Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Prop 8

EDITED. I was very emotional when i wrote this, and that was a mistake. My feelings on this issue have been all over the map. Basically, i am torn between what my God tells me, and my desire to play fair and never cause pain to others. I have a conflicted relationship with God, and things like this tend to reach down into those secret chambers of my heart and pull my quiet internal disputes out in a very bloody and painful mess. We are like a father and a daughter who love each other very much but who have a few strong disagreements. We get along fine, until those disagreements are forced to the front, and then we have a falling-out for a while. This is one of those issues that gets me worked up. It's impossible for me to be rational for very long about it. I have pled with God at length about this, begging Him to change His mind. Some things are hard for me to believe, and I will possibly never agree with Him 100% in this life. I struggle with obedience, i freely admit that.

I do not regret what i said about the Yes campaign. It relies heavily on distortions, misrepresentation, fearmongering and occasional outright lies. I do not regret criticizing that the church has associated itself with the Protect Marriage coalition. We should not be supporting half-truths and deceptions. I don't criticize the church's stand on the issue itself - it is obligated by doctrine. I criticize people who have used this as an opportunity to air their bigotries and ignorance. I do not criticize people who soberly and sadly stand up for what they genuinely believe is right.

I'll almost certainly regret this post. But the brethren have asked us to blog about it, and blog about it I shall.

I hate prop 8. I hate everything about it. I hate the thumbscrew-pressure that's getting put on members to support it. I hate the lies (PLEASE read this rebuttal written by a BYU grad lawyer, active member and contributor to the Joseph Smith papers project) and hysteria being used to promote it. I hate that the church has elected to throw in its lot with Focus on the Family, an organization with a long history of fact-bending and religion-baiting, and other reactionary self-appointed arbiters of what is Christian and what is not. Very few of the groups we are mixing with on Prop 8 were our friends before now, and very few of them will be our friends afterward. They will stab us in the back as soon as it's over, mark my words.


Ken said...

My Thoughts...

I agree that the whole thing has gotten ugly. The advisary will use any means possible to disrupt and damage all of us. He doesn't play by the rules. He pits friend against friend, brother against brother, he lies to both sides, and he must be jumping for joy at what he's accomplished. And when the votes are tallied, whether it passes or not, it's probably just the begining.

The thing that I fear most is the idea of "I fail to see". I suspect that there are consequences that we are not even close to "seeing" if we do not defend and protect marriage. All the other arguments may or may not take place, and those alone are bad enough, but it's what we can't see that we should be truly concerned with. If the brethren put so much stock in such an unpopular endevour, there must be something to it. I feel we need to trust them, and put our faith in their direction. If they lead us in the wrong direction, it's on them, not us. But don't we believe that the Lord would not allow that to happen?
People in my ward have said some pretty ignorant things as well, and I just shake my head at it, and hope that somewhere down the road they see that.

The bottom line for me is, if the Brethren want me to vote "yes", then I will vote "yes".

Stephanie said...

I agree with Ken. I don't know how this is going to go down, but I'm at least going to be on the side of the brethren. We have been promised that they won't lead us astray - and if there is anything I don't need in my life, it's astray.

I think it's sad that it's come to this. I agree with you on the church aligning itself with political organizations - it was a real eye opener when I went to California and heard and saw the blatant politiking that went on in Sunday School and Sacrament meeting. It's a little scary that it has come to a severe choosing of sides. You would think there would be a better middle ground, but right now there is not.

I'm sorry that this has caused you anguish. I will say a prayer that you will find some peace with whatever it is you decide.

Love your guts!

samandholly said...

I join the chorus of virtual applause (and if there is no chorus, I stand alone clapping my virtual heart out) for your post. I am glad I am not the only Mormon who is not on the Yes on 8 bandwagon. As a member of the Church who honestly believes that the leaders of the Church are inspired by God, I am really torn over the whole thing. As a human being, I hate Prop 8 and its divisive inequality. Were it not for the direction of the Prophet, whom I sustain as a seer (as alluded to by Ken), I would definitely vote no on 8. But I know that the leaders of the Church are inspired and that really matters to me. For most of the election season, I just planned on not voting either way on Prop 8. But I read an article by President N. Eldon Tanner from the early '80s that said, in effect, the Prophet has spoken, the debate is over. (If you want, I can find a link to the article somewhere) I will vote yes, without understanding why it is so important to divide and discriminate, hoping that those who are called to lead us really can see the BIG picture.

Susan M said...

I can relate to your feelings on this. I'm glad I'm in primary and haven't had to sit through any sunday school/RS discussions about it.

Mostly I hate the constant advertising about it on TV, from both sides. Neither sides' ads seem particularly truthful.

All that said, I prayed about it, and I got an answer I wasn't really expecting.

liannallama said...

NOTHING about this election gets me more worked up than this issue!!! I hate discussing politics, but I have no problems shouting from the rooftops that I think this proposition is horrible and unfair! It is discrimination at its worst.

The best thing someone can do to defend marriage is to find a strong, loving mate and stick to that person through thick and thin. I am saddened that people will blindly vote the way they are told even if it goes against their logic and their heart.

I'll stop now but I'll make no secret of it--I am voting NOOOOOO on 8.

Kimberly said...

Up to now, I'd been pretty decided on the issue... but I appreciate your courageous light shedding. After reading your blog and another friend's I'm feeling like I made a bit of a mistake. I was trying to show my daughter how informed you need to be when you're voting, and here I was not even bothering to investigate both sides of the issue because I kind of felt I already knew what the other side had to say. Thanks for the additional voice of reason.

colleeeen said...

i do now wish that maybe i hadn't done this. going back to it after a few days, i can see that i was pretty upset and angry when i wrote it. my biggest problem is that if i vote one way i will feel as though i am betraying my God (and God and i have plenty to discuss as it is), and if i vote another way i will be causing emotional pain to some people. i just wish God could let up a little and work out a compromise with people who didn't ask for these feelings but are stuck with them for life. it goes so much deeper than prop 8 and right to the heart of my constant dispute with God about how He manages things (or abstains from management). Don't worry, i'm not apostate. i'm just peeved.