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Comments about ‘Lawmakers, LDS Church brainstorm’

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Published: Saturday, Jan. 19 2008 12:44 a.m. MST

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Matt E.

I wonder what the church means by "compassion". It's not like any of Utah's lawmakers have denied that illegal immigrants are human beings or have argued against immigration itself. The issue the lawmakers are concerned with is line-jumping -- what to do with those who push others waiting in line to get what they want. There are many people in Mexico and around the world waiting in line to emigrate to America, and "compassion" would seemingly require us to protect the rights of those playing fairly, which means making those who pushed their way to the front to go get back in line.

An experienced immigrant

I'm not an immigrant but my wife is. Her and I have attended a Spanish speaking branch in Salt Lake. Calling the issue to a direction of humanity couldn't be more appropriate. My wife and I have tirelessly complied with the laws that are in place. Though I could become resentful toward those who fail to comply with these federal laws (which can be similar to filing taxes), I yet must say that I've felt that there are very specific elements (too boring for the average person to read) of the law that need to be altered so that there is a greater incentive by those who need to come forward and become a part of the society at large. I don't like taxes in general - I don't like thinking that my taxes went to pay the Uintah cop who tazered an innocent citizen. I don't like thinking that my taxes go to pay for a 'department' that rejected my sister-in-law a tourist visa (so that she could attend her sister's wedding) for absolutely no explainable reason. I support Mitt Romney as a whole, but on this issue I don't trust that he's merciful enough.

Anonymous

What ever happened to separation of church and state? Why does the LDS church think that it should be allowed to have a say in anything around here? What about my rights to have a fair and just government, without undue influence or bias?

DR Don

I, too, feel love and compassion for illegal immigrants. I would love to compassionately move them all back to their country of origin, be it Pakistan, Mexico, Ireland or China.

Anonymous

Key to the whole thing, the LDS Church wants more converts, obeying the laws, honesty does not come into play, we can look to our very ethical law makers to know that. Send the families home and let Mexico or whatever government step up and educated and take care of their own. As a legal immigrant that had to go through the ropes, it makes me angry the the "CHURCH" is supporting illigal aliens - wonder if they would help take the burden of the tax payer and pay for the schooling and medical costs of their new illegal converts

read the article

I believe the lds church says that it comments on moral issues. The article mentioned that both the Republicans and Democrats were also meeting with another group of various religious leaders. I also believe that religious leaders such as Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Billy Graham and the Teletubby guy meets regularly with government officials regarding moral issues. Don't accuse the church of being secretive and then not let them speak out on their views.

Bottom Line

The bottom line here is that the church knows that Utah has a huge percentage of its population that are hispanic and that a huge percentage of those hispanics are illegal aliens, and a large percentage of those illegal aliens are part of families and neighborhoods with huge church membership which equates to tithing, offerings and free labor for the church in those communities.

The Church preaches compassion and a more liberal view of the law only when it serves their financial interests. If the gay population of the church accounted for enough financial input, you can be sure that they would be more compassionate and liberal in their view of same-sex marriage and civil rights.

Utah is a shadow theocratically based legal system, wherein the Church acts as a lobbyist in purely secular affairs. Having their cake and eating it too... that's what Christianity, Judaism, Islam, and yes... Mormonism is about when push comes to shove. Theocracy is the antithesis of Democracy, as sectarianism is the antithesis of secularism. The Founding Fathers knew this which is why they established a government by the people, of the people, for the people... not churches!

Speeding

That comment (above) about speeding is a good one. Utah is a state that made it nearly impossible to use a PhotoCop in West Valley City, something that actually stopped people from speeding (believe me, I drove through there every morning, and it was the only place on Bangerter that was moving at the speed limit).

I think the attitude in Utah is not "we must obey the laws." The attitude is "YOU must obey the laws, but I know what I'm doing and don't need to obey them."

Jerry

Clearly the Lord blesses all of his children. He just blesses the Republicans more, since it is clear that we adhere to His principles today. The democrats can be loved too, with counseling. The church clearly is demonstrating a Masterstroke here by reaching out to all parties.

we are all of imigrant heritage

I wish people really understood what is happening with the new immigration laws. I am an employer and I have a young father who has lived here since he was 5 years old went to school here graduated from high school at Provo High School. Obtained a tax ID number and has been working since he was 12 to help support his mothers family. He is now married to a local "american citizen" and they have 2 children. He only knows american culture and american ways but his mother never applied for citizenship for the children and now he is faced with trying to get a SS # and the prospects are grim. The imigration attorney we are working with to help him has indicated the very best case senario he might be able to get one in 6-8 months, worse case he will be shipped back to Mexico. That would leave a mother and two children on Welfare, devistate this man who loves his children and shut down a thriving business (he is the forman of my shop). I think we realy need to take a look at the human side. This only scratches the surface.

RayD

I live in Ohio. I have lived in Alabama and Massachusetts. Every large Christian denomination finds ways to express its views and concerns and feelings about political issues - and MOST do it in a much more intrusive way than holding meetings to discuss them. Most actively pick candidates and support them in very blatant ways.

If you think this is disturbing, live in the Deep South for a while. Evangelical and Southern Baptist leaders make Mormon leaders look like Boy Scouts in this regard.

Christian Evangelical

I am not Mormon, I am a Born Again Christian with strong evangelical views on life. But I admire the mormons and their church leaders for making sure the politicians remember God when they create laws. I applaud the mormons for doing this. We do the same thing in the Southeast, in the bible belt. Baptists, evagelicals, Assamblies of God, and others, WE LOBBY! Of course, we need to do it to protect our christian rights!

The Mormon Church has the right to lobby and counsel and advice politicians just as Billy Graham counseled several U.S. presidents.

We sould learn from the mormons and do the same thing in other states in the country.

disturbed 2

I agree 100 percent with "Disturbed" & "Utah Valley Resident" above. The real issue here is what the church says, and then turns around and does something complete different. The laws already in place are NOT being enforced. The church has it's hands in too many kettles to say it's not involved in politics.
Yes they can express their wishes but done this way they are nothing more than a lobbyist and should abide by lobbyist rules and full disclosure.

Voin Campbell

The LDS Church has, for many years, maintained a posture of not endnorcing political parties or candidates. That what they mean by staying out of politics, nothing more and nothing less. As the leadership its members everywhere, the LDS church has always spoken out and, hopefully, always will speak out on issues that directly impact the spiritual well being of its members, especially issure of principle and morality. For LDS leaders to do otherwise would be to abandon its membeship in the heat of a great moral battle, in which eternal souls are at risk.

Alan of Orem

On Church influence in the legislature:

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (CoJCoLDS) does not "direct" the legislature in anything. As a prominent institutional citizen of the State, it requests, and is freely granted by both parties, an opportunity to express views. This is not coercion, but a freely agreed-upon meeting. IOW, the CoJCoLDS is free, like any citizen of Utah, to express (not impose) its views, and lawmakers are free to listen, which they choose to do.

On treatment of undocumented immigrants:

1. Only a relatively small proportion of Utah hispanic immigrants are LDS, or ever will be.

2. When Hispanic immigrants choose to join the CoJCoLDS, or seek temple privileges, they are *not* asked about their immigrations status. Not the Church's job.

3. I suspect that the CoJCoLDS is largely concerned about tearing families apart.

My own view:

- First: Build and use "the fence". Do it now.
- *After* it's built, drop most barriers to *legal* immigration. Quotas, etc.
- National ID system to track those who come in through airports as students, tourists, etc.
- Don't treat this is a culture war. Our society is, should be, and will remain a multicultural melting pot.

fredd

The story here that many glaze over to discuss immigration is that BEFORE EVERY GENERAL SESSION church leaders sit down with leaders of the house and senate. Don't ever tell me the mormon church is not involved in Utah politics. And yes there is a seperation of church and state in this country and yes this is a bviolation. Last year there was an article that said whenever a controversial bll is being considered they run it by the church because, 'without thier support it would never pass." This should end any discussion of the Mormon church running Utah.

Orson

Wow. Most of the commenters here just don't get it. The church was talking to the lawmakers. That is, the people that make the laws, which are the things which determine if something is "illegal" or not.

We in this country have a terrible system in place. We tempt immigrants to come here to fuel our economy with their labor, then we punish them with a bureaucracy that makes it impossible for the legal immigration process to keep up with our demand for immigrant labor. A man who has been working in this country for years because our economy relied on his labor, and has a family, if deported, would have to take ten years working the system (with the help of a stateside immigration attorney) to get back in.

We're not talking about the Church thinking it's okay to break the law. We're talking about the Church urging compassion in crafting the law itself in the first place! We're not talking about "illegal" being okay. We're talking about having more compassion in determining what's "illegal."

Ignorant people always like to blame their problems on minorities. The label "illegal" simply gives us license to indulge in hatred and xenophobia.

Love and inforcement

We can show human love at the same time we round the illegals up and shipem back. Ship back whole familys together. Bus fulls train fulls what ever it takes, but do it with love. Thats what I hear here.

An experienced immigrant II

The church has a three fold mission - 1. Proclaim the Gospel, 2. Perfect the Saints and 3. Redeem the Dead. - it doesn't just 'want more converts' to have 'more converts' - 'it' "the church" has a work as well which is "to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man". In answer to the anonymous comment about the separation of church and state - I'm a member of the church and I live in this state. I served a mission in Panama and I've traveled to Mexico, Venezuela, and Peru. The people in Panama welcomed me with open arms when I was there. An LDS temple in Panama is being completed. I have very good friends there. I also have very good friends in Peru and Mexico. If there were to want to visit me, I wouldn't want to burden them with exhaustive interrogation. I can guarantee that they'd welcome me into their homes if I were to go there. They fed me and were extremely generous. There's elements of the current immigration situation that simply don't feel right. I also submit that justice is necessary, but without mercy justice is inhumane.

To Phebe,

WHAT is your problem? I am assuming you are a member of the LDS Church. And from your message, it seems clear you think you are greater, smarter, and better than the general authorities to issued this call for humanity and compassion. If you're not willing to concede to basic compassion, called for by the highest leaders of your church, and you actually do think you are better and smarter than the general authorities, perhaps you'd better high-tail it OUT of the church, and keep your nasty opinions to yourself. They are making us all look terribly bigoted. If you are not a member of the LDS church, then good. I'm relieved.

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