Thanks to Steve Greenstreet for this perspective… I’m with you 100%
Stop the presses! The LDS church, via spokesman Michael Otterson, held a special news conference today to announce to every soul in the entire universe that they support “the right of people (gays) to have a roof over their heads and the right to work without being discriminated against.”
Wow… what a stance.
A truly groundbreaking day in the progression of civil rights. Gays can now have a roof over their heads and not be fired from their jobs thanks to the stamp of approval from the Mormons.
C’mon, really? How is this even news? Did gay folks really need the church’s nod of approval to have what Otterson himself admitted are “common-sense rights”?
Now I’m sure all the national press is eating this up with a spoon printing headlines of “WHOA! MORMONS ENDORSE SOMETHING THAT HELPS GAYS” and so on. Because that’s the angle the church wanted and that’s the easiest angle to fit into 250 words or less. And that’s just lazy journalism. Copy / Paste.
Because if you read the church’s statement, it’s really full of the same old mumbo jumbo.
Starting with this zinger:
“The Church supports this ordinance because it is fair and reasonable and does not do violence to the institution of marriage.”
Violence? Against the institution of marriage? Seriously? Has no one else called “crazy” on this yet?
I’ll tell you what, Michael Otterson Official Spokeperson for the Mormon Church, violence is exactly what your church’s policies have enacted over the past couple decades. Violence? How do you address the high suicide rate among gay Mormons? In our film, we tell the story of Stuart Matis who, after sitting through countless church meetings listening to gay bashing, stood on the steps of his Mormon church in California and put a bullet in his brain while holding note saying, in essence, “I’m sorry”. Stuart, sadly, is one of many. Or what about the countless scores of homeless teenagers roming the streets of Utah because Mormon bishops told their families to throw them to the curb? In our film, we followed a group of them around as they slept on filthy mattresses in abandoned warehouses. “There is no hope”, one of them said, “I’m surprised I’m not dead.” How does that fit into “fair and reasonable”?
I’d really like to know. Which is why I asked you a few months ago. I spoke with Kim Farah, another spokesperson with the Mormon church. I asked, “The church raised millions of dollars and engaged entire communities in helping pass Proposition 8 in California. How much of the churches efforts are being used to help the gay members, within your church, who are suffering suicide and homelessness in Utah and nationwide?”
She stumbled a bit before candidly saying, “I’m not familiar with any specific programs the church has for that. I’ll have to… I’ll have to get back to you on that.”
She never did.
The fact of the matter is that the press conference held today was a desperate attempt by the Mormon church to curb the relentlous bad press they’ve had since Proposition 8 passed. They lied about their financial reports, they coerced church members into donating exorbitant dollar amounts (some even gave their kids’ entire college savings), they ended up donating 30 of the 40 million dollars for “Yes on 8”, and then, when it was all over, they helped strip a civil right from tens of thousands of Americans.
Oh, but it’s “not an issue of civil rights”, Kim Farah said in my interview.
And the Mormon leaders know a thing or two about civil rights. Just ask Dallin Oaks, who said that the backlash his church has endured because of Prop 8 is equal to or more than the lynchings, fire hoses, police dogs, beatings, and utter chaos that blacks endured during the civil rights movement.
I could go on, but I shouldn’t have to. This was a ruse from the Mormon church. Plain and simple. And most of us should see right through it. You can’t strip rights from thousands and then endorse “um, ok you can have a house” and then call yourself a champion of civil rights.
Otterson ended his comments by saying that “In these comments and in our actions, we try to follow what Jesus Christ taught.”
Well, Jesus taught, “By their fruits, ye shall know them.”
Mr. Otterson, our film is full of your church’s fruits. Lies, tears, misery and death.
“Ye shall know them.” Indeed.