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Comments about ‘LDS Church joins 'growing chorus' of faiths asking followers to defend religious liberty’

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Published: Sunday, Sept. 15 2013 4:45 p.m. MDT

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Hutterite
American Fork, UT

Religion is looking to soothe its' discriminatory conscience, and will deal victim card after victim card to do it.

bandersen
Saint George, UT

The ignorance voiced hear is astounding. To have anyone conclude that the Mormon church takes away agency or is forcing people to live a certain way is truly juvenile, ignorant, and patronizing. To think in this day of enlightenment that religion is viewed as anything but as a preserver of liberty and life is laughable beyond compare. To think that someone actually can express it without thinking that there ignorance, bigotry, and blindness isn't exposed is a mystery.

michael.jensen369
Lethbridge, 00

@Linguist
I appreciate your comment, but most of all, I appreciate your being civil in this discussion. I have had a lot of bad experiences with people with similar opinions to yours, who are just absolutely terrible, mean and bigoted when I express my beliefs. So thank you for being civil. I think that the points that you raised takes this issue into the realms of business law. As far as I know, it has always been the right of any business to refuse service to any potential customer. And, as far as I know, that "right" has never been struck down by the Supreme Court. Another thing is....there's probably more than one bakery shop in the area where they live.... why not find another one? If a business or organization slanders the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, do I pull out my signs and my wrath and go parade in front of their establishment?(I don't know if that is actually what happened in this case, but you get the idea.) Nope. Life goes on, conflict is part of it, people believe what they believe, and I just roll with the punches.

cebh
Sandy, UT

I looked at the new Facebook page of the LDS Church "Support Religious Freedom." What a great resource and teacher of LDS beliefs. As stated, "Religious Freedom is the right to think, express, and act upon what you deeply believe." This simple concept is so important in this day and age for the continuation of any faith. Regardless of which religion you belong to, or what belief you follow...this is a great source of information to let all know why we need religious freedom and what matters about it. I look forward to following this subject on Facebook.

ThornBirds
St.George, Utah

The DN frequently publishes this type of article.
Haven't noticed people being upset that their Church is being picked on.
Here in St. George, on Sunday, the streets are quiet, as is a great portion of the city, similar to the rest of the state of Utah. Many of the Utah populace spend a good portion of their day in Church. Some things never change, it appears.
Funny, there are so many people EVERYWHERE who can make a good cake.
One has to wonder what is frightening these folks.

cjb
Bountiful, UT

Religious liberty to the Moslems means circumcising girls involuntarily. Religious liberty to the Jews means circumcising boys involuntarily.

Both of these religious liberty is are improper and ought not be allowed.

atl134
Salt Lake City, UT

@michael.jenson369
The Nazi regime wasn't atheist.

SCfan
clearfield, UT

Re: atl134

The German Nazis/Hitler were not Christian or any other religion. In fact Hitler executed many Christians ministers. He used religion in a pagan sort of way. And in all his monstrous activities he never claimed he was doing in the name of Christ. That in contrast to a certain religion of today that do much evil in the name of their god.

bamball
Mesa, AZ

Growing chorus? Look at the two "partner" websites listed in the article, should have frightened anyone who is looking a for a more balanced "chorus" of left & right combined. Who's head of the Faith & Freedom Coalition? Mr. Ralph Reed. The list of folks, more references to Bush-Cheney & Liberty University than ever seen before. With voices like this as our friends, do you think the other side is going to join up on the same stage with the politicized folks cited?? Then click on the other link-Mr. William Kristol is one of the organization's policy advisors? With friends like these, who needs enemies? Are we playing embattled Church victim, where everyone's out to bring us down (like so many other conservative whines we hear these days)? Or are we going to lead by doing the right thing first instead of playing catch-up 40 years later? I am so sorry (as an active member) to say that in the long history of critical 20th century issues, Church leadership never led by example-were always playing catch-up with civil rights, labor, cold war fear, anti-communism hysteria. Always making friends with the wrong side. Is it again?

Owen
Heber City, UT

I looked at the new Facebook page of the LDS Church "Support Religious Freedom." What a mass of confusion. As stated, "Religious Freedom is the right to think, express, and act upon what you deeply believe." Yet there is not one example given, nor can I, as an active member of the sponsoring church, think of one example of any American not being able to think, lawfully express or act on what they deeply believe - unless they've tried to use public resources to do so. Seems such a strange position for a Constitution-loving organization.

marxist
Salt Lake City, UT

OK, I recognize the importance of freedom of religion, but what about freedom within religion? Isn't that just as important?

Truthseeker
SLO, CA

Re:Michaeljensen369

The Supreme Court has struck down discriminatory laws. States have also enacted laws against discrimination which the Supreme Court has upheld. In states which have such laws, businesses that refuse service are breaking the law. So, no, businesses do not have an unfettered right to refuse service to anybody for any reason.

When a business is breaking the law, people have a right to redress. Religious groups and religious people have organized boycotts against various businesses and practices. They've even fought to have state constitutions changed to prohibit activities they don't agree with so lets not pretend that religious people simply turn the other cheek and go on with their lives.

Peacemaking, looking for common ground, loving thy neighbor, not judging, I thought that is what the Gospel is about.

Do people really believe God is going to condem them because they baked a wedding cake for a gay couple?

Linguist
Silver Spring, MD

There's a recent BBC report about elderly gay patients in nursing homes in the U.K. being denied treatment or being otherwise given less than adequate support by care staff who have religious or other objections to "homosexuality." It is apparently a pretty widespread problem.

And it is one of the reasons that gay people tend to be wary of those who say "just find another provider, one who wants to serve you."

Isn't always possible. And, well, it shouldn't ever be necessary.

EternalPerspective
Eldersburg, MD

People forget any movement for equality in history never stops when the original objective is achieved. Rather, a line is crossed where equality becomes at least a shade of removing freedom from opposing viewpoints.

The movements of today contrary to traditional religious values constantly claim injustice, unfairness, and a need to "balance" society, that greater privilege and protection is not extended any more to religion than any other ideology. But, just as history clearly shows religious discrimination against unbelievers and different faiths, so too, religious people of today can make the reverse case.

When majority groups become a shrunken minority that once was, the need to "dominate" the other side soon becomes apparent in the new majority. Many religious groups of yesteryear are now experiencing a decline of membership and loss of popular consensus to become a minority, just as those groups not popular then, now have majority power and influence.

How will the new majority act any different with respecting non-believers of their ideology than religious hypocrites having greater power historically? Power of worldly groups always becomes unrighteous dominion over others eventually, so why are so many convinced secularism won't follow this trend?

Furry1993
Ogden, UT

Religious freedom isn't under attack. The right of religions, however, to impose themselves on society and require people to live according to their tenets is being challenged. Rightly so.

In the bakery case -- By obtaining a business license, this bakery agreed to abide by all regulations, including regulations concerning discrimination, that had been or were in the future enacted. When they obtained the business license, there was a regulation providing that discrimination based on sexual orientation as illegal. By obtaining their business license, they agreed that they would not discriminate based on sexual orientation.

Part of their business was to bake and provide wedding cakes. Since they provided cakes for receptions for "straight" marriages, they legally could not discriminate by refusing to provide cakes for receptions for "gay" marriages. That is de facto discrimination based on sexual orientation, and consequently illegal. AND it is contrary to the assurances they gave when they got their business license that they would adhere to the law.

If they didn't want to provide wedding cakes at gay marriages, all they had to do was stop providing wedding case. There are lot more things a bakery can do an make money.

Mike in Cedar City
Cedar City, Utah

This movement to "preserve religious freedom" is just a diversionary label that conservative religious groups coalesce around to get at public policies that they do not agree with. There is no threat to religious freedom inherent in permitting same sex marriage. There is no real threat to religious freedom in expanding medical coverages to include more people. What conservative religious groups are really worried about, including the LDS Church, is a growing realization that these institutions are the real "takers" in the economic sense, and that growing awakening might well represent a public policy threat to the privileged status they enjoy with regard to taxation and other economic factors.

cy1951
Arlington, VA

I am concerned about my Church's continuing alliance with what can only be described as the Christian Conservative Right, while at the same time trying to "Hasten The Work" -- that is, increase membership and convert baptisms -- through greater missionary effort. By alligning itself with increasingly politically conservative groups and taking their positions on matters that many people believe are just as much political as they are moral issues, the Church is eliminating huge chunks of North American population who are not politically conservative and are "turned off" by such narrow political viewpoints. Did we not learn anything from the debacle that was Proposition 8 in California? Where any one who thinks gay rights is a civil rights question -- at least 40% of the population -- will likely never have interest in the church when missionaries or members approach them. What is the cost to potential church growth of choosing to stand with conservatively aligned groups on issues like this one -- "religious liberty" is a buzz word for conservatives rallying against ObamaCare, and that is political, not religious. We need to focus on reaching out to everyone if we truly want to "grow the church."

Lightening Lad
Austin , TX

I can see a great deal of abuse being OK because it's part of the freedom to hold to your religious convictions. It's interesting that Baptists were early on since they used Relgious theology to back the use of slaves in the 18th and 19th centuries. They weren't alone of course the Methodists also strong in the south, did the same. There are over 30 scriptures in the Old and New Testament which advocate the practice of slavery, over 20 where God approves and advocates genecide. I don't think I want to give any group the right to do those things just because they claim God told them to. If you follow the Bible you know that mental illness is nothing but devil posession, that birth defects are a result of sinful parents and homosexuals should be punished for their "sins". It appears that by picking and choosing which ones to believe the gays got stuck with old superstition that still holds. Why not simply be honest and tell the Fed you're not going to take their interference anymore while forsaking the tax deduction for contributions?

Tyler D
Meridian, ID

I suspect this move by the Church will, in the long run, do more harm to their main goal (growing membership) than good as they continue to be more and more associated with right-wing politics than with anything Jesus taught.

But hey, far be it from me to defend any religious organization… so (LDS Church) keep digging.

marxist
Salt Lake City, UT

I had hoped to see the Church less aligned with outside right wing groups. Clearly that is not going to happen.

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