This week the 9th Circuit Court decided to overturn California's Proposition 8, a decision that has drawn everything from shock to heavy criticism to near hysteria in the conservative Mormon community.
On Facebook and other forums I have heard from Latter-day Saints who defend their church's bigoted, homophobic position in various irrational ways. For example:
If gay marriage becomes legal, then gay people will be able to legally force the Mormon Church into letting them marry in their temples.
--As if the Mormons haven't successfully kept people out of their temples for years without suffering any legal repercussions.
Gays can't get married because they can't procreate.
--As if couples who adopt kids or are childless should only be allowed to form domestic partnerships.
I could go on, but I can already mentally see my intelligent readers' eyes glazing over. So I will jump ahead to the one argument that Mormons make that actually has some merit:
I don't question why gays shouldn't get married because the prophet speaks directly to God and the church is true.
--This makes perfect sense if you drink the Kool-Aid. It's also one of the main reasons why some people call Mormonism a cult. And it's this premise that has enabled the LDS Church to maintain its membership, in spite of the fact that it has been on the wrong side of just about every social issue it has weighed in on.
Mormons claim that they differentiate between when the prophet is speaking "as a man" and when he is speaking "as a prophet." I maintain that the prophet differentiates between when he is speaking "to the church" and when he is speaking "to the world." Why else would the LDS Church issue this bullshit statement:
Now that the he's issued his statement, the prophet may go back to speaking "to the world," in the form of slick advertising and maybe even a high profile interview in which he characterizes himself as "an example."
It took 14 years after the 1964 Civil Rights Act before the LDS Church finally switched sides and extended its priesthood to black men. Since their 1978 policy shift, the Mormons have promoted themselves as a people who have always stood for racial equality. Who knows? Maybe in fifty-some years, when gay marriage is an established norm, and our president is a lesbian, the Mormons will be saying that they've always stood for same-sex marriage. Stranger things have happened.
But for now the Mormons are on the wrong side of the issue. Like the growing majority who support gay marriage, I hope that this case goes before the Supreme Court and that the decision of the lower court is upheld. But whatever the future holds, the events of this historic week have made me feel proud to be an American and a resident of the 9th Circuit. They also remind me of how grateful I am that I no longer drink the Kool-Aid.
If you wanted to stop receiving emails from the Abbottsville Fourth Ward, forget it. After suffering years of Mormon-induced depression, this blog owner takes humor very seriously and her silly side will return.
And don't forget to vote for your favorite Mormon-themed blogs in the Brodie Awards!