Follow up thoughts on Mormon church v. California Prop 8

Ok, now that I’ve had further time to digest this development with the Mormon church and Proposition 8 in California, I have some further thoughts on it.

First, here are the things going on that I have the biggest problem with:
1: The church donates over 10 million dollars to the support of Proposition 8
2: The general leadership of the church sends out a letter to California church members encouraging them to get out and support the political cause.
3: The general leadership then has the local Bishops and stake leaders encourage the single utah members to donate extra money to the cause, and spend up to 20 hours of their time calling California residents and attempting to sway more support.

I think my biggest issue with all of this is that I feel it’s just an extreme violation of trust for a religion to impose political views on it’s members. The whole point of a religion is to follow people who can help you get closer to God. I understand that the tenants of the church say that the leadership are only human, and can make mistakes, so whenever they say something, you should pray about it and get an answer for yourself. The flaw in this plan is that if you ever feel like you get a different answer, the culture says that you’re doing something wrong, and ostracizing ensues. And despite what the tenant of the church really is, you know that millions of followers will just immediately follow anything the 1st presidency says without question, and assume that they are doing what “God” wants them to do.

The church has given money to politicians and causes before, which I also don’t agree with, but at least it was done quietly, and without release or encourgement to the members. But this is the line that no religion must ever cross, at what point does it cease to be about “God” and become just another political pusher.

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8 responses to this post.

  1. Proposition 8 is more than same sex marriage its about protecting our sons and daughters from growing up in a world that teaches that being gay or lesbian is just as normal as being straight. I don’t want my sons and daughters being taught as young as five years old in school that it is okay to marry someone of their same sex. It is about the principle of religion. And protecting what God has set up as the correct way to replenish the earth. It is marriage between a Man and a Woman. God set Adam and Eve on earth to have their posterity fill the whole earth. It goes contrary to the laws set up by God himself. I have nothing against gay or lesbian individuals. I believe they can live their life how they please. I am against the teachings that go against the teachings of God. And we must fight to protect God’s holy ordinance of Marriage between one man and one woman.

    Please go to http://www.protectmarriage.com to read more about the benefits of proposition 8.

    Reply

  2. Posted by Linda on October 16, 2008 at 11:29 am

    If this were just a political issue, I would agree with you. But, it’s not. It’s a fundamentally moral issue. “Family is central to God’s plan.” It is also essential to the health of a society. The further the family deteriorates, the further society deteriorates, too.

    It would be hypocritical of the church if they did not get involved in this issue. You cannot claim the importance of the family and then stand on the sidelines when there is a real threat against it.

    By all means, study the issue. Try to get past the emotional appeals on both sides and find out what proposition 8 really means. Judge for yourself what the consequences are for the gay community and the family if proposition 8 passes, and also if it does not. It’s a challenge I’ve given my 17 year old daughter. It’s in keeping with the teachings of the church. Decide for yourself, and then act accordingly.

    Reply

  3. Posted by ethingtoneric on October 16, 2008 at 10:56 pm

    I would like to post a reply to Linda and Spencer for their comments. First of all thanks for writing, I like to see that it’s being given consideration. However, (in reply to Linda’s opening line) this IS just a political issue. At no point does this issue become about God, it’s about denying equal rights to all.

    2nd, you mention that it would be “hypocritical of the church if they did not get involved in this issue.” The church itself has stated on several occassions that it would be immoral and unethical if it ever were to involve itself in the legal proceedings of a government. Now I understand that the church’s official stance is against gay marriage, and perhaps even against homosexuality in general. However, for any religion to impose it’s beliefs in a political fashion violates every purpose of a religion. At what point in any scripture does it encourage people to force their views on others? Doesn’t the LDS church teach that people are free to make their own choices?

    Thanks again for posting your comments!

    Reply

  4. You want cold hard fact. You say prop 8 will not have an effect on teaching same sex marriage in school. I disagree completely with you on this issues. I would like you to look up the story of the Massachusetts father who was arrested because he would not leave his daughters school until he was informed when their school would be teaching about same sex marriage so he could remove his daughter when they taught this. The school said they did NOT have to inform him of when this would be taught because it was not topic that needed parental release. That is taking away the right of the parent to teach his child what he believes is right and granting that right to the government. You say this isn’t in proposition 8 but where does it stop. It wasn’t in Massachusetts law when passed but was ruled by the Massachusetts state that parents had no say. The Massachusetts Supreme Court would not hear the case, so therefore it stands as law. I will not stand by a Proposition that points in this directions. Furthermore I agree with you in that gay and lesbian individuals should have the same civil rights as married couples, but what I do not agree with is if gay marriage is passes then my religious leaders could get sued for not performing same sex weddings because it would be considered discrimination. This is violating their right of personal belief in their religion and the things their religion teaches. Supporters of no say “give non religious reasons” These are all non religious reasons of why I am a supporter to protecting traditional marriage.

    Reply

  5. Posted by alibeast on October 24, 2008 at 4:35 pm

    linda, spencer:
    no one is banging down the doors of religious institutions demanding that they recognize their gay marriage. it’s not about that. religions can choose whatever they want to do. if unitarians want to honor gay marriages, so be it. if, so predictably, the lds don’t want to, so be it. this is about legal issues that are outside of the boundaries of religion.

    simply put, all arguments against gay marriage are based around religious dogma. they are leftovers from the iron age. which makes you wonder-why don’t we adopt some of those other ‘wise’ iron age arguments? commit adultery? death. steal someone’s ox? death. isn’t it funny what we pick and choose?

    i challenge you to find a legitimate, logical argument against gay marriage. i guarantee that none exist. there is nothing wrong with treating human beings like human beings. remember that whole ‘separate but equal’ thing? didn’t work so well back then, and it sure won’t now.

    Reply

  6. Posted by alibeast on October 24, 2008 at 4:38 pm

    edit:

    by the way, when i say legitimate and logical, i dare you not to use the words religion, god, or any equivalent thereof.

    Reply

  7. Posted by preserveMarriage on November 4, 2008 at 3:48 pm

    IF the gay community is only concerned about love and compassion how can they allow adoption agencies to be shut down because they won’t allow gay couples to use their agency? You want to know what the consequences of allowing gay marriage? Look at Massachusetts. The gay community won’t stop at marriage.

    Reply

  8. Posted by Mike on November 8, 2008 at 12:15 pm

    “1: The church donates over 10 million dollars to the support of Proposition 8
    2: The general leadership of the church sends out a letter to California church members encouraging them to get out and support the political cause.
    3: The general leadership then has the local Bishops and stake leaders encourage the single utah members to donate extra money to the cause, and spend up to 20 hours of their time calling California residents and attempting to sway more support.”

    So your beef with the Mormon church is that it practiced it’s freedom and democracy in America?

    Even if the church has donated money directy it’s of no consequence. It is a free private entity that can do as it wishes, within reason, to promote a vote. MTV does it, Ellen DeGeneres did it, the NRA does it, Numerous other churches did it. Would you protest time square if MTV mobilized the youth vote against something you disagree with? If you’re angry about upset support why don’t you protest homosexual rights organizations that out-raised the mormons and proponents of prop 8 in out of state funding?

    Lobbying is a part of democracy and those who lost this last election did a better job of it then the proponents that included a small majority of Mormons. Unfortunately, they lost so the whole world gets to hear about it.

    “no one is banging down the doors of religious institutions demanding that they recognize their gay marriage.”

    No, they’re not; their just showing up in mass numbers to protest a religious lobby that accounted for 13% of the “yes” vote and wasn’t able to raise as much money, in state or out of state, as the homosexual rights lobby.

    Reply

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