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Gay rights activists see Mormons softening attitudes toward their community
Gay rights activists hold hands in protest in front of the Mormon Temple in Salt Lake City, Utah, in July 2009.
April 17th, 2012
12:25 PM ET

Gay rights activists see Mormons softening attitudes toward their community

By Dan Merica, CNN

Washington (CNN) Kevin Kloosterman, a former Mormon bishop, said he “came out” last year just not in the way that many people associate with coming out.

“I came out and basically made a personal apology to (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) folks for really not understanding their issues, not really taking the time to understand their lives and really not doing my homework,” Kloosterman said in an interview with CNN.

Though not speaking on behalf of the church, the then-bishop stood in front of a crowd of gay and straight Mormons at a November conference on gay and lesbian issues in Salt Lake City, Utah, where the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is headquartered.

Donning a suit and tie, Kloosterman was visibly shaken, struggling to find the right words as tears welled up in his eyes.

“I’m sorry deeply, deeply sorry,” Kloosterman told the group in a speech that was captured on video. “The only thing I can say to those of you who have been so patient, and have gone through so much, is for you to watch and look for any small changes with your loved ones, with your wards (Mormon congregations), with your leaders. And encourage them in this repentance process.”

Kloosterman’s apology was just one example of what many Mormons and church watchers see as a recent shift in the Mormon community’s posture toward gays and lesbians, including by the official church itself.

Though the church’s doctrine condemning homosexuality has not changed, and the church remains opposed to same-sex marriage, many say the church is subtly but unmistakably growing friendlier toward the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community, including voicing support for some gay rights.

CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories

Students at the church-owned Brigham Young University recently posted an “It Gets Better” video about the gay and lesbian community there, while a gay Mormon in San Francisco was selected last year for a church leadership position.

A new conference series on gay and lesbian Mormons the same one Kloosterman addressed last year is seeing an uptick in popularity.

Church spokesman Michael Purdy would not comment on whether church members are changing their stance toward gay and lesbian issues but said in an e-mail message: “In the Church, we strive to follow Jesus Christ who showed immense love and compassion towards all of God’s children.”

Purdy wrote, “If members are becoming more loving and Christ-like toward others then this can only be a positive development.”

‘It is definitely getting better’

The Brigham Young students who taped the pro-gay video this month were contributing to a popular video series meant to inspire hope in young people who are struggling to come to terms with their sexuality identity.

The video featured students telling stories of being gay at Brigham Young, sharing tales of heartache, loss and even suicide.

“It kind of is a very different world to be gay and Mormon because it feels like neither community accepts you completely,” said Bridey Jensen, a fifth-year senior and acting president of Understanding Same Gender Attraction, the group that posted the video.

Explain it to me: What’s Mormonism?

“We put out the message for youth that are going through this, and we want them to know that we were them a few years ago, and it gets better and there is a place for you,” she said.

Though chastity is a requirement at Brigham Young, gay and lesbian students say they are under more scrutiny. The school’s honor code says that “homosexual behavior is inappropriate and violates” the code.

But Jensen said reaction to the video, which has been viewed almost 400,000 times on YouTube, has been “overwhelmingly positive.”

Carri Jenkins, an assistant to Brigham Young's president, told CNN that the production of the video is not a violation of the honor code and that the students will not be punished.

The honor code, Jenkins said, is “based on conduct, not on feeling and if same-gender attraction is only stated, that is not an honor code issue.”

Jensen said that while gay and lesbian Mormons face a tough road, she sees a shift toward greater acceptance. It is definitely getting better within the church, she said. “They are not so quick to judge. They understand that they don’t understand everything. I am glad I can be a little part of it.”

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Some scholars of Mormonism, such as Columbia University’s Richard Bushman, said they see the very existence of such a gay rights group at Brigham Young as a step toward greater acceptance of gays and lesbians.

“The last 10 years have been a huge sea change in terms of willingness to accept homosexuals,” Bushman said. “Gay kids are still going to have a tough time in the church, but this level of acceptance and acknowledgment that is really that last decade I would say.”

Most gay Mormons point to 2008’s push for Proposition 8 in California, which banned same-sex marriage in the state but has faced legal challenge in the courts, as a low point in the relationship between the church and gay and lesbian community.

Mormons make up 2% of California’s population, but they contributed half of the $40 million war chest used to defend Proposition 8, according to a Time magazine report.

The church’s Proposition 8 activism angered many gay rights groups around the country, with some labeling the church “bigoted,” “homophobic” and “anti-gay.”

But church officials pushed back against the perception that the Proposition 8 backlash has provoked a Mormon softening on gay and lesbian issues.

“Many positive relationships have come from the Church’s experience in supporting traditional marriage in California,” Purdy, the church spokesman, said in an e-mail exchange with CNN.

Purdy draws a distinction between being against same-sex marriage and against equality for gays and lesbians.

He reiterated that the church was “strongly on the record as supporting traditional marriage,” but he said its stance should never be used as justification for violence or unkindness.

“The Church’s doctrine has not changed but we certainly believe you can be Christ-like, loving and civil, while advocating a strongly held moral position such as supporting traditional marriage,” Purdy wrote in an e-mail message.

“We do not believe that strong support of traditional marriage is anti-gay,” he wrote. “We love and cherish our brothers and sisters who experience same gender attraction. They are children of God.”

Church doctrine says that sex outside marriage is a sin and can lead to excommunication. Since gay people cannot be married in the church, any sex for them would be premarital and, therefore, sinful.

“The distinction between feelings or inclinations on the one hand, and behavior on the other hand, is very clear,” the church’s website says. “It’s no sin to have inclinations that if yielded to would produce behavior that would be a transgression. The sin is in yielding to temptation. Temptation is not unique. Even the Savior was tempted.”

Openly gay and a church leader

Mitch Mayne seems to relish his role as a lightning rod.

Mayne, an openly gay Mormon who blogs about homosexuality and the church, received the calling a term Mormons use for being invited into a church position in August.

Mayne is now executive secretary in a San Francisco ward of the church.

“I view myself as gay and being completely whole as being gay,” Mayne said.

Many observers of Mormonism say Mayne’s calling marked a unique moment in church history. Purdy said that Mayne’s appointment is “not unique,” but it’s hard to find precedent for an outspokenly gay executive secretary.

Mayne said he sees his job as building bridges with the gay community in San Francisco and showing them “there are pockets in the Mormon Church where you can be yourself.”

The biggest obstacle toward building those bridges is the threat of excommunication, said Mayne, who told CNN that in some wards just being gay can lead to expulsion from the church.

According to church doctrine, a formal disciplinary council can be called at the request of church leader.

While the leaders of the church mandate councils called for murder, incest or apostasy, it has a long list of reasons to call a disciplinary council.

According to the church’s website, the list of reasons includes “abortion, transsexual operation, attempted murder, rape, forcible sexual abuse, intentionally inflicting serious physical injuries on others, adultery, fornication, homosexual relations. …”

Some wards are observing that guidance while others aren’t, Mayne said.

“Here in the Bay Area ... we are no longer seeking out LGBT members of the church and excommunicating them,” Mayne said. “Our role is to bring people closer to the Savior, so if we are routinely excommunicating people, then we are really not doing our job.”

Mayne said he believes the challenge is to convince church leaders that they don’t ever have to excommunicate gay members.

And he said the Proposition 8 campaign was the “least Christ-like thing we have ever done as a church.”

“Not only did we alienate gays and lesbians, but we alienated their parents, their friends, those who support them the ripple effect went way beyond the gay community, and I don’t think we were prepared for such a negative fallout,” Mayne said. “I think the church deserved the black eye they received.”

He added, “As a result of that really horrible time, I think we are entering a really good time to be a gay Mormon. It is getting better.”

‘Mormonism doesn’t simply wash off’

When the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints speaks, the City Council of Salt Lake City listens. At least the council seemed to in 2009 when it voted on an ordinance to make it illegal to discriminate against gay and transgendered residents in housing and employment.

"The church supports these ordinances because they are fair and reasonable and do not do violence to the institution of marriage,” church spokesman Michael Otterson told the council.

Shortly after the church’s expression, the City Council approved the measure unanimously.

Many gay rights activists said they saw the move as an olive branch after the Proposition 8 debate.

“The tone and the culture is evolving, and the way the LGBT people are being treated is changing. I don’t think the church’s policy has caught up to that change in culture,” said Ross Murray, director of religion, faith and values at the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation. “The Mormon church hasn’t gotten nearly as politically involved as they had since 2009.”

Though Murray sees the church lobbying for anti-discrimination laws as a positive step, he said the church’s shift is more about style than substance.

“It is going to take a lot of intentional effort to actually prove they are different,” Murray said. “That burden, because of the really public nature of their support of Prop 8, falls harder on the Mormon church than others.”

Joanna Brooks, a popular Mormon blogger and president of Mormon Stories, a nonprofit group that facilitates conversations on Mormon issues, echoes Murray’s sentiments.

She said she sees the church’s stance as challenging gay Mormons to choose between the religion they most likely grew up with and their desire for romantic companionship.

“Mormonism doesn’t simply wash off,” she said, adding that the church can’t make it that “either you are gay or you are Mormon, or either you support gay rights or you support the church.”

- Dan Merica

Filed under: California • Gay marriage • Gay rights • Homosexuality • Mormonism • Utah

soundoff (1,904 Responses)
  1. The Damocles Society

    Test post.

    April 19, 2012 at 6:31 am |
    • Frank Bund

      Congratulations numbnuts. You learned how to use the internet!

      April 19, 2012 at 6:54 am |
  2. Greg

    Marriage is under God. I pray for these people that they see the Lord's will and turn away from the disease of the flesh. We all have to abide by God's laws. What these people do is a sin and an abomination in Jesus' eyes and it hurts Him to know that His people are doing such vile things. Pray for them. Have faith that the Lord will cure them of this sickness. This is a sign written about in the Bible. The Word states that there will be signs before the second coming of Jesus. Our planet is in a dark void! Don't you see that? Soon, we will see Him on a white horse. This is not the time to soften our stance. Instead we have to stand firm in our faith together. Sin will not be allowed into Heaven. Remember that!

    April 19, 2012 at 5:50 am |
    • Flamespeak

      Could you tell me what heaven is exactly, sir?

      April 19, 2012 at 5:54 am |
    • Greg

      It is described in the Bible.

      April 19, 2012 at 5:55 am |
    • Flamespeak

      I see. As I do not have a bible nearby, could you be so kind as to give the description of heaven that the bible contains?

      April 19, 2012 at 5:57 am |
    • Greg

      I pulled this up with a quick Google search. I hope it helps:

      http://www.whatchristianswanttoknow.com/bible-verses-about-heaven-15-scripture-quotes/

      April 19, 2012 at 6:01 am |
    • Greg

      More information:

      christianitytoday.com/biblestudies/articles/theology/090128.html

      April 19, 2012 at 6:09 am |
    • Flamespeak

      Please don't take this an offense, sir, however, the quotes that you provided don't really offer much of a description of heaven. The only one that even offers some of a description was rather strange in its account. A bright river, a tree with twelve friuts, and god banishing night while providing light. Do you have any better quotes that more accurately describe heaven, sir?

      April 19, 2012 at 6:12 am |
    • Flamespeak

      Sir, your second source, while an entertaining read and some good insight is offered by the author, doesn't really show what the bible lists as descriptors of heaven. I don't mean to sound persistent, sir, but I would like a good description of the goal that a Christian should be working for.

      April 19, 2012 at 6:20 am |
    • Greg

      I do not take offense. But there is an abundance of information available on the subject. I encourage you to find a Bible and read it. It offers us a lot of information. I hope that you find peace in it and that it will speak to you.

      April 19, 2012 at 6:21 am |
    • Flamespeak

      Thank you for responding to my posts, Sir.

      I will do some research on the subject matter in my free time later on Today. Your kindness is most appreciated.

      April 19, 2012 at 6:31 am |
    • Primewonk

      Point 1 – We've invented tens of thousands of gods. Your god was cobbled together from other minor tribal deities in the area at the time.

      Point 2 – Marriage existed long before your bible.

      Point 3 – People are born gay. We have the science to explain it. Your god; however, was incredibly scientifically illiterate. Being born gay is no more of a sin than being born left-handed.

      Point 4 – You nutters have been claiming we are in the end times for 2000 years. You've been wrong each and every time.

      April 19, 2012 at 8:40 am |
    • YeahRight

      "Marriage is under God."

      Marriage was defined well before your bible. Marriage also happened in other cultures and religions. Christianity does not have a monopoly on it, especially since only 33% of people on this planet are Christians. The evidence has been presented, laws have been changed because being gay is not a choice, it's not a mental illness, and it can't be voluntarily changed. Gay partnerships deserve the same civil rights for their partners and children as straights do, this has nothing to do with religion!

      April 19, 2012 at 10:54 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @Greg
      End Times? Really?
      “Children, it is the last hour; and just as you heard that antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have appeared; from this we know that it is the last hour.”
      —1 John 2:18
      Christians have been waiting on tenterhooks for the Second Coming since the Bible itself was written.
      Many have prophesied the exact time of date of His return and ALL have been wrong.
      George Rapp said it would be September 15th, 1829.
      William Miller predicted October 22, 1844. Jesus’ failure to arrive is known as “The Great Disappointment”. Many of his disillusioned followers went on the found the 7th Day Adventist Church, who are still patiently awaiting His return.
      Charles Russell, 1st President of the Watchtower Society told his fellow Jehovah’s Witnesses that Jesus would be back in 1874.
      Rudolf Steiner maintained that from 1930 onwards, Jesus would grant certain people psychic powers to enable them to witness his presence in the “etheric plane”.
      Herbert Armstrong, Pastor General of the Worldwide Church of God said 1975.
      Bill Maupin managed to convince his followers to sell all of their worldly goods in preparation for Jesus’ return on June 28th, 1981.
      Benjamin Crème stated that on June 21st, 1982 Christ would make a worldwide television announcement.
      Mark Blitz, Pastor of El Shaddai Ministries says it would be September 30th, 2008
      Jerry Falwell said it’d happen between 1999 and 2009.
      Harold Camping told everyone that the Rapture would happen May 21, 2011 after failing in his first predicted date of 1994.

      Conversely, many believe He’s all ready come in the form of Sun Myung Moon, Emanuel Swedenborg, Baha u llah, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, David Koresh, Hailie Selassie, John Thom, Arnold Potter, William Davies, George roux, Ernest Norman, Krishna Venta, Ahn Sahng-Hong, Jim Jones, Mashall Applewhite, Hulon Mitchell, Wayne Bent, Ariffin Mohammed, Mitsuo Matayoshi, Jose Luis de Jesus Miranda, Inri Cristo, Thomas Provenzano, David Icke, Shoko Asahara, Hogan Fukinaga, Marina Tsvigun or Sergei Troop.

      It would appear that the much lauded Jewish carpenter has been thoroughly dead for 2000 years and will remain so.

      April 19, 2012 at 10:57 am |
    • sam stone

      "Marriage is under God."

      Yet I do not see any big movement to take the civil rights of non-christians who get married.

      Also, marriage has been around longer than the old testament.

      April 19, 2012 at 3:09 pm |
    • TR6

      @Flamespeak:”Could you tell me what heaven is exactly”
      Heaven is like an eternal church service on a warm day with no air conditioning. You sit there forever, endlessly repeating to god how great he is, as your butt gets flatter and flatter from the cheap folding chairs. Every now and then they pass around a tray of bits of jesus and a cup of blood to snack on (in heaven there is no transubstantiation, you get the real thing)

      April 19, 2012 at 3:31 pm |
  3. HITLER WAS A CHRISTIAN

    CASE CLOSED

    April 19, 2012 at 5:38 am |
  4. Flamespeak

    The Abrahamic faiths (Christianity, Judaism, Islam, and most recently Mormonism) all have clearly stated stances on their opinion of same gender relationships. I don't hold the same view on the subject as they do, but it would be wrong of me to force them to change their opinion just as it would be wrong of them to force me to change mine. I also recognize that it would more than silly to think that everyone should share my views on a given subject, in fact, it would downright insane to expect it.

    While on the subject of prop-8 (mentioned in the article), I have to marvel at the zeal in which activists of the LGBT community attacked the Mormon churches and followers. If the Mormon populace would have been against prop-8 and the entirity of their faith showed up to be against it passing, it still would have passed due to the high number of minority voters that supported it being passed. Yet, the LGBT community is strangely silent in regards to that particular group of people. Why? Is attacking a faith you don't agree with someone not seen as being intolerant? Is political correctness forcing your hand to avoid the real root of your problem? If you will not counter the true root of your problem, but instead lash out on something that is trivial in comparison, how do you expect anyone to honestly take you seriously, much less succed in your goal.

    Make no mistake, being intolerant of someone's race is just as wrong as being intolerant of someone's religion, but the former will be avoided at all costs while the latter is somehow considered a socially acceptable target when neither should be.

    April 19, 2012 at 2:52 am |
    • Prolixian

      Race is not religion and you cannot use them so. You are using a false equivalency and thus have failed to make a valid point.

      April 19, 2012 at 4:02 am |
    • Flamespeak

      @ Prolixian

      You are correct in that race is not a religion, however, you missed the point I was making. Neither should be considered an acceptable social target and most of the public (particularly those that assign themselves to progressives which included most LGBT groups) agree with that. However, we are witnessing a blatant disregard for one in this case. I find it odd that people would have no problem abandoning their ideals in such a way as to attack the target that will give them less of a social backlash as opposed to attacking the real advisary to their goal as it would be considered socially unnacceptable to do so. In that regard, I personally feel it is correct to associate the two (race and religion) in the same view.

      Although, it is fine for you to hold your opinion that it is not acceptable to relate the two in this case. This is merely me explaining my view on the situation.

      April 19, 2012 at 4:10 am |
    • Prolixian

      Well, here's the problem. Religion is a belief system based upon falsehoods and fraudulent narratives.
      Since religions don't have any real basis for their fraudulent structure and expression, they are clearly unworthy of protection by any stretch of the imagination.
      Race, on the other hand, and in this instance, is only a factor according to the ethnic religious delusions of each particular individual. So race is never a real issue because it is the individual that counts, not their ethnic identty.
      And also at the base of all those statistics is the fact that it is those individual's religious views that gave rise to their support of denying rights to the LGBT community. Religion made them act that way, not their race.
      So in the end, race had nothing to do with it other than the predilection, among certain ethnic religious groups, to be as strongly against LGBT as any generic, non-ethnic religious group with similar interpretations of their anti-gay religious texts – which happen to be completely made up from start to finish.

      Race has nothing to do with anyone's opinion. Religion does. And in this case it was those people's religion that made them vote to deny equal rights to the LGBT community. The color of their skin did nothing. That's why race means nothing here.
      The melanin content of your skin does not control your brain. Religion is mind-control fairy tales. Race is just your skin.

      April 19, 2012 at 4:27 am |
    • Flamespeak

      @ Prolixian

      Is it not taught that we, as a society, should be tolerant of people regardless of their race, religion, age, gender, and orientation? To openly bash one of those groups and not have it seem as being socially unacceptable by the bulk of society should raise a red flag. It paves the way for the open bashing and discrimination of the others down the road.

      Should two consenting adults who want to get married and spend the rest of their lives together be allowed to do so? Of course they should, from a legal perspective, and since you can get married by a goverment official with absolutely zero religious involvement, it seems down-right wrong on a civil level for such a marriage to not be feasible as it shows blatant discrimination by a form of goverment.

      To attack religious groups and not have any kind of a real public outcry when you do so is, quite frankly, dishearting and downright worrisome as it shows a lack or scoial morality on the whole. One should keep the moral high road, if you lose your footing on that path then your journey would have been for naught.

      April 19, 2012 at 4:52 am |
    • Prolixian

      Ah. Here, then, is the crux of your misinterpretation of what you see as anti-religion persecution.

      It's not.

      It is the massively oppressive political maneuvers done by religious people for religious reasons and religious purposes that is the real crime here, the real danger signal, the cause of the cries for justice.
      Before, in the old days, things were different. When they wrote the Const.tution, the 13 colonies were mostly religious enclaves with varying religious groups populating the colonies.
      These religious groups did not mesh. They had religious wars, religious violence, and religious intolerance amongst all of them, even to having clearly theocratic laws as oppressive as they felt they could get away with.
      When they signed that first Bill of Rights, the only way they were able to even come close to all agreeing on those rights were if they were to be equally shared by all.
      No religious group at the time wanted *any* of the other religions to gain any special advantages or to make any special laws that might enshrine one religious interpretation into law.
      And, being British colonies, they knew first-hand what it was like with the government being run by just one church with interpretations they hated. They knew, right then and there, what it was like to be oppressed, severely oppressed, by a theocratic government filled with corruption and injustice and all the rest of it.

      That is why there should be no laws that are created that favor the religious values of one group over another.
      It violates the religious freedoms of the LGBT community. That is why you are being opposed. You are violating their rights to equal protection under the law.

      Here's the kicker: All of the States, United under the Const.tution and signatories to it, have agreed, by signing, that the Const.tution is to be considered by all, regardless of religion, to be the Supreme Law in this country – The United States of America.

      As the Const.tution is Supreme Law here, and you'd better glom onto that fact, that means you are required to treat your personal religious interpretations as sub-ordinate to the Const.tution and to only support legislation that does not give any preferential advantage to any one religion's interpretation or expression.

      To that end, you must understand that making a law that treats any people unequally along certain lines is clearly and unequivocally PROHIBITED.
      So, when you seek to oppress others who do not share your religion according and in preference to your particular interpretation of what can only be described as a very personal religious belief (right?), then you are trying to invade and destroy the rights of others for the advantage of your personal religion. Prohibited again.

      But here you are making "oh, no these people are attacking my religion" noises.
      No. We're not.
      We're attacking your violations and clearly seen attacks on the Const.tutional rights of people who do not share your personal, and I say again PERSONAL, religion.
      This is a case of the criminal-minded oppressor beating their chest and crying that they are being persecuted and oppressed, even with your "general" Christian sayings SHOVED onto our money!
      OUR MONEY HAS YOUR CRAP ON IT. GET IT OFF.
      Seriously, stop what you are doing and start removing your religion's violations that are EVERYWHERE.
      Yet you would cry that you are under attack.

      No. Your kind has been attacking and violating the rights of others throughout history. You just don't get it. Maybe you never will. You are the criminals here. You don't get special protection just because you are using your religion as an excuse and a motivation for your crimes.
      You don't get to kill in the name of your god here. Your religion is not the Supreme Law here. If and when you force it, you are committing a gross violation of the whole Const.tution. Either keep it to yourself, as you should, or move to a different country. This one does not belong to your religion. Others are free here. You must respect the rights of others or else.

      April 19, 2012 at 7:04 am |
    • Flamespeak

      Sir, you assume I am a follower of the Abrahamic faiths, I am not.

      I am a Taoist.

      April 19, 2012 at 7:08 am |
    • Prolixian

      Then perhaps you could better see the points I'm trying to make here. You are assuming that any attack is bad if it's against a religion. But what we have here is a violation of equal rights under the law.

      Freedom of religious expression does not and should never include any violation of the rights of anyone.
      That is why we have the First Amendment. It protects religions by keeping them free of governmental bias.
      At least in theory.
      These days the corruption is so deep and so bad, it only takes money in the right hands and anything can be rubberstamped by a corrupt legislature and signed by corrupt governors and Presidents.

      Were you to seek to enshrine some Taoist saying into a public law that everyone had to follow, you would be violating the First Amendment and it would not be an attack on Taoism to oppose such a move on your part. It would be an opposition to the criminal activities that violate the First Amendment. Not the same thing at all.

      April 19, 2012 at 7:20 am |
    • Flamespeak

      I do see your point, sir. It is logical to keep religion out of government and government out religion. As I have stated earlier, I see no reason why two consenting adults can't get married regardless of their orientation and denying them the ability to get married seems like a gross mishandling of the law of the land due to it having nothing to do religion in a civil union.

      And you are correct in that the idea of a god is heavily emphasized in the USA. It is on the currency, its children are to reference it daily as part of school, and even Christian holidays are given federal notice. It is true that this kind of thing shouldn't occur in public funded domains or with the coin of the nation. I do feel that Christian values are attacked far more frequently than other religious groups in the USA though.

      I can't count the number of times I see people offended at Christmas decorations and Christmas trees around the holidays (even though they are old pagan symbols and actually have nothing to do with Christianity most of the time). Not only are their complaints made publicly known, but their will is forced upon the whole. It seems rather odd that a bank or store can't put up Christmas trees without offending someone. Perhaps the funniest instance I have run into over the years was a man that wanted all the stars taken down during Christmas time because it wasn't fair to Atheists. I can't help but see this guy looking up into the night sky and screaming expletives at the heavens for pushing their religious agenda upon him.

      I can understand the mindset of atheists, afterall, as a Taoist I would be considered one (although most atheists don't think I am one), however, I also think it would be best to lead the example of what we should expect out of others in terms of our behavior.

      I do apologize if that seems like rambling. My Unisom is finally starting to kick in, and the screen is a little wonky right now as a result.

      April 19, 2012 at 9:44 am |
    • YeahRight

      "Is it not taught that we, as a society, should be tolerant of people regardless of their race, religion, age, gender, and orientation? "

      It might not be taught in your religion but tolerance has been built into our laws, now the rest of the civil laws need to be fixed.

      April 19, 2012 at 11:13 am |
  5. Gang

    It is interesting to see many faithless people have such great faith on things they don't really know. It won't hurt you if you take a moment to think in others' shoes for a moment.

    April 19, 2012 at 1:16 am |
    • christians are garbage

      my own shoes are just fine

      much better than that of walking in the shoes of some moron that believes some sky hostess prancer is talking to them

      christians, if you're out of work, instead of praying for a job, go out and look for one

      there's a thought

      do some actual work instead of hoping santa will do it for you

      idiots

      April 19, 2012 at 2:36 am |
    • sam stone

      "....have such great faith on things they don't really know."

      you confuse reason and faith

      April 19, 2012 at 3:51 am |
  6. uriah

    Mormonism is a religion of blasphemy. Do your research before you consider them christians. Rev 2:9 I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but thou art rich) and [I know] the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but [are] the synagogue of Satan.

    April 19, 2012 at 1:08 am |
    • Ting

      At least God has talked to them somewhat recently. He hasn't spoken to the Christians in almost 2,000 years. That's not very nice considering that he said he would be back soon. Eventually Mormonism will surpass Christianity in numbers until the next fresh religion comes along.

      April 19, 2012 at 1:34 am |
  7. Reality

    ONLY FOR THE NEWCOMERS:

    "Abrahamics" believe that their god created all of us and of course that includes the g-ay members of the human race. Also, those who have studied ho-mo-se-xuality have determined that there is no choice involved therefore ga-ys are ga-y because god made them that way.

    To wit:

    o The Royal College of Psy-chiatrists stated in 2007:

    “ Despite almost a century of psy-choanalytic and psy-chological speculation, there is no substantive evidence to support the suggestion that the nature of parenting or early childhood experiences play any role in the formation of a person’s fundamental heteros-exual or hom-ose-xual orientation. It would appear that s-exual orientation is biological in nature, determined by a complex interplay of ge-netic factors and the early ut-erine environment. Se-xual orientation is therefore not a choice.[60] "
    "Garcia-Falgueras and Swaab state in the abstract of their 2010 study, "The fe-tal brain develops during the intraut-erine period in the male direction through a direct action of tes-tosterone on the developing nerve cells, or in the female direction through the absence of this hor-mone surge. In this way, our gender identi-ty (the conviction of belonging to the male or female gender) and s-exual orientation are programmed or organized into our brain structures when we are still in the womb. There is no indication that social environment after birth has an effect on gender ident–ity or s-exual orientation."[8

    See also the Philadelphia Inquirer review “Gay Gene, Deconstructed”, 12/12/2011. Said review addresses the following “How do genes associated with ho-mose-xuality avoid being weeded out by Darwinian evolution?”

    Of course, those gays who belong to Abrahamic religions abide by the rules of no adu-ltery or for-nication allowed.

    And because of basic biology differences said monogamous ventures should always be called same-se-x unions not same-se-x marriages.

    Then there is this:

    From below, on top, backwards, forwards, from this side of the Moon and from the other side too, gay se-xual activity is still mutual masturbation caused by one or more complex, gene-related, se-xual differences. Some differences are visually obvious in for example the complex maleness of DeGeneres, Billy Jean King and Rosie O'Donnell.

    Yes, heteros-exuals practice many of the same "moves" but there is never a doubt who is the female and who is the male

    April 18, 2012 at 11:42 pm |
    • edwardo

      What a weird post! I've met straight people, where the wife ruled the roost. The wife was the one who ran the show, made the decisions, brought home the bacon and fried it up in a pan. You're trying to stereotype people, and it just doesn't work.

      April 19, 2012 at 12:41 am |
    • Colin

      I have been reading "reality's" posts for over a year now. He is generally spot on. He is correct here, too. The configuration of the genetic blueprints that lead to hom.osecksuality very often have a corresponding physical manifestation, in making women appear more masculine and men more femenin.

      April 19, 2012 at 12:54 am |
    • edwardo

      @Colin If you were more worldly you would know that gays behave the way they do, usually, as a method of protest. It is our way of fighting back. It is our way of being rebellious against a hateful society. I have been with my parter for 14 years, and neither is masc or fem. We are 2 guys who love each other. We don't wear dresses, we work at manly jobs, but we are gay. I've met many str8 men who were much more femm than most gay people I know. Like I said... dumb post!

      April 19, 2012 at 8:45 am |
  8. MIke

    No....the Mormon Church isn't more gay friendly, they just have stopped making news with horrible things like kicking the gay couple off temple square for kissing. It's a public relations thing after their involvement in Proposition 8 imploded in their face. I know I was kicked out of the church not long ago. It's a psychological death trap, and one wouldn't understand it unless they lived through what I have.

    April 18, 2012 at 11:22 pm |
    • edwardo

      Yep, we have the same background. Glad to see you survived it. There were times I wanted to die. It took years to recover from the brainwashing. Actually, I still have to deal with it on a daily basis.

      April 18, 2012 at 11:30 pm |
  9. edwardo

    Religion is a memeplex. It will stop at nothing to ensure its survival. The infected are driven to propogate their ludicrous beliefs on others. They will do it in anyway they can. They use the threat of eternal punishment, earthly discrimination, wars, crusades, witch trials, etc. etc. It is indeed the scurge of all humanity.

    April 18, 2012 at 10:27 pm |
    • michael

      it is not GODS wrath and judgement that draws someone to himself. It is Jehovah kindness that lead me to turn to him. I realized that he was not forcing me to love him. I was not obligated to love him. Although, while we were yet sinners Christ died for us. The fall of the 2 humans was allowed to happen so that he might now have lots of humans that are no longer forced to love him. I don't have to serve him but I do because I realize by His spirit, he is slowly showing me his love. He is sweet to us when we think he is not sweet and is kind to us when we are not kind to him or others. He allowed satan to have his way might you say. So to each has gone his own way. Now, since God realizes that we did not ask to be created, he is all knowing and knows that your complaint is justifiable. Here we are down here on this earth and struggling with all kinds of difficulty. It seems for some that life is meaningless. Depression lurks at many of our homes at times and it seem that everybody is being mean to each other these days. GOD does not give anyone permission to be mean to another human. So, how nice is this GOD JEHOVAH. In the heavens the Father had a talk with the SON. It is just a whisper from the Father to the SON. Son, my only son that I have. We have always been together, we have talked and created and made all sorts of humans and fish and creatures. Although, the humans that we have created need us to save them. We must provide a way of escape for them. Son, my only son; I am so pure and Holy that when sin gets near me it burns. I want so badly to keep every single one of my humans for myself but I cannot force them to love me. Since we allowed those first folks to have knowledge of good and also of evil, this means we must provide a way out for them. Son, oh my son, what i must ask of you is since sin has entered the world, we must provide a way of escape so that i can be around them and I want to live inside of there hearts if they wish me to do so. So, my son whom I love, i am asking for you to leave heaven and go to earth. You will be born of a virgin woman whom I have selected, and you the only son of my loins, will save your people from there sins. Go and be obedient to what i tell you to do. Since your mother has not been touched by a man, and since you will not be from the loins of a man but you are my son in whom i love. Please go and be obedient all the way to the point of death. They will take you and nail you to a cross and will spit on you, but i will hear your words as you let go of your last breath, forgive them Daddy, for they don't know what they are doing, Three days later I will raise you from the dead. Then you will come back to me and be by my side. Son, I know that this is alot to ask of my only son but all our humans need help. Then we will send our spirit down and we will go down and live inside of our humans and we can have fellowship with them if they wish to have fellowship with us. But they must accept you my son, I require them to honor you my son in the same way they honor me, after all you are my son. Now no one will have an excuse and can say that we don't love them. We have been to earth and seen what it is to be a human. We have walked together and i have come to know what it is like to be a human and the strength of satans temptations. We can understand so much better since we have walked together on earth. We got to look eye to eye with other humans and we can remember when we designed each one, past and present. If this world and the people here have let you down, then maybe try reading God's word and coming to GOD as you are and let him change us if we need changing. Let God's spirit of freedom indwell you very inner most being and may you see God's love today.

      April 19, 2012 at 12:54 am |
    • edwardo

      @Michael You just proved my point. You ended your post with "may you see God's love today". You are trying to recruit me. You are trying to inflict your memeplex on me, so the meme aka religion will live on from generation to generation. You will stop at nothing, even trying to recruit a gay man, into your cult. Your disease wants to infect me. It's like a human mind virus.

      April 19, 2012 at 8:49 am |
  10. alpeaston

    JESUS, PLEASE SAVE ME FROM YOUR FOLLOWERS!!!

    April 18, 2012 at 8:28 pm |
    • michael

      that is funny what u said hey jesus save me from your followers that is funny funny

      April 18, 2012 at 9:34 pm |
  11. just sayin

    Yep prayer is evidence of psychosis. God Bless!

    April 18, 2012 at 8:20 pm |
  12. Dan

    Does that mean they can marry more than one?

    April 18, 2012 at 6:25 pm |
  13. Woody

    How does Obama's old Church Of Hate and the ever affable Reverend Wright feel about Gays?

    The last three openly Gay "worshippers" wound up dead, right after Barry anounced his Presidential run...

    April 18, 2012 at 5:46 pm |
  14. reason

    The evolution of religion continues. It must in order to stay relevant. According to Pew Research the majority of Americans now accept Evolution is true, and have watered down their creationist fairytale to be yet another story not to be taken literally.

    It is fun to watch religious morality bend to cultural norms of a society starting to rely on reason instead of superstition. Religious morality is totally dependant on each individual's subjective interpretation of their god through scripture, prayer and other experiences. There is no objectivity.

    The only path to any sort of objective morality is reason, since only the rules of logic are universal.

    April 18, 2012 at 5:10 pm |
    • mema

      All of your posts is made up bogus information. Lol. The majority of Americans do not accept that evolution it true. Religion by far have not bent their rules to fit the cultural norm. Did you even understand what you just read? The man was a pastor not is a pastor. He does not speak for LDS but in spite of its leaders who did not comment other than to say the have better acceptance of gay attracrion. The people speaking here say "its getting better" not that they allow them to openly practice being gay. So these students can have all the attraction the want but are NOT allowed to act upon it. So they are to be chaste and celebate. Evolution is still a theory as it does not yet have enough scientific or fossile records to conclusively prove it is true. But you know this already. Its these FACTS that make you and others like you bitter and resentfull, full of anger that all you can do is try to put those intelligent enough to see the truth down. Your efforts are futile.

      April 18, 2012 at 6:48 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      The DNA evidence alone confirms evolution has and still is taking place.

      April 18, 2012 at 6:50 pm |
    • mema

      No DNA effidence alone (lol) proves evolution. Are you freaking kidding. Thats is so rediculous. Where is all the fossil records? No not one or two extict chimps, real evidence. There should be tons of fossils found by now. There should have been millions of life before us to get to where we are today.

      April 18, 2012 at 6:59 pm |
    • sam

      Oh mema. Facepalm x 1000.

      April 18, 2012 at 7:14 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      Do you have any idea how rare the fossilization process is? The fact that we have the fossils we do is by itself amazing. DNA evidence shows conclusively common ancestry, which is the entire point of evolution. Different species sharing a common ancestor shows that different adaptations occur in different parts of the world. Go to talkorigins.org/faqs/comdesc if you want an in depth rundown of the evidence to support evolution as a fact, because I'm fairly certain that you won't really listen to anything said here.

      April 18, 2012 at 7:16 pm |
    • mema

      I already know how similar dna is duh. However that tiny percent is what makes a vast difference in determining the species. That is not conclusive evidence or make evolution a fact. You make excuses as to why there is no fossil records, and its not simply for man that they do not exsist it for all other modern life that they are absent for. That is a unmentionable amout of missing links. Is it not? Its almost as if life just showed up in all its forms as they are today. Oh but that is what happened! Because life WAS created. Look you can talk around your so called facts all you want but it does not change the truth. I can not show you God exsist and you can not prove evolution. You trust a book man wrote and I trust a book man wrote, inspired by God. Plain and simply. I have faith you do not. I accept that, why can't you!

      April 18, 2012 at 8:29 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      Perhaps because you are a complete liar that misrepresents the facts of evolution. Why would there be even a single percent of shared DNA if everything just popped into existnce as they are now? Evolution has been proven, and just because you are to much of a stubborn person to look at the actual evidence won't change that.

      April 18, 2012 at 8:33 pm |
    • mema

      Why why why! Thats your proof. You can do better than that cant you? I mean with all the scientist and archeologist searching to fill the holes of evolutionist theory they come up empty. Is it not just as possible that God created life that way? Are you and your dna not very simular to a cow, dog, pig! And yet how vastly different you are from those species. Is not our entire ecosystem and all things not made from the same atomic table of elements? Yet I have nothing in common with a tree. It is possible that all things can be evaluated scientifically and God is the greatest scientist of all! All powerfull! Nothing being impossible to Him!

      April 18, 2012 at 8:56 pm |
    • edwardo

      @mema – Nothing impossible for him? Can he create a wall so thick he can't tear it down? That statement you made is beyond stupid. Your theory begs the question.. Who created god? If it takes a god to make something from nothing, then it would take a god to make a god.

      April 18, 2012 at 9:01 pm |
    • michael

      there is one God and his personal name is Jehovah and he is the one true GOD and Jesus Christ our LORD. All other gods have ears but can't hear, eyes but can't see, mouths but cannot speak. The I AM is his name and he will destroy all of mans gods and only Jesus will be left standing. The truth will set us free, all of us. There is no one good, no not one. Salvation only comes through the blood of Christ by faith alone and not by works so that I cannot boast that I am saved by those good things i do, but those things good that I now do i do for Jesus. Jesus was a friend of sinners. We should be a friend of sinners but that takes maturity in Christ to do that. Be as sly as the serpent, and gentle as a dove.

      April 18, 2012 at 9:47 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      As I said to another poster. Your god is pretty vain and petty.

      April 18, 2012 at 9:53 pm |
    • edwardo

      @Michael – Have another sip of kool aid dude! Will you be catching a ride on the next comet, I hope???

      April 18, 2012 at 10:05 pm |
    • mema

      Actually micheal is correct in that Gods name is YHWH, translated to Jehovah. Its occurence is the bible is both hebrew and greek is excess of over 6000 times. However due to fears, real or not, of not saying is name correctly, it was in most occurences replaced by LORD or GOD, all caps to differenciate it from the text Lord and God, not all caps, that are actual translations. I have seen its occurrence in the original Dead Sea Scrolls myself. You assume his posts lack good judgement or kmowledge but it takes real research on find answers. God however is far from vain or petty! Actually he gives us the freedom to choose between not only faith that he exsists or not but to believe in Him or other God(s). He makes the run rise and rain fall on both the righteous and unrighteous. Oh and the koolaid thing is so 70's and over used. Geez. Does that mean you drink from the cup of your fellow inperfect man? Men who are here today and gone tomorrow? Men He created who feel they have superior knowledge to Gods? Who really is vain?

      April 18, 2012 at 11:04 pm |
    • edwardo

      @Mema – you and Michael can ride together on the comet! You can comet pool. Isn't it odd that a god would create beings that he found offensive? How can a perfect being create such imperfection? The whole concept is laughable at best.

      April 18, 2012 at 11:07 pm |
    • mema

      Its obvious that you have absolutely no knowledge of the abspect of freewill. God did not create robots or preprogram man to do His will. He gave man the freedom of choice. The ability to do right or wrong. To follow His laws or not. Not to say there are no consequences to choosing the latter. However He does not send one to burning tornment as some have adopted of Dante' inferno. No, its very simular to an atheists concept of simple death, no longer existing. Removing to opportunity to life enternal. I am sure you will comment on how eternal life sounds. In reality those same scientists you rely on for your viewpoint are one and the same who have concluded that in all reality humans should be able to continue living indefinately. Where the change and breakdown and aging process begins is of great speculation. That is where the concept of the fountain of youth comes from. And where vast amounts of scientific research is aimed towards, what makes us age and cellular breakdown. Do the research. I mean at least make informed and educated comments.

      April 18, 2012 at 11:28 pm |
    • edwardo

      @mema – The Christians' objection to this argument involves freewill. They say that a being must have freewill to be happy. The omnibenevolent God did not wish to create robots, so he gave humans freewill to enable them to experience love and happiness. But the humans used this freewill to choose evil, and introduced imperfection into God's originally perfect universe. God had no control over this decision, so the blame for our imperfect universe is on the humans, not God.
      Here is why the argument is weak. First, if God is omnipotent, then the assumption that freewill is necessary for happiness is false. If God could make it a rule that only beings with freewill may experience happiness, then he could just as easily have made it a rule that only robots may experience happiness. The latter option is clearly superior, since perfect robots will never make decisions which could render them or their creator unhappy, whereas beings with freewill could. A perfect and omnipotent God who creates beings capable of ruining their own happiness is impossible.
      Second, even if we were to allow the necessity of freewill for happiness, God could have created humans with freewill who did not have the ability to choose evil, but to choose between several good options.
      Third, God supposedly has freewill, and yet he does not make imperfect decisions. If humans are miniature images of God, our decisions should likewise be perfect. Also, the occupants of heaven, who presumably must have freewill to be happy, will never use that freewill to make imperfect decisions. Why would the originally perfect humans do differently?

      April 18, 2012 at 11:57 pm |
    • a person of the Name

      Without darkness there is no light.

      April 19, 2012 at 12:18 am |
    • mema

      Edwardo as I have stated it is a simple lack of knowlege on the subject. Any society where there is dictatorship that leaves its people without the fundamental freedom it so desires the people tend to be unfullfilled. I never said or implied that one could not find happiness with structered laws and regulations. In fact free country or not we are living in structure from the moment of birth. Our parents, government, rulers, school, emoloyers etc...have expectations and rules to follow in order to maintain order and structured citizens. We can still choose to not follow that structure but we must accept that there are consequences. Both immediate and longterm to those choices. I will not go into your drawn out view on why God although perfect created man with freewill rather than robots or preprogramed beings content with said controled factors and controled thinking, basically have instincts simular to animals. It is God right to choose how he created man and who am I, a lowly human in compairison, to question God? As I said before it is your lack of knowlege of the bible and its teaching as to why you can not fathum the revelations of scripture. Heavenly creation was also given freewill and those that chose to not abide by Gods rule are today Satan and his legions who were cast to the earth. They will be abolished in the future Armageddon. As I have stated it takes research and learning to see broad picture. It could serve one well to do the research regardless if its for religous reasons or simply to broaden one insight into what society and its populous believe and what shapes others perceptions. One need not believe it or accept it as fact, it can serve to broaden general knowledge of subjects. As I studied evolution despite the fact that I am a creationist. Just a different view. Also man in Gods image is not as you percieve it to mean. Alas its much more complex and I just leave it at if you wish to know, do some studies on religous beliefs or not.

      April 19, 2012 at 1:36 am |
    • christians are garbage

      mema is a fucking idiot

      April 19, 2012 at 2:15 am |
    • mema

      Awe how insightfull. This shows your true ingnorance of worldly matters and subjects and in general. Isnt it passed your bed time!

      April 19, 2012 at 3:43 am |
    • Really

      mema,

      2 lines – 3 errors. You look more and more stupid with each post. Keep it up!

      April 19, 2012 at 3:52 am |
    • Really

      ... make that 4!

      April 19, 2012 at 3:53 am |
    • Prolixian

      Arguing about how to properly interpret, according to you, the words of your fairy tale, is a fool's errand.
      You cannot even prove it to be true. It is a fairy tale.
      If you cannot even prove it to not be a fairy tale, what makes you think any of the internal concepts and words mean anything to someone who doesn't believe as you do? Your cognitive disconnect, despite asking others to walk "in someone else's shoes", is clearly blinding you to your untenable position as regards truths we can all agree on to provide a common dialogue we can use to communicate.
      Or I could say "don't feed the trolls" to my atheist friends so they don't encourage your mindless arguing over something you cannot even prove your own opinion to be right on, but I'm getting a headache. Arguing with dumb crazy people hurts my brain.

      April 19, 2012 at 4:13 am |
  15. Pipe-Dreamer

    Most people of Humanisms' creeds want credentialisms to become as a guide dog for their rancidedness values in mimmickeries that swell their prides' dogmatical entourages in social crcle jerks! Let Go! Let God alone for Christ's sake!

    April 18, 2012 at 4:55 pm |
  16. Pipe-Dreamer

    What really are people? Cellular structures perhaps? What are cellular structures? Are they not made up of atoms? What are atoms? Are not atoms made up of neutrons, protons and electrons?What are these 3 things made up of? Are these 3 things made up of quarks and gluons and ? Such is Life! Such are the living organisms of ladled movements going here and dithering there! My being but one quark away from knowing that which was and things that are and there is forever a myriad of possibilities in immeasurable amounts! The "weening" process toward the perfection of "wisdomnomics" is timed by the Godly in the everness that abounds practically everywhere known and yet unknown by us frugal folks!
    April 17, 2012 at 1:40

    April 18, 2012 at 4:35 pm |
    • just sayin

      Assumption, nothing more. If one assumes with no facts/evidence then one must have faith.

      April 18, 2012 at 4:37 pm |
    • Pipe-Dreamer

      So then,,, Am I safely caricturizing you as an "Assumptionologist"? Where did you get your degree from?

      April 18, 2012 at 4:51 pm |
    • just sayin

      Faith is the evidence of things not seen. God bless

      April 18, 2012 at 4:54 pm |
    • just sayin

      If its got a degree its cheated or stolen. God bless

      April 18, 2012 at 4:55 pm |
    • sam stone

      "Faith is the evidence of things not seen"

      So is psychosis

      April 18, 2012 at 4:57 pm |
    • Pipe-Dreamer

      just sayin,,,, wrote,,, "If its got a degree its cheated or stolen. God bless"

      May God Bless those that have "earned" their degree(s)!

      April 18, 2012 at 5:01 pm |
    • just sayin

      just sayin

      Faith is the evidence of things not seen. God bless
      >
      oops correction, faith is assumption out of the absence of fact/evidence.

      April 18, 2012 at 5:03 pm |
    • just sayin

      Nope, faith is the evidence of things not seen. God bless

      April 18, 2012 at 5:14 pm |
    • just sayin

      psy·cho·sis- A severe mental disorder in which thought and emotions are so impaired that contact is lost with external reality.
      >
      If a person were to walk around saying that Thor or RA speaks to them and they can feel thier presence, would they fall under this definition?

      April 18, 2012 at 5:15 pm |
    • just sayin

      Faith is firm belief in something for which there is no proof. If there is no proof then there is no evidence. Faith itself is evidence of that person having wishful thinking. If there is no proof or evidence, one witha sound mind cannot claim "unseen". A sound mind recognizes that they simply have faith because there is not and never was evidence. Now back to me holding my hands over my ears and yellling I CANT HEAR YOU.

      April 18, 2012 at 5:21 pm |
    • evolvedDNA

      You have some idea of what you are about, but the mud from which you evolved appears, in your case to, still be part of your writing.

      April 18, 2012 at 7:34 pm |
  17. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things .

    April 18, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
    • just sayin

      Yes it does. I had the runs in the middle of driving home. I prayed God please don't let me $h !t myself. It was like warm hands entered my bu tt and stopped me from sh! t t ing myself. God Bless

      April 18, 2012 at 4:41 pm |
    • Jesus

      Prayer doesn’t not; you are such a LIAR. You have NO proof it changes anything! A great example of prayer proven not to work is the Christians in jail because prayer didn't work and their children died. For example: Susan Grady, who relied on prayer to heal her son. Nine-year-old Aaron Grady died and Susan Grady was arrested.

      An article in the Journal of Pediatrics examined the deaths of 172 children from families who relied upon faith healing from 1975 to 1995. They concluded that four out of five ill children, who died under the care of faith healers or being left to prayer only, would most likely have survived if they had received medical care.

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs!.!~

      April 18, 2012 at 4:53 pm |
    • just sayin

      Anyone who would steal a name on an anonymous blog will degenerate to a miserable, dirty, mealymouthed sob at every given opportunity.
      Proven.

      April 18, 2012 at 4:53 pm |
    • mema

      Really jesus! You just paste the same exact post over and over and over, like a broken record you are. You know nothing of faith and prayer and what it means to have them answered. It can not be summed up or evaluated by mans standars or so called science. Prayers are not a matter of a miracle for every Amen. Thats how you see it. For someone without faith it can not be defined. Just as you can not grasp how someone could believe in God.and creation or faith. It can not be explained to those who close their minds and hearts to its practice.

      April 18, 2012 at 8:45 pm |
    • Jesus

      "Really jesus! You just paste the same exact post over and over and over, like a broken record you are. You know nothing of faith and prayer and what it means to have them answered. It can not be summed up or evaluated by mans standars or so called science. Prayers are not a matter of a miracle for every Amen. Thats how you see it. For someone without faith it can not be defined. Just as you can not grasp how someone could believe in God.and creation or faith. It can not be explained to those who close their minds and hearts to its practice."

      Thanks for proving my post correct. LMAO!

      April 19, 2012 at 11:20 am |
  18. BigToots (Colorado)

    Mormons are pragmatic (among other things). They want their man Mitt to get elected. Their anti-gay stance may result in a loss of votes so they will "lighten up" on their stance.

    April 18, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
    • VegasRage

      But don't mess with their golden plates or magic underwear!

      April 18, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  19. Joe

    "The scientific evidence of the innateness of hom os exuality, bi s exuality, and transg enderism is overwhelming, and more peer-reviewed studies which bolster this fact are being added all the time. Science has long regarded s exual orientation – and that's all s exual orientations, including heterose xuality – as a phenotype. Simply put, a phenotype is an observable set of properties that varies among individuals and is deeply rooted in biology. For the scientific community, the role of genetics in s exuality is about as "disputable" as the role of evolution in biology."

    Erik – I keep hearing about these "overwhelming" proofs, but have yet to see anything definitive. First, evolution has a much richer research history than this issue does, so comparing the two is a little misleading (for now at least). Second, the fact that reparative therapy has poor results and that a lot of medical associations disprove of it, doesn't prove s exual orientation is genetic in nature. That supports a notion that that type of therapy doesn't work but doesn't prove that it is innate. I love science as well and certainly wouldn't dispute something that is proven, but lets call it like it is, this isn't yet. There are studies, and findings, they may point to a conclusion...depending on interpretation, but nothing is definitively showing that it is not nurture or environment, but rather is in born. Note that nothing proves it is nurture or environment either, but once again, lack of proof for one hypothesis does not prove another. In this case I don't think there will ever be any definitive findings either way.

    Which in the end leaves both sides just expressing opinions, maybe somewhat founded, somewhat supported, but just opinions.

    Now if I can talk a little bit outside of our understanding of the natural world. I believe there is a higher law. That not all knowledge and law is limited to our perception. I feel to assume that we are the end of our creation and that all things are limited to our understanding is a little arrogant. I am talking not of scientific proof, but faith. They are not mutually exclusive though. By faith we can receive knowledge of things that are true, but not seen. I know that this church is C hrist's church on the earth. By following it's teachings we can draw closer to Him and receive what we need to return to our Heavenly Father, my father and yours. He is the source of ultimate knowledge. I believe this to be true.

    It is a hard thing to know that the L ord speaks to his servants the Prophets and be dedicated to following their teachings in a time when the world is opposed to you. At least to me it is at times. You want to have compassion and you want to belong, but everywhere around you the very core of you is being vilified. Some cave under this pressure. I believe that if we are true to the teachings of the S avior and have faith and compassion to everyone, even to those who hate and despise what people of faith believe, then in the end everything will experience will be for our good.

    This is what the Church of J esus C hrist of Latter Day S aints has taught me. It is the L ord's Gospel and I would encourage all to come and see for themselves.

    April 18, 2012 at 4:02 pm |
    • YeahRight

      "I am talking not of scientific proof, but faith. "

      Yeah, that's cause the experts have proven you wrong and your ego can't handle it. What is hysterical is you are tying use a book that has been proven to not be a historical book as your proof. LOL!

      April 18, 2012 at 4:06 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      @Joe says:
      "Which in the end leaves both sides just expressing opinions, maybe somewhat founded, somewhat supported, but just opinions."

      That is the difference between you and science. Science keeps looking for answers, you do not. You just throw up your hands and say the higher power, the higher power. Science is ongoing, ever changing and providing new answers that are challenged over and over but the religious are plain ignorant and lazy.

      April 18, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
    • Pipe-Dreamer

      Joe

      Let's ASSume I wanna get my rocks' off! Do I find someone willing to jerk me off or should I do such myself? The point being, "Any se-xualistics of social constructivisms are just that constructs by those who "imagine" things as being relavent to supposed social normalities which is but a joke on the flip sides of morbidities!" Let Go! Let God alone for Christ's sake!

      .

      April 18, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
    • Dave

      @yeahright....."experts have proven you wrong and your ego can't handle it"... Which experts are we talking about? I'm sure both sides of any issue can produce experts. As another post put it 'science is always changing'. It's amazing how many people are willing to categorically 'prove' something based on what we know today when we don't know everything. Lots of smart people died thinking the world was flat...and they were wrong.

      Ultimately people believe the experts who align with their own perceptions. We (yourself included) are not as persuaded by the experts as you believe because of our own bias.

      April 18, 2012 at 4:35 pm |
    • YeahRight

      “Which experts are we talking about? I'm sure both sides of any issue can produce experts. As another post put it 'science is always changing'. It's amazing how many people are willing to categorically 'prove' something based on what we know today when we don't know everything. Lots of smart people died thinking the world was flat...and they were wrong.
      Ultimately people believe the experts who align with their own perceptions. We (yourself included) are not as persuaded by the experts as you believe because of our own bias.”
      The fact you don’t know what you’re talking about is priceless. Let’s see…experts…the American Psychological Association, the American Medical Association, the American Counseling Association and the American Psychiatric Association, The World Health Organization, etc…etc..etc..

      Actually Dave you’re wrong, I use to be one of those fundamentalists Christians until I was awaken by the hate and prejudice towards this group that is not founded on real facts. So you’re wrong because if it hadn’t been for experts to leaders African Americans and women would not have gotten their civil rights either but they changed peoples biases. .

      April 18, 2012 at 5:01 pm |
    • Maya

      Prove it or shut it.

      April 18, 2012 at 7:58 pm |
  20. Voice of Reason

    godless underwear for sale!

    April 18, 2012 at 3:58 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke and Eric Marrapodi with daily contributions from CNN's worldwide newsgathering team.