Comments about ‘My view: Who is my neighbor?’

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Published: Friday, Jan. 10 2014 12:00 a.m. MST

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The Scientist
Provo, UT

The message is pretty clear: "We love you...as long as you remain second class citizens."

With "loving" neighbors like that, who needs enemies?

Here, UT

I had to check thrice to see if I was actually reading the DN.

Very nice op-ed, Erika. Now if you can convince the Sutherland Institute... they're running those awful ad's claiming that granting protections to LGBT people takes away the rights of non-LGBT people.

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

The message is very clear. Anyone can have sex with any consenting adult at any time, regardless of sex, but no one, absolutely no one, has the right to change the definition of the most sacred unit on earth, the family. No one, absolutely no one, can claim that they are being treated "unequally" just because they "feel" that the physician was wrong when he told them that they had a male body or a female body.

We can show tolerance and empathy for those who disagree with their doctors, but we do not have to redefine "marriage" to accommodate anyone who wants to be made "normal" by a judge's decree.

The problem is two fold. First our Creator defined "marriage". Secondly, the only way that a homosexual individual can find someone to have sexual relations with is to convince that person that he/she is also homosexual. Until there are laws that would convict anyone who even talked to minors about homosexual "feelings" or "orientation", then the homosexual community is asking us to open our homes and our schools to their propaganda.

Tyler D
Meridian, ID

After my eyebrows returned from the back of my head reading this the first time, I actually feel sorry for you Mike. It’s clear you see a world filled with all sorts of evil (e.g., homosexual brainwashing others to “turn” gay) and you no doubt feel it to be your Christian duty to stamp out this evil.

And as chilling as many others will likely find your last sentence above, I’m curious how you reconcile such draconian laws – and can we assume “gay gulags” for those who break these laws – with your strict libertarian views of our Constitution?

salt lake, UT

I think Mike's comment represents why it is so important to protect the free speech of those you disagree with the most. He is changing the hearts and minds of others as he shows the true colors of those that so ardently oppose LGBT rights (Including ignoring the counsel of his own religion). I say let the man speak and don't be afraid to point out the flaws in his logic. The more people see and hear these types of venomous comments and see good people stand up and speak out against it the sooner we can reach true equality for the LGBT community.

A Quaker
Brooklyn, NY

Thank you for posting a loving editorial on a subject of civil justice. No society benefits from hatred and persecution. This law will ultimately strengthen your state. Good luck to you in getting it signed into effect.

@MikeRichards: Your contempt is showing. Transgender people and homosexuals might be statistical minorities in our population, but within the context of our society, they work, study, keep house, shop, drive, vote, pay taxes, tend to their loved ones, manage their finances, water their lawns, and do almost everything else, just like the rest of us. They can even be good neighbors, if they're not beleaguered with the fear of being hated.

So, I would argue that they might be uncommon, but that doesn't mean they're abnormal. And civil rights won't change that. They'll still be uncommon. But they're already "normal" enough for society's purposes.

Hey, if you don't like who someone is marrying, don't go to the wedding. And if you don't like the couple next door, no one says you have to accept their invitation to dinner. But, everyone should have a right to live peaceably, under the protection of law.

Seattle, WA

Thank you Erika! I love the suggestion to find an LGBT person in our community and ask what this legislation would mean to him or her. Really getting to know and listening to our LGBT neighbors and family is the best way to bridge the divide of misunderstanding about these issues.


I can invite loved family/ friends into my home and still appropriately deny them a shared room.

I am still groping with the concept about making a law that puts restrictions on that.


Erika, well said. You brighten my day.

Bountiful, UT


Depending on religious persuasion, it appear our Creator has changed his/her mind several times on the definition of marriage, types of family structures, etc.

Or, like on a recent clarifications of a previous racial ban, maybe the religious leaders earnestly *thought* they were given specific direction from our Creator on acceptable or even recommended marriage structures, but they weren't.

In any case, it appears the results of those divergent family structures didn't exactly ruin society. There are still some of those family types in existence today, in Utah and other states, and yet for the rest of us, life goes on unabated.

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

@ A Quaker,

Perhaps my "contempt" is showing. I find it hard to agree with anyone who would eliminate all human life within one lifetime if his ideas were practiced by everyone. I find it hard to agree with anyone who would require the schools, the churches and the government to teach people that his way of same-sex sex is normal and acceptable when same-sex sex, if practiced by everyone, would eliminate all humanity within one lifetime. I find it hard to agree with anyone who claims that his lifestyle and his definition of marriage be considered equal to the marriage of a man and a woman when his style of marriage would eliminate all humanity within one lifetime.


When you find the way to ignite the "spark" that gives a body life, then you can tell God what to say and when to say it, until then wouldn't it be more prudent to study His word and align yourself as perfectly as possible with His doctrine?

He commanded us to marry. He defined marriage as being between men and women. He commanded us to replenish the earth.

Salt Lake City, UT

You cannot claim to love someone

and work to deny them the legal protections, you enjoy.

Double talk is not what God intended.

For more evidence, we need to see what Jesus actually said about gay marriage.

Which is, nothing.

American Fork, UT

Mike, thanks for your discussion. Now, here's the deal: I'm not obligated to buy into it. Not one iota. Plus, your contention that a gay individual has to 'convince' someone else to be gay in order to obtain a partner is a total denial of the idea, which according to the article even the mormon church supports, that people do not choose to be gay.

Moab, UT

@Mike: >> "He defined marriage as being between men and women."

Do you mean like Solomon, who was "married" to 700 wives, and had 300 concubines?

Or do you mean between a rapist and his victim - who was forced to "marry" her assailant? (Deuterotomy 22:28).

Or do you mean the virgin female prisoners of war who were forced to "marry" their invaders? (Numbers 31).

I certainly hope you don't mean the "marriage" defined in Genesis 2:24 - where a bride who was not a virgin was stoned to death.

So which exact definition were you referring to? Or, shall we just say that the definition of marriage is not as clear-cut as many people think?

Salt Lake City, UT

@Mike Richards
"I find it hard to agree with anyone who would eliminate all human life within one lifetime if his ideas were practiced by everyone."

As long as in-vitro fertilization exists, you're not even factually accurate in that statement.

Do you also dislike heterosexual couples who, for whatever reason, don't have children either? I had dinner last night with two friends who never want to have children, do you hate them too?

"just because they "feel" that the physician was wrong when he told them that they had a male body or a female body. "

For the last time... the "wrong body" thing is trans, gay/lesbian deals with who one is attracted to. Gay men still consider themselves men, for instance.

Salt Lake City, UT

"How do we follow this exhortation when it comes to our LGBT/same-sex attracted brothers and sisters?"

Don't be a third derivative of position. (math pun)

There You Go Again
Saint George, UT

"...Given the rapid pace of change in the prevailing attitudes toward LGBT people, many of us may feel fearful and cut adrift in uncharted waters. But while fear can save us from imminent physical danger, it is not a helpful emotion as citizens seek to make their communities harmonious and loving places...".


Thank you for taking the time to express your opinion.

Houston, TX

@Mike " Secondly, the only way that a homosexual individual can find someone to have sexual relations with is to convince that person that he/she is also homosexual.'

It looks like your comment is getting beaten up quite a bit, with other commenters claiming that you are spreading baseless fears. In reference to the quote above, I know that this is absolutely taking place. One of my teen relatives announced to his family that he was gay and logged into a gay chat website soon thereafter. It was no surprise that he was skyping with a gay adult 24 hours later who was trying to convince him to have sex with him. Even the teen realized that he was being rushed into something he wasn't ready for.

Not all gays are predators and not all hetero-sexuals are child molesters, but there are a a significant abundance in both groups.

Gays deserve equal housing and employment, but they are at risk for something that laws cannot protect them from. They deserve all the protection they can get.

New York, NY

Mike Richards, maybe your (our?) creator defined "marriage" as you (and me?) understand it, but that is not what we are talking about. We are talking about the government's definition of marriage. The government's decision to change its definition of marriage to ensure the law protects all equally has no bearing on God's definition of marriage (nor mine, nor yours, nor the church that I assume we both attend).

I have a hard time understanding why people think that making the government's definition of marriage or family more inclusive is an attempt to change what they believe or God's definition of marriage? Are we seeking a Mormon version of sharia? We don't drink alcohol--should it be illegal to make or possess? Should "relations" outside of marriage be illegal? What about sabbath day observance? Fines for all who open their stores and the shoppers too?

Sorry Charlie!

Mike Richards

Anything taken to an extreme (everyone doing the same thing ) is unhealthy for any society, for example if we were all carpenters we would all starve to death in really nice houses sitting on fancy furniture and any country that has forced everyone to follow one religion always falls into brutality and eventually war. No one is talking about everyone being forced to be gay we are talking about peoples right to live their life without your interference so maybe we can scale back on the all or nothing thinking.

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