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Comments about ‘Mormonism still raising questions among Americans, in New York Times forum’

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Published: Friday, Feb. 3 2012 1:26 p.m. MST

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Colorado Springs, CO

I would say these are valid questions for those not familiar with the church's practice. This is also good for the church, I believe, in that a dialog is happening to explain, for example, why Mitt gave $4 million to the church; i.e., 10 percent in tithing. I feel these questions can only help the church, not hurt it.

Pagan
Salt Lake City, UT

'This is also good for the church, I believe, in that a dialog is happening to explain, for example, why Mitt gave $4 million to the church...' - xscribe | 1:43 p.m. Feb. 3, 2012

While I have my own ideas about why Romney made the donations.

**'Romney paid $3M in federal income tax in 2010' - By Stephen Braun - AP - Published by DSNews - 01/24/12

'At the same time, Romney gave nearly $3 million to charity about half of that amount to the Mormon Church which helped LOWER his effective tax rate to a modest 14 percent...' article

I think a more national platform for dialouge on the Mormon church is a boon.

Having a national platform to to scrutinize your belief's may be painful...

but it helps to disaude any of the...extreme elements from taking any undue actions.

And I am not trying to say that all Mormons are extreme!

But as with the good, there is bad. With any group.

Inquisition
Crusades
Jihad
9/11, etc, etc.

John20000
Cedar Hills, UT

Benson, Hinckley, and Monson have visited the White House to speak with the President while they headed the Mormon church. If Romney was president, would he invite the prophet or would that be seen as "sheepish" behavior?

If people want to limit the LDS church's influence on the White House, the best way would be to have a Mormon president since every possible move by the President would be scrutinized.

Changing issues, anyone who thinks giving money to charity is a good tax strategy needs to pull out their 1040 instructions. You can only claim a small portion of your donations against your taxes. Generally, it would be like spending a dollar to save 30 cents on your taxes. Why not keep the dollar and pay 30 cents in taxes? You come out ahead 70 cents.

Pagan
Salt Lake City, UT

'Generally, it would be like spending a dollar to save 30 cents on your taxes.' - John20000 | 3:44 p.m. Feb. 3, 2012

Or...

$3 million dollars.

atl134
Salt Lake City, UT

Pagan, donating 3 million dollars to charity to reduce ones' tax contribution by roughly 1 million is not a sound investment if Romney's goal was to increase the amount he himself keeps.

Dee J
Portland, OR

I welcome the public dialogue about our beliefs, practices and lifestyle. I think the best approach is to be honest, forthright, and not defensive, and remember that our actions speak louder than our words.

But I also think that the typical misperceptions and suspicions will continue to persist. My 8th grade son told me last night that some kids at school keep saying that Mormons practice polygamy, or asking about it. When I asked how he responds, he said, "Oh, I just laugh and say, 'That's totally not true.'" He's not the least bit uncomfortable or offended when kids at school say these kinds of things, which is great and hopefully disarming. But what concerns me is that these kids are probably getting these ideas from their parents, who are too lazy to get their facts correct before sharing their opinions with their kids.

Of course, there will continue to be people and groups that strongly disagree with us on some very significant issues, and we have to learn to either find common ground or disagree respectfully. Some disagreements may never be bridged.

The Deuce
Livermore, CA

While not of the LDS Faith, I do have several LDS members I associate with at work and a number of others who participate in recreational activities that I do. These people are as normal as one can get compared to the rest of society. I find them intelligent and can hold a conversation with anyone about any topic. I can also say that about other friends who are not LDS members. The point of the matter is that many who post on here, such as Pagan, seem to only know a certain type of member that is constantly referred to. I say move out of Utah and join the human race if you want to find LDS people who are making a difference in their occupations and communities. Your view is much to narrow of the LDS society as a whole.

Moontan
Roanoke, VA

Pagan, extreme Mormons susceptible to 9/11-type behavior? Inquisition or Jihad? "etc, etc." Crazed MoTab soprano running down 5th avenue with gas cans yelling 'Monson Akbar!'?

Highly doubtful.

Flashback
Kearns, UT

Mitt Romney an upper level leader in the church? Hardly. Being a Stake President is no more than middle management. Most likely the lowest managerial position of Mitts career. IF he was an Area Authority 70 or a real 70, then he'd be in the upper level of leaders.

The only people having questions are the stupid ones that don't bother to do research for themselves and listen to their pastor.

Pagan, again, have an original thought. Cut and paste doesn't take any thinking.

Middle of the Road
Home Town USA, UT

The observation I have of those who slam the LDS Church are who essentially the ones (group) who voted in the majority in South Carolina are jealous (of Mormons)as a whole.

Honestly, it appears that they voted against Romney instead of for Gingrich. It was so blatant that it didn't make a wrinkle in the support Romney had already gained and since. It is laughable to say the least.

This whole idea will bear out among those that call good, evil, and evil, good.

Those who take the word of others when it comes to putting down the LDS Church and not look for themselves nor take the time to investigate it themselves are the ones who are the "sheep."

Pagan
Salt Lake City, UT

'Pagan, extreme Mormons susceptible to 9/11-type behavior?' - Moontan | 5:42 p.m. Feb. 3, 2012

Did you even READ my post?


'And I am not trying to say that all Mormons are extreme!' - Pagan | 2:51 p.m. Feb. 3, 2012

Dear lord!

After I SPECIFY to not generalize Mormons...

people claim I am, regardless.

Are you trying to say that EVERY Mormon is perfect, so pure, they can do no wrong?

**'Ex-seminary principal Michael Pratt pleads guilty in sex case' - By Sara Israelsen-Hartley, Deseret News - 06/02/10

We both know that is not the case.

Moontan
Roanoke, VA

Yes, I understood your opinion isn't that all Mormons are extreme. Your position is very clear. But when 9/11, Jihad, etc., are mentioned, the clear implication is that some extreme Mormons may fit that level of barbarity. This I doubt. And of course I don't think Mormons are perfect beings. We'd not need Christ if we were.

The attitude that the abominable behavior of a member of a group somehow impugns the group itself is usually a facile argument used by agnostics and atheists to attack religious belief. And only religious belief. They dare not apply that argument to any secular group, and that fact betrays their motives. An atheist robs a bank; you won't hear the national atheist group saying "well then, we are all bad."

But if a seminary principle does something immoral, they offer it as proof that the LDS Church is a corrupting influence.

That's just flawed thinking.

christoph
Brigham City, UT

Feminism is a problem in our world. Few ever want to bring it up. Few dare argue with it or stand up to it. Yes, I'm happy woman are presidents of countries and moving to the top of all fields, they will solve many problems in the world and cause less wars-----HOWEVER-- there are some negative side effects. American culture takes it too far and begins to say women are good, men are bad. (Little wonder more men are becoming feminine---to please and be accepted.) Christ came to comfort the afflicted and to afflict the comfortable. His Church is on the earth to do the same. All Christian churches are on the same team to stand up to secularism and media and universities.

newintown
WOODS CROSS, UT

What an odd paradox. People call Mitt Romney a flip flopper because he seems to have changed his position on social issues from his administrative stance in Mass as governor, to a more conservative position as he runs for the POTUS.

In reality it shows his ability to function according to his oath of office to represent his states constitution and the people he was sworn to serve, inspite of its position to his church's beliefs. still, they fear his willingness to do the same in Washington. He walks the walk, not just talks the talk.

If you replaced the name Mormon with Muslim, Wiccan or other minority description, cries of bigotry and racism would never end. That simple test clearly highlights the bigotry which is cavalierly leveled at the Mormons while "liberal minded" evangelicals hide behind their piety.

When Romney keeps his most important covenants, his integrity gets blasted as "wanting to take over the world". When Gingrich violates his covenants, he is hailed as progressive and forthright.

Interesting paradox indeed.

JayTee
Sandy, UT

The level of ignorance and misunderstanding is phenomenal. The LDS faith has been on this continent for nearly 182 years now, and those who claim it is non-Christian definitely know nothing at all about the theology. Or, they may claim it's non-Christian because it doesn't coincide perfectly what THEIR brand of Christianity--in which case, why don't they make the same assertions about the Catholics? And, I view the Priesthood as more of a matter of RESPONSIBILITY, as opposed to authority. I think most experienced and informed observers would argue that the women are the onces with the real power and influence. Also, if people act like sheep, it's because they CHOOSE to act like sheep--not because it is required by the Gospel of Salvation. You'll always have those who are looking for someone else to make all the decisions and take charge, but that doesn't include all of us.

Moontan
Roanoke, VA

Newintown is spot on. And I find another interesting paradox: anti-Mormons who frequently visit Mormon websites. Go figure.

I do not believe one must handle rattlesnakes to prove one's salvation, yet several churches do. Nor do I pass out in church, or speak in tongues, yet most religious television stations show exactly that. But I would never dream of making antagonistic visits to their websites.

Sometimes a person who yells 'the sky is falling' is simply looking for affirmation that it isn't. Other times, they want assurance that it is - an "am I right?" plea.

But a person of firm convictions has no need to rain on anybody's parade.

sharrona
layton, UT

Re: Moontan: But a person of firm convictions has no need to rain on anybody's parade.But,
All their creeds were an abomination in his sight that those professors were all corrupt, JS History 1:19,

RE: Middle of the Road, take the time to investigate It,[OK] themselves are the ones who are the "sheep."?
And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.(John 10:16)Who are the sheep(gentiles).
Be it known therefore unto you, that the salvation of God is sent unto the Gentiles, and that they will hear it.(Acts 28:28)
Again I ask: Did Israel not understand? First, Moses says, "I will make you envious by those who are not a nation; I will make you angry by a nation that has no understanding." And Isaiah boldly says, "I was found by those who did not seek me; I revealed myself to those who did not ask for me."(Romans 10:19-20 NIV)Neither the Nephites nor the Laminites can meet this qualification.

Moontan
Roanoke, VA

@Sharrona: But that conviction isn't used as a weapon of condemnation or criticism. The statement isn't used to condemn Baptists and Catholics to Hell, or to deny their status as a Christian. The claim "you're not a real Christian" isn't directed by Mormons toward any Christian community. It's solely reserved for us, by others.

barbara
Carlsbad, CA

Moontan,
I love your screen name. Also, your comments. And, why would people be leery of others who are willing to jump out of bed at one am to help you bail your flooded basement, or take the midnight shift at watching your children while you are at the hospital with a sick one, or good works ad infinitum? Plus, other people of other faiths can take comfort in the fact that many Mormon converts drop out after a short time due to lack of commitment or understanding.

Truthseeker
SLO, CA

Sorry, JayTee

Have to disagree.
While LDS women, as do women in general, have potential power and influence, that power and influence can be and is often constrained, both inside and outside the home and church.

Do women in the Church even decide who will be in leadership positions of the women's organizations? No

Women are excluded from real decision and policy-making in the Church, from local levels to SLC headquarters.

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