Archive for December, 2009

New Info On Mormon Church’s Anti-Gay Agenda

These guys just never stop! New information is now slowly beginning to leak from inside the LDS (aka Mormon) church about their Anti-Gay agenda.

Mormon President, Thomas S Monson

As many people are aware, the Mormon church recently managed to get itself into the good graces of some in the nation-wide LGBT community by supporting Salt Lake City’s new non-discrimination ordinances (barring discrimination in the workplace and housing ((with exceptions)) ). However, new documents being uncovered by Reed Cowan, director of the upcoming 8: The Mormon Proposition, which date back over 10 years ago show that church leadership has had this in their game plan all along.

Although the full documents may not be made public until late January, they allegedly outline a cold game being played by the Mormon Prophet and the “Quorum of 12

Dallin H Oaks

Apostles” against the national Gay and Transgender community. Dallin H. Oaks of the Latter Day Saint high command is quoted as saying, “..in order to win the overall battle, there may have to be certain legal rights recognized for unmarried people, such as hospital visitation, strictly so opponents in the legislature will come away with something.” As many people may recall, this is almost identical to the documents that were discovered of communiques between the Mormon high command under the last church president Gordon B Hinckley during the fight for marriage equality in Hawaii. Oh yeah, and if you don’t know Dallin H Oaks, he’s the one who barely bothered to veil his comments when speaking to all members of the church earlier this year, calling LGBT people “filthy.” Then when he was called out on it he was also the one who said the “sufferings” of Mormon church members due to the backlash over Prop 8 was comparable to African-American sufferings in the south during the 1960’s.

So what does this mean for the nation and the more progressive states that are beginning to have the understanding that LGBT citizens are human (you know, progressive places like IOWA)? It means that the gold-laden and bloody hand of the LDS church is incredibly far-reaching, and if you’re not careful you’ll be stuck in the 18th century like us here in Utah. Personally, I can’t wait to get my hands on the full documents we’re hearing about. I guarantee I’ll have them to you in a heartbeat, and I have a feeling Monson won’t be thrilled.

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Gay Traitors?

Over the past week or so, I keep hearing claims that those in the LGBT community who supported Ben McAdams for Senate instead of Arlyn Bradshaw are traitors, true? In an ultra conservative state like Utah, we need to support any gay candidate we can right? Um………NO.

Get real people. Anyone with half a brain knows that in this state it takes the right person to get the job done, and while I’m a fan of both Ben and Arlyn and truely would have been happy either way, right now Ben is the more qualified person for the job. We must avoid childish stereotypes in this state because we cannot afford any mistakes, there are too many in the majority party fighting against us to have such mundane squabbles. I’m proud of who I am, I’m proud of my community and I’m proud to support our LGBT elected officials like Christine Johnson and Jackie Biskupski, but I will not let myself fall into the trap of Identity Politics.

This is the same thing you tend to hear our community clamoring about the conservatives doing isn’t it? Don’t vote for the white male Mormon just because he’s the white male Mormon? So how are we justified in doing the same thing ourselves? I cannot vote for a gay candidate just because he’s gay, period.

Oh and by the way, before you start hurling around a mud-word like “traitor,” take a look at the list below of a couple of the LGBT supporters of Ben McAdams, see any traitors?

Will Carlson – former Public Policy Manager for Equality Utah
Jon Jepsen – Salt Lake’s Human Rights Commissioner and current Board Member of the Utah Pride Center
Bruce Bastian – Executive Director of 8:TMP as well as the primary backer of the National Equality March
Christine Johnson – Openly lesbian State Representative
Mike Thompson – Former Executive Director of Equality Utah
Jim Dabakis – Former Board Member of the Utah Pride Center and one of the 5 community leaders who negotiated with the LDS church about the non-discrimination ordinaces.

Hopefully A New Ally In the Utah Senate

Ben McAdams

Scot McCoy, one of only 3 openly gay state-wide elected officials resigned last month; Can we please get someone good, not another Buttars? With several candidates running for the newly opened Senate seat in District 2, there isn’t much time before the election tomorrow (Dec 19th) at the City and County building in Salt Lake. I support Ben McAdams.

Ben has been in the game for a long time, and most recently has been working with both ex-Senator McCoy as well as Mayor Ralph Becker. He was the final push that made sure Salt Lake’s Domestic Partnership Registry didn’t disappear as so many wanted it to. He also worked very closely with Mayor Becker to achieve Salt Lake’s new Non-Discrimination Ordinances.

But you know, it seems like every candidate for this seat has a good track record. What’s most important to me is where his heart is, and what company he keeps. Ben is straight, married and has 2 kids (which is really too bad, he’s pretty good lookin!). He is also in support of full marriage equality, as well as any other right the hetero’s have that we don’t. I had a chance to ask him about his feelings on LGBT issues last night, and how it would be different,  switching from Scott McCoy (out and proud gay man) to a married straight man. “These are not issues just for gay candidates,” Ben said, “these are issues all of society needs to fight for.” Best..answer..ever. We got into the new Non-Discrimination ordinances that Salt Lake passed, Ben was very hopeful about the future of them and mentioned that he thinks “all cities need to adopt them because they are the right thing to do.”

With his thoughts and feelings on my issues, as well as the full endorsement of people like the city’s Human Rights Commissioner Jon Jepsen and the Executive Producer of “8: The Mormon Proposition” Bruce Bastian, I vote for Ben.

See more here.

Why I Understand, and Why They Will

Uganda is trying to kill us, President Obama wants us to be patient, Sutherland Institute wants us homeless and Chris Buttars thinks we’re Militant Muslim Terrorists who want to force him to have “pig-sex;” Welcome to the age of enlightenment.

I’m confused as hell right now. How is it after centuries of oppression, the women’s rights movement, the civil rights movement, the gays are still the ones holding the shit bucket? Is it because we’re not an “easily recognized” group of people? Our skin isn’t all the same color or we’re not all the same religion, economic class, political group or country? What the hell makes us the brunt of every joke and the “biggest threat to America going down?”

I’m going to get really personal here, so be forewarned. Many of our readers may know that I was raised LDS, aka Mormon. I attended Nursery, Primary, was Deacon’s

Me

Quorum President, Teacher’s Quorum President and a counselor in Priest’s Quorum. I served in leadership positions in Boy Scouts, was president of my Seminary class several times, attended Institute in college and was eventually married in the temple. My father served in leadership of the Young Men’s, the Bishopric and the High Council. My mother was Primary president, Young Women’s president, and Stake Rough Camp director for many years. My sisters and younger brother each held leadership positions in their respective classes and groups. Our family was the pillar of the Mormon community, doing exactly as it was supposed to be doing. With the small problem that I’m bisexual.

I came out for the first time my senior year of high school when I was seventeen. It didn’t go well, Mom cried and Dad threw me out of the house for a few days calling me a disappointment. I was eventually let back in but was under strict command that I would be following the Church to the “T.” When I graduated high school I was given a choice, go on a mission or get out. I got out. During the next two years I was lost and on my own. Because of no money I lived in rough neighborhoods, I had a gun in my face twice, and was physically assaulted 3 times while they yelled fag. After 2 years of no contact with my family I was so emotionally drained and unprepared that I whiplashed hard back into the church. I went through a disciplinary hearing where they decided that since I had never been given the melchizedek priesthood that I would not be excommunicated, only disfellowshipped and placed on probation. I was told I needed to get a girlfriend and start working towards marriage immediately to help combat my feelings, which I did and was married in the Salt Lake Temple a year and a half later. Needless to say it didn’t work out, and 2.5 years later I came out again, this time fully prepared.

Why do I tell this story? Why should I post something this personal online? Because I can. Because I want you to read it. Because I want Paul Mero and Chris Buttars and my Father in California to read it. I want everyone to know what I have been through, and what so many of my brothers and sisters have been through. This is a horrible story, and I was subjected to things that no child should ever go through. And my story isn’t nearly half as bad as it could have been. At least my father was only minimally physically abusive.

This city, this state, country and world is filled with hateful, ignorant people who want to kill me. People who would do horrible things to my body just because of what I feel in my heart and who I am in my head. Because they don’t know any better. And that right there is my point. THEY.DO.NOT.KNOW.ANY.BETTER.

I am a white man, I can never truly know what it’s like to be a black man or a woman. But guess what, I have an idea. I have an idea because I’ve read the stories of others and listened to friends who were my age during the 60’s and lived in the South. I have an idea. And because I have an idea I can sympathize. And because I can sympathize I fight for these rights. Because I can sympathize I will promote the freedom of religions to teach what they want as long as it’s not violence, even if they say I’m a sinner. Because I can sympathize I will never stand silent when I see someone called “nigger” or watch a woman be abused.

And if you know my story, and you see what I have been through, you will start to have a glimmer of understanding and you will begin to sympathize. My mother now has some understanding, my little sister yells at anyone she hears saying, “that’s so gay.” People will hear you, people will listen. Tell your story, so they will sympathize.

My name is Eric Ethington, and this is my story. Please repost this wherever you would like.

Reed Cowan and “The Mormon Proposition.” Pushing Too Far Or Just Right?

The latest film from film maker and news anchor Reed Cowan “8: The Mormon Proposition” has done nothing but catch headlines since it was announced to premiere at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival. And pro or con, it seems everyone’s got a strong opinion.

The far right-wingers and the LDS (Mormon) Church brass have thrown up instant cries of outrage and foul play, complaining that the film is nothing but an attack against the Church. Jeanne Malker of Cottonwood Heights Utah is a life-long member of the LDS / Mormon church and supporter of Prop 8, which stripped members of the LGBT community in California of their right to wed. “Well I think it’s disgusting,” Jeanne says, “..the [LDS] church is trying to shed light and happiness in the world, while this man [Cowan] is trying to tear everything down.” Even Cowan’s own sister, on a recorded phone call with Cowan, claimed that the film is attacking her faith and trying to tear down “God’s Commandments.”

Now boycotts are being called on Sundance, and local kook groups like the Meronites (Sutherland Institute, led by Paul Mero), as well as the Westboro Baptists are promising to be out in force.

Crazy huh? Just what on earth is this movie saying? Does it show Cowan spray-painting a temple, Book of Mormons being ripped up or a sacrament tray being dumped all over a Bishop? Um………no actually. The film itself actually is noticeably NOT anti-mormon, but rather chronicles the facts, programs and influences the LDS / Mormon church perpetuated to ensure the success of Prop 8 and the reaction and effect their actions had on people.

The Mormon faith teaches that it’s President and his advisors (a.k.a. the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles) speak directly for God, and

Reed Cowan, Director

cannot be questioned without serious ramifications. As such, any real or perceived attack on the church is a direct affront on God. But the film isn’t a direct attack on the Church itself right? I asked Marlene Bell, resident of Salt Lake City on the East Bench,  why the Church or it’s members should be afraid of the film showing what they did during the Prop 8 campaign, if the Church is led by God shouldn’t they be proud to show their involvement? “It has nothing to do with the Church’s involvement in Prop 8, this is about one man trying to bring the Prophet down.” said Mrs. Bell, just before she stopped talking to me (HEY what did I do?).

But the Westboro Baptists and the other kooks may have more to deal with when they arrive in Park City then they bargained for. Both local and national Pro-Human groups are banding together quickly in what promises to be an amazing array of American citizens, all united in the belief that all citizens of our country deserve to be treated as such. Rumors are abounding, but big-name players are being rumored to be among those voicing support of the film and LGBT rights (No I will NOT drop names, they’re still rumors!)

Well either way, love it or hate it, 8: The Mormon Proposition is guaranteed to be one of the most controversial and most successful documentaries Sundance has ever seen. And if you’re anywhere near Utah this January, better get here quick. This is going to be huge.