Saturday, April 13, 2013

Show and Tell

Matt here.

I'm back in the United States, safe, sound, and unemployed. We'll see how long I stay that way.

For today's post, I offer you a perspective and discussion outside our normal ken, brought to my attention by  Gay BYU Student Blogger, who really needs to come up with a shorter handle.

Here is the first post, which is about supporting gay marriage and answering the temple interview questions. GBYUSB comments a couple of times.

Here is the second post, in which the author clarifies many things. (I know the feeling.) Also in this post, GBYUSB exchanges a few more comments with the author and I pop in toward the end with comments that are quite long and may be the kernels of several future posts. Fun times.

If you join the conversation over there, please be nice. Please don't be whiny or illogical or rude. I think I kinda like this guy, although I disagree with him about stuff.


For your viewing pleasure: Animals About to Become Dinner.


  1. I don't know... he comes off as rather sanctimonious and "holier than thou" to me. I mean, he straight up told GBYUSB to go see his bishop. He quotes the Mormons and Gays website as if it were scripture, and does the same thing with statements made in general conference or other places. These kind of statements are not doctrine, and are incredibly easy to walk back (there are numerous examples of this, even recently with the changing of President Packer's talk a few years ago.)

    He also insists over and over again that gay marriage and the priesthood ban are not the same, even saying that to compare them is "juvenile, naive, and extremely misleading." But then he fails over and over again to give any sort of explanation or logic supporting that claim.

    I think the thing that bothers me the most about his doctrinal assertions is the assumption that homosexuality didn't exist before this life and won't exist after it. Not only does that seem to contradict Alma, but it also makes no sense the for the thousands of gay families who want to live "together forever" just like everyone else.

  2. Hi El Genio! Good to hear from you.

    Of course I agree about the sanctimoniousness and such--my word for it was "a$$hole," I believe.

    I didn't pay much attention to the priesthood ban part because half the conversation has been deleted--which makes me think the commenter was making stupid arguments that didn't really need to be refuted. Heaven knows that happens a lot, on both sides.

    I agree that there were some really irritating parts of his presentation, especially the frequency with which he referred to the m&g website, but I don't think he's out of line treating that stuff as if it were scripture. They're words of people Mormons recognize as prophets acting in official capacity. Though we may not respect their authority that much, I think we're the exceptions, and it's perfectly logical for him to treat those as trustworthy sources when he's addressing a Mormon audience.

    Regarding the assumption that homosexuality didn't exist before and won't exist after, that _is_ the official position of the church. I'm on the fence about believing in the church at all, but if I did I would believe that too. I don't see any problem with Alma, and regarding the wishes of gay families, I want a jetpack and a million dollars; wanting a thing doesn't mean you'll get it.

  3. Ha ha, I hope you'll be staying safe and sound.

    Wow, I'm impressed you had the patience to participate in that exchange. Honestly, it is precisely the people like that that make me want to leave/take a break from the Church. I know I need to take responsibility for my own beliefs, but man it's hard to work through them being constantly subject to such persistent negative influences.

  4. I don't know why all those comments were deleted in reference to the priesthood ban. The commenter was actually making good points that added to the conversation. The guy probably got so frustrated he went on a deleting spree.

    To approach this from a different angle, and since there's a lot of discussion about the M&G website, I personally am tired of the "holier than thou" gay Mormons who don't take the website as scripture or doctrine or whatever we're calling it. When it launched many were pissed by the domain name. "Ummm. I'm SSA, not gay."

    Then there's this line from the site: "Unlike in times past, the Church does not necessarily advise those with same-sex attraction to marry those of the opposite sex." I still see a lot of indirect encouragement to marry (as in a mixed-orientation marriage) among the Evergreen/North Star community. Many of the single guys plan on getting married and have the mentality of "I'll only be attracted to one person of the opposite sex - my wife." Plus there's so much viral focus on the MOM couples (Weed, Mansfield, etc.) The Church obviously knows the dangers of MOM's, otherwise they wouldn't have it listed on their official site.

    Those holding to the faith loves this line: "The attraction itself is not a sin, but acting on it is," but many seem to pick and choose what they want to hear from the rest given by our leaders.

  5. Welcome back to the U.S. I hope you find work that you enjoy.

    I won't be commenting on that guy's rant. He obviously knows everything so he has no interest in listening to another side of the story. I found the most offensive part in his comments that there is no such thing as gay love. It seems like each week I read experiences or comments that make me happy I resigned from the church.

  6. Trev, you never know. We have bears here. And I think I had energy to participate in that exchange because I don't have to do it often at all--pretty much only when I feel like it. Benefits of years of inactivity, I suppose.

    Anonymous, I wish the commentor hadn't deleted his own comments. I would have liked to see for myself what kind of argument he was mounting. I think we must run in different circles, if you're in one that has holier-than-though mohos in it. Mine are full of doubters and apostates. I have vague memories of such attitudes (the holier-than ones) being one reason I distanced myself from North Star's forums a few years ago (though I still read their blog occasionally).

    [Side note--when the author on the other page advised me to 'check out North Star and Evergreen' like it was a resource I'd probably never heard of, I cackled. Honey, I've been keeping one eye on North Star since I came back from the 2007 Evergreen conference. But thanks for playing.]

    I imagine my feelings about guys hoping for OSM are very similar to my parents' feelings for me and my inactivity. That's something along the lines of "I don't think it's a very wise idea, but it's your life." Perhaps church leaders feel the same, I dunno.

    Dean, thanks for the welcome! I hope so too. Cranking out applications like a mofo, so we'll see what comes of it. I'm sure I'll put vague celebratory details up here at that time.

    I feel like a lot of the problem is that the gay world and the religious world use a lot of the same words to mean different things, so there's a lot of confusion. It doesn't help that he was writing in broad 'clear' strokes, avoiding nuance and detail.

    All told, I thought it was a fun dip in the other side's pool. Thanks for coming with, y'all!