Comments about ‘What famous people have said about Mormons’

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Published: Thursday, April 14 2011 3:30 a.m. MDT

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eastcoastcoug
Danbury, CT

We are controversial for many reasons including the fact we are a relatively new faith and tend to stick to our own (despite appeals by many of our leaders). Too many of you congregate out in Utah - we need you to move out in the rest of the world and be the salt of the earth.

I was intrigued by the first comment in the headline about "No other faith...). The Jews obviously have a long history of misunderstanding, persecution and genocide to which we LDS have nothing to compare. The Muslims are greatly misunderstood and many harbor a generalized prejudice towards them.

I find a general laziness in the media (going back beyond Mark Twain) to really find out what people of faith are like without resorting to the sensational just to sell paper. The stories today about the LDS carry many of the same stereotypes that have been around for 190 years, whereas the people who get to know us have a more favorable opinion. We need to do more to get out in the world, be on our best behavior and be "anxiously engaged" in good causes. As we do this, the stereotypes will fade.

JoeBlow
Miami Area, Fl

I would generally agree with all these positive comments about Mormons.

However, there was certainly some "cherry picking" going on in the article.

Chachi
Charlottesville, VA

I think this article illustrates a problem Mormons have:

We're too interested in ourselves. Our ears perk up whenever we're in the news, or at any sign of the Church gaining recognition. We have an inflated sense both of our impact on the world and of the general public's misunderstanding of us.

"Has any religious community been the subject of more curiosity, controversy or misunderstanding than the Latter-day Saints?" Um, yes. How about Scientology, Freemasonry (a religious community if not a religion), or Islam? In the past, Jews, Catholics, and even Protestants have been the subject of much misunderstanding and controversy in the communities in which they were the minority. Mormons suffered an extermination order against them at one point, but each one of those groups has actually been the subject of wars of extermination.

We would do well to talk to ourselves about ourselves a little less, and learn about other religious traditions and beliefs.

Vanka
Provo, UT

Chachi,

You are right. This may be called ego-centric, or ethnocentric, or narcissistic, or self-absorbtion, or self-centeredness, or self-promoting.

Call it what you will, it permeates everything Mormons do and gives the "plastic" superficial-ness to their personas and relationships.

I have always said I find my relationships with Mormons, MLM-ers, and salespeople to be identical, and anything but genuine.

open minded non believer
salt lake city, utah

I would have to disagree with some of the positive things said. Some mormons I have met have been nice and true to their word but a majority of others have acted in most vindictive ways. Very clickish and judgemental towards other people who dont have the same beliefs.

bwoods
Tucson, AZ

I generally disagree with every negative comment so far posted.

I respond to Charles in saying that who cares what those "frank" opinions--we've already heard them. What's news is the good opinions, what we hardly hear. (Thus this IS a cherry picking article.)

I'm sorry that Vanka has experienced "plastic" relationships with Mormons--my experiences are vastly different.

Chachi, I do not think there is anything wrong with the fascination about ourselves. First, it is normal. Anyone who is part of any kind of group will pick up on news about that group. Second, it is always interesting to see how one's group is covered in the media.

Also, I totally disagree with your assessment that "We have an inflated sense both of our impact on the world and of the general public's misunderstanding of us." We have an astounding impact on the world. Some are news headline stuff, but most of the impact comes in influence with individuals and communities. Else why have a true church?!!! And as a convert, I will tell you that we definitely do not have an inflated idea of misunderstandings about the church. It is rampant.

Timothy
Benton City, WA

Leave it to a poet to ignore the obvious and use rose-colored observation in stating an opinion.. I do not think that the Fancher party would agree with the statement that overland travelers were greeted with hospitality and warmth from the early Mormons residing in Utah at that time..As a matter of fact church members,during part of that time,were forbidden to sell goods to or trade with Gentiles under penalty of excommunication or death..Moreover,Brigham did indeed promise a warm welcome to to Army personnel and officials sent from Washington to establish a goverment free from the theocracy that reined for far too long in Salt Lake City..It was the warmth of hot lead coursing through ones body..As JoeBlow has pointed out,there was an enormous amount of out of context quotes in this article that beg to be pointed out,and should be..I mean,do most church members really believe that the early church appeared as it does now,with platitudes raining down about their greatness? If so,some people need to go to a library and do some historical fact-checking..

Independent
Henderson, NV

With all of the negative things said about Mormons in the media or out in the community, I found this article refleshingly uplifting, and the fact that it cherry picked doesn't bother me at all. Is it so bad that the Deseret News would publish something positive once in a while? Are we supposed to ignore the fact that sometimes people have a favorable opinion about the church or a particular aspect of it? For every one positive article about the church, there will be 100 more that are negative. Can't you just let us have this one?

Pagan
Salt Lake City, UT

Story:
*Coming Out: The story of an openly gay athlete By Nancy Armour AP Published by DSNews 04/09/2011

Comments:
Oh goody goody, now when do we get to embrace the pedophile, the alcoholic, the closet litterer, and nose picker.
- HaHaHaHa | 1:37 p.m. April 11, 2011

This post has since been removed by the Moderator. Thank you.
As, it compares an entire group to pedophiles.

I do not pretend to know the religious background of the poster OR the moderator but these types of comments are common.

And yet, was removed when the question of civility in the discussion was brough up.

Say what you will, as with everything, there are good AND bad with any group.

I have found majority of LDS members to be polite and good. While the choices of some of their leadership directly affect me and those I know, there is a tiny but growing majority I see that treats others as they themselves want to be treated.

While it is obvious I do not agree with EVERYTHING the LDS church stands for...

I am optimistic, as there is a growing number of LDS I CAN agree with.

Aggielove
Junction city, Oregon

The most successful salesman are those who "believe in there product".
With this product there is no commission, but there is a sales goal.
Keep selling my mormon family, the product is self sustaining, and pays itself forward.....

Independent
Henderson, NV

The plastic persona problem is real, but much of that can be attributed to the fact that many people just aren't used to people being polite or bold enough to share their beliefs with them. I think people get so caught up in being "real" sometimes, that they don't believe it's actually possible to have a fully-functioning happy family, so when they see it, they naturally call it fake. They don't see how anything "real" could be positive at the same time, because their concept of what's real is so negative. That's not to say that all LDS people have fully-functioning families, but many genuinely do. It really is that good. What I don't understand is why some people feel compelled to tear it down.

friedeggonAZstreets
Glendale, AZ

@bwoods..."Also, I totally disagree with your assessment that "We have an inflated sense both of our impact on the world and of the general public's misunderstanding of us." We have an astounding impact on the world. Some are news headline stuff, but most of the impact comes in influence with individuals and communities. Else why have a true church?!!! And as a convert, I will tell you that we definitely do not have an inflated idea of misunderstandings about the church. It is rampant."

Thank you for this point. Exactly, "Else why have a true church?"

Mormoncowboy
Provo, Ut

Mark Twain was quoted here to give a small impression of objectivity. Most of the other quotes were the obligatory post-platitudes that traveling dignitaries give in public settings to maintain diplomacy. "uh...those Mormons sure seem like good people, and their religion is admirable as an American contrivance...I mean...specimen...of frontier theology". In other words, it's probably not a good idea to read too much into diplomatic compliments.

And yes, in the world of Mormonism, we are the most curious people - and everyone wants to know about us. In the actual world, that is far less true.

no fit in SG
St.George, Utah

I know, I know....
If one chooses to live in Utah, one must deal with the "This is the way people should live" Mormon Majority way of life, and the "We are better than the rest of you" attitudes.
If one should not enjoy their unique environment, one is encouraged to move out of the state.
Rather than try to introduce diversity, or say something Mormon's would consider negative about their culture, the philosophy of most "outsiders" or "Gentiles" is to keep quiet.

LOL
holladay, utah

A lot of my friends and some relatives are LDS. I have noticed there are clearly different levels/types of LDS people ranging from "Temple Worthy" to "Non Temple Worthy making it impossible to stereotype then entire group.
For the most part, the LDS I am familiar with are good people who just happen to live in a time where their religious leaders are more political than they are spiritual.
And that comes right from the horses mouth.

LOL
holladay, utah

Mormons have to find new ways to set themselves apart. Perhaps less politics and more spirituality. (See California and gay marriage)

Brahmabull
sandy, ut

Of course deseretnews cherrypicks. They do it with the comments too. I posted on a mormon topic about some less than known facts about the church and the comment was denied! I guess as the church filters and edits its own history, so does the deseretnews. You lose credibility by 'shielding' people from the facts. Cool story though anyways.

Chris B
Salt Lake City, UT

"Story:
*Coming Out: The story of an openly gay athlete By Nancy Armour AP Published by DSNews 04/09/2011

Comments:
Oh goody goody, now when do we get to embrace the pedophile, the alcoholic, the closet litterer, and nose picker.
- HaHaHaHa | 1:37 p.m. April 11, 2011

This post has since been removed by the Moderator. Thank you.
As, it compares an entire group to pedophiles.

I do not pretend to know the religious background of the poster OR the moderator but these types of comments are common."

No - gays arent trying to shove their gayness in everyone's face. Clearly we're imagining this. This article had so much to do with the gays it was a very applicable point to bring up the "persecution" the gays face again.

I don't see the Mormons(of which I'm not) making all articles that have nothing to with Mormons about the Mormons

I don't see heterosexuals(which I absolutely am) making all articles that have nothing to do with heterosexuality about heterosexuals.

I don't see Catholics(which I am) making all articles that have nothing to do with Catholics about Catholics.

Pagan
Salt Lake City, UT

'I don't see the Mormons(of which I'm not) making all articles that have nothing to with Mormons about the Mormons' - Chris B | 11:45 a.m.

Chris,

If I only spoke about homosexuals, that would make sense. But if you read the rest, you will notice I spoke about my interactions with LDS members.

The horror!

If you don't want the public, to read or interact with the information you present...
don't make it availible to the public.

As for: 'Mormons making all articles that have nothing to with Mormons about the Mormons.'

Answer one, simple question.

Who owns the DSNews?

Good day to you. :)

Idaho Coug
Meridian, Idaho

I have been LDS my whole life. There is so much I love about my LDS heritage and culture. But throughout adulthood I have been able to take a more objective view of the LDS culture and beliefs. My work requires a lot of travel and as a result the vast majority of my friends and peers are non-LDS allowing my to see my LDS culture through the eyes of others.

My conclusion is that we LDS do some wonderful things in our own homes, wards, neighborhoods and communities. We are a charitable people who genuinely care about the temporal and spiritual well-being of others. In addition, we believe some things that outsiders see as very strange and even some active LDS struggle to either wrap their heads around or "put on the shelf" in spriritual self-preservation. Some LDS-history is simply difficult to reframe in a positive way.

I think, like most cultures, belief-systems and families, we are a mixture of both positive and negative. We can be wonderful, admirable, and sincere. But also insular, defensive, robotically obedient, and a bit strange in some of our beliefs/rituals.

But I truly love being LDS.

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