Monday, November 17, 2008

Getting Out From Under The Bus by Renee

"My two Moms can beat up your 14 wives."

"You have 55 Wives. I just want one."



Book of Mormon burnings outside churches. Protests outside temples. Ads depicting missionaries smugly robbing a couple of their rings and rights. Pictures of Prophets ripped in half.

Hm. Looks like we've found somewhere to project the hatred, frustration, and fear. Order up! Scapegoat, well-done!

It isn't that I don't understand why Mormons are a target. Many members of the Church, being conservative voters, financially backed the propositions that are stirring up a nation of people tired of discrimination. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints even encouraged its members to exercise their right to vote on this topic, as it would be an important one that pertained to principles taught in the Bible and doctrine of the Church.

Still, there's sort of a number problem here that I can't seem to overlook. The Mormon Church cannot possibly account for enough votes to make for a majority and pass a proposition through on their own. Mormons make up only 2% of the population of California. Considering Mormons only account for 5% of the Yes vote, I'm starting to wonder what's really going on here.

It's natural to seek out those who are contrary to your cause, and tear down their offense. That's how you win battles. And who are we kidding? It's kind of fun to hate on people who wear knee shorts and eat a lot of Jell-O, and have sordid pasts. But there's something wrong with placing the blame of the vote on Mormons, and even attacking the entire religion, especially when there are many Latter-Day Saints who voted No, and even donated their time, money, and efforts against it.

Steve Young on Prop 8

So, why is there a big, fat, red target on the LDS community as a whole? Why should a book, considered a piece of holy scripture, be burned in effigy, when it makes no reference to homosexuality within its pages? Why will there be bans on Christmas Temple Light displays this year?

I suppose that when you need someone to blame, it's easiest to go after another minority. I've heard political analysts call out black and latino voters, old voters, and poor voters to share the blame with the Mormons. It's everyone else's fault. If we can just single out the problem, WHO we should be angry with for taking away freedoms, we can wipe them out, and our problems will be solved. If a couple of annoying characters get thrown out of town while we're at it, all the better.

Guys. That's not how it's done. Isn't this vote, at its core, about equality and acceptance?

Instead of targeting a religion that had very little to do with the outcome, let's do our best to inform ourselves, so that when someone presents an opportunity, we can be there to say, "No, actually, this proposition says NOTHING about educating our children about gay marriage." Or "The constitution is meant to protect the minority, and if we work hard to offer an informative, intelligent response to this unfair propostiion, the supreme court will overturn these decision based on bigotry and misinformation." Or maybe we can find out who the other 95% are in the Yes vote, so that we can address those guys in our countermove.

When we defend one group by attacking another, the real issue gets lost, anyway. Instead of hearing a message of tolerance, Mormons are hearing, "We hated you all along, and will do everything we can do run you out of here, you polygamist scum." Which, you know, not quite as effective. I believe we are better off being an example of how to love, rather than how to oppress.

I thought that was what we were going for here.


witticism here said...

Well said, Renee.

Valerie said...

Well said.

Check this out for passion:

I've been addressing this very issue in my blog, Confessions of a Bible Virgin ( Hope you'll check it out!

A friend of Keiko's,


Rhonda said...

Dante put the hypocrites in the Eighth circle of hell. You might want to call ahead to reserve some space. As long as you mock those you pretend to defend, you become that which you profess to deplore.

Jacqueline d'Estries said...

I'm not sure how much the mormons had to do with the the California prop, but they had everything to do with prop 102. While they may not have had a majority of the votes, the campaign was all theirs. They contributed over 75% of the money for the campaign. Some of the top backers were Rex and Ruth Maughan ($100,000) and Kristen Cowley ($40,000)who happens to organize the easter pageant. Of the 190 contributions of $100,000 or more, 70 were from Mesa (which is embarrasingly where I am from and the hole to our oldest LDS temple in Arizona) They shamelessly used CHILDREN in their add and their fasle message of "yes to marriage" confused many voters into thinking they were in fact voting yes for marriage. I worked at the polling places on election day and there were a handful of people who had to redo their ballot because they were confused about which one meant taking away people's rights. I got letters in the mail and messages on my answering machine from these people. I am sorry but they are monsters. I am sure not everyone in the Mormon Church has that kind of hate for homosexuals. I have to beleive that in order for me to not develop my own prejudice. But if you ask how I feel about the Klu Klux Klan, I am prejudiced against them for their agenda of hate. If the Klu Klux Klan was here (and they may be), they would have also voted yes. I was horrified by what the mormons put into action on this proposition. They used scare tactics and deception to manipulate voters into passing a law to take away rights of a minority then tried to act like their millions of dollars of funding had nothing to do with it. I have no pity whatsoever for it blowing up in their faces.