage movement. I have yet to hear of protest being anything other than civil - which is a stark contrast to way in which proponents of Prop 8 - mormon and non-mormon handled themselves in California.

    The gentleman in California losing his job is regrettable, but if you're going to take a stand against something, you need to consider the consequences. I work for a very devout member of the Church, and as such, I am aware that my being vocal about support of Gay rights will likely have an impact on my employment. I generally try and avoid the topic, since I'm never going to agree with him, but it's not an easy road to walk. It shouldn't be an issue, but it is.

    In a perfect world discrimination wouldn't exist, but that isn't the case. I know several men in Utah who have lost jobs because they're gay. It's just a bad situation all around.

    I think the backlash to which Mr. Oaks was referring could have included boycotts of LDS businesses and that kind of thing as well. I suspected that you may have been referring to that. My issue with that is that I receive emails on a weekly basis from LDS friends and family telling me to pull support from various businesses who support Gay rights, so I see it as the exact same thing from the other side.

    In my opinion, the LDS Church made a huge error in judgement in getting involved in this. If you knew the history of the LDS Church and the Civil Rights movement it just makes the whole thing a little more bitter. That and my leaders at Church have called me a traitor for following a path which I believe is right. Nice huh!

    Like I said in the post, I think it's a marketing ploy to attract additional membership. Which will bring in additional money, and ironically enough, it was money that got the LDS Church to accept blacks back in 1978.

    In my mind the Church could have avoided this by staying out of the issue all together and merely encourage their members to use their brains and vote in accordance with their beliefs.

    Now that it's all said and done, the Church is now adopting an approach of (If you'll excuse the expression) "Kicking the poo!".

    They don't want this issue to go away, and as such are inviting any backlash which comes as a result.

    Karma's a bitch!!

  9. Dear A. Miller:

    Back when I was a little Mormon boy, we were taught that whenever Mormons were being criticized, an effective thang to do was to get us a shill. A shill, for those who don't know, is someone who appears to be unrelated and disinterested, but is in fact in the pay of the criticized. They were used very successfully by snake-oil salesmen in the 18th century. Someone in the crowd would get up and spontaneously "bear his testimony" about the miracle water, and the rest of the crowd would line up and shell out the dough.

    Sometimes we cultivated shills, and sometimes we were shills ourselves. I, myself did this a time or two. Because of my background I was fairly effective at saying: "O, I have never been a Mormon, and would never join them, but I lived among them and they are such wuuuuuuuunderful people."

    I was better at it than you, but no matter. Keep trying.


  10. Fuck you, Gregoire, and your stupid sarcastic comment. I knew I was wading into bad territory when I commented here. I guess I should take a few years to understand this Mormons versus non Mormons feud before I weigh in again.

    Urban Koda, this whole discussion is making my point. Say something somebody disagrees with and sit back and watch the accusations fly.


  11. No Mr. Miller, I think Mr. Gregoire saw you for what you are.

    You're always welcome to comment and have a civil discourse here.

    I have civil discussion here all the time with people with opposing views, but they're honest about what they believe and I try to be as well.

    Obviously you're not too happy about being caught with your pants down, but we're a forgiving lot here - Just let's try watch the language in the future!!

    I must admit that your choice of words seems like a little bit of an over reaction for someone with just a casual interest in all of this.

  12. I guess I'm busted, just a shill from Snowflake Arizona.

    Not happy? No, what pisses me off is I come here, share an opinion that you disagree with, and obviously I'm a shill. I don't comment a lot on blogs, and when I do it would be nice to be respected. And what do you care what language I use?

    Thing is, I don't know that we'd have much political disagreement. If I would have come in and cheered you in one of your political rants, you and your pal would think I was great.

    Yes, my interest is casual. My comment was casual, too. God forbid I say something that sounds like something your prude parents said once.

  13. There is a gentleman who comments here often, called D. Sirmize. He and I have had some pretty strong debates, and neither of us have ever convinced the other to change. Well except that I try and research my opinions a lot more than I used to. And I've learned a great deal from him about respectful debate too.

    Mr. Sirmize is well spoken, presents his arguments clearly and in a respectful manner, and is one of the people I respect the most on this blog. In fact he even knows my real name and where I live.

    So let's not try that approach shall we?

    As far as I can tell you never actually presented an opinion or made a clear point.

    You claimed that you had never seen so much hatred levied at the LDS Church, but all you could offer to back that claim up was a firing in California. Which I actually agree with you that was unjust and it actually has legal redress, because religion, unlike homosexuality is protected! And some peaceful protests at LDS HQ. I work right around the corner as well, and I've never seen anything which could be remotely defined as vile hatred.

    It's a pretty far cry from an extermination order in Missouri (If you know your LDS history), or the lynching of blacks in the Southern States.

    Your only other point was that I shouldn't be bashing an organization which you claimed on multiple occasions, not to know anything about.

    I'm all for intelligent debate, but please try and back up your assertions with something other than words like stupid and rants about fueds between mormons and non-mormons.

    I've shared nothing untrue about the LDS Church, including the teaching about Catholics being the Church of the Devil - Which I am absolutely SHOCKED didn't appear to bother you, being Catholic and all.

    If you feel that dropping an F-bomb is an appropriate response, or you're just looking for a fight, might I suggest ksl.com instead of this blog. This community is actually very respectful. In fact I think that you might be first person to attack another person using such base and degrading language as you used with Mr. Gregoire.

    My friend, if you want respect, you need to give some as well.

  14. I didn't comment to have a discourse or to even make a clear argument. What I was trying to say was that I find it ironic that you continue to keep this religion when you seem to hate it so badly. I shouldn't have mentioned prop 8. I mentioned it only to help you understand why I was commenting. Mormons are not victims like the blacks were, so we agree there.

    Again, I don't pretend to understand this culture. If your job depends on you being a Mormon, whatever. I don't mind civil discourse, but you're in a battle with an unarmed man. Other than a few things I got from the Mormons I knew, I know next to nothing about your church or its history. It's possible that if I studied a little, I'd completely understand where you're coming from.

    I should also mention that while I am a Catholic, I've taken a more agnostic view lately. I have no real desire to criticize or defend any church. I meant no disrespect with my comments. Sometimes I make the mistake of talking to people online the same way I talk to people in real life.

  15. Wow, I just looked back and I guess I didn't catch the church of the devil reference the first time. That's quite offensive.

  16. It is isn't it!! But conveniently forgotten when alliances can be formed against the gays. I actually had literature on my mission comparing the verses in Revelation to the Vatican in terms of Geography and teachings. And then someone send me a story that alleged that the pope met with Satan on a regular basis. Funny how Mormons are fine forwarding crap like that on, but freak out if someone some much as questions the Authority.

    In response to your comment prior...

    Well, if that was the case, then it would appear we've gone off on rather a funky tangent. And no worries on needing to be armed. I tried arming myself a few years ago by reading the history of the LDS Church and immersing myself in it to learn more, and well - that was the beginning of the end for me. Generally Mormons are great people and the principles are generally good, but every so often some jackass at the top comes up with a principle that is purely a result of his bigotry and everyone laps it up...

    If you read through your initial comment again though you'll see why I got that impression. Most of it was just about the awful treatment of Mormons since prop 8 passed. I'll be honest that I'm still not convinced, but none of us are perfect, so I'll give you the benefit of the doubt in this case.

    The behavior of Mormons prior to the passage of prop 8 was totally deserving of any protests and more. And Mr. Oaks comments yesterday are a continuation of their efforts to encourage discrimination against homosexual citizens of our nation and further promote the image of the LDS Church as an anti-gay organization.

    I'm still associated with the LDS Church because of family. If it wasn't for my family (mostly extended on my wife's side) I would have been gone a long time ago.

    You don't need a reason to post a question or comment though!!

    And as far as my beliefs go, I'm pretty much agnostic as well. A loving God and religion don't seem to go together in my mind.

  17. I'm not sure a pure religion can't exist with a loving god. I just haven't found it anywhere. Throw man into the mix it screws everything up. I know Catholics who genuinely believe that religion. I can't. Too many holes, too much corruption. I'm sure most Mormons completely believe what they're taught too. I don't share those beliefs but more power to them. Agnosticism fits me well until something just hits me upside the head.

    I think we got off to a rough start, my friend. My apologies.

  18. I'm actually sliding closer and closer to the atheist end of the agnostic scale... It's an evolving process.

    I do endurance sports and one of the gals I run with told me that she worships at the Church of the Great Blue dome, so I've adopted her faith.

    We held "services" yesterday up in City Creek on the Bonneville Shoreline Trail. The most spiritual experience I've had this week!