Response on Romney

Mormon Founder Joseph Smith Receives the Golden Tablets

I received this very smart comment on my piece on Romney and Religion. Here’s the original column, where I quote Abraham Foxman, the national director of the Anti-Defamation League, voicing concern about treatment of the Mormon religion during the election. My one counterpoint is that Krakauer’s book deals with an off-shoot Mormon-sect, not the mainstream Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Here’s the comment:

“I write this with one caveat; you didn’t ask for my opinion, so feel free to
disregard and delete if I’m overstepping here. I don’t get political, I
don’t get that angry about issues or politics except for the military and
war (always have) and as of late Mitt Romney. Have you read Under the Banner of Heaven? If not, it’s a must. Like, read it tomorrow. If you have, were
you not deeply disturbed and left seriously shaken by the tenants of
Mormonism?

I applaud your column for questioning why we think it’s okay to bash a
Mormon but would never consider it acceptable to do to a Jew or a Catholic.
However, I think there is a respectful way of probing and asking questions
and demanding answers. In this case, the case of Mitt Romney vying for the
position of leader of the United States of America, it’s imperative that
people ask questions (many fairly simply ones) about Mormonism and demand
real answers, not political answers.

I should tell you I have no patience for Jews who think that as long as you
support Israel, posthumously converting people to Mormonism and
prosthelytize to the weak, poor, lost, miserable, and vulnerable is okay.
It’s not okay. That is a requirement of the faith, as it is of some other
faiths. The question is will Romney put country before church? He hasn’t
answered that question – he dodges that question. His first loyalty is to
church. That I have a serious problem with his church is one thing. That he
would put it before country is another matter. Take the Clintons (can’t
stand either of them) but I respect that even as devout, God-fearing, church
going Christians they put country before church. Not all of the Clinton
policies were in line with the Clintons’ personal policies. They are
staunchly anti-abortion, for example, but recognized that this was not an
issue for the prez to take on. Once elected he didn’t need to hide it.

Romney is hiding a lot of stuff and I think we need to know about it before
he becomes president not after. That he wears some garment under his Brooks
Brothers suit may be great fodder for late night TV jokes, but it’s a total
distraction from the mysterious and unexplained practices of his religion.
When Muslims dropped to the ground, prostrated in airports and freaked
people out they were asked to explain; they did. Whether you’re anti-Muslim
or not, you know why they do this. Mormons don’t explain the unusual and
sometimes questionable and objectionable principles of their faith. Total
religious tolerance means nothing. Religious education and understanding are
another thing. We don’t know enough about Mormonism to ask the right
questions; the last of which is, “if you’re elected President will I be able
to have multiple wives?”

This is the fastest growing religion in our country and I think as you’ll
see from Kraukauer’s argument, there is a movement under way to get the
Mormons in as many politically powerful positions as possible so as to
accomplish what is left for the Mormons to accomplish. I don’t care that
they are Mormon, I care that there is some movement of domination that has
been set in motion; that to me is scary and unacceptable, whether its’ doen
under the auspices of religion or ants on a mission fro lunch. Hate doesn’t
need to be part of it, but the media isn’t asking the right questions. In
fact, the media is asking the wrong questions and trivializing the entire
issue. “

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4 Responses to “Response on Romney”

  1. Marc Says:

    The mormon faith requires that they follow the laws of the country. Sounds pretty good to me.

  2. Jay Says:

    Yeah dude. I read Krakauer’s book too. The Mormons universally condemned the Lafferty brothers.

    Did Mitt Romney put his church ahead of successfully governing the state of Massachusets as governor?

    Did Mitt Romney put his church ahead of managing the 2002 olympics?

    Has ANY supposed weird belief of Mitt Romney’s prevented him from being an exemplary American in basically every way possible?

    Attack the Mormons all day. Bill Maher said on his HBO show that up until 1950 the Mormons believed that the only way for a black person to get to heaven was as a slave. – I doubt that’s true, but was Bill Maher saying that Romney was racist? – That is preposterous. Mitt Romney isn’t racist, doesn’t hate gays. Mitt Romney isn’t polygamist, or a polygamist sympathizer, he doesn’t participate in any sort of conspiracy.

  3. Emily Says:

    The fact that I went to their geneology library in Salt Lake City, and they had a complete listing of both my mother’s family and fathers family (who virtually all died in the Holocaust) was terrifying and down right bizzare. Why do they have a geneology library that documents the histories of Non-Mormons? Why do they welcome and encourage vistors to visit The Tablernacle, listen to their choirs, try to convert us, and not explain their core beliefs. I would love for a practicing Mormon to explain the differances between the various Christian / Protestant faiths and Mormon and why the Mormon faith is growing.. I agree entirely with you Seth. If he’s running, Americans need to understand exactly what Mitt belives. I say this from a place of education…and not discrimation. Its a perfect educational moment.

  4. Marilyn Says:

    Though this last post veers off the direction “Response on Romney” seemed to be headed, I wish to respond with this…

    All genealogy libraries, whether run by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons), or a city, county or Genealogical Society will have records of man’s inhumanity to man. Such atrocities as the Jewish people experienced in the Holocaust, the atrocities of the Native Americans, the atrocities to the Negroid race of people, and yes, even the atrocities brought upon the early Mormon pioneers here in our “land of freedom” are found in the archives of historical records that are made available to all people from many different sources – not solely the Salt Lake Family History Library. The reason those records are there is not to terrify anyone nor is it bizarre, but it is because each person found in any record, whether a victim of atrocities or not, are someone’s relative. Malachi, prophet of the Old Testament stated in the book of Malachi 4:6 “And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.” Latter-day Saints are not the only people who have “had their hearts turned” as it were.

    I believe that offering an open invitation to visit the Tabernacle, listen to the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, enter and learn in the many Visitor’s Centers associated to Temples and utilize the many Family History Centers are not only for the purpose of accommodating those interested in learning and wish to accept the teachings but, also to help educate those who merely want to gain understanding from the source rather than from myths and concoctions. I am not sure why you have that statement; “…not explain their core beliefs” following the “try to convert us” because you can find exactly that at any of those places you mentioned that are open to everyoone of every color, background and walk of life as well as right on the Internet. The official sites (untainted by outside misconstrued ideas) are: http://www.lds.org/portal/site/LDSOrg and http://www.mormon.org/welcome/0,6929,403-1,00.html

    These portals to obtain information have no strings tied to them. It is completely up to the individual seeking information or understanding as to what and how much knowledge they want to gain. It is their choice to do with it as they wish.

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