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If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen

In response to the protests of the passing of Proposition 8, the LDS church made a press release asking for civility:

Attacks on churches and intimidation of people of faith have no place in civil discourse over controversial issues. People of faith have a democratic right to express their views in the public square without fear of reprisal. Efforts to force citizens out of public discussion should be deplored by people of goodwill everywhere.

Methinks the irony is thick. They ask that for us to protect their right to free speech (so far, so good) by silencing the free speech of others (Danger, Will Robinson!). I agree that no one should be threatened with physical violence for speaking their mind in a liberal democracy. Every person has a right to speak out in the public square. Other people who think that person is full of shit are free to disagree, free to have their criticism heard, free to try to drown out voices of hatred and division. The LDS church’s attempt to silence opposition through playing the victim card has me worked up.

It seems like many Mormons feel threatened by people like me who recognize the right of homosexual couples to choose their marriage partners. They imagine me plotting the destruction of their Mormon lifestyle, meeting in dark rooms to discuss dark thoughts whispered seductively in my ears by demonic voices. To them, I am a foot soldier in Satan’s army, mustered against them in the Mormon version of Ragnarök. What those frightened Mormons don’t understand is that I would be one of the first to fight for their right to party Mormon-style no matter how much I disagree with their lifestyle. Believe me when I say that I would love to leave them alone in their corner of the room, if only they would leave the rest of us alone.

I confess to feeling a certain amount of schadenfreude at the perplexed distress of those pusillanimous, bigoted souls among the Mormons. They live in fear of freedom and an open horizon. They prefer the squalid security of their chthonic burrows. Their desire to exert control over a scary world where people disagree with each other has led them to betray the memory of their Mormon ancestors who fought for their own right to choose their spouses. These modern Mormon mobsters have become the persecutors who want to define marriage for other people. They deserve to twist in the wind a bit, to have their not-so-secret hatreds and fears exposed to the razor of public scrutiny and derision.

To the Mormons who didn’t support the suppression of the right of same-sex couples to marry and who now feel unfairly targeted, didn’t your mother warn you about hanging out with a bad crowd? What happened to avoiding even the appearance of evil? :)

Democracy can be an unforgiving place. I hope we never forget the LDS church’s consistent foot dragging on equal rights for people of all races and all sexes. Today’s support of Proposition 8 and other similar measures is just part of a pattern. I am willing to forgive if they are willing to renounce the bigotry of the past and actively work for the freedom of all (a freedom they seem to want to reserve only to themselves).

New York Times: Mormons Tipped Scale in Ban on Gay Marriage (via Main Street Plaza)

Jodi Mardesich at Salon: “I have been a Mormon my whole life. But after the church’s campaign of hatred to ban gay marriage, I finally renounced my membership.” (Proposition 8 made me quit the Mormon church, via Main Street Plaza)

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  1. Stephanie said,

    November 18, 2008 @ 5:44 pm

    It just really bothers me that they’re trying to act like all the Mormons who campaigned for Prop 8 and donated money did it all on their own and were just asserting their democratic rights. HELLO! You read a letter in church encouraging it! Said letter is still available for reading on!

  2. Jonathan Blake said,

    November 19, 2008 @ 5:11 am

    “Don’t blame us. We just effectively told everyone that it was their God-given duty to donate their money, time, and vote to suppress marriage rights.”


  3. Carolyn said,

    November 20, 2008 @ 7:00 pm

    It makes me very upset that Derek and I have been married for 1 yr and Derek would be able to visit me if I was hospitalized, my co-worker Brian has been with his partner for 13 years and does not have that same right. People need to realize this is wrong. We don’t get to choose for others. I work with some open minded Mormons and yet they are the minority who believe people get to choose for themselves.
    It’s very sad how backwards this world still is and how the Gays are now the target for their hatred.

  4. Jonathan Blake said,

    November 20, 2008 @ 7:19 pm


  5. Anonymous for this one said,

    November 21, 2008 @ 11:58 am

    Well I think that too many within the LDS church forget that we could allow such marriages with the legal benefits thereof and that does not mean that we are forsaking our principles, IE: “we don’t allow for it with the membership of the church” to go with “to be in the world but not of it”.

    I think that we should revamp the whole thing. Government should not dictate marriage (nor perform them either), but should allow for legal contracts of civil unions. Let the churches and individuals decide on their own “ceremonies” and let them practice it who, where, or what they may. That would allow such groups as the Catholics and Mormons to not allow same sex marriages within their churches, give them the fun of doing new marriages just like your baptized into the church of your choice while affording gays and lesbians all the legal rights and own spirituality they want in this regard.. And, it would help keep lawyers employed. :twisted:

    Same sex marriage is as great of an idea and should be as common place as abortion (the LDS church should practice this as it would send more spirits straight to heaven). We should allow for as many of them as people want. Hell, they should be free of charge from the government. And I’ll sum it up in two words that I know some environmentalists will agree with, “population reduction.” My growing disdain for humanity in general has led me to think that the fewer there are of us around (to the point of extinction) the better the world will be. Homosexuality is just another means to that end.

    And Jon, seriously, after Feeling’s Gone Away do you honestly expect me to believe that you are content with letting the church as an organization sit off to the side continuing in its beliefs instead of being destroyed for becoming the thing it fought so hard to survive from?

  6. Jonathan Blake said,

    November 21, 2008 @ 1:47 pm

    Anonymous, I get the feeling you would get along great with the folks in the Voluntary Human Extinction Movement.

    There does seem to be a contradiction when I say “the world would be much better off without the LDS church” and “I would love to leave [Mormons] alone in their corner of the room”. These are not at odds for two reasons. First, I am aware of the distinction between the Mormon people and the Corporation of the President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to which the money goes. The former are generally good people, even if the most orthodox are narrow minded and fearful. The latter is a generally a leech on society giving little benefit in return for all it takes. It is the instrument of keeping many people in fear and ignorance (then offering to cure to said fear and ignorance). The Mormon church wouldn’t be half so bad if it didn’t have such a stranglehold on the hearts and minds of its people.

    On the other hand, adults must be left to make their own decisions. If people want to be Mormon, I won’t try to use force to change their mind. If they would allow the rest of us the same courtesy, then everything would be copacetic. I will fight against the willingness among some Mormons and others to use the law to enforce their religious judgments on society.

    Anyway, I agree that we can solve this by getting government back out of the marriage business. It never should have started licensing marriage (i.e. deciding whose marriages are legal). Contract law and laws about joint property should be pretty much enough to handle most marriages issues as far as the government is concerned.

  7. Anonymous For This One said,

    November 21, 2008 @ 5:11 pm

    The VHEMT seem to happy go lucky for me.

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