The anger and persecution directed at the LDS Church over California proposition 8 has been disappointing and troubling. This whole election year has been troubling in one form or another. It’s all very tiring. My voting choices were not shallow or vindictive, but were researched, studied and yes, even prayed over. I didn’t vote on Prop8, but I did have the opportunity to vote on a similar proposition in my state. And opportunity it was…voting in this grand Country IS an opportunity…and one I don’t take lightly.
“You have your way. I have my way. As for the right way, the correct way, and the only way, it does not exist.” Friedrich Nietzsche
Deciding how I was going to vote on the Marriage Prop, was no easy task. I believe in Christ and His true Church. I also believe in Freedom and Free Agency. You’d think those 2 beliefs would easily walk hand in hand. But every once in a while they clash in a big way…which is sad and sometimes unsettling. Spiritual nature dictates that they shouldn’t clash, but human nature doesn’t always listen to spiritual nature. I was willing to follow my beliefs and vote for the sanctity of marriage. But I was having trouble with the idea of taking away another’s right to live in a way they wish. It turns out, that was never the issue. Prop8 doesn’t take away that right…it only insures my right to follow my beliefs. And truth be told, even if that wasn’t the case, it didn’t take long for me to realize I could never support a group of individuals who chose to express their views by participating in acts of hatred, theft and other criminal behavior with the intent of forcing their views on others.
“Tolerance implies no lack of commitment to one’s own beliefs. Rather it condemns the oppression or persecution of others.” John Fitzgerald Kennedy
It still saddens me to see so much anger and hatred…and it disgusts me to hear of so many so called Americans gladly taking advantage of the situation by giving in to their own prejudices and hatred. Do they really think Prop8 was a huge conspiracy by the LDS Church? Or that persecuting the LDS Church is going to magically change the outcome of the vote? From what I understand, members in California only make up somewhere between 2% and 5% of the voting population. And contrary to popular belief, we are not brainwashed and not all members voted “yes”. It would make more sense to direct their anger at the black and Hispanic population who turned out in greater numbers to vote for Obama. Oh, but wait…that would be racist and considered a “hate crime” wouldn’t it? It’s easier to persecute a group of people who typically and historically “turn the other cheek”. The horrid backlash that came from the opponents of Prop8 against a group of people in the minority of those who voted for the proposition only magnifies the real agenda. It’s really not about equal rights, is it? It’s about free agency. So I guess the clash of my beliefs isn’t such a big clash after all. Resorting to acts of intolerance and hatred to force others to conform to a certain set of beliefs is contrary to everything I believe in. Except they really don’t care what I believe in, do they? If I don’t believe in their ways, then I must be intolerant and hate them, right? Because that’s the only way they think. But I honestly don’t care how they choose to think and live…until they try to tell me how to think and live and raise my family.
It’s quite exasperating, really. If they’re so convinced that God is approving of their way of life, then why are they so insistent on forcing everyone else to believe as they do? If they were so secure in their beliefs then it wouldn’t matter what others believe. If their church doesn’t approve, then why stay? If they believe strongly in their church, then they need to look a little closer at their current choices.
“There is more stupidity than hydrogen in the universe, and it has a longer shelf life.” Frank Zappa
I guess the big point I’m trying to make, is that I DID NOTHING WRONG! I am proud to be an American, and I’m grateful for the opportunity to vote my conscience. I will forever defend my beliefs in God and my Church…and I will continue to exercise my right to do so.
“If you are busy being kind
Before you knew you would find,
You’d soon forget to think twas true
That someone was unkind to you.
If you were busy being good
And doing just the best you could,
You’d not have time to blame some man
Who’s doing just the best he can”
The Book of Virtues, Responsibility, 1996
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