What does the Mormon 'temperature' reading mean in new Pew survey?

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  • USAlover Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 29, 2014 11:08 a.m.

    This kind of story is the adult equivalent of teenage angst over how many "likes" you have on Instagram/Facebook et al.

  • kolob1 sandy, UT
    Oct. 28, 2014 4:41 p.m.

    That Mormons think more of themselves than other religious or ethnic groups do is not surprising. This type of thinking is inherent in an " one and only" doctrine. It is also the main reason why early Mormons were run out of many communities.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    Oct. 27, 2014 9:11 p.m.

    What it means to me is that people worry about the 'brand' way more than they do about the stuff they should be concerned with.

  • abtrumpet Provo, UT
    Oct. 25, 2014 10:29 p.m.

    @Kings Court

    That's not true. They have the same view of them, although they see some of Utahn's practices/customs as bizarre.

  • Dr. Thom Long Beach, CA
    Oct. 1, 2014 8:11 p.m.

    Our family is historically Democratic (ever since FDR) and I am the first person to vote Republican, which does make for some fun and interesting holiday dinners at mom and dads. wWith 5th generation LDS. it doesnt get better than this

  • RBB Sandy, UT
    Sept. 24, 2014 9:06 p.m.


    The LDS Church is open to all. I make up my opinion about members based on what I see of their conduct. There are many good LDS members on both sides of the isle, but I do not consider Harry Reid to be one of them. I have seen him lie, misrepresent and disparage people too many times to think that he is a good person. He accused Mitt Romney (who is not high on my list) of not paying any taxes for a number of years - but would never backed it up. Lying about people is wrong regardless of whether you are conservative, progressive or whatever.


    I am not sure where you are getting the - you must accept without question bit because it is simply not true. You should come to the gospel doctrine class in my ward. Hardly a week goes by without some valiant member questioning some doctrine. It is discussed an all are edified. Questioning is welcome - throwing a tantrum if everyone else doesn't follow your lead is not.

  • Ken Sisler Newmarket, Ontario
    July 24, 2014 9:31 p.m.

    As President Hinckley once stated, It's not important how others view us. It's important how we view ourselves. I expect the world to dislike me because I'm a Christian. If I fit in with the world too much, then I'm not really a Christian.

  • nycut New York, NY
    July 23, 2014 8:34 a.m.

    Despite hosting the winter Olympics, and fielding national presidential candidate, and persistent public relations campaigns designed to convince the world Mormons are as great as they say they are, the public "likes" Mormons about as little as atheist-- the true religious outsiders-- and the much-villainized, media-fictionalized Muslim.

    There is an opportunity for self-reflection. Why do people have such a different perspective on Mormonism? But rather than explore the Mormon self-perception disconnect, this comment thread is bizarrely dominated by "let's all trash Harry Reid, democrats and liberals!"

    Strange to feel so misunderstood and do so little to foster understanding.

  • andyjaggy American Fork, UT
    July 21, 2014 12:10 p.m.

    Agree with what others have said, why are we so concerned about if people like us or not?


    It's okay, I've been LDS my entire life and have never quite fit into the culture or had many friends at church. Just the way it is I guess. It also doesn't help that I am an extreme introvert and the LDS culture is very social and very much geared towards extroverts.

  • donn layton, UT
    July 21, 2014 11:45 a.m.

    RE:Ordinaryfolks, the LDS church members to mature as a sect and accept legitimate criticism of their faith in action and their leaders?

    To be a faithful Mormon, according to the Church leaders you must accept what they teach without question and without debate or question “ doctrinal teachings” .Yet,

    Early Christians were not be afraid to question their apostle[s] , “the Berean Jews were of more noble character than those in Thessalonica, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true”. Acts 17:11

    @Harry Reid probably even believes “As man is, God was; as God is, man may be”

  • 1aggie SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    July 21, 2014 9:25 a.m.

    Harry Reid's abortion stance may very well be in line with the LDS Church, as are mine.. I believe abortion should be available for rape, incest, maternal life/health issues and severe fetal deformity. However, I don't believe abortion should be criminalized and I believe ALL women (not just well-off women) should have access to safe abortions--therefore, I am pro-choice. The official church policy on abortion doesn't mention Roe v Wade.

    It has been established repeatedly that contraceptive use reduces abortion rates.
    It can be argued that conservatives are pro-abortion since they support limits on contraceptive education and availability.

  • ordinaryfolks seattle, WA
    July 21, 2014 6:35 a.m.

    I find the fear and loathing of Sen Reid by some presumed "good" LDS members most interesting.

    If one presumes that Sen Reid is a member in good standing in his church, then should not one presume (well, LDS member anyway) that he is by definition a "good" man?

    Sen Reid was elected by his constituents to represent their interests in the US Senate. Many, many times people of all faiths have to advocate and vote for policies that may not necessarily align with their faith traditions. This does not make them people of bad faith, it makes them people of government. People are sent to the nation's capital to make things work, not legislate their faith.

    In one respect, it is important for the LDS church members to mature as a sect and accept legitimate criticism of their faith in action and their leaders. However, the bitter criticism of a fellow member of the LDS tribe seems based on pure animus (the undertone being he's not really one of us) belies an immature attitude.

  • 1aggie SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    July 20, 2014 11:58 p.m.

    "What's truly striking and revealing (in other studies) is that no group gives themselves a higher rating than Mormons do Mormons. Mormons give Mormons even higher scores than blacks give blacks or Hispanics give Hispanics in feeling thermometer surveys about race."

    Not surprised.

    I, too have noticed, as an LDS member, a lack of humility among Church members. As long as I can remember having grown up in UT, an inferiority complex among UT Mormons such that we are so happy when we can lay claim to someone famous being Mormon, like we can now be part of the "popular" group. We proudly pat our own backs about the "good-works" we do and proclaim the LDS Church to be the most charitable, despite having no facts/figures to back it up.

    Articles like these just reinforce the preoccupation we have about our own "popularity."

  • junkgeek Agua Dulce, TX
    July 20, 2014 7:59 p.m.

    I haven't seen a CTR ring on a church member in years. Maybe I'm not just looking hard enough.

  • chilly Salt Lake City, UT
    July 20, 2014 2:38 p.m.

    I recently saw the Book of Mormon musical. I couldn't help wondering, several times during the performance, how other religions would react to this sort of caricature of their faith. I also couldn't help remembering the criticism of the "Bengazi" video and in particular, Hilary Clinton calling it "disgusting and reprehensible". I'm still waiting for her response to the portrayal of Mormons by Matt Stone and Trey Parker :)

    From all I've seen, LDS reaction to the BOM musical has been poised and gentle. Who knows, maybe with this sort of aplomb they'll move up to 50% in the next poll.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    July 20, 2014 12:45 p.m.

    at least they aren't burning our temples and tar and feathering our leaders....

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    July 20, 2014 11:56 a.m.

    Latter-Day Saints for all their virtues display an amazing conceit, which is this - anything which a majority of LDS believe or advocate for cannot be wrong (in their view).

  • McMurphy St George, Utah
    July 20, 2014 11:04 a.m.

    @ Kings Court.
    The vice versa is also true. Utah LDS tend to look down their noses at members who are not in Zion.

    @ Bloodhound.
    I agree with you. I believe part of the problem is that the LDS church is still relatively new and small. I don't see the Catholics wringing their hands and agonizing over public perception.

    The Shurtleff and Swallow scandal cannot help public perception of the LDS church. The broader general public may not know the two are LDS but they know they are in Utah and Utah and the LDS church are synonymous.

  • Sparrow Surprise, AZ
    July 20, 2014 10:54 a.m.

    I converted in 2005, at the time I felt welcome...but felt like I was standing from the outside of a warm family gathering, looking in a window. Sometimes I feel like I'm welcomed in, most often not. I'm single, and older...not the, "ideal," Mormon look. It makes sense that Mormon's are warmer towards each others rather than outsiders. The Mormon culture is very strong, which is sad because the Lord wanted all to feel welcome and a part of HIS kingdom. The church is true, the people however have a lot to work on yet.

  • elevate Bountiful, UT
    July 20, 2014 10:34 a.m.

    Who cares? (Galatians 1:10)?
    Like another who commented, I'm also Mormon, don't like what these "how cool does the world think my church is" stories.

    Are we some insecure teenager counting facebook likes, hoping that will make us feel better? Are we trying to win some sort of popularity contest, as if that was our goal? Are we afraid we might noto get enough mileage for good deeds we collectively perform?
    I'd appreciate it if we as a church would forget this made up "mormon moment" PR crap, and realize that our actions are being observed...by God, and that should be more than enough. That's what the scriptures clearly ask us to do.

    Matthew 6:1-4
    Ecclesiastes 12:13-14

  • KellyWSmith Sparks, NV
    July 19, 2014 11:25 p.m.

    If I wrote what I actually think of Harry Reid, it would never get published in this comment section even without swearing (which I never do anyway). I am from Nevada and I have no idea how he got elected and I constantly have to apologize to anyone outside my state for having him be our Senator. All I can do is say I am sorry and I pray that he won't get elected again, but it happens every time. Some think he brings a lot of influence back to our state, but that is a corrupting influence of the highest order and it is my opinion that a lot of corrosion has occurred over the years.

  • Bob K Davis, CA
    July 19, 2014 8:07 p.m.

    Unfortunately typical that most of the commenters cannot fathom that anyone thinks anything is wrong with any Mormon except Sen. Reid, and make the discussion about him.

    All one would have to do, to combat the millions spend on TV ads, etc, would be to give folks the DN comments to read, if trying to make folks dislike mormons.

  • donn layton, UT
    July 19, 2014 3:07 p.m.

    RE: why Mormons like each other so much.

    Their Masonic forefathers(Joseph Smith, Brigham Young…etc) had an understanding of human needs and human aspirations. They may never have dreamed of the mindless computer which governs our lives, or the fission of matter which threatens our lives, but they understood human nature and what motivates the spirit of man. Thus from a simple process of using stone and mortar for building they progressed to the most important of life's functions, the building of character

  • kvnsmnsn Springville, UT
    July 19, 2014 2:02 p.m.

    Gary Kinney posted:

    =Harry Reid is despised by many more than just Utah Mormons. The way he conducts
    =himself and attacks others who do not think like him is despicable. His lying
    =and underhanded dealings in government make me often wonder how he stays active
    =in a Church which teaches the opposite of being truthful and honest in our

    Some of the things Harry Reid has said are of concern to me, most notably his criticism of the LDS Church itself on gay rights issues, but my approach to pretty much anybody is to give that person a fair trial before passing judgement on her/him, and that applies to Reid just as it applies to anyone else.

    By the way, did you mean to put a comma between "opposite" and "of being" up there? The LDS Church doesn't teach the opposite of being truthful and honest.

  • kvnsmnsn Springville, UT
    July 19, 2014 1:56 p.m.

    Marxist posted:

    =But you'll note that in Utah at least Mormons very much dislike Democrats or
    =anybody left leaning. Harry Reid is much despised by Utah Mormons.

    Both statements are unwarranted exaggerations. For quite some time there has been one Democratic congressman from Utah elected to the U.S. House of Representatives, so it logically follows that there are some Utah Mormons that have liked them enough to vote for them. And back in 2005 or 2006 Harry Reid actually came and gave a devotional at LDS Church owned Brigham Young University. Reid did a very good job of describing and defending both sides, the conservative and liberal ones, on several important issues. Each time he defended one of those sides he got a round of applause, obviously from different parts of the audience. The people who applauded his defense of the liberal sides of issues were obviously at least partially Utah Mormons. I, personally, came away from that devotional liking Reid very much, and I'm a Utah Mormon, even though I wasn't born here.

  • Common-Tator Saint Paul, MN
    July 19, 2014 12:03 p.m.

    @ Drewdove - as a somewhat longer LDS convert, I would strongly advise you not to base your testimony on the behave of every fellow Saint. The vast majority will attempt to live their lives in accordance with their beliefs. It is not universal, however, (freedom of choice does exist, even in the church), and eventually you will run into the one or two who will attempt to take advantage of you in a rather unethical manner, based simply on your trusting them because they are or claim to be a church member.

    Be loving, but use the Spirit for discernment, and you will continue to prosper. Best of luck in everything, that way!

  • Naval Vet Philadelphia, PA
    July 19, 2014 11:15 a.m.

    Gene Poole:

    "Do [Mormons] vote party line? Not necessarily. If a candidate of a party proves by previous actions that they will be of best service for the community, then they are elected - not by party line."

    Nope. Not true. Consider Utah's state attorney general election of 2012. The Democrats ran Weber County Attorney Dee Smith. Smith was a well-respected prosecutor with an impeccable record. The GOP ran John Swallow, whose OWN legal experience was little more than that of a political fixer and fundraiser. Swallow defeated Smith with 65% of the vote.

    In the prior AG election (2000), the GOP's Mark Shurtleff defeated Democrat Reed Richards with 57% of the vote (to Reeds 40%). Richards' CV included serving as a Weber County attorney, and subsequent deputy AG under Jan Graham. Shurtleff had been, for a short time, a Salt Lake County commissioner with not a long résumé as an attorney.

    And now Shurtleff and Swallow are under indictment for multiple felonies.

    Clearly Smith and Richards were the better candidates, but they didn't fall under "party line" voting practices.

  • Wilf 55 SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    July 19, 2014 10:42 a.m.

    And what about how Mormons are viewed internationally? There people like Harry Reid or Jim Dabakis have rendered an enormous service to the Church during the "Mormon Moment". They showed that not all Mormons were right-wing Christian extremists (as they are often presented). Also, the actions of "Mormon building bridges" were picked by international media and gave an excellent impression of Mormon diversity and love for our gay brothers and sisters.

    However, since then, Utah's fight against same-sex marriage and the animosity toward dissenters have again plunged the Mormon image in the negative. The point here is not to argue about SSM or excommunications, but to understand what kind of news determines the image of the Church. If Church PR wants to improve that image worldwide, for the sake of missionary work, it does not seem we're on the right track.

  • HaHaHaHa Othello, WA
    July 19, 2014 10:34 a.m.

    Your inept, high, or way out of touch, if you think Reid is only despised by Utah Mormons.

    July 19, 2014 10:17 a.m.

    The idea that Reid is "despised" by Utah Mormons exhibits the frustration many have with us. The concept of disliking Reid is flawed - better put is "I don't like his politics" - big difference. I don't believe him to be a dishonorable man. I think he is a good man doing what he believes is right - even when he knows much of his tribe disagrees.

    Some try to equate being a good Republican with being a good LDS with being a good American.

    Fight the political battle but I have a small news flash - In the end politics do not win - theology does and it turns out its all okay - even if Barry occupies the White House instead of Mitt.

    Its more about the woman at the well and the Sermon on the Mount than it is about whats happening in Rome. The Mormon Moment will come when we exhibit our love and kindness not our political might.

    Having said that - I sure wish Reid would have lost that election - he bugs the snot out of me on a political level.

  • gmlewis Houston, TX
    July 19, 2014 9:35 a.m.

    Ultra-Extreme Liberals justify their positions by denying the existence of divine commandments through an over-emphasis on God's mercy. Ultra-Extreme Conservatives justify their positions by focusing on the divine commandments through an over-emphasis on God's justice.

    Moderates fall somewhere in between, but the ultra-extremes dominate the conversation. Since Mormons have great faith in living by the Lord's standard, it is understandable that they tend to be predominately conservative. They need to resist the propensity to be ultra-extreme to the extent of forgetting God's mercy.

  • bellsandbells Columbia, MO
    July 19, 2014 9:35 a.m.

    My fellow LDS are like me. When I am with many other groups, I am out of place…the odd ball. That is why “Mormons” like “Mormons” better. I have always lived where I am the only LDS in the crowd or there are only a few of us. Still, I feel more comfortable with my fellow LDS. When traveling or moving, I can go right into a church group and feel I am at home immediately. Or call for help if I am in a strange town. You are never alone when you have immediate family all over the world.

  • ThornBirds St.George, UT
    July 19, 2014 9:30 a.m.

    Many throughout the country will interpret Mormons needing some help in bringing that temp down to normal. Their temperature is in need of some generic medication in order to temper that high and mighty attitide to the level of the rest of the population.

  • Bloodhound Provo, UT
    July 19, 2014 9:29 a.m.

    I'm LDS and don't care for these stories. Let's get over ourselves and stop worrying about whether or not people think we are "important," "good," etc. We make up a tiny, tiny fraction of the world's population and most people don't look to us for advice. They probably never will.

  • Schnee Salt Lake City, UT
    July 19, 2014 9:16 a.m.

    I'm surprised there wasn't a partisan gap in 2010 since that was after Prop 8 and considering it's amongst the most conservative churches (by which I mean greatest percentage of members say they're conservative) in the nation.

  • Kings Court Alpine, UT
    July 19, 2014 8:52 a.m.

    Coming from outside Utah, I can testify that non-Utah Mormons don't have a high regard for Utah Mormons.

  • There You Go Again Saint George, UT
    July 19, 2014 8:14 a.m.

    Temperature readings by whom?

    In not so polite conversation, there are some white new-comers to the Saint George area whose disdain for blacks and hispanics barely exceeds their disdain for Mormons.

    So what?

    "...All that proved about Mormons is that Americans don't feel much warmer or colder about them than they have for the past eight years...".

    Some Americans do, some Americans don't.

    Interpretation of poll driven data tends to be a function of the audience the interpretation is designed to please/impress/sway.


    "...political perspective...".

    The temperature rating for Mormons is in the 40% level just above atheists and Muslims.

    "...underlying reality...".

    Maybe, maybe not.

  • Gary Kinney Huntington Beach, CA
    July 19, 2014 7:52 a.m.

    @marxist. Harry Reid is despised by many more than just Utah Mormons. The way he conducts himself and attacks others who do not think like him is despicable. His lying and underhanded dealings in government make me often wonder how he stays active in a Church which teaches the opposite of being truthful and honest in our dealings. IMO he is a very poor example of how we should act toward others. Definitely not the example I want of a good Letter-day Saint.

  • bj-hp Maryville, MO
    July 19, 2014 7:32 a.m.

    Marxist: You will find that many Latter Day Saints as a whole dislike or distrust Harry Reid or anyone who is a self-proclaimed Democrat regardless where you are at anywhere in the Untied States. Harry Reid would be welcome to any LDS Church meeting in the United States but he would be highly criticized for his LIBERAL leanings. Don't just say Utah as it is nation wide.

  • U-tar Woodland Hills, UT
    July 19, 2014 7:30 a.m.

    Harry Ried is not well liked by Anyone that leans to the Right, not just Mormons.

  • Don Bugg Prince Frederick, MD
    July 19, 2014 6:21 a.m.

    The problem with "marxist's" generalization is that many or most of the Democrats in Utah are Mormons.

  • Gene Poole SLC, UT
    July 19, 2014 1:15 a.m.

    @marxist... I would venture to ask if there is a purpose to your baiting for controversy or are you sharing an opinion that is based upon a large section of interviews that you have personally obtained. Are Utah voters conservative? Based upon voting statistics: yes. Do they vote party line? Not necessarily. If a candidate of a party proves by previous actions that they will be of best service for the community, then they are elected - not by party line. Because they are - ready for it marxist - honorable! I'm left handed - on occasion - so, I guess I'm left leaning. ;) As for considerations for Harry Reid, it has nothing to do with his party affiliation or his membership in the LDS Church but his complete disdain for the First and Second Amendments to The Constitution of the United States and other indications of socialism, cronyism and nepotism that make him a tad bit despicable to some right leaning folks.

  • gittalopctbi Glendale, AZ
    July 19, 2014 12:54 a.m.

    @marxist, Harry Reid is much despised by a lot of people, not just in Utah. :)

  • Drewdove Anaheim, CA
    July 19, 2014 12:08 a.m.

    As a new Mormon (March 2014) I have nothing but love for my brothers & sisters. I tend to give my fellow Mormons the benefit of the doubt and it has paid off every time. I think it's this that will turn up the temp in time as more join us and join in on the fun.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    July 18, 2014 10:16 p.m.

    But you'll note that in Utah at least Mormons very much dislike Democrats or anybody left leaning. Harry Reid is much despised by Utah Mormons.

  • Danite Salt Lake City, UT
    July 18, 2014 9:41 p.m.

    As far as the tribe thing, I'm not at all surprised by this. "Members" see themselves in a harmonizing brotherhood and sisterhood with total strangers, all it takes for the comraderie is the sighting of their CTR ring or other indicators. This is one of our most powerful tools, we are connected with very diverse individuals by our common faith. To me, this is a small indicator of our Zion seeking theology. Let us continue to be united, and "have favorable views on other Mormons".