A faith divided: Opinions on illegal immigration vary among Utah's Mormons

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  • all4one Provo, UT
    Jan. 7, 2011 12:38 p.m.

    If LDS members decide to reduce their donations, that's their right, but if it's tithing then they just won't be able to go to the Temple. Those that do so will have to stand before the Lord. Also, the comment about abortion is ridiculous. The Church is still strongly opposed to abortion except for certain circumstances.

  • radically_independent Orem, Utah
    Jan. 7, 2011 8:34 a.m.

    I think little of this has to do with directly with the rule of law, as most people I know bend or tweak laws. There are far more serious crimes being committed that impact our lives daily. What I really think the main issues here is about respect, or what is scene as a lack of respect for our laws and out culture by those who are arriving here illegally. And I think those feelings are completely justifiable.

    But let us not forget our own history. Like these illegals, many of our forefathers, these people come here to provide a better future for their families. But you say our people came here legally. Well, if they were part of the group who entered Utah in its first years, that isn't exactly true. While they may have come to the United States legally, Utah was not part of the United States - it was part of mexico. And just as these new arrivals justifiably offended those who lived in these lands then, we are equally offended by those who arrive in our land seeming to disrespect our laws and customs.

    This is simply a repeat of history.

  • A Guy With A Brain Enid, OK
    Jan. 6, 2011 7:30 p.m.

    @ Considering | 12:06 p.m. Jan. 2, 2011


    'Condsidering', your reasoning, as well as your wording, is absolutely brilliant!

    Could not agree with you more.

  • The Caravan Moves On Enid, OK
    Jan. 6, 2011 7:26 p.m.

    Article quote: "However, the (LDS) church also acknowledged that every nation has the right to enforce its laws and secure its borders, and stated that all persons subject to a nations laws are accountable for their acts in relation to them."

    Can any LDS member doubt that while the church feels empathy for the families that will be split over the enforcement of illegal immigration, that the LDS church ultimately says "the law is the law"?

    Liberals proclaim "Compassion! Compassion! Compassion!" but completely fail to understand that Christ is also a being of law and justice.

    What in the world do you think the Final Judgement will be?, one big "Well, I know you did wrong in that situation, but I'll turn my back and ignore that?"


    When laws are disregarded and ignored, chaos and it's consequent destruction always result. Always.

  • The Caravan Moves On Enid, OK
    Jan. 6, 2011 7:15 p.m.

    What's more important?, obedience to laws or family?

    Obedience to laws that are based on morality.


    Because Christ said, in NO uncertain terms, that anyone who would choose family over obedience to righteous laws is not worthy to receive Him. Go look it up yourself, it's there.

    So, the question becomes, are our immigration laws ones that are based on morality and wisdom or not?

    I say, yes.


    Because they show respect for the greater good/needs of a society rather than a selfish "me, me" mentality, societal needs such as "don't drain our resources by forcing us to take care of you when you enter our country illegally", needs such as "don't split our society by refusing to speak our language".

    The intent of our laws is also wise in that it makes it difficult to covet what one's (international) neighbor has. By coveting what your neighbor has you turn up your nose at what you have in your own yard. Blessings you could've received in your land are squandered.

    (BTW, this required respect for a society's needs isn't just U.S.-specific only, but is for all countries.)

  • Concerned-American West Valley, Utah
    Jan. 6, 2011 3:35 p.m.

    Mormons are commanded to obey the law of the land and as Mormons we should obey.
    Let no man break the laws of the land, for he that keepeth the laws of God hath no need to break the laws of the land. (Doctrine and Covenants 58:21)
    "We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers, and magistrates, in obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law." (12th Article of Faith)
    observe the commandments of God and to be law-abiding citizens wherever they live. (LDS Church Family Proclamation- signed by the 1st Presidency and the 12 Apostles)
    Are these statements the true teachings of the LDS Church?
    One cannot change the teachings of the scriptures without changing the scriptures.
    The offical doctrine of the LDS Church is to obey the law of the land.

  • john in az tempe, az
    Jan. 5, 2011 11:45 p.m.

    The LDS Church most recent statement is that persons will be accountable for the pain they cause their own family.

    Also the LDS Church state "Obey the laws" of the land you are in.

    screwdriver, what of all the people entering legally who are separated from their families for years, because the legal process only allows for a few at a time.

    rewarding the illegal person is an affront to those who are entering legally and suffering.

  • CARL South Salt Lake, UT
    Jan. 5, 2011 6:13 p.m.

    Church always encourage members to stay home and build up membership in their home country. It has been doing that since President McKay has espoused "every members is a missionary"

  • Screwdriver Casa Grande, AZ
    Jan. 5, 2011 10:53 a.m.

    So many here in God's country can't see a higher law when it hits them.

    Take care of them. They were starving and they came here to work.

    Why were they starving? NAFTA. Subsidies to our corn farmers (welfare) that dumped corn on the Mexican market and put over a million farmers out of work. When was the last time you had to send your kids to bed without anything to eat?

    They come here out of desperation and all many can say here is go back and starve to death unless we get around to processing you papers in time. Nice.

    We'll be judged on our thoughlessness and lack of curoiosity about the suffering of your brothers and sisters don't you think? Or did we really think it's just our home teaching record that counts?

    Is it better to send sacks of food to starving people or give them jobs?

    If you think you are poorer for having helped the sick and starving I really wonder if there is ANY faith left here.

  • Jaime Lee Bonberger Houston, TX
    Jan. 5, 2011 9:56 a.m.

    shakespeare's fool - "Follow the money."

    Having dealt with Church welfare issues in a few situations, the financial drain of assistance to the immigrants is far greater than any imagined increase in the "10%". And fast offerings are typically at a negative cash flow in US stakes, while positive in most Latin American stakes.

    If you are getting at a perceived church leniency being driven by "the money", then the church would do better to support legislation to send them all home.

    The Perpetual Education Fund seeks to solve both isssues - support a decent education for members who stay in their home countries. This allows them a better standard of living while remaining in their native country to provide strength and leadership to the local units.

  • wrz SLC, Utah
    Jan. 4, 2011 7:59 p.m.


    "They are already here and most of their families include US Citizens and Undocumented people in a mix."

    Yes, and if they are allowed to stay they will soon have all there relatives here as well. We can't take the entire world no matter how disadvantaged they are. Please view 'Immigration Gumballs' on YouTube for details.

    "A mass deportation would take over 25 years..."

    Not so. Enforce hiring of illegals laws and they will deport themselves... by the thousands.

    "...and separate families..."

    They can take their families with them.

    "...causing more damage to... our financial system."

    We currently have 15 million Americans unemployed. If illegals were to deport, the jobs they leave will swiftly be taken up by our unemployed.

    "They should be fined just as we would fine any other Civil infraction."

    They should be fined then deported.

    "That is why the LDS Church gives them callings..."

    They get callings because the LDS Church does not look into citizenship before making a call.

    "...there is no legal line they can go get into in their own countries."

    Then, how do those who come here legally do it? What line do they get into?

  • wrz SLC, Utah
    Jan. 4, 2011 5:18 p.m.

    @Terrie Bittner

    "Ezra Taft Benson said following the prophet only when he agrees with you is not following the prophet and that putting someone else's views first (your political party for instance) makes that person or group your prophet."

    Benson said nothing about immigration, illegal or otherwise.

    "They don't advocate opening the borders--no one does--only treating those who are here the way Jesus would."

    Jesus drove the money changers out of the temple. Why? Because they were not there legally.

    "When two commandments conflict, we have to choose the higher law and the twelfth article of faith is not ranked higher than compassion..."

    Immigration laws can be administered with compassion, if that's your concern. Those who've broken the law can be deported in a kindly and compassionate manner. It's not rocket science.

  • Mr. Bean SLC, Utah
    Jan. 4, 2011 5:07 p.m.

    @What in Tucket?

    "At least let us not admit HIV positive individuals, those with tuberculosis and other contagious diseases."

    If you can catch them for the requisite tests you can throw them out of the country at the same time.

    "Those with postgraduate degrees I would give a green card."

    We have plenty of citizens with postgraduate degrees that are unemployed. We don't need foreigners to take our jobs.



    "I'm so tired of people responding so simplistically to this complex issue by smugly saying 'Obey the law.'"

    I'm so sick and tired of paying out billions in unemployment benefits when illegals are here taking Americans' jobs.

    "Because what we're talking about here is CRAFTING the law, and CREATING laws that are fair and just."

    Only laws that require deportation are fair and just. Anything else is amnesty.

    "I like the way Elder Marlin K. Jensen put it: it doesn't do much good to simply say 'obey the law' when the law itself is already broken."

    He needs to rethink his position. The law is broken not only by crossing the border uninvited but by staying here uninvited.

  • van Saratoga Springs, UT
    Jan. 4, 2011 12:31 p.m.

    Jabing the Desnews editor for giving a EC makes your comment look foolish. The rest of your comments look like you took them form the talk radio talking points of the day list.

    People are getting tired of phrases like:
    Illegal is Illegal. The law is the law. Bleeding heart libs. They are getting real old.

    Some LDS people see illegals as children of god and their brothers and sisters. Others see them as nothing but criminals.

    Some see their status is equal to a speeding ticket. Others see their status is next to murder.

    Some would like to find solutions to the problem. Others see deportation the only solution.

    Some would like to forgive and forget and help illegas progress, keeping families united and understand the problem with immigration is very complex. Others will not be happy until every illegal pays for his crime and is deported or self deports.

    Some use the letter of the law, others the rule of the law.

    Some LDS saints even go as far as wanting temple recomends of illegal immigrants taken away sadly. Others roll their eyes and wonder who are these people to judge.

  • shakespeare's fool Pleasant Grove, UT
    Jan. 4, 2011 12:09 p.m.

    What really matters is that 10% of an illegals income is greater than 10% of their legal income in their country of origin.

    Follow the money.

  • USAlover Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 4, 2011 10:30 a.m.

    Self-reliance and obeying the law are two huge Mormon tenants. Illegal immigration flies in the face of both...

  • terra nova Park City, UT
    Jan. 4, 2011 10:02 a.m.

    Those who pathetically play the one-note symphony of the "rule of law" do not understand "natural law." When the colonists broke the "rule of law" (becoming illegals) they appealed to "natural law" with these words:

    "When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation." (Opening lines of the Declaration of Independence)

    "Natural law" and the "rule of law" must merge and harmonize in order to create peaceful orderly government. It was so in 1776 and it is true today. Those that understand this principle are more willing to consider the deeper implications of our nation and the laws we enact, "for the people, of the people and by the people."

    The Utah Compact got it right. It is merciful and reasonable. It is balanced. We can and should support it.

  • positiverealist Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 4, 2011 9:38 a.m.

    They are already here and most of their families include US Citizens and Undocumented people in a mix. A mass deportation would take over 25 years and separate families causing more damage to society and to our financial system. They should be fined just as we would fine any other Civil infraction. 40% came in legal and their visas have expired. We need to take a reasonable approach rather than just a cold enforcement approach. We should deal with the felony convictions by coming down with the hammer of the law. The rest of the Civil infractions cannot be dealt with the same way according to the current law.

    If they were caught crossing it was a class B criminal misdemeanor and if they were not caught or even if their visa expired then it is "Unlawful Presence" (11 million) which is not criminal it is only CIVIL. That is why the LDS Church gives them callings, even leadership callings, sends them on missions and allows them to attend the Temple. 2 Nephi 1:6 is often quoted and for most of them there is no legal line they can go get into in their own counrties.

  • Mathew Antelope, CA
    Jan. 4, 2011 12:38 a.m.

    A comprehensive solution needs to include a path to citizenship for group 1, economic incentives to go back to their countries of origin for group 2, economic incentives to stay in their countries of origin for group 3, and a revamping of the whole process of legal immigration so it's more fair for group 4; fair within single countries and fair across different countries. The U.S. plays lots of favoritism. Where I live I see religious refugees who got a free trip here, free citizenship, and a free ride through college. They go to school right alongside the children of Latino immigrants who came here out of necessity with nothing but the shirts on their backs to work the fields for minimum wage just to be able to provide for their families. We could use the millions saved in border patrol, Medicare, welfare, etc. to work with the Mexican government in setting up these programs. We owe more than that anyways. Maybe we could get rid of some of the corruption down there and even tackle PEMEX at the same time. No tax increases for Americans, only a re-channeling of money for a time.

  • Mathew Antelope, CA
    Jan. 4, 2011 12:38 a.m.

    They also need a Perpetual Education Fund so they have a reason to stay in their countries. Lots of NPOs/religious organizations already do this type of sponsoring.

    *These 3 groups of immigrants tend to come from very poor socioeconomic circumstances. They haven't succeeded because they've never had the chance. They do not wish to assimilate and have come (or will come) here out of economic necessity.

    4) The last group of immigrants are the ones who simply desire to become Americans and either assimilate or acculturate. Many of them had money which allowed them to jump ahead in line to legally come here. Lots look down upon immigrants in the first 3 groups. However, many outstay their visas while here and become quite poor right along with everyone else. In the meantime they're forced to pay college tuition that's several times more expensive since they're not legal residents.

    *Obviously drug and human traffickers and terrorists need to be pursued no matter what theyre immigration status. Amnesty is not the answer. All that does is keep groups 1 and 2 here and encourage group 3 to come who will never get amnesty.

  • Mathew Antelope, CA
    Jan. 4, 2011 12:36 a.m.

    Here's what I think comprehensive immigration should look like:

    1) One group of undocumented immigrants is well established in the U.S. Theyve been here a long time, have kids here, have permanent jobs, etc. Theyre not going to leave. They are the ones who have put the most into the economy and paid the most into Social Security (of which theyll likely never see a penny) and taxes, much more than they have taken out. They should have a path to citizenship.

    2) Another group of undocumented immigrants is not as established. If they had a chance at making a living in their own country, many would go back. They need something like the Perpetual Education Fund so they have access to money for college, job training, or to set up a business in their own countries. Without some sort of initial financial aid they will never be able to come out of poverty and likely won't leave here.

    3) Then there is the group who is not here yet but will make the trek here if they can't make a living in their country.

  • Mathew Antelope, CA
    Jan. 4, 2011 12:14 a.m.

    I think weve hit most the common arguments from both sides. When this issue is studied in depth, other factors surface that haven't been mentioned yet. For starters, look up dependency theory and world-systems approach and you'll see the U.S. is one of the primary reasons Mexico is so poor. Delve a little deeper into the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo and you'll find the U.S. took the Mexican territory by trickery and force similar to how the rest of the continent was acquired. Hence many of the Native Americans who have a historical right to be here originate from what was Mexico and yet theyre being told to go home! Don't get me wrong, I believe the U.S. Constitution was inspired and that only in this country could the Church be set up so the Gospel could eventually spread throughout the world. I also believe the Lord bowed his head in shame when he saw how his White children treated his Native and Black children. I am sure it could have been done another way but alas, He cannot take away our agency. With that background knowledge...

  • SLars Provo, UT
    Jan. 3, 2011 3:55 p.m.

    My ancestors came to the Salt Lake valley in 1847. The land was not owned by Mexico, but was a claimed territory of the USA. One of my ancestors was able to join his relatives a few months later after the Mormon battalion was decommission by the American government from the war with Mexico.

    The Utah compact did not deal with illegal immigration, but with legal immigration. It does not contain the word illegal or undocumented in it.

  • Tom Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Jan. 3, 2011 3:06 p.m.

    If you believe in the principles stated in the Utah Compact you can still step forward and sign your name to it. Lets take a stand for what is right.

  • Jonathan Eddy Payson, UT
    Jan. 3, 2011 2:27 p.m.

    "And now, verily I say unto you concerning the laws of the land, it is my will that my people should observe to do all things whatsoever I command them.

    And that law of the land which is constitutional, supporting that principle of freedom in maintaining rights and privileges, belongs to all mankind, and is justifiable before me.

    Therefore, I, the Lord, justify you, and your brethren of my church, in befriending that law which is the constitutional law of the land;

    And as pertaining to law of man, whatsoever is more or less than this, cometh of evil.

    I, the Lord God, make you free, therefore ye are free indeed; and the law also maketh you free.

    Nevertheless, when the wicked rule the people mourn."

    Before you judge the actions of any human being, I would warn you to be in sync with the will of God toward HIS people and HIS land and HIS borders. Flag wavers are quite a spectacle.

  • Sigfried Payson, UT
    Jan. 3, 2011 2:09 p.m.

    I'm not interested in punishing people harshly for "minor infractions of the law". I'm interested in stopping the flow of undocumented aliens over the southern border. They don't come over here to live so much as to get work or move illegal substances. Those who come here to work often send the buld of their money back home where the USD buys more.
    Is anyone not clear that we are talking strictly about Mexico here?
    Once our grandfathers migrated here in bulk once upon a time, but that's just not the situation any more. All other countries are pretty strict on who can come into them. Why not us?
    Also, while we are providing a pressure release valve for the "South", people who are willing to get up and make a difference in their situation are just coming over here instead of improving the home land.
    That's not doing Mexico any favors.

  • Ajax Mapleton, UT
    Jan. 3, 2011 12:51 p.m.

    The problem of undocumented Hispanic labor is a catch-22. On the one hand the labor of undocumented migrants--which we have never duly credited--is integral to our economy in response to our needs for growth, while on the other hand our laws are in opposition to the efforts of migrant workers in fulfilling what we in essence have sought of them.

    So now in our arrogance and ignorance disguised as righteous indignation over minor infractions of law in a role that we have forced upon them we seek to punish our undocumented laborers and teach them a good lesson.

  • Tom Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Jan. 3, 2011 12:22 p.m.

    This is not as simple of an issue as many make it out to be. The reality is that the best way to do away with illegal immigration is to allow greater legal immigration for those who want to come here and work hard at jobs that need to be filled. I know that some say that the unemployed would take there jobs if they could but that has not been the reality. I have not known of any unemployed computer programmers that were willing to shear sheep in southern Utah or pick oranges in Florida. I believe the Church can see that we have a broken immigration system and that you have millions of Gods Children that our caught in the middle of international forces that are beyond their control.

  • Jaime Lee Bonberger Houston, TX
    Jan. 3, 2011 12:08 p.m.

    to ideasnstuff:

    None of what was considered Utah territory in July of 1847 was under Mexican control. The war was already lost and Mexico officially surrendered in September 1847.

    The Mormon Battalion passed through New Mexico, southern Arizona and along today's California-Mexico border in late 1846 and received zero military resistence. Mexico had already relinquished control.

    Some of your ideas, however, are interesting. I don't think the polar solutions being proposed by both extreme sides of the argument will benefit anyone.

  • Jazz Bass Man Wellsville, Utah
    Jan. 3, 2011 12:04 p.m.

    I have a question for all of you bleeding heart libs that advocate giving amnesty to illegals and opening our borders.

    What you're really saying is that we should justify letting all the illegals stay only because they hopped the border, and we should do that in the name of "compassion". What about the MILLIONS of other people in the world, many who are worse off than illegal mexicans, who would certainly like to come here and become Americans? You all are really talking out of both sides of your mouth. Either we be fair and let everyone in who wants to come, or we deport those who hopped the border illegally. Showing "compassion" on border hoppers because they committed a crime and butted in front of the line is no solution.

    Either we have laws and enforce them, or we don't. If we don't enforce one law, then we should just throw them all out and live in anarchy.

    Utah absolutely needs an Arizona type law just so we can get rid of all the gangbanger illegals from mexico who are fleeing Arizona to come here.

  • Richard Saunders Provo, UT
    Jan. 3, 2011 11:49 a.m.

    @ hamberg | 2:16 p.m. Jan. 2, 2011
    My comments were directed at believing members of the LDS church. If they wish to follow their leaders, then my point stands. And yes, illegal immigrants can get baptized. Google an article from the USA Today called "LDS members conflicted about illegal migrant growth." and look under the paragraph titled 'No questions asked.' I'll let God decide if their baptism is valid, and I won't pretend to know. Anyone who says they believe in "honoring, sustaining, and obeying the law" for illegal immigrants but then routinely speeds or doesn't wear a seat belt or downloads music without paying for it or rolls through stop signs is a hyprocrite.

  • SLars Provo, UT
    Jan. 3, 2011 11:41 a.m.

    We will never be able to let in all the people who want to come here. So we have quotas to protect our citizens jobs, and to keep our country from building to fast an overburdening our social services.

    The only way to be fair to everyone is to demand that people follow the laws, including our leaders.

    Our immigration and worker programs are set by need, not by demands of foreign citizens and their supporters. It makes little sense bringing in a million people, when we have 15 million out of work.

  • mammalou Somewhere in the USA, UT
    Jan. 3, 2011 9:44 a.m.

    Considering, I wish there was an applause button I could push for your comments. They are spot on, and spoken eloquently. I always get to excited to write so profoundly. Good Job!!

  • patrick campbell Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 3, 2011 9:38 a.m.

    And while we're quoting Articles of Faith:

    10. We believe in the literal gathering of Israel and in the restoration of the Ten Tribes; that Zion (the New Jerusalem) will be built upon the American continent; that Christ will reign personally upon the earth; and, that the earth will be renewed and receive its paradisiacal glory.

    As much as many commenters would like to believe, this is not a black and white issue.

  • Say No to BO Mapleton, UT
    Jan. 3, 2011 8:00 a.m.

    The LDS Church is playing a hamfisted game of situational ethics.
    My testimony has been shaken, not stirred.
    Personally, I have found it necessary to divide the church into two segments.
    One I'll call the "Institutional" church that employs lawyers, lobbyists and PR people to navigate the world of politics and media.
    The other church, the one I joined, I simply refer to as the Gospel.
    It isn't a great plan, but it'll do for now.

  • ideasnstuff Orem, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 11:48 p.m.


    You make some good points. My pioneer forbears walked into Mexico (the Salt Lake Valley) and settled down without asking permission of anybody. But probably the Mexicans didn't care, or couldn't pay much attention to the matter, as they were in the process of losing a war and massive national territory to the USA.

    I don't think we would be Monsters for building the wall. I absolutely think we should do it. However, many in the world woud SEE us as inhuman monsters for doing it. That's what I meant by political courage.

    I agree that we should remove incentives for illegal aliens to come here, while enhancing the ability of law-abiding people with skills to immigrate legally. The problem is that it is now pathetically easy to obtain and use falsified ID, and there is no non-burdensome way for employers and public agencies to verify that ID. ID needs to be provided with anti-counterfitting measures that are very expensive to overcome, and should be quickly verifiable. As a lifelong citizen I would gladly tote such a card for the sake of national security and sovereignty.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 11:08 p.m.

    Not sure what the issue is exactly?? Just follow the law of the land. Problem solved. Illegal is illegal just like speeding is speeding and is against the law. You can't drive what ever speed you want just because you are a certain race. The law is blind to race.

  • cerana Littleton, CO
    Jan. 2, 2011 10:56 p.m.

    I am not afraid of my church (LDS) to be opposed with illegal immigration in the US.

  • Considering Stockton, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 10:55 p.m.

    The first mormons were NOT "illegal aliens" in Mexico. Anyone who so claims better cite the specific Mexican law in effect at the time that made the LDS conduct illegal. Notice that LDS polygamists were quite welcome to start their colonies in Mexico well after the treaty was signed. Laws change over time.

    I got my first ticket on I-15 driving a speed that is perfectly legal today, but was illegal under the "double nickel".

    We do NOT have to deport 12 million illegal aliens. Mexico did not deport them to get them to come here. If we remove the incentives to be here, most will self deport. Any real effort at enforcement will provide additional pressure to self-deport.

    ANY reward for illegally entering our nation will lead to increased illegal border crossings. We must not send that message. It is fatal.

    We have sufficient ID today. We need to penalize employers who look the other way.

    I don't know why a fence makes us look like a monster? Have you seen what Mexico does on their southern border? Or what Australia requires to legally immigrate? Good fences make good neighbors.

  • Clydesdale Tooele, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 10:47 p.m.

    I want the good, law abiding Mexicans here, legally. I like them. I think we need them. We need to make immigrating here a faster process!

  • ideasnstuff Orem, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 10:37 p.m.

    The problem is that the correct measures require political courage:

    1. Truly secure the borders. Build the "wall". All the way across. Be willing to look like a heartless monster.

    2. Institute a secure, hard-to-falsify identification system capable of tracking the status of citizens and non-citizens. Many "illegals" flew in legally with tourist or student visas, and stayed. Many Americans (especially conservatives such as myself) resist such an ID system as "police state". But sooner or later we will need it.

    3. Modernize our laws so that hard-working, law-abiding people from other countries can immigrate in months, not years, and without spending a fortune. The current immigration system is frankly designed to keep people out, for historical reasons of political expeiency.

    4. Find a way to qualify and transition most of who are already here. We do not have the resources (or the inhumanity) to deport 12 million people. But this will not work without secure borders, a key to national sovereignty!

    Historical note: The first Mormon settlers were illegal aliens on Mexican territory until the signing of the treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, February 2, 1848.

  • Considering Stockton, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 10:31 p.m.

    van in his "editor's choice" post demonstrates how polls can be rigged to say anything you like.

    How about a poll that asked questions like:

    Do you think illegal aliens should get preferential treatment over would be lawful immigrants who are doing things the right way and waiting for legal authorization to enter our nation?

    Do you think people should be rewarded for criminal conduct?

    If you learned your or your child's identity had been stolen and used by an illegal alien, your credit damaged, and tax problems created for you with the IRS, would you support greater enforcement of our immigration laws?

    If you learned that illegal aliens are far more likely to commit crimes such as ID theft, driving without insurance, and be involved with gang activity and the drug trade than are legal immigrants or natural born citizens, would you support greater enforcement?

    Should our immigration laws or policy give preference to Mexico over Great Britain, Europe, Asia, or Africa?

    Do you support paying increased taxes to provide government services in two or more languages?

    Do you enjoy having to "press one for english?"

    Do you prefer US culture or Mexican culture?

  • WP Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 10:13 p.m.

    A couple of thoughts from the Book of Mormon:

    - When pride was at it's peak among Nephites, hatred and contention was also at it's peak. Feuds and divisions between regions flourished.

    - When the people turned their hearts to Christ, trade and friendship increased and boundaries & divisions became meaningless.

    These discussions sound like a lot of pride being wrapped up in nationalism and "rule of law" talk.

  • UtahnativeinliberalCA Claremont, CA
    Jan. 2, 2011 9:30 p.m.

    It wss interesting to me to find out that a missionary from my ward was called to the Mexico City West mission and had to spend the first few months of his mission in the Provo mission because he could not get a visa to go to Mexico. He finally received one last week. We are flooded with illegal immigrants who do not honor, obey and sustain the law as we have been taught from youth. We and the church can both honor and obey and sustain the law and still be compassionate. Everyone has their free agency and the illegals can choose to keep the family together in Mexico if they desire or they can choose to continue to break our laws. Laws can be changed and be compassionate but existing laws should be enforced and should be obeyed by church members.

  • sg Santa Clarita, CA
    Jan. 2, 2011 9:26 p.m.

    Tony Yapias doesn't get it. Obey the laws of the land. Tony, why don't you walk across the Mexican border to live there and let us know what happens? I'm sure the Mexican gov't will receive you with open arms and feed you, clothe you, give you medical attention when you need it; provide you with a driver's license, a social security number and the right to work. All of these illegals, their families, their children, everyone of them that is here illegally should be, no must be deported back from where they came. There shouldn't be any sanction or safe city haven. The rule of law supercedes what liberals cry as humanitarianism. It is not. And yet, if these bleeding heart liberals are so concerned, then I suggest you pay the bills and leave us who believe in this country; to be protected from all borders to do our jobs in protecting this great nation. Tony, you are so wrong; it makes me really wonder what your agenda truly is.

  • JP Chandler, AZ
    Jan. 2, 2011 9:13 p.m.

    I'm always entertained by all the "Obey the law" posts. Many of these same people think nothing of breaking the law every day as they speed to and from work. What that tells me is that it's okay to break the law if it will cut 2 minutes off your commute, but it's not okay to break the law in order to give your family a chance at a better life.

  • MormonDem Provo, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 8:50 p.m.

    It's interesting how when the Church supports Prop 8, Utahns are chomping at the bit to show how faithful they are. The Church supports the Utah compact, and all of the sudden half of Utah is on the verge of apostasy.

  • van Saratoga Springs, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 8:28 p.m.

    I would like to see some polls based on questions like...

    Do you support a pathway to citizenship through paying fines, and community service.

    Do you support a way for families that have mixed legal/illegal members to fix their status and stay united.

    Do you support rounding up 100,000 illegals in Utah and deporting them.

    Do you think by removing 100,000 people from Utah's population is going to benifit out economy..our rental market, our housing market.

    Do you think talk radio is creating more hate and divide than common sense solutions on immigration.

    Would you support deporting your best friend or close members of your church if you found out they were illegal?

    Would you want to deport his/her mother or father?

    Should the LDS church take a stand like the Catholic church has on the immigration issue?

    Utah is getting alot of publicity nationwide with the Utah Compact. Would Utah be better off leading the country with ideas like the Utah Compact or follow the hardline approach like the Sanstrom/Arizona type bill.

  • 10CC Bountiful, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 8:19 p.m.

    Ultimately this issue hinges on the LDS church and growth via missionary work, at least as far as the Utah Legislature is concerned. If the Mexican government threatened to withhold missionary visas, the Legislature would fold, immediately.

    Growth in the church is fairly stagnant within the US, but Latin America is a gold mine.

  • hamberg Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 7:27 p.m.

    @Ronald Mortensen: You're wrong. You cannot work in this country when you are here illegally and that is a criminal offense not a civil one. You can't confuse the facts because your facts are based on based on a lie. Simply stated you have to have the right to work here in the United States and those people who are working illegally are either working by taking $$$ under the table (thus not paying taxes) or by stealing an identity. Both are criminal acts not civil.

    I used to work for Workforce Services and 2 out of 3 people who get reported under bad SSNs are illegal (1 in 3 is a typo when reported to Workforce Services.) The Department of Workforce Services can only report your SSN being used illegally if you are under 18 and they reported about 100 the last week I worked for DWS.

  • hamberg Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 7:20 p.m.

    @MormonDem: The law isn't broken, it's the politicians don't have the stomach to enforce the law they have sworn to enforce.

    The real problem with illegal Mexican immigration is that the government of Mexico has been corrupt for decades. Until that problem is solved we will continue to have illegal immigration.

    Deport the illegals and let them fight for their rights in their home countries. They have no rights here other than to be deported.

  • facts_r_stubborn Kaysville, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 7:13 p.m.

    For those who say nothing has been done, just a few facts to add regarding enforcement.

    1) The recession has become the most effective enforcer of all, with many illegal immigrants leaving the country because they can't find jobs here.

    2) The budget for federal immigration law enforcement has doubled over the last five years.

    3) Deportations are at an all time high.

    4) Border security has been improved. Congress, for all their other problems did manage to send another 2000 troops pilotless drones, border barrier improvements etc. at a cost of an additional $600 million.

    5) Utah has gained a new federal immigration court in Salt Lake with two judges, dramatically improving processing of deportation cases.

    6) The Utah legislature is considering a political message bill that is not much more than political posturing, an unfunded mandate to cash strapped local law enforcement agencies.

    7) A more effective federal/local law enforcement program exists under 287(g). It has been very effective in other states. Local law enforcement can be trained and apprehend criminal aliens, but it takes state and local funding to implement, which is why only two counties in Utah have done it.

  • facts_r_stubborn Kaysville, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 7:02 p.m.

    Why can't enforcement of existing immigration laws coexist with improvements to existing immigration laws? I don't see the conflict. It is possible to be for enforcement of all laws and also to change laws that need changing.

    Unlike laws against crimes universally accepted as fundamental in all nations, (e.g. murder, theft etc.) immigration laws tend to vary from country to country and over time as conditions change. Even fundamental laws do not deter all crime, neither do they detect all crimes or punish all criminals. Immigration enforcement is no exception. The idea that the borders must be sealed and enforcement complete before any positive changes can be made to immigration laws needs to be flushed out with realistic numerical or statistical targets.

    We should continue to improve enforcement not just by throwing more money at it, but by doing things smarter. At the same time having a national guest worker program, (not at the state level only), and other improvements to existing laws will help separate those who will legally contribute to our nation and society from those who will not honor and obey the law.

    Immigration is not a zero sum game!

  • Ronald Mortensen Bountiful, Utah
    Jan. 2, 2011 6:42 p.m.

    AJAX writes: Facts are that the majority of undocumented immigrants are engaged in legal endeavors that clearly benefit our communities.

    The fact is that illegal aliens are real criminals. According to the Social Security actuary, as reported by the New York Times, an estimated 75% of illegal aliens have a fraudulently obtained Social Security number (felony). When these fraudulently obtained numbers are used to obtain jobs with employers who require the completion of an I-9 form, illegal aliens perjure themselves by falsifying the I-9 (felony). Finally, many of the fraudulently obtained numbers belong to other Americans and under Utah law that is identity fraud, a felony.

    In Utah based on investigations by Workforce Services and the Utah Attorney Generals office, it is estimated that 50,000 Utah children have their identities being used by illegal aliens. In Arizona, over one million children are the victims of illegal alien identity theft.

    These kids have their good names ruined and their futures destroyed. Their credit is ruined, they have arrest records attached to their names and their medical records may be corrupted with life threatening consequences.

    Thus, most illegal aliens are involved in serious criminal activities.

  • Ajax Mapleton, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 6:36 p.m.

    Am I alone in seeing an ity bity problem with the constant clamor for being subject to kings, presidents, etc. and the thorough going insurrection against your president and mine, Barak Obama?

  • JanSan Pocatello, ID
    Jan. 2, 2011 5:53 p.m.

    I worry big time about the borders and how if illeagals can get into the country this way then so can terrorist.
    I get frustrated when I have to deal with someone in public that cannot speak English and I get upset when they seem to want to take over and make this a new Mexico. If they are here then they should be AMERICAN!! I don't care what your color is, what your religion is, what your legacy is.. if your here you should be American and PROUD to be such.
    The thing that is upsetting is that so many of the illeagals seem to be from Mexico and they seem to want to make over America. But, then hey, the way Mexico is now I know I wouldn't want to live there! I feel for those trying to get away from horrible situations in their home lands.. there has to be some kind of middle ground..Please politions DO YOUR JOBS and find it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • TMR Santa Monica, CA
    Jan. 2, 2011 5:52 p.m.

    Nottyou: The law, as stated by Jesus, is quite clear: 1) love God with all your heart; and 2) love your neighbor as yourself. Illegal immigrants are our neighbors. The articles of faith, as are all faith tenants, are subsumed under these two "greatest" commandments. The balance in dealing with illegal immigration by the LDS church tempers any extreme interpretations of "law" with the spirit of love. This is the law, my friend.

  • JanSan Pocatello, ID
    Jan. 2, 2011 5:44 p.m.

    I am conflicted about all of this....
    As an American I am for square that the laws of this land should be obeyed.
    I think that it is totally unfair that all of these illeagal immagrants come in and use our resources. I don't think it is fair for some to have to wait years to do it the right way while some break the law and get onto food stamps etc. while people are still waiting.
    That said, I feel for children who have only known the US as home being torn from this land and put into a land that is foreign to them.. con't

  • Ajax Mapleton, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 5:38 p.m.

    Have you ever wondered why so many of us in our political views are so consistently meanspirited on social issues, so unyielding to concessions that would allow for important reform, and so warmongering at home and abroad? Why are we so ardently exclusionary on nearly every issue? And what does it say of ourselves?

    The way we see our world and those around us has as much to do with our inner ethos as with the outside reality we normally reference as reason for our beliefs. To a significant degree we are they who confront us in shaping our world. Might we better look to our own hearts to know the truth that would free us from the despair of harmful beliefs than to wallow in the degrading self-condemnation inherent in the criticism and rejection of others?

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    Jan. 2, 2011 5:16 p.m.

    We need to fix our immigration system. I just don't see it happening. Anything short of bussing 12 million back to Mexico won't get Republican support.
    I found this interesting:

    As of November 10, 2010, Citizenship and Immigration Services was processing some family-related visas applications filed as far back as January 1988, and it was still processing some employment-related visa applications from January 2002.

    A US citizen wishing to sponsor an unmarried adult child from Mexico, for instance, has to wait more than 17 years before the application will be processed, and a US citizen wishing to sponsor a sibling from the Philippines has to wait 22 years. However, recent years have witnessed dramatic reductions in the backlogs for certain categories of immigrants, particularly the immediate family members (spouses and children) of lawful permanent residents.
    (migrationinformation org)

  • nottyou Riverton, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 4:40 p.m.

    This is the LDS Church's stance on ILLEGAL immigration: We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers, and magistrates, in obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law. Now, will someone please explain what the LAW IS?

  • Ajax Mapleton, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 4:33 p.m.

    Certainly a growing Hispanic underclass (mostly Mexican) of gangbangers who remorselessly prey upon our society is a concern. However, I question whether the pursuit of the Sandstrom crowd of an across the board purging of "illegals" is truly in our best interests. Sandstrom's lament that, "It's hard to be called a racist or a bigot when all I want to do is enforce the law" I find to be highly disingenuous.

    In this case the simple-minded jingoism of "the law" seems less a legitimate concern than an expression of insecurity in troubled times and a convenient pretense. A vindictive and oppressive mindset serves no one. The scapegoating of minorities is the all too often response.

    Facts are that the majority of undocumented immigrants are engaged in legal endeavors that clearly benefit our communities. Might we not be better served in focusing on the real criminals? That is certainly the most feasible approach and the overwhelming preference of our law enforcement officials.

    Highly commended in resolving differences is charity. Difficult to understand but nonetheless true is that the well-being of others and ourselves is not exclusive but always intertwined.

  • Ronald Mortensen Bountiful, Utah
    Jan. 2, 2011 4:32 p.m.

    Vin writes: The law defines violation of immigration law as on par with rolling a stop sign, speeding, etc.

    This is not entirely correct because 8 U.S.C.1325 distinguishes between people unlawfully in the U.S. after entering legally and people who are unlawfully in the U.S. after entering illegally.

    Thus, a person who enters legally and overstays her visa is subject to a civil penalty (fine) for unlawful presence. Civil penalties also apply to people caught while trying to illegally enter the United States but who do not get in.

    A person who illegally enters the United States commits a criminal misdemeanor. The penalty for the first successful illegal entry is to be fined under title 18 or imprisoned not more than 6 months. The penalty for returning after being deported is to be fined under title 18, or imprisoned not more than 2 years, or both.

    The problem is that people who are unlawfully in the U.S. quickly commit felonies in order to get jobs. They commit document/social security fraud in order to get fake Social Security numbers, perjure themselves on I-9 forms and even commit identity theft.

  • CJ Murray, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 4:19 p.m.


    Great comments, you are exactly right on this. We should not trade expediency for the principles we purport to believe in. The church is clearly doing exactly that. The DN is so blatantly pro amnesty and anti enforcement it is truly disheartening. I think they are on a slippery slope with this issue unlike anything they have ever undertaken. This is one where they don't have the support of a majority of members, in fact, quite the opposite. I have been the victim of illegal alien crime three times now and it is getting hard to be "compassionate" about it when they are not even supposed to be here and now the church is behind them. Not very easy to be understanding about it.
    Salt Lake has become a major distribution hub for black tar heroin and the DEA will tell you it is operated by illegal Mexican nationals. The church is not looking at what illegal immigration is really doing to this state, those of us in the real world are seeing it firsthand. I have a 24 year old son who can't find a 9 per hour job, illegals have taken them all.

  • Jack Aurora, CO
    Jan. 2, 2011 4:12 p.m.

    @Maple Don;
    I think if you check, the Church encourages ALL discussions on highly charged matters to be civil. So, this one isn't getting preferential treatment. I too, want ILLEGAL immigration stopped, but trying to make all 12M plus leave is logistically problematic. So, a better way must be found. We must find a better way to get this under control, or we will invariably succumb to the deluge.

  • TRUTH Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 4:01 p.m.

    Mormons are not as divided as this article pretends to imply.......

    As the Utah Survey showed a huge number support Sandstrom while little to no one listens to Yapias!

  • Terrie Bittner Warminster, PA
    Jan. 2, 2011 3:56 p.m.

    Sandstrom said that if the church openly opposed his bill, he'd do it anyway. Ezra Taft Benson said following the prophet only when he agrees with you is not following the prophet and that putting someone else's views first (your political party for instance) makes that person or group your prophet. Sandstrom revealed his source of truth in that statement.

    The Church's focus has been on those who are already here. They don't advocate opening the borders--no one does--only treating those who are here the way Jesus would. Remember in the Church's early past, prophets themselves sometimes broke laws for the greater good.

    When two commandments conflict, we have to choose the higher law and the twelfth article of faith is not ranked higher than compassion, nor is it higher than following the prophet. It's an Article of Faith...not the greatest law as outlined by Jesus Christ.

    The Church is right--the Utah Compact is compassionate, fair, and balanced--and Christlike.

  • Cookie999 Sandy, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 3:44 p.m.

    In my opinion, having spent over 10 years in Spanish wards in Utah and outside of Utah, whatever support the LDS Church gives to immigrants regardless of legal status is a very tiny fraction of what goes on in government levels. I think efforts to teach English (such as the Daily Dose program) to those who need to learn it, regardless of whether one is here legally or not, helps those who stay and helps those who return to their countries of origin, either way the people decide. It is my opinion, that if immigration law were re-engineered to be faster and more fair, and that if rudimentary English skills were required as a condition of living here past a certain amount of time, that those of us who have experience teaching English as a second language might actually make a living wage instead of doing it largely on a volunteer basis. Also, business English would help those who have businesses in other countries build business contacts here in the United States.

  • MapleDon Springville, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 3:31 p.m.

    This statement made me laugh:

    "The LDS church has tried to find a balance between the teachings of the church, compassion and the law." Nothing can be further from the truth.

    The fact is the Church, through its media--chiefly the Deseret News and KSL, has been the most vocal advocate for illegal immigration and amnesty in this state. Sure it did its best to keep the name of the Church out of the fray, but it still provide the vehicles for propoganda.

    As a stake leader, I also received notice from Church HQ to keep discussion on this issue civil. Why should discussion of this issue receive preferential treatment?

    The problem for me has been that other motives besides those given have really driven their stance. And rather than say the truth regarding the matter, they have allowed employees of their media to call the rest of us racists and lacking compassion.

    I am intolerant of lawlessness and oppose to its sanction by those I believe care little for our nation, its heritage, the rule of law, but gladly trade those for money and power.

  • JBrady Murray, Ut
    Jan. 2, 2011 3:11 p.m.

    It's the actions of those who break the laws, that breaks up families.

    Upon deportation, the family is reunited in their own country. It seems to be a lot of excuse making. Enforcing other crimes breaks up families, but there is no argument to stop their enforcement?

    It's not the law that's broken, it's Federal enforcement. We let in more people legally, than all other countries combined since 2006.

    There is no reason for this.

  • Dixie Dan Saint George, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 2:53 p.m.

    Let's start by deporting all full time missionaries who are here illegally but lied to go on a mission with the help of their bishop and stake presidents.

  • Doug10 Roosevelt, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 2:52 p.m.

    It is a huge problem facing the USA and Utah. I hope the lawmakers don't just address the painful and immediate issue now facing them but fix the problem once and for all.

    I know educated, working, people who have been waiting for 3 years to come to this country. They have made application and paid thousands of dollars in applications yet still wait.

    For the country to ignore those who could be here but chose not to break the law vs those who came and stayed uninvited is wrong.

    If those wanting to come from other parts of North America, Europe and South America just showed up and stayed and worked until Utah/USA changed the laws, the outcome would be drastic

  • Brer Rabbit Spanish Fork, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 2:51 p.m.

    LDS Church members are about the same as non-Mormons concerning illegal immigration. 3 out of 4 Mormons oppose illegal immigration, but fear that it makes them look like they oppose the LDS Church if they make their feelings known. That is about the same ratio as non-LDS that really don't care what the LDS Church thinks. So, Mormons are hesitant to speak up publicly.

    Many members of the LDS Church are confused concerning the "Official LDS Church Position," which is a position of "neutrality." The members get confused when they see the Church enabling illegal immigrants in Utah.

    Many Church members see the Church providing support and enabling illegal immigration as a violation of the 12th Article of Faith, "...honoring and sustaining the law..." Many see this as hypocrisy which cause them to struggle with their faith.

  • CJ Murray, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 2:18 p.m.

    There is nothing to debate here at all. The 12th article is either something we believe in or we don't. The Church handbook also clearly states that members should stay in the own countries and if they do immigrate they should do so LEGALLY following all the relevant laws. There is no equivocation on this at all. Illegal immigrants break the law by crossing the border, they usually steal an ID (from kids), they lie about their status, steal a job from an American,incur hospital bills they don't pay, and send their kids to schools that we all pay for.
    The net effect of all this is nothing short of the wholesale looting of the state and national treasuries. What little they pay in taxes (if they even do) is the equivalent of stealing a dollar and paying back a penny. How can anyone argue that this isn't a clear cut issue? If we did the same to Mexico and sent 20 million Americans down there the church would certainly come out against that wouldn't they? Stand for your principles please or quit preaching them.

  • hamberg Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 2:16 p.m.

    @Richard Saunders:

    Just because church leaders turn a blind eye doesn't mean it's OK or that the baptism is valid. It may be recognized in this life however it will not be recognized in the next.

    As for going on a mission, you are wrong. The church cannot send somebody outside the country that is here illegally. The church can't even send somebody they know is illegal to serve a mission as that itself is illegal.

    Why don't you find out how many people you can find that can't get a temple recommend because they are a month behind in their child support payments? Then go and confront your bishop/stake president and make your same argument.

  • woodysworld Sandy, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 2:04 p.m.

    We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers, and magistrates, in obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law.

    How are we sustaining the law if we are allowing illegal immigration? Sandstrom does get it.

    If we can overlook illegal immigration then we can over look everything else right? Having help two people legally immigrate to the USA I am aware of how difficult and expensive it can be. I am empathetic to those who do not have the resources to do it legally. But ignoring the laws of this land are not the fix. Fix the law, don't ignore it.

  • Vin Harrisville, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 1:43 p.m.

    Always amusing to watch people manipulate religious tenets to justify stuff.

    The law defines violation of immigration law as on par with rolling a stop sign, speeding, etc. It's truly shocking to see the penalties that so many of you demand be exacted upon illegal immigrants who've done absolutely nothing wrong other than commit an infraction of that degree.

    The penalty needs to be commensurate with the infraction. Deporting a father, whose wife and children are familiar only with the U.S., seems like a bizarre and perverted application of justice.

  • OremGuy Orem, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 1:40 p.m.

    Yes, we should all obey the law, but clearly the law if flawed. Immigrants are needed here in the US; if they weren't, they couldn't get jobs and they wouldn't come here. We should start to realize that immigrants are a resource, a valuable resource, almost a necessary resource, in our present-day economy. So lets change the laws. Let's live by what made this country great: Give me your tired, your poor,"Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
    I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

  • MormonDem Provo, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 1:39 p.m.

    I'm so tired of people responding so simplistically to this complex issue by smugly saying "Obey the law. Enough said." Because what we're talking about here is CRAFTING the law, and CREATING laws that are fair and just. It's not just about enforcement, because if the law we're enforcing is itself out of touch with reality, self-righteous citations of the 13th Article of Faith serve only to justify selfish and hateful attitudes.

    I like the way Elder Marlin K. Jensen put it: it doesn't do much good to simply say "obey the law" when the law itself is already broken.

  • Richard Saunders Provo, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 1:13 p.m.

    Those of you LDS who keep harping about "obeying the law" should remember that being an illegal immigrant does not prevent someone from being baptized or serving an LDS mission. If it does not prevent you from serving a mission, it can't be the greivous sin, at least according to the Brethren, that some of you make it out to be. Let us worry about ourselves a little more, and not cast stones at our brothers and sisters, for they are our brothers and sisters.

  • smiling2 Cedar Hills, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 12:54 p.m.

    One can be compassionate (feel compassion)toward the illegals and still send them home. I feel for them, I'm sorry their home country is not like the USA, but I do not support them coming here illegally.

  • Hawkeye79 Iowa City, IA
    Jan. 2, 2011 12:52 p.m.

    It would be unwise to create an incentive to enter the US without being screened for deadly diseases, criminal histories and/or terrorist ties. This is why our country has established a legal immigration process.

  • rhrobison West Chester, OH
    Jan. 2, 2011 12:39 p.m.

    Members' opinions may be divided, but the Church's position could be clear! Remember that pesky 12th article of faith. There is a LAW against illegal immigration. Every other country on earth aggressively enforces that law and protects their borders, especially Mexico. The 12th article faith is clear, "illegal" immigrants are illegal and are breaking the law. There is plenty of room for compassionate, legal immigration. Compassion never has a place in encouraging law breaking!

  • What in Tucket? Provo, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 12:34 p.m.

    At least let us not admit HIV positive individuals, those with tuberculosis and other contagious diseases. Those with postgraduate degrees I would give a green card. Those with felony convictions should be deported. Those serving 2 years in the armed services should also get a green card.

  • jim l West Jordan, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 12:33 p.m.

    Yes, the majority of people here in utah want something done similar to what arizona did. When the effects of illegal immigration start affecting your pocketbook, it begins to become very important.

  • C. Darwin Sandy, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 12:21 p.m.

    opinions vary,yes, however the opinion of the majority is expected to be supportrd as the rule of law. We are a democratic republic. Therefore, illegal lawbreakers must return to their birth countries and follow the will of the majority of legal American citizens. No more excuses or opinions are necessary.

  • Rifleman Salt Lake City, Utah
    Jan. 2, 2011 12:20 p.m.

    Compassion is a worthy virtue but it doesn't trump the law. If we're going to be truly compassionate perhaps we should open our flood gates and allow all the world's hungry and poor to enter.

    I would think that in the eyes of the liberals it would be blatant discrimination to only allow the poor and hungry from Mexico to cross our border.

  • Considering Stockton, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 12:10 p.m.

    It is entirely compassionate, humane, charitable, and kind to require that those breaking the law stop doing so. To impose no civil or criminal penalty is beyond generous.

    Jesus told the woman taken in adultery, "Go. And sin no more."

    He did not say, "Go back to your paramour and continue your sinful conduct."

    Those who have entered or remain in our nation illegally need to leave. They can apply for legal entry like everyone else. That they may not be granted such permission, or that permission may take some time to obtain is not a moral or other justification to violate our laws.

    We may well should change some of our immigration laws. But those changes should be made for the good of our nation and our citizens, first and foremost. And, it will be impossible to make any changes until the government proves to the citizens that the border is secure and that real interior enforcement is taking place.

    At least 1 BILLION persons worldwide would come to the USA if they could. We cannot take them all. And there is no reason to favor those who can walk here over others in those we do admit.

  • Most Truthful and Patriotic Layton, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 12:10 p.m.

    May I gently propose the root cause of the divide?

    On one hand, you have the Church (rightfully urging its members to be charitable towards all).

    On the other hand, you have LDS member Glenn Beck ranting against "illegals" and calling them "terrorists" and lawbreakers who are ruining our country.

    The solution is obvious:

    The LDS Church must stand up against the powerful Mr Beck, who many believe is planning a breakaway, even more conservative fundamental sect.

    The danger to your Church, my LDS friends and neighbors, is from wealthy members within.

  • Hawkeye79 Iowa City, IA
    Jan. 2, 2011 12:08 p.m.

    Sadly, there are people who make decisions that cause harm to their families. I am concerned for anyone who knowingly makes a choice that may result in separation from their family. Perhaps those people should consider making different choices.

    The greatest tragedy caused by illegal immigration is the deteriorating conditions abroad. Suffering abroad will only increase as those who want a better life leave their countrymen instead of working to improve conditions.

  • Cris B. Sandy, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 12:07 p.m.

    Obeying the law is good. Breaking the law is bad. Not too complicated

  • Considering Stockton, UT
    Jan. 2, 2011 12:06 p.m.

    Obey the law. If you wish to come to this nation, come in the front door, LEGALLY. Learn our language, assimilate into our culture, obey our laws, and renounce all foreign loyalties.

    And active LDS ought to consider the official counsel of the LDS Church in terms of NOT emigrating to the USA and Utah, but instead improving their lives, communities, and strengthening the church where they live.

    Every person who claims some "moral" or "religious" obligation to ignore immigration laws, or to grant amnesty (by whatever name), or actually open our borders and allow unlimited numbers in, has opened the door for religious/moral arguments to be used in every political debate. If you attempt to beat me with what you think God and/or Jesus requires me to do relative to immigration, then my religious views are perfectly appropriate in the political arena in issues like alcohol, the definition of marriage, what is considered indecent conduct in public, and so on.

    While my moral and religious views inform my political views, I make certain that I argue and can defend my political views from a secular, rational position.