Comments about ‘Rainbow Family gathering prompts concerns, action from police, LDS Church’

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Published: Monday, June 16 2014 10:55 p.m. MDT

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AZ Blue & Red
Gilbert, AZ

Google Rainbow family and click on images and you will see exactly why the LDS Church did what they did.

A Quaker
Brooklyn, NY

Xenophobic much? Need I remind anyone that Sodom and Gomorrah were burned to the ground for being selfish and inhospitable to visitors?

A quick glance at Wikipedia ("Rainbow Gathering") tells me that these gatherings in the US are always held in National Forest areas, that the group espouses environmental and utopian ideals, and that they call the rest of us and our civilization, "Babylon," disapproving of our industrial society and living style. Sounds like they're as contemptuous of you guys as vice versa. Being held in National Forests means that the US Parks Department is the agency in charge of permits, safety and supervision. And, as these gatherings are always in National Forests, the Parks people presumably remember who they're dealing with when they issue the permits. If they're not worried, I'm not sure anyone else should be.

But, don't let that stop you.

Othello, WA

Interesting how so many responders, to this story, have such an inability to figure it out. As dumb as our society has become, most of us still have the ability to figure out that 2+2=4. We don't always have to be told the end result or have it spelled out for us. I know we have a regular group of DN posters, who think they are so much more tolerant and enlightened when they seek out, embrace, support and participate in the perverse, the off-beat, and the freaky strange kookiness of others. Good for you, but try to be a little more enlightened by understanding that the rest of us, may want to avoid that at all cost, or at least take preliminary precautions. Especially with a stewardship over so many kids who face life challenges and have parents that we need to answer too.

Provo, UT

I agree with Quaker. This is more of a National Parks problem than anything, and overreacting is poor form.

Having said that, I probably would have moved the Youth conferences, too.

folkston, GA

I have attended gatherings for 10 years now. Some things the community in and around the gathering should know.

Most of the Rainbow Family are peaceful people, even if they come off a bit harsh sometimes. Yes we are both protesting for our right to gather and praying for peace. However some people are just there to party. Many children attend the gatherings as well, and are watched over and protected just like they would be in any family and "normal" living situation.

That being said, we have no leader who dictates behavior, or holds any power to enforce things internally. It is up to each person to be respectful of the land and the communities that we are in proximity to and gather on. Yes there is a lot of panhandling that will inevitably occur. Yes there will be shoplifting. In a group of 20,000-40,000 people there are going to be dishonest thieves. On the bright side (and looking up some youtube videos will confirm this.) businesses see a large increase with the arrival of the Rainbow family. We may panhandle, but most of that money goes back into the community.

folkston, GA

Plus a majority of people who will arrive are employed and are taking a vacation, so they are not reliant on panhandling. They are in fact bringing more income to the local community, not leeching it away as some may assume.

As for arrests, very little serious crimes occur at a gathering as compared to the normal crime rate in a given population of people. Someone gave the figure of 218 arrests and tickets. The 200 tickets were probably for "Dog off leash" or "Gathering of more than 75 people without a permit" the latter of the two is a charge that has been fabricated specifically to try and stymie gatherings, and based on the 1st amendment, is unconstitutional. That is where the aspect of this being a protest arises.

folkston, GA

To wrap up. Yes there is an element of actual crime associated with us, the majority of people in attendance as well as myself are just as frustrated by the bad apples as the local population. My advice is to keep in mind that we will only be around for a couple of months, and as long as the Federal agents don't kick us out prematurely we will clean up and things will once again return to normal.

stevan madrigal
murray, UT

Well, Tad - it looks like the editorial reading public has given your copy some comment.
No need to pile on.

Pendleton, OR

The simple overloading of the environment associated with 20,000 people would give me a reason to change my "camp". Ulterior motives do not need to be sought.

I do wonder at the apprehension of law enforcement described here. This group does not seem to be a threat by their stated goals or reasons for being or gathering. It reminds me of the old days on the haight-ashbury and those "peaceful" motorcycle rides with the Angels. It is true the Rainbow family are almost universally into altered states of consciousness and most if not all use one chemical or another to achieve those altered states.

Ciao Mike
West Valley City, UT

If you google search "Rainbow Family" or visit their web page you'll see lots of pictures of public nudity similar to old pictures of Woodstock. Free love doesn't offend me, but I wouldn't want my daughters to have to drive through that to get to girl's camp.

Laura Bilington
Maple Valley, WA

@HaHaHaHa, you refer to a group of us regular posters who "seek out, embrace, support and participate in the perverse, the off-beat, and the freaky strange kookiness of others."

May I respectfully remind you that the doctrines of the LDS church, indeed, of Christianity in general, strike some people as off-beat, freaky, strange, and a bit kooky.

Mchenry, IL

When thousands of LDS and others go to a small town resort they are temporarily exponentially increasing the number of people that town can handle. Imagine the police issuing a citation because a ward building that normally serves 300 suddenly is overflowing for two months with 500 in attendance. Some of those cars at the family reunions are overflowing with people as well who flew in from out of town. Doesn't Park City see an increase in crime during the peak seasons too? At least most the things mentioned aren't violent. Just unpleasant. If they want to cancel camp because it's just too crowded that would make more sense.

Cottonwood, CA

Most are harmless. A significant portion is trouble. They are all takers. They float babbling about peace, but are not responsible adults. I've seen them in calif mant times. I am sure one of the camp activities will include working on their " will work for food." Signs and "need gas"


exdixieite: you own a corvair van?! where do you find parts for it. I have one here and would like to know?

Newport Beach, CA

The counterculture can only exist as a parasite on the responsible culture.

Harrison Bergeron
Holladay , UT

If a picture is worth 1000 words, then Google Images speaks VOLUMES when you type in "Rainbow Family." (WARNING: Not suitable for minors).

Absolutely, there is cause for concern. And this article has portrayed the group in the kindest way possible.

Big Joe V
Rancho Cucamonga, CA

This is similar to any anti establishment group coming to a small town to party. Remember the movie "The Wild One" with Marlon Brando? Why don't they go to Park City to express their liberal lifestyles. They could perform and panhandle there and pay for the trip.

Twin Lights
Louisville, KY

Irrespective of their politics or stated aims this is a small city of 20,000 people magically appearing next to the camp where your daughters are going to be. It just makes sense to be cautious. Are all a danger to the girls? Of course not. But it is wise to assume that not all who travel with the group are harmless.

Columbus, OH

"Look up Montana's experience 2013. Five Reasons To Be Concerned ..."

I did, and you know what I found out? There were 2 arrests. I also found out that the annual gathering is shrinking in size where in the early 2000s it was 20,000 people, it is now really only about 10,000 people. Realistically, it's unlikely Utah will see 20,000 people.

The local news at the time also reported that alcohol was generally taboo amongst the group, that they set up community kitchens where people were freely invited to share and eat at no cost. They also reported that the area was left in relatively good condition and that members of the group stayed behind for weeks, on a volunteer basis, to rehabilitate the site under Forest Service direction.

Salt Lake City, UT


1961 8-door panel van. Finding parts can sometimes be a challenge. The main source for parts is Clark's Corvair. Also you can sub other parts. For example, instead of buying Corvair springs for $210 a pair, get springs for a 68 Mustang V8 for $110 a pair.

Corvairs are quirky but fun.

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