Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Proposition 8

I watched The Return of the King last night instead of election coverage, because orcs eating people seemed cheerier to me than watching the Leftist media gloat. I will say, it's an exciting day for blacks in America and I hope Barack Obama's presidency will be the kind of change his followers hope for.

I was sent a disturbing email this morning about an anti-Mormon ad opposing Proposition 8 in California. Prop. 8 is a ballot measure in California, seeking to add wording to the state constitution clarifying that marriage is to be between a man and a woman. The battle has been heated, as you can imagine. If you want to watch "Mormon missionaries" ransacking the house of a lesbian couple and ripping up their marriage license, you can look it up the ad from 'Courage Campaign' on YouTube. I found it offensive in the extreme. It is always the case with liberal extremists that they say they want all views respected, when in reality, they have only respect for themselves. I can understand why people would oppose Proposition 8. But clearly, they do not extend the same courtesy as to why others might support it. The Church's response to this ad was characteristically classy.

Scott Trotter with the Church released this statement,
“The Church has joined a broad-based coalition in defense of traditional marriage. While we feel this is important to all of society, we have always emphasized that respect be given to those who feel differently on this issue. It is unfortunate that some who oppose this proposition have not given the Church this same courtesy.”

I remember when this was first a ballot measure in California several years ago while I was a student at BYU. I was surprised at how divided the campus--especially the professors--were on this issue. I remember one professor who I particularly admired being opposed to the Church's position mostly because of the extreme right groups it put us in camp with. Nobody likes to be thought of as intolerant. Heck, if the Church didn't have a position on gay marriage, I might not think it mattered. But I trust that the Prophet knows more. He is in the watch tower and it is his sacred responsibility to warn us when danger approaches, even if it doesn't look dangerous to us in the beginning. I think this issue and many others that members of the LDS faith may struggle with really boil down to whether or not you have a testimony of the divine call of the Prophet. If you don't believe he speaks for God, why would you care what he said? If he does, how can you possibly disregard it?

I'm including a link to a site supporting proposition 8. Read to the bottom and watch the video about how legalizing same-sex marriage has affected education in Massachusetts. It is disturbing, but not surprising.

I sometimes hear people suggest that the Church has no business in politics...I find this idea offensive. God makes laws...not the prophet, not the Church. If the laws of man run contrary to scriptural teachings, it is our responsibility to seek to change those laws. Man does not legislate morality. God already did that. We're just trying to keep in line with what he already taught. It is absurd to me that anyone would willingly compartmentalize or segregate the parts of their life in which they're willing to hear God...
"He can tell me how to eat, but not how to act out my sexuality...Our entire criminal justice system is based on the Ten Commandments, but we have no right to legislate morality....I'm willing to do what is already easy for me, but if His prophet asks something I'm uncomfortable with, I think it's none of His business." ????

Where gay marriage is concerned, this is plainly true. There is no discrimination against gay couples on the books in California. All the same rights are extended to them. Their relationship is just not called "marriage." By seeking that final title, they're not seeking equality in legal rights; they're forcing everyone else to acknowledge that their lifestyle is equally acceptable. They're seeking moral validation.

The Bishop will never ask you how you voted on an issue in a Temple recommend interview, and certainly it would not be appropriate. But if you are a faithful member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, you have covenanted to follow God's prophet. And if the prophet says we should do something--like support Proposition 8--and we choose not to, we are ignoring our testimony and choosing to consider the Prophet simply an old man with some advice we are also free to ignore. Either God leads this Church through his prophet, or he doesn't.

You may struggle internally--I certainly have on this issue. You may not understand every bit of reasoning behind the Church's official position. But if the Church has an official position, you have a responsibility to make it your own. If you choose against the prophet, you've chosen the wrong side, folks. This is not blind obedience, it is conscientious faithfulness. Besides, if people like to think of us as sheep, at least we can take comfort in following the voice of our Shepherd.

I like an old quote from Elder Neal A Maxwell of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. It seems particularly pertinent here. "There didn't seem to be any problem with conformity the day the Red Sea parted."


We Are A Happy Family said...

I agree.

Melissa said...

Bravo! You read my mind.

Burke Blog said...

AMEN!!! I could not have said it better. Strong to the point, and loving. You're so awesome Jennie, I love you!!!!

Linda Kelly said...

Thanks for your kind words about prop 8. We have been in the trenches for months trying to get people to understand our position and especially to obey the prophet to do everything within our power to get this prop passed. We are so grateful that it did pass but the fight is still on as you can see from the media reports. I have never been so involved in the political process as I was with this issue and I am so glad I had the opportunity to stand for truth and righteousness. I want to beable to tell my children and grandchildren that I did all I could to fight the good fight. Even if we would have lost the battle I still could have rested in peace knowing that I fought on the Lords side. Your blog really said it well!! It still amazes me of how many "good" members could not support the prophet on this issue!! Do I want them teaching my children in Primary or YW's?? Should they have a temple recommend?? Food for thought!!!

dubby said...

Did you see after the vote against homosexual marriage in California the call to "torch the Mormon temples"? They said they couldn't get their way peacefully so now they "have" to resort to violence.

Hopefully this is just a few whackos.

Old Man With a radio transmitter in his car said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Urban Tangerine said...

Thank you California friends. You did something really uncomfortable.

Tonight I passed a man carrying a "Love not 8" sign to the protest at the Manhattan temple. Today a friend of ours resigned as artistic director from a regional theatre in CA because the GLBTG theatre folks discovered he had donated $1,000 to the protect marriage campaign. He has been politically lynched, black-listed, whatever you want to call it.

While I believe in modern revelation, the statements in the newsroom encourage us to be informed. Preach My Gospel teaches that we can only know something spiritually if we pray about it. Please pray about it AND get informed. Try for starters. There are reasons and "because the prophet said so," doesn't fly when discussing this with our neighbors.

I think I am beginning to feel some of the anxieties of the early pioneers. I do actually consider being bodily harmed a possibility,but my prayer is that I will always recognize my opponents as children of God and that I may be filled with His love for them.

In the meantime, if you believe that marriage is between a man and a woman, then go on a date with your spouse for goodness sake. If you're not married, volunteer to babysit for someone who is. We've let marriage disintegrate with living together and easy divorce. At least, make your marriage strong.