Display depicting gay students is back in the Harris Fine Arts Center
BYU has the right to take down anything they deem to not be in accordance with
BYU rules. Here, they had concerned individuals that thought it best to take it
down. However, they reviewed it and found no offense. This art work could have
been about anything, and BYU has the right. Case closed. The fact that it dealt
with homosexuality just charged the issue to a different degree. Members of the
church as a whole, are uncomfortable with other members saying they are gay.
They liken it with anti-mormonism, excommunication and the such. I think BYU was
brave to allow it back. Make the Mormon community understand that being a gay
member means one thing--lonliness if you don't have the ability to overcome it
to a degree and get married. Admitting you have feelings is not a sin, only not
observing the law of chastity is the sin. I would love homosexuality to be
viewed as just a weakness. Not every SSA individual immediately decides to take
it to a sexual level. I myself deal with the weakness, and am married. Thanks to
BYU for their decision, the artist for the work, and the students for their
I'm suprised at the number of people who don't seem to have actually read the
article and are just jumping to conclusions, attacking the artist and the gay
community. First being openly gay does not mean that someone is sexually
active, just that they are open and honest about their attraction to members of
the same sex. Also, nowhere does the artist say or infer that he is himself
gay, quite the opposite. He states that he has some gay friends, a statement
that to me suggests that he himself is straight. His photographs don't identify
who in the photo is gay and who is the straight supporter, thereby forcing
viewers to test their views and prejudices of stereotypes, and show that there
differences between gay and straight individuals aren't so great.And
for those who say that the artist did not act in good faith by criticizing BYU
on his blog before hearing back; if BYU had acted in good faith and spoken to
him before removing his work, he wouldn't have had anything to criticize, but
they jumped to conclusions and ended up looking stupid.
I am sorry that you, and many others, have been treated this way by people who
claim to "love the sinner." But I think this forum represents some of the most
judgmental members of the LDS church, who might want to read that scripture
about "he who is without sin..." Don't be discouraged - we're not all like that.
In fact, A LOT of us are compassionate and have empathy, though we might not be
able to understand your experience or what it's like to be in your shoes.I find it insulting when someone like Lambert equates it to "we know
persecution" and "we all have struggles." He clearly has no idea - none of us
do, unless we've experienced the same thing. To suggest that we do is
presumptuous and reflects poorly on us.
I am active, married, at BYU, and still gay (same-sex oriented.) I feel like
most of those who have commented either don't know what they are talking about
or are grossly misguided. Both the church's stance and BYU's honor code are
completely in line with this display, as proven by its reinstatement. If you
don't believe me, do a little research into the matter. It is destructive and
inapproriate to equate being gay to pornography addicts and pedophiles. To tell
the mother of a gay son to get over it is very low indeed. To assert that
Witibank has "secret private motives" to promote gay marriage and homosexuality
itself is just plain silly. Such rhetoric is what drives people like me away
from the church when it ought to be welcoming us in. By telling the gay
community at BYU to just shrink away proves that the display is timely and much
needed. I sincerely hope that its message of understanding towards people like
me is not utterly wasted on the BYU student body, because the impression I am
getting by these comments is that it is.
"Miracle of forgiveness doesn't count ;) It's outdated and does not reflect the
current attitude of living apostles."I can't compose a post that
will get past the moderator on this one. My best attempt is this: the verbal
dancing that LDS members do when prior statements were wrong and damaging to
individuals astounds me.
Sorry for a couple of missing words. But I need to point out one last point...
"If you read any article or talk of any church leaders about homosexuality
published within the past decade". That's a very important qualification :D
Miracle of forgiveness doesn't count ;) It's outdated and does not reflect the
current attitude of living apostles.
But some of these comments are so outragious, such as Cats, just name one.
Religion when practiced by fools is nothing but damaging to those around them.
If you had done any research into the topic, you would know that church leaders
do not say that homosexuality is an abomination. It is the action on those
feelings. We cannot be judged on things we do not act upon. You're attitude
towards these people who are attracted to those of the same gender is by far
more grievous. They put there face on the issue to try and make people
understand that they are people, who need love and support and are trying to get
rid of the many many MISCONCEPTIONS reguarding homosexuality that so many flaunt
on this forum. Actions are a choice. What we are tempted by is not. If you read
any articles on homosexuality by church leaders, you would have known this.
Marriage is not a cure, nore should be viewed as such. They are our children,
fathers, mothers, bishops and leaders and live excellent lives, but are torn
down in passing by those who understand nothing of the torment they suffer.
Compassion... did we forget that?
RE: Honor Code Review | 8:59 a.m. Dec. 12, 2008 "I did attend
reparative therapy at BYU, and I attempted suicide because of it. Thank God I
failed."What about all those who tried and failed?And yet this program went on for a couple of decades. Amazing. I actually
know those who have scars from these shocks.
"Just because someone commits suicide while in a program does not mean there is
a cause and effect relationship between the two."What about
more than one? What about more than five?
To the 1:09 commentator, Just because someone commits suicide while in
a program does not mean there is a cause and effect relationship between the
"Electro shock theorapy may or may not have ever been a good idea."The reported suicides that came as a result of this program would seem to
indicate that it may not have been a good idea. What do you think?
"I do not know about the electro-shock aversion therapy.....However, it was
administered by people who believed that the electric shocks would help people
function better, because they felt the problems of these people were caused by
the electric impulses in the body not working."You just keep talking
whether you know anything about a subject or not, Lambert. You state you don't
know about the program used, but somehow you know their motives as well as
stating "they felt the problems were caused by the electric impulses in the
body".The program was "aversion" therapy. Students were shown
slides of men and while seeing the slides, the were given electric shocks. The
idea is to give the student an unpleasant reaction to seeing the slides.You remind me of my Sunday School students. So many are reluctant to
pronounce Old Testament names because they don't know how to correctly pronounce
the names. I tell them pronounce it however you want, just do it loudly and
confidently. Everyone else in the room will be mistakenly impressed because
they will think you know the corrrectpronunciation.You keep
talking loudly and confindently, whether you know what you are talking about or
To Sam, I thought the point of the exhibit was that these people do not
practice a lifestyle but that they have deep seated attractions to the
same-gender that they do not act on. I am beganing to realize more and
more that the biggest problem is that we have never come to a dialogue where we
differencite those who suffer from same-gender attraction and those who act on
it. The main problem is the gay-rights activists who want both groups
conflated into one so they can be the speakers for a larger power bloc.
To the 10:18 commentator, You have made a great progress. I am glad to
hear you are standing in the Lord's kingdom. Remember, we love you. Your
comments have helped me understand that this may well be a good exhibit.
However, I think a lot of people forget the level of hate and intolerance shown
to the ex-gay movement. To often people who are seeking to overcome same-gender
attraction are told by psychologists that they should just give in. While
it is true than you may have to actively struggle with this attraction all your
life, we must remember than God loves us, and at times the power of Jesus can
change our innermost desires. I do not know why some people are allowed
to cast off this attraction and eventually reach the point of marrying in the
temple in this life, and others struggle with same gender attraction all their
life, but I do know that God loveth his children, and if you remain faithful to
your covenants in this life, God will not deney any blessing to you. We
love you 10:18 guy, and I hope there is a way we can help you more.
To the 9:51 commentator, Yes, we only know what it is like to be hated,
made fun of and mocked for a religion we hold dearly. Yet, many of us
know what it is like to have a strugle with something we wish we did not have,
to get made when we wish we could stay calm. Your experience is not as
unique or different as you think it is. Also you may say "I am not a
gay rights activist" but the fact that people constantly tell us that "love the
sinner, condemn the sin" and teaching against homosexual actions is wrong is
distrubing. Also, I advise you to re-consider your decision to identify
as being "gay". Same-gender attraction is not the only hallmark of this
movement. The amount of active homosexuals who have over 500 sexual partners is
sickening. What goes on in Castro is sickening. I would advise embracing
the term of "same-gender attraction" for the very reason that the term gay
carries with it the baggage of a movement that seeks to destroy monogamy as a
social norm and other such things. Your basic attraction is not mutable,
but your identity is.
To the 10:50 commentator, My guess is that someone things Paul's "thorn
in the flesh" was same-gender attraction. However, there is a passage in
one of the epistles where he makes explicit reference to his wife. The term
appears in the KJV as "yoke-fellow" but based on its originally Greek it is
almost certainly a reference to his wife. This will cause people to
comment on his line "It is better to marry than to burn". He is not there
saying that he is unmarried, but he lives as an unmarried man. Like the
apostles early in this dispensation when they went to England, Paul left his
wife behind in one of the Greek cities on most of his missions. Brother Griggs
wrote an article where he explained all this much better than I have here.
My understanding of various rules would tell me that dating, kissing and other
such behaviors by church members with those of the same gender would not allow
them to reamin in good standing with the church. While a non-mmeber student at
BYU engaged in such activity would be allowed to reamin, I think that behaviors
that are meant to lead to activities that are universally an abomination to the
Lord would not be acceptable. I would however like to hear from someone
who has first hand knowledge on this issue, such as someone who has actually
ajudicated such a case at BYU. At least my assumption was that the men
portrayed in the pictures are men who feel same-gender attraction but do not act
on it, which would mean they do not kiss members of the same sex. Well, at
least not in a manner and under the idea of someone they are sexually attracted
to. To me at least the line is an inward one, that only you can know if you
crossed. At least I hope they understand if you don't want to burn you
avoid playing with fire.
No where in the article did I see these people identified as open homosexuals.
They are "self identified homosexuals". There is a difference. However, the
assumptions about the fixedness of sexual orientation implicit in this
description and in the rhetoric of the same-sex marrige movement are disturbing
and untrue. I would also agree that this piece was meant to be
provocative. I think the maker, growing up in an mainly Mormon town like Eagar,
has no clue what effect this issue has on those of us who live outside of the
Mormon Cultural Area. Lastly I think the creator of the display is too
into publicity. He should have not publicized the ups and downs of this case.
He should have kept quiet while the adminstration was sorting it out. Despite
his claims to like BYU, his actions betray a desire to tweak it, which is
clearly not a Zion attitude.
I did not make the comments at 8:38. This again causes me to call for
structured registaration. I do not know about the electro-shock aversion
therapy. However I do know that most of the understanding of electro-shock
therapy is an outgrowth of the lies perpetrated by "One Flew Over The Cuckoos
Nest". Electro shock theorapy may or may not have ever been a good idea.
However, it was administered by people who believed that the electric shocks
would help people function better, because they felt the problems of these
people were caused by the electric impulses in the body not working. It was not
meant to be a form of punishing people but of treating and helping people. It
may have been ill advised and poorly administered, but the intent was to help
those people it was used on, it was not a form of punishment and manipulation as
some have tried to represent it. I thought the assesment of why
homosexuality elicits different reactions that alchoholism was fairly good.
However, the author ignored the fact that we have not spoken enough that
homosexuals always have legally been allowed to marry, and people like Quinn
prove they did.
I think we need to reject the making of sexual orientation an identity. We
need to realize our first and foremost identity is as children of God.
Said Cheryl: "At the very least, BYU should require its gay students to complete
a reparative therapy regimen in order to retain student status."I
did attend reparative therapy at BYU, and I attempted suicide because of it.
Thank God I failed. I know at least 30 people who have been through reparative
therapy. Not a single one of them has been changed from gay to straight.
Reparative therapy not only failed to give me an attraction to women and to
remove same gender attractions, it almost killed me.If voluntary
therapy couldn't change me, how would forcing someone into therapy change their
orientation? You're proposed requirement would become capital punishment for
"Commentor at 9:24am: If you're complaining about how YOUR tithing money is
spent, I don't think you quite understand tithing."Sorry the sarcasm
of my 9:24 post went over your head. (oops, there I go again.)
"At the very least, BYU should require its gay students to complete a reparative
therapy regimen in order to retain student status. "Cherilyn Bacon
EagarWorld Class Education Research Didn't you
read these posts? Didn't you know that this has already been tried? I quote I WAS THERE:"As a student volunteer, I worked in the BYU
Psychology Department/Clinic-sponsored research studies and I can assure you
that these electric-shock therapy experiments to try to cure homosexuality DID
HAPPEN! I was a volunteer helping out with no less than 3 separate studies, each
examining aspects of homosexuality, its origins, and its modifiability. The
results of these studies were communicated to Salt Lake and the Brethren, and it
is because the results indicated that homosexuality may be inborn and is
extremely resistant to the most powerful forms of electro- and chemical-
therapies that the Brethren have taken the official stand they have taken.
Officially, same sex attraction is NOT a sin! Only homosexual behavior is
considered sinful in the Church."
I thought it was a beautiful exhibit. Whether you agree or disagree with the
subjects' lifestyles you cannot help but feel love and charity toward them-
purely because they are people....and so are you. It's a humbling experience to
realize that we are all God's children. Not one of us is regarded as better
than the other no matter how much you light loath someone.
How very depressing to read most of these comments. To the artist! Bravo, you
brilliantly put your finger on the pulse of the most explosive issue at BYU in a
very classy way. To Cats: Lets turn your argument around. Mormons
should be tolerated in the same way you tolerate homosexuals. We don't imprison
them or kill them, we would never do such a thing here in the US. But we should
not tolerate their bigotry or hatred either. Let's vote on a law in america to
classify mormons as a cult rather than a religion, thus preserving the
traditional definition of christianity and saving it from degradation and
destruction. Love the mormon, but hate their religion. How does all
that sound when it is turned back on you?I think it sounds
incredibly small minded and bigoted. To everyone, someone you know
and love is gay. If you don't know anyone... then it is just because they are
too afraid to tell you. Whether it is one in 100, or 1 in ten, each of us has a
family member or a close friend who is gay. That's what this exhibit is about.
It's time for BYU to sit down and review its Honor Code and to define exactly
what sexual behavior is for heterosexual and homosexual students. My
understanding is that the church is benevolent to homosexuals who are not
"practicing."I have several gay friends, due to the nature of my
work in the theatre arts. I treat them all civilly and appreciate their talents
and contributions. But I don't want my tithing to fund, nor my
children to attend, any university that allows homosexuals to advocate for their
lifestyle, as this photo display the student's blog do. Homosexuality is not a civil right. It is a sin. Furthermore, Simon LeVay,
the father of "born that way" research has backed off because of the success of
reorientation and reparative therapy.People are born with genetic
tendencies to many other detrimental behaviors, such as alcoholism. We do not
preach tolerance toward alcoholism. But we do love the alcoholic and desire to
help that person. We rehabilitate alcoholism best through Christ-like 12 step
programs.At the very least, BYU should require its gay students to
complete a reparative therapy regimen in order to retain student status. Cherilyn Bacon EagarWorld Class Education Research
If it is MY tithing money, then I will keep a good grip on it so frauds and
charlatans don't deprive me of it!
Of tempests and teapots...
Commentor at 9:24am: If you're complaining about how YOUR tithing money is
spent, I don't think you quite understand tithing.
"I am sick and tired of people using my tithing money to promote an agenda
that is contrary to the teachings of the church that pays for 66% of his
education."An agenda such as understanding other people? Heaven
forbid charitable donations be used for things such as that.
I don't understand don't want to understand the Bible anymore. The Bible does
talk about tolerance and Love. Never does it say we should tolerate the sin nor
does it say that if we don't toelerate sin that we are unloving. Our Savior
says, and we accept, that we should love everyone, but sin is unacceptable. The
Book of Mormon talks of ALL men (women) being a natural enemy of Christ unless
we yield to the enticings of the Holy Spirit. So if you want to claim
homosexuality as "natural" that is your choice, but it doesn't mean it is not a
sin and therefore must be repented of.
It is like troy was reading my mind.
Why are we so quick to pass judgements? I think the artist was trying to make a
point and he made it. Not all art is easy to swallow, and apparently this topic
is very difficult for many of us.
I too have read most of the comments on this board and I would like to add my
comments. I too struggle with same sex attractions. I was weaker than you and
unfortunately, I gave in many times. I finally went to my Bishop and he was very
helpful to me. With much prayer and determination I have lived the law of
chastity for over two years now. My temptations were strong but have gotten
easier over time for me to handle. I chose to be celibate. I am a bit different
than you in that I have not been made fun of or hated. I do not find fault with
anything anyone has said on here, but just wanted to give my perspective. I
think I do understand you and what you are going through. What helps me is that
I believe I have this issue (challenge) to bear during my mortal life. Many
people I know have spiritual, physical or mental challenges and I admire those
who bear them with dignity and honor. I want to do likewise. I have no interest
in changing the world or the Gospel. Thanks to all who wrote here.
I have read through most of the comments and I would like to say a few things. I
am one of the people pictured in this exhibit. I consider myself gay, but I am
not "openly gay" meaning, acting on my attractions and desires. I guess some
people call it having same-sex or same-gender attractions. I am also a member of
the LDS Church. I participated in this project to break down stereotypes and for
people in the BYU and Mormon community to gain a better understanding of the
subject. Most of you have no idea what it is like to feel hated, to be made fun
of, be alienated, and to feel alone for something that you did not choose and
that has been a part of you your whole life. I am not an evil person and I am
not a gay rights activist. I am just trying to live my life the best way that I
can. I hope that people will look at the exhibit for what it truly is for,
understanding. Look into my eyes and see me for who I am.
Lets put your picture up for public viewing and see if you approve! Say what you
think, but please think before you say it!
To Shame, what evidence do you have that the explanation for the temporary
removal of the exhibit was anything other than the miscommunication stated in
the article? If you have any, then state it. If not, then apologize for your
To Glen,As a student volunteer, I worked in the BYU Psychology
Department/Clinic-sponsored research studies and I can assure you that these
electric-shock therapy experiments to try to cure homosexuality DID HAPPEN! I
was a volunteer helping out with no less than 3 separate studies, each examining
aspects of homosexuality, its origins, and its modifiability. The results of
these studies were communicated to Salt Lake and the Brethren, and it is because
the results indicated that homosexuality may be inborn and is extremely
resistant to the most powerful forms of electro- and chemical- therapies that
the Brethren have taken the official stand they have taken. Officially, same sex
attraction is NOT a sin! Only homosexual behavior is considered sinful in the
Only homophobia and bigotry can possibly explain why BYU took down the exhibit
in the first place. The fact that they corrected their error only shows that
they have a politically savy administration, but it doesn't change the fact that
prejudice, discrimination, and bigotry are fundamental to the mindset of BYU and
LDS leaders!Shame on BYU! Shame on the LDS church!
ok, what's for dinner?!
Tolerance of vice is no virtue.Intolerance thereof is no vice.I am sick and tired of people using my tithing money to promote an agenda that
is contrary to the teachings of the church that pays for 66% of his
education.Either support the churches positions or go to another
I don't like the exhibit at BYU. However, I trust the President of BYU and the
President of the Church to make the right choices for this institution.But I don't like it one bit. Of course, I didn't like scheduling Elon College
for the Men's BBall team either, but that's not my job.So I'm still
a proud Alum, but I don't like even the appearance of promoting that lifestyle
and the potention for destruction to the family it represents.Chris
You can think gays are evil, and the rest of the world can think mormons are
close minded. You can't put judgement on one group and then complain when the
same thing happens to you.
Um, "Cats", some people would disagree with "A few thoughts"'s comments about
promiscuity. Not every one in the world thinks that having more than one sexual
partner in their life is contributing to the end of society. Not everyone has
the same point of view on these "moral" issues. Isn't that half the problem?
BYU classifies homosexuality as evil, but to the person with those feelings it's
natural. People are people are people.
This is a great article. Very insightful. To my thinking this is the first
acknowledgment from the LDS Church that it is not only aware that many of its
BYU students are Gay and but that they [the students] feel comfortable
outing themselves. Talk about progress...now if we can only stop treating them
like 2nd class citzens...
Celibacy works until you meet the love of your life. Then what do you do?
@miss the pointNo, I know why they were removed. I also know that
skill-wise, they are crummy. If this kid tried to put these in his portfolio,
he wouldn't get a job. You know why? Coz they go for "statement!" instead of
craft, and a very narrow statement at that. (Honestly, is that statement that
creative? No one in New York would give a flying rat about it. No, it's only
there to let BYU and LDS people show how close-minded they are. Now that's
open-minded!) As far as the review board goes, you must mean the
"You gotta do a show or you won't get your BFA degree" review board. Yea I know
that board. I graduated with a degree in BFA at BYU so I should.
How can having a mind that doesn't agree with your thoughts be 'closed minded'?
I'm so tired of the gays trying to cram their lifestyle down our throats so we
will accept their evil ways. Believe how you want and allow others to believe
how we want. That's freedom and free agency. I am tired of gsys telling me to
'love' them. Yes, I can love them. But, I don't have to accept, nor embrace
Simple fact: This is a boring idea. A bunch of face photos of people with no
expression. This is a classic case of hanging nothing and calling it "Art."
Are you proud of yourself, Michael??
Electro-shock aversion therapy?!That's shocking- SHOCKING!
TO: a few thoughts: That was REALLY off point. Talk about setting up a straw
man. Are you trying to distract attention from the real issue here? No one
would disagree with your comments about promiscuity. That's a completely
seperate issue from homosexuality.
these comments are pure absurdity... do any of you realize what you are saying?
You have every right to vote the way you see fit. Nobody is forcing you to
abandon your beliefs, however misguided they may be. And, we have every right
to view you as misguided and bigoted, just was we view those who supported
slavery and segregation as bigoted as well. The these were both once majority
views, similar to this issue.What I don't get is how you can argue
that you "love" the gay person and then turn around and vote to take away their
right to marry, a right that had been granted by a Republican majority court.
That, sir, is not love at all. Intolerance, fear, and homophobia.
Cats: "What we won't do is accept homosexual behavior as normal, natural or
morally equal to heterosexual behavior. When gays say they want tolerance, what
they really want is for everyone else to embrace and accept their lifestyle as
normal and moral."Would that "normal heterosexual behaivor" include
promiscuity? Promiscuity is really the issue which has degraded our society.
Promiscuity results in out-of-wedlock pregnancies, higher rates of abortion,
STDs, AIDs etc. The church approves of "civil unions." So what we are arguing
about here is the term we use? Why don't we work on the main issue
instead of focusing our attention on an easily targeted group of people?
Especially when the history of our church included a practice viewed abhorently
and depraved by the outside world...............
So why is it so many BYU students can't accept homosexuals, when they are
sodomites? They walk around with a giant stick up their...I can't say because
I'll be edited..but you know what I mean. Anyone outside of LDS org, and an
admirable few inside, can see that BYU is close minded and deserves any critism
it gets on this. Gays are people too, children of God, you claim to love them
(just not the sin)...but then you can't support and love them, or show pictures
of them! No no no. It's better to keep a faceless enemy you can despise, in
the name of righteousness.
To John Pack Lambert: You wrote: "What are you talking about?! BYU never
used shock aversion therapy. Check your facts before you post." May I
suggest you go to the BYU library and ask for the PhD dissertation, "Effect of
Visual Stimuli in Electric Aversion Therapy," by Max Ford McBride, 1976. It
reports on what happened at BYU. It will clear up your questions. Unless, of
course, it has been "temporarily removed from circulation."
I would have liked to have seen a picture of an alcoholic, a student in a
wheelchair, someone struggling with pornography, an older single person, a
person addicted to anti-depressants, and a gay person all in the same picture,
arms wrapped around each other. (Labeled of course). To me, that message would
portrait an understanding of the trails people go through. To see just gay
people sends an awkward message to an awkward audience that doesn't quite know
how to deal with this issue.
Mormon Scholar | 11:36 a.m. wrote:"Nothing about Paul was moderate.
He was tightly drawn, passionately emotional, filled with enormous feelings of
self-negativity, seeking to deal with those feelings in the timehonored way of
external controls, unflagging religious zeal, and rigid discipline. He could
not, however, master the passions that consumed him. What were these
passions? There is no doubt in my mind that they were sexual in nature, but what
kind of sexual passions were they? Searching once again through the writings of
Paul, some conclusions begin to emerge that startle and surprise the reader.
Paul's passions seemed to be incapable of being relieved. Why was that? Paul
himself had written that if one "could not exercise self-control" that person
should marry. "For it is better to marry than to be aflame with passion" (1 Cor.
7:9). But we have no evidence from any source that Paul ever married. Indeed, he
exhorts widows and the unmarried to "remain single as I do" (1 Cor. 7:8). Also, Paul has been perceived as basically negative toward women. He did
write that "it is well for a man not to touch a woman" (1 Cor. 7:1)."Sounds gay to me.
TO: TO Cats: I am quoting scholars from the Neil A. Maxwell Institute. These
scholars maintain that he had to be a member of the Sanhedrin and, as such, was
persecuting Christians. Jewish men were expected to marry at about the age of
twenty. It would be extremely unusual for one not to be married after that age.
In order to reach a position as eminent as being a member of the Sanhedrin, one
had to be married. That is what those scholars maintain. I refer you to them.
I support the human race. Homosexual activity does not support it because they
cannot reproduce. It would seem homosexual activity along with pornography,
pedophiles, and whatever other attraction people act upon is because of selfish
desires. Everyone needs to get over themselves and see the bigger picture.
P.S. All people regardless of gender attraction still have the right to get
married. They can ALL marry those of the opposite sex. No rights have been
"I was advancing in Judaism beyond many Jews of my own age and was extremely
zealous for the traditions of my fathers" (Galatians 1:14). However, Paul might not have advanced far enough to be a member of the
Sanhedrin before He converted to Christ. How do you know that he
became a member of the Sanhedrin?
To Gandolf: I have not seen one blog here that has exhibited ANY hate
whatsoever. That is so typical of the gay movement to use the word HATE every
time someone disagrees with them. This sort of intimidation will not work.And to the blogger who said the Church won't adress same gender
attraction or "gayness," that is absurd. The Church has completely addressed
this issue. They have made their position clear. Case closed.
Why are people denying that BYU tried to "fix" homosexuals by applying shock
aversion treatment? This was very common in the 1960s-1980s, and even as
recently as 1995. Just do a simple Google search for "BYU shock treatment".
To: TO Cats: Those quotes are from the scriptures. If you disagree with them,
your arguments is not with me, it is with GOD. I don't speak for GOD, I am only
quoting the scriptures. And, I reiterate, there is NO scientific
study that concludes that anyone is born gay no matter how much gays or others
try to say there is. One study, conducted in Holland, (the most gay affirming
country on earth) conluded that there may be a genetic component to it. If so,
it is only one of several factors, ONE OF WHICH IS CHOICE. That was the
conclusion of the study.To Those who struggle with this problem and
have chosen to life a chaste life, I really admire and support you. YOU WILL BE
BLESSED FOR YOUR FAITHFULNESS.
To: Sneaky Jimmy: There is aboslutely NO evidence that the Apostle Paul had
same gender attraction. In fact, he was a member of the Sanhedrin. In order to
be a member of the Sanhedrin, one HAD TO BE MARRIED. So you see, your comments
But is it art? Seems like a display of this kind would be better suited to a
social science setting.
To Jeff: I don't recall saying what gender I am. Interesting that you just
assume that I am a woman. HHHMMMM.You are making my point. There
are many countries who do NOT tolerate homosexual behavior. We are NOT one of
those countries and LDS people are not one of those religions. We DO tolerate
gays. That's why we would ALWAYS oppose any of those laws or practices.What we won't do is accept homosexual behavior as normal, natural or
morally equal to heterosexual behavior. When gays say they want tolerance, what
they really want is for everyone else to embrace and accept their lifestyle as
normal and moral. That is what we will not do. That is a completely seperate
issue from tolerance.
To Sneak Jimmy,Nothing about Paul was moderate. He was tightly
drawn, passionately emotional, filled with enormous feelings of self-negativity,
seeking to deal with those feelings in the timehonored way of external controls,
unflagging religious zeal, and rigid discipline. He could not, however, master
the passions that consumed him. What were these passions? There is
no doubt in my mind that they were sexual in nature, but what kind of sexual
passions were they? Searching once again through the writings of Paul, some
conclusions begin to emerge that startle and surprise the reader. Paul's
passions seemed to be incapable of being relieved. Why was that? Paul himself
had written that if one "could not exercise self-control" that person should
marry. "For it is better to marry than to be aflame with passion" (1 Cor. 7:9).
But we have no evidence from any source that Paul ever married. Indeed, he
exhorts widows and the unmarried to "remain single as I do" (1 Cor. 7:8). Also, Paul has been perceived as basically negative toward women. He did
write that "it is well for a man not to touch a woman" (1 Cor. 7:1).
Fellow members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,It
is embarassing to read some of these posts. Beliefs can be upheld and positions
stated without finger-pointing, inflammatory language, and spiteful
argumentative words.It has been my experience that if you really
want to cement someone's idea about something or someone (Us for instance), the
best way to do it is to attack them and their ideas. BYU is not
about to change its position nor its honor code.Verbal attacks only
fuel the fire of those who are attacking the Church.
How do know what Michael "wanted"? We as human beings tend to see the world as
we see ourselves. Unless you know Michael personally and he told you that he
wanted this kind of attention, or that somehow you are mysteriously able to
"know" the real intents of his heart, you're making a VERY HUGE assumption about
his character.The words you posted on his blog are very manipulative.
I dont really think gay people are special to do all these kind of stuff so
they can feel better, everyone of us take day to day decisions, and for those
decisions we must be enough mature and responsible to live for.If you are
trying to change GOD's law for those decisions, and Im not talking if you are
gay or not, there is many issues today to discuss. You cannot change GOD's law,
He was, is and will be the same forever.About these pics @ BYU, I
think we can spend that money in pics about saving lives from genocide or
finding the cure for AIDS.
I know blind obedience is a slippery slope. But I think you understood me
wrong: some people posting here are appalled the BYU administration allowed the
display, but I'm saying that I trust their judgment to replace it.It
seems like the "blind obedience" argument would be used if they had taken the
display down and then I completely backed them on it on the basis that they're
leaders.Lose your self-righteous attitude.
I am sincerely intrigued by one of your comments. Where is there a reference in
the bible to the apostle Paul's possible same-gender attraction? This is not a
rhetorical comment of any kind, just a question. Thanks for your post.
I think that there is a natural knee jerk reaction when you work for a church
owned institution that is likely normal for any such environment. Better to err
on the side of "looking righteous" than to err on the side of possibly promoting
a behavior discouraged by the institution. Would he lose his job if he pulled
the photos's? Probably not. Could he lose his job if he didn't pull the
photos? Probably yes if the administration viewed the display of the photos to
be against the mission of the school. This is just a case of covering
your butt to keep your job. However, I would not be surprised if this went all
the way up the hierarchy of the church and a decision was actually made at the
top or very near to the top.Prop 8 only adds to the temperature of this
issue.we love gay people. They are our brothers and sisters. They are
children of God.
Michael wanted attention, and he got attention. Only time will tell if he got
the kind of attention he was seeking. I will say that he showed an amazing
display of tolerance when he posted my unfavorable comment on his blog, an
attribute that many of his supporters lack, as they attacked me personally for
my opposing viewpoint. Tolerance is a two way street, and the sooner
we all understand the right to dissent exists for us all, the sooner we will
move forward. While I understand the challenges that being gay in an intolerant
society can present, my advice is simple. Practice what you preach, and show
equal tolerance for even those that may oppose you. Lead by
example,and take the higher road. The one who talks loudest, rarely if ever wins
the argument, and often the one who whispers is heard the best.
Why should they hang pictures of gays who live the honor code? What about
people who are attracted to married people at BYU but who live the Honor Code?
What about recovering alcoholics at BYU? What about students who lust after the
opposite sex but live the Honor Code? What about anyone who has an inclination
to disobey the Honor Code, but lives it anyway? I can't understand why gays get
all the attention.
Will Mormon culture ever be released from the grasp of ignorance regarding
homosexuals?Some people here get it, but many do not and much of
what has been said is extremely disheartening for me, as a Latter-day Saint, to
read. This discussion has completely overlooked the true intent of Michael
Wilbank's display.What has happened to love? What has happened to
compassion? What has happened to understanding? What happened to remembering
that we are all brothers and sisters? Mormon culture sometimes forgets. And it
is the "forgetting" of these quality's that will help lead to society's
fall--not the mere existence of homosexuals.Thank-you BYU for doing
the right thing and allowing the project back up :)
Penny must mistakenly think BYU removed the pictures because "they are not that
good . . ." I'm pretty sure the quality or lack of quality wasn't the problem.
Good on BYU for backing off their communication problems and replacing the
exhibit. Presumably they had review the photos before approving the display, it
is sad to see small minds at work.
"Right is right and wrong is wrong."Radicals from any religion have
long justified hate and murder as "right."Instead of issuance of a
definition of what "right" is, it seems to me that we would all be better off
doing good instead of needing to be "right."I don't think anyone can
argue what is good and what is bad. So, I for one, will try to do good, and
ignore definitions of "right" and "wrong."Perhaps there is something
peaceful in doing good. If that's the case, I'm walking that way.
The point of is article and photo essay is to point out the intolerence that
exist in Utah and at BYU. Intolerance has always existed at BYU, rather it be
with non-LDS, non-white, non-conformist. It's OK to teach that homosexual
activities are not acceptable with god, but taking away their rights is another
issue all together.Homosexuals have always existed in mass numbers but
during some times they were driven underground due to intolerance. I know there
are lots of gays that exist within the church but are driven underground because
of the hate that is present amongest most members. Example- this blog.
Hugh Nibley's daughter, Martha Beck accused him of molesting her, which all her
siblings vehemently denied. Many gays feel they were born gay, are
not aware of having made a choice to be gay. There are many who talk about
feeling gay at a very early age--7 years old for example. Additionally, there
are many gays who have spent their entire lives trying to deny their gayness,
trying to avoid feeling gay, praying and fasting mightily to be cured of
gayness, yet not being able to escape. We have a long way to go in this church
in our level of knowledge and understanding about what it is like to be gay.
As an active LDS person who lives with same gender attraction, recently attended
BYU, and chooses to live a chaste life, I can tell you that homosexual
attractions are not a choice. I don't know whether the source of such
attractions are biological or environmental, and I honestly don't really care (I
happen to believe it is a little bit of both). I strongly believe that what the
Church teaches about homosexuality is 100% correct; the problem is that most
people have no clue what the LDS church actually teaches about homosexuality (at
least they don't act like they believe it). Go and read what President Hinckley
has said on the matter; read the interview given by Elder Oaks and Elder
Wickman. On the churches newsroom site, there are several videos and articles
explaining their position. I am not suggesting that homosexual attraction is
something that should be celebrated and broadcast to the world, but if this art
display can cause people (lds or not) to really find out what the church's
position on homosexuality is and to be a little more tolerant themselves, then
it will be a huge success.
peace is a good thing
I agree, BYU is splitting hairs here. This is an area where hairs need to be
split. So many people attach to their intolerance of homosexual behavior (which
I share) an intolerance to anyone with homosexual attractions. If this project
can send the message to people that you can struggle with same gender attraction
and still be acceptable at BYU and still be "worthy" in the eyes of God,
fantastic!!! Same Gender Attraction is not a sin!! I understand that
people might be uncomfortable discussing the issue and that it is not necessary
for people to where their sexuality on their sleeve; but, I don't see this
display as an advocacy for homosexual behavior. It is a recognition that there
is an entire class of people at BYU (and in the LDS church) that struggle with
major trials in their lives. Despite these trials, they chose to live a chaste
life. If that is not the best message that can be sent to those who advocate
gay marriage and homosexual lifestyles, I don't know what is!
Have you seen the photos? They are not that good...
I applaud BYU's decision to put the display back up. There is a
huuuuuuuuuuuuuge difference between homosexual attraction and homosexual
behavior/activity. As the article says, those who are experience homosexual
attractions are more than welcome at BYU; only when those attractions end up in
behavior do these people violate the Honor Code. Also, there is nothing sinful
at all about being attracted to someone of the same gender. I understand
completely those who would argue that putting someone's struggles and
temptations on display is something that is unnecessary, but art is never about
what is or is not necessary. It is often about a message. Any piece of art
that helps those with same gender attraction know that they are accepted at BYU
and that helps people understand that it is alright to be attracted to members
of the same gender, but not to act on those attractions is praiseworthy in my
eyes. Here's to hoping there are future opportunities for BYU to stand up for
its true viewpoints again in the future.
Wow. As I've been reading these comments, most of them just sound so hateful,
mean-spirited, and contentious. Is this how Mormons talk? If so then I suddenly
feel less sorry about all the recent attacks on your church- you guys are no
better than the people making the attacks. You get what you give.
"God has stated that homosexuality is an abomination and GOD WILL NOT BE
MOCKED!"And neither will you, obviously!I think
God can take care of himself. You do not need to speak for him or do the
judging for him. That is his job.
"Why the church is has [sic] to continually answer this question is
beyond me."The reason why the church is, and will continue to be,
harangued about homosexuality is due to their refusal to address it.LDS doctrine requires Temple matrimonial ordinances in order to ascend to the
highest level of Celestial life. Since gays cannot marry each other, they must
either forfeit their eternal reward, or conceal their proclivities and feign
affections for their partner. This certainly would not be fair to the hetero
spouse; this marriage would most likely be doomed.Homosexuality is
NOT a choice. The "choice" is whether or not to ACT on those innervations.
Gays can be no more impressionable to alter their innate orientations than we.
I am a hetero male, but I never chose to be hetero, nor did I choose to be male.
It just worked out that way for me.Since LDS church Presidents and
General Authorities are so divinely inspired, it stands to reason that something
that could bar one of God's children from achieving such Celestial happiness and
everlasting joy would be something of a concern to them. Why, after 178 yrs,
has the church not addressed it?
Are you guys serious? Shock therapy?! Did BYU really give gay students shock
therapy in an attempt to cure them?What is the source for this
It seems that few get the point of the exhibit. We have met the enemy and he is
us. Same gender attraction is a normal part of the "Mormon Lifestyle". THEY are
among us, our sons, daughters, brothers, sisters, fathers, mothers. Until we
accept the fact that someone like the apostle Paul could have a same gender
attraction and still be a man of God we will make no headway.
in this article is "change". Tolerance?.....Yes....Support?......Yes.....But
the word change ought to be deleted because BYU won't change as expected....
Cats: Some of your remarks can't go unanswered. I'm sure that as a woman you do
things every day that would get you stoned to death in many countries.You imply that the opposite of tolerance is execution or imprisonment. What an
attitude! Also the bible says lots of things that rational people don't believe
or act on. I think America is the wrong place for you. You belong in Saudi
re: Trust the BYU leadership | 8:46 a.m. Dec. 10, 2008 Blind trust
is a slippery slope.re: TNHick | 8:17 a.m. Dec. 10, 2008 I agree its perpetuating a societal division re: what the? | 8:24
a.m. Dec. 10, 2008 There is an incredible amount its all about be &
having look at me moments 24/7 so people wanting to air their dirty laundry s/b
I would be terrfied to advertise my gayness at that school!
re: So | 5:24 a.m. Dec. 10, 2008 >>So, if one proclaims to be gay
yet he refrains from the act is he still gay?>If you were a straight student at
BYU, or just following the church's admonition not to have sex before marriage,
does that make you asexual rather than heterosexual?>You don't have to be
actively having sex to be gay.
Thanks I.D. 8:52. I was not sure. I imiagine that the students pictured in the
display are those with same-sex attraction who have chosen to follow the honor
code. They have proven that we can all choose our actions, in spite of our
attractions and propensities. The display can be taken as a pro-responsible
choices in spite of adversities declaration. Am I correct?
"What are you talking about?! BYU never used shock aversion therapy. Check your
facts before you post." I don't think BYU has ever denied
using shock therapy and I have heard too many first hand stories from gays who
were subjects to question it. What makes you think they did not try
this? It makes sense. If, in the 1970's, the church believed it was a learned
response, it could be unlearned. Thus, reparative, shock therapy. They do not
do it any longer as it did not work.
I'm not so sure Hugh Nibley would have been tolerant of the gay display at BYU.
His lesbian daughter nearly broke his heart with her pro-gay, anti-Church
I applaud the reposting of this exhibit and the BYU administration. Just because
we LDS have some controversial moral stances doesn't mean we can't be accepting
and examine ourselves and our reactions. Gay members of the church are a fact of
life - we should not shy away from it nor should we shun them or condemn. I lost
a lot of faith in BYU, not the church mind you, when I was there but this
restores much of my good will towards the school. Brave steps and big hearts for
To: To Missing the Point: Gays amount to about 1% of the population--not 10%.
Also, there is no study ever conducted that has come to the conclusion that
anyone is born gay. There was a study conducted in Holland that concluded that
genetics may play a roll, but it is only one of a number of factors, one of
which is CHOICE. This is the study that most gays point to in order to claim
that gays are born that way.To the mother of a gay son--I feel
really sorry for you, but there is NO study that supports the position that
ANYONE is born gay. I hope your son can get some help.And we do
tolerate gays. If we didn't they would be in prison or executed. That's what
they do in some countries. We don't do that and would never tolerate any such
practice. So you see, we are very tolerant. What gays want is not tolerance
but total acceptance. They want the rest of us to tell them their behavior is
natural, normal and morally equal to heterosexual behavior. God has stated that
homosexuality is an abomination and GOD WILL NOT BE MOCKED!
Gay vs. Honor Code, no that is not correct. Two gay people holding hands is a
violation of the honor code which forbids any homosexual behavior or advocacy of
homosexual behavior whether it is sexual behavior or not.
to 8:43. You make me wonder if the honor code extends to all kinds of
unbecoming activities, like students hanging out in bars (not drinking of
course), going to 'R' rated movies, looking at pornography, gambling,
participating in pro-gay events, etc. are against the honor code. Is dating and
kissing members affectionately of the same sex unbecoming? How restrictive is
the honor code?
Hugh Nibley was also bothered by what he saw as the unthinking, sometimes almost
dogmatic application of some portions of BYU's honor code. Hugh
Nibley said, "The worst sinners, according to Jesus, are not the harlots and
publicans, but the religious leaders with their insistence on proper dress and
grooming, their careful observance of all the rules, their precious concern for
status symbols, their strict legality, their pious patriotism... the haircut
becomes the test of virtue in a world where Satan deceives and rules by
appearances."I don't think he would have been too pleased with this
decision to pull the photo exhibit either.
To Otis and John P. Lambert,Aversion Therapy is no longer practiced
by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. The practice of electroshock
therapy at BYU ended in the 1970s. Aversion therapy had to be abandoned by BYU
because electroshock aversion therapy failed to cure homosexuality.End of story. Now you guys can go back to whatever you were doing and let us
continue this discussion.
If you don't want to see it, don't go.I have enough faith in the
leaders at BYU to know they're not "sliding down the slippery slope." They're
the leaders...I trust their judgment call. I might not have done the same thing
if I were in their position, but I'm NOT in their position, am I?
I think that the BYU students who are gay must be free to date, kiss, and show
other affection in their same-sex relationships, but are not allowed to have
sexual relations outside of marriage. That is what is a violation of the honor
code. Do I understand this correctly?
I love the Honor Code. BYU is a tremendous institution in part because of it.
But I am sometimes disappointed in the administrators that apply it. This might
well be one of those instances.
Otis Spurlock wrote:"BYU has come a long way from the old days of
electro-shock aversion therapy. I applaud BYU allowing this photo
exhibition at their campus. In 1985 when I was a BYU student, I can tell you
that this would not have been allowed."What are you talking about?!
BYU never used shock aversion therapy. Check your facts before you post.
Otis Spurlock | 8:21 a.m. Dec. 10, 2008 wrote:"BYU has come a long
way from the old days of electro-shock aversion therapy. I applaud
BYU allowing this photo exhibition at their campus. In 1985 when I was a BYU
student, I can tell you that this would not have been allowed."Why
is this a good thing, Otis?
I liked the display. It shows that our perceptions or assumptions may not be
true. You know someone who is gay but may not know it. Would knowing change
how you feel about that person? Should it?Being gay doesn't mean
you act on the attraction any more than being heterosexual means you act on the
attraction. If heterosexuals can comply with the honor code why would you
expect less from someone who is gay?
I agree with you wholeheartedly, Tolerance. And Otis, get over yourself and
>>Why is it that the gay community cannot accept my belief?>>Why
should the have to accept YOUR belief? >>Why is it that they cannot
accept my vote by my conscience? >>Because you're wrong? If you "believed" the earth was flat, should I be required to uphold your
fantasy? What so many of the posters in here, and in LDS
strangleholds don't understand is that gay men and women are up to 10% of our
population. Homosexual behavior, despite biological directives, exist everywhere
in all species. God made us all. What can you not understand about
that??No one is required to acquiesce to your misguided fantasies or
"beliefs." Feel free to not accept or tolerate gays. But don't
expect people to pat you on the back and cater to you for, basically, being
I'm a BYU grad and I think BYU is splitting major hairs here. It's one thing to
display photos of people who just happen to be gay as part of some neutral theme
and quite another to display photos of gay people when homosexuality itself IS
the theme. At BYU? Come on! As far as I'm concerned that is promotion of
homosexuality and is an inappropriate display to have at a university owned by a
religious institution that unapologetically disavows homosexuality. LDS people
are all taught the 'love the sinner, hate the sin' principle, so we don't need
to be schooled in "tolerance" (in the true meaning of that word--not the current
skewed meaning, which seems to include not only tolerating, but accepting and
even embracing beliefs you don't share). The display is promotion and it should
be taken down, permanently. It's a really sad day when you can't even escape
having the militant homosexual agenda rammed down your throat at BYU. Sorry
BYU, you got this one dead wrong.
And we wonder why people think we are judgmental and petty. Let's take his
exhibit at face value and appreciate that people with different life
circumstances are still people who deserve to be loved.
Why don't the next project be photos of people who are attracted to porn and the
people who support them? Why not? Seems like the logical next step dontcha
think? Let's put up pics of everyone and their dirty laundry!!!
BYU has come a long way from the old days of electro-shock aversion therapy.
I applaud BYU allowing this photo exhibition at their campus. In
1985 when I was a BYU student, I can tell you that this would not have been
From the article: "The artist's statement said labels create societal
divisions"I realize I'm just a dumb'ol country boy, but isn't a
display of gay photos, or however you want to label it, perpetuating a societal
if a photo-essay about a person who struggles with alcohol attraction /
addiction, and the family that supports them, would elicit the same uproar?
That question is rhetorical. Of course it wouldn't. We would focus on the
compassion of the family and have compassion for the struggles of the
alcoholic.However, the homosexual community has, for the most part,
successfully altered the dialogue such that homosexuality is spoken of as just
another natural division of the human genome; White - Black, Tall - Short, Male
- Female, Heterosexual - homosexual. To them, it's a natural division that
should be given equal rights. That fundamental change in the way
society speaks of homosexuality alters this discussion. We view alcoholicism as
a condition which includes personal choice (even though many struggle with a
strong attraction to alcohol). Unless we correct the dialogue where homosexual
behavior is a lifestyle choice in response to an attraction, we'll continually
face this angst.Lastly, it seems to me that previous discussions
regarding those who choose to be gay included the notion that 'openly gay' was
equated to practicing the gay lifestyle which includes homosexual behavior that
would violate the honor code. What am I missing?
I have not heard the gay community go after the mormons for their beliefs in
god, jesus, or spirituality. The problem is the LDS leadership and members have
targeted the gay community mercilessly at the legislature, media, calling on
members to finance hateful pieces of legislation. If you had not stuck your
necks into this as an organization, this would not be happening. Yes, tolerance
goes two ways, reach out to the gay communities and help them to gain equal
rights. That is all they are asking for, dialog and support.
@So and @Gary,If you were a straight student at BYU, or just
following the church's admonition not to have sex before marriage, does that
make you asexual rather than heterosexual? You don't have to be actively having
sex to be gay.
Just as I would not view pronography, I will not view the "message photos", vote
with your attendance. I will not be attending any other fine arts events for
the next few months, voting with $ is my way of making another statment about
What next? Maybe we could photograph pedophiles and the kids they are attracted
to. Of course the photographer would not be promoting deviance would he? Wake up
people or slide down the slippery slope! Any promotion of homosexuality is
wrong. Get the photos out of BYU and make a statement. I'm tired of having to
What does a group of pictures have to do with homosexuality? These were not,
and are not pictures of a sexual act decipting homosexual behaviors - they are
of PEOPLE. What is so hard, or so threating to members of the church to have to
look at the person, not the sin? I am a fourth generation member, I am active,
and could hold a temple recommend if I chose, but I am first a mother of a gay
son who I adore - and never see his gayness when I look at him. He is 20 years
old and is proud to admit that he is not sexually active, not has never been -
how many straight kids in the church can honestly state that? It is a world of
small minds that assumes that gender preference infers sexual deviance and
immoral behavior - I think this artists display was lost on most of you. When
will we all recognize that life is not all about YOU!
Seems to me that "Missing the Point" misses the point. MtP says, "The LDS Church
does not condone homosexuality." Homosexuality is the state of being burdened
with homosexual attraction. My understanding is that the LDS Church does not
condone homosexual relations, but neither condones nor forbids someone being
born with homosexual attraction. The state of being born with homosexual
attraction is not a sin. The Church condones righteous behavior or forbids
sinful behavior. It does not condone or forbid states of being. Does the Church
condone or forbid children born with too many or too few fingers or toes? With
IQ's of 85 vs. 145?
What objective do gay individuals have in openly declaring that they are gay? If
I was gay, I don't think I would be announcing it to the world. I would quietly
strive to change, because I know that I want to become like my Savior. If I had
a problem with pornography, should I try to defend my "orientation," or should I
quietly meet with my bishop, and possibly counsel with loved ones, and strive to
change and become virtuous in my heart?
I think Milbank was trying to create controversy when he put up the display.
This is a particularly sensitive subject at this time and he just enflamed the
situation even more by creating the display. It was really bad form.Under the circumstances, the School did the right thing by allowing the
display and it will be nice if the whole thing just dies a natural death. But,
it will probably be picked up nationally and cause even more controversy for the
Church. Again, bad form on the part of Mr. Milbank.Neither the
Church nor the School will not be intimidated into changing a policy that is
based on right and truth. These principles are eternal and no amount of
pressure is going to change that. God is the same yesterday, today and forever.
Wiltbank here seems to be walking a fine line. On one hand, his exhibit
apparently doesn't violate the BYU Honor Code, since it doesn't engage in(!) or
actively promote homosexual conduct. It's just photos of BYU students who claim
to "be" gay. On the other hand, what is Wiltbank's intent here? Is
it to put a face with a condition, like an exhibit of cancer sufferers? Or is
it to very subtly promote gay marriage or homosexuality itself as normal and
harmless? If so, he's smart to leave that unsaid. And the lack of a clear,
non-fluff statement on his intent leaves me suspecting that promoting gay
marriage or homosexuality itself is his private desire and intent.
I agree with Missing the Point's comments. Tolerance is a two way road. More
and more people are realizing how hateful, bigoted, and intolerant the gay
movement is. I accept everybody as equals, but I do not accept certain behavior.
Many have missed the special thing about this display. They put it up November
31. As Paul Harvey would say, "Now that is news."
Does Wiltbank want the church to petition God to change eternal marriage to
include gay partnerships in the celestial kingdom? Hmmm. I wonder how that
dialogue will evolve. We'll have to change the words in the hymn, "Oh My
Father". I was taught all my young life by my parents that I would live to see
the day when every worthy male could hold the priesthood, and our family
celebrated that revelation. But I was never taught that one day I would see
temple sealings of anyone to anyone and that same-sex marriages are an eternal
I believe that BYU did the right thing to correct the misunderstanding by
re-displaying the exhibit, since it does not violate the honor code which Mr
Wiltbank signed. The fact that the school did this, in spite of a clear policy
against homosexual conduct, should be applauded.I am disappointed with Mr
Wiltbanks actions on this matter.As quoted,Wiltbank said he spoke
with college leadership on Monday. Later that day, bloggers around the country
began to criticize BYU and its owner, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day
Saints.Mr Wiltbank did the right thing to discuss it with BYU, and BYU did
the right thing to redisplay the work.However, for Mr Wiltbank to
prematurely criticize BYU in his blog, before a decision was made, is
detestable. His actions unleashed criticism and propagated misunderstanding
throughout the country before BYU even had a chance to act in good faith. Mr Wiltbanks premise of showing tolerance on both sides of the issue appears
now to be an attempt to show tolerance on only one side of the issue. His
actions have directly lead to further intolerance toward the LDS church and BYU.
While I have compassion for those who may suffer from same sex attraction I do
not understand why BYU feels it needs to show an exhibit of openly gay students.
In my mind to be openly gay means you not only have same sex attraction feelings
but you act on those and have inappropriate same sex relationships. Why don't
we have an exhibit of students who struggle with any other inappropriate
behavior? The voice of the gay community is so loud and so constant it is
beginning to wear us all down. I believe that to be the goal of the gay
community. Wear us all down so we will finally admit that same sex attraction is
normal and they can practice their craft with impunity from Church and state.
Well, in my mind it is not normal, and never will be. Should we have tolerance
and love for those who may struggle with this, absolutely. Should we view it as
normal and good, absolutely not.
The end result of this issue at BYU is an example of "patience is a virtue".
That is why pentagenarians and above are called to lead at BYU. That sometimes
patience and wisdom are required to make the correct decision.I
applaud the artist for his talents and willingness to develop them at BYU.In
addition I hope that he will develop the wisdom to use his talent to reflect the
good in society and not the bad.(Please, no hidden meaning.) The
Administration at BYU showed exemplary leadership with their judgement and
decision. May Mr. Wiltbank strive to do the same in his quest.Regards,drw
What don't BYU students understand about the church's policy. The LDS church
does not condone homosexuality. Does the church love gay people? Yes. Loving
someone and accepting the lifestyle they choose are two completely different
things. Why the church is has to continually answer this question is beyond me.
People just don't seem to get it. I have two great friends, not my best friends
but good friends. They are gay. Do I think less of them, NO! Do I still love
them as friends? Absolutely! However, I DO NOT accept homosexuality as a
righteous practice, nor should I be forced to do so.Why is it that
the gay community cannot accept my belief? Why is it that they cannot accept my
vote by my conscience? It appears that in today's society I am being strong
armed into accepting a practice that I STILL think is wrong.Does my
morality have a place in society? I guess whichever way you look at it someone
will not be happy but quit asking me to defy what I believe to be correct.
The word tolerance was used twice here in the story and the words words hate and
bigot were also used. Just because I don't tolerate certain lifestyles doesn't
mean that I hate or am a bigot. Right is right and wrong is wrong. Those who
accuse the L.D.S. community of intolerance ,are themselves hateful, and bigoted,
and intolerant of my beliefs. Pictures are pictures, big deal.
So, if one proclaims to be gay yet he refrains from the act is he still gay?
Nice story. I understand some things are different at BYU, but I thought they
used the same calendar everyone else does.
This article should prove to be a real "lightning rod" to attract Forum posters
of all shades of opinion. One can hope that none of the comments will be
"abusive, offensive, off-topic," or "misrepresentative".
Nothing to see here. Move along folks.