A Mormon man named Joe Vogel wrote a very thought provoking and sincere article about California's Proposition 8, and how the Mormon Church has donated $19 million to try to help overturn the gay marriage amendment.
"With Proposition 8 it is time to stand for justice, not discrimination. It is time to stand for equality. It is time to be on the right side of history. Regardless of race, gender, or sexuality human beings are human beings and deserve to be treated as such. Today I voice my public support in favor of treating my gay and lesbian brothers and sisters as equals, and ask my fellow Mormons to do the same."
The entire article is very informative on the history of some important milestones in the church and in the world - from the Equal Rights Amendment for women, to Race Equality, and more.
I often find myself wondering why some of the most religious people seem to judge and condemn others when I was under the impression that most religions teach love and forgiveness, plus that "Judge not lest thee be judged" or "let he who has never sinned cast the first stone" stuff. Those aren't the exact quotes, but I recall learning those lessons as a kid.
I especially do not understand why some people have issues with other people being gay. I am of the impression that gay people are born gay, and the only "choice" they have in the matter is whether or not to be honest about that. Often, we see people who choose to deny their inner most feelings and try to "turn" themselves straight because they are taught that being gay is "wrong". This just encourages closeted, dangerous behavior where people like Larry Craig try to solicit sex in an airport bathroom.
Anyway, this is where Vogel breaks it all down -
"So here we are, in 2008, and now the threat is gay people who are already gay, who love each other and in many cases live together, and want to get married. How does this hurt the average Mormon family?
If the concern really was the practical welfare of the family, perhaps the Church could instead invest its vast resources into making healthcare universal and affordable, expanding the Family and Medical Leave Act, cracking down on child predators, and improving the quality of our educational system. All of these issues have a direct impact on my family and millions of others.
You hear of marriages ruined all the time because of abuse, neglect, or stress over finances. But I have personally never heard of a divorce caused by another gay couple getting married.
Yet instead of focusing on issues that can really help nourish our families we obsess over a word. A word we refuse to share. A word that has never been perfectly fixed. There was a time, after all, when inter-racial marriage was just as taboo and illegal as gay marriage. Marriage has been many things, but the common ideal has been and should continue to be a relationship built on love and commitment.
So to my fellow Mormons: I ask you to please re-consider. Take the time you would spend fighting this errant cause with your family. Go to a movie. Take a drive together. Watch the World Series.
Maybe you don't completely understand homosexuality. Maybe you think it's a sin. But shouldn't we leave that to God and allow others to be who they are and make their own choices? As followers of Christ, isn't it always better to err on the side of compassion and love? "