Saturday, May 8, 2010

... and Justice for All

When I started this blog I just wanted to vent about my feelings, my hurts. Maybe that is not enough. Mormons, please watch this trailer.

Here is the trailer to the movie '8:The Mormon Proposition' out in cinemas June 18.

then read this

The rising generation will not tolerate the homophobia, sexism, bigotry and hatred of the past. The youth of today will vote with their feet, turning their backs on falsehoods and institutions that maintain such inequality. The youth of today know that it is only when we see ourselves in the Other that we can actually realise our goals for equality.


  1. Prop 8 is what triggered everything for me and my wife in questioning the church. It was the spark that caused us to stand back and say, "This is wrong and we do not agree." We also decided to start finding the answers to our questions. The way the church handled Prop 8 is just embarrassing and shows the hate for gays and lesbians that the church harbors.

    This is not the first time that the church has completely screwed up and looked stupid. The practice of polygamy was oppressive against women. Polygamy is negative in every way, not one shred of a positive outcome.

    The church should be ashamed of its actions on Prop 8, the leaders of the Mormon church are absolutely wrong on this.

  2. Hey Maureen, the link you posted is broken (one 'http' too many in it).

  3. Thanks Cavalcanti, I think I've got it right this time :)

    I imagine that it was a very different experience for you Bowie, living right in the heart of Mormondom, to observe things going on around Prop 8. Here in Australia we didn't hear very much but we are hearing it pretty loud and clear now.

    I can only imagine what it was like for Californians!

  4. We actually had Lynn Wardle here in Perth during it; I think he gave some firesides on the subject. I was led to believe that Wardle was one of the main intellectual forces behind the Church's involvement in Prop 8, and that he had been acting in an advisory capacity to the Brethren on the social and legal consequences of same-sex marriage.
    I was surprised at how varied the reactions were among the members here.

  5. I wish I had been aware of those firesides.

    Was one of the legal consequences the notion that Mormon Bishops would have been required by law to marry gay couples?

    Would you like to elaborate on the reactions you observed?

    I too was surprised to discover racist, sexist and homophobic opinions amongst the members during the last year or so that I was there. I did not notice these attitudes until after I had experienced my own initial 'lightbulb moment' about the church.

  6. That wasn't one of the consequences that Wardle argued for, but I did hear it pop up occasionally. Actually, from the very brief interaction we had, I thought Wardle was very intelligent and articulate (I hate it when that happens!) - I still have a copy of a peer-reviewed monograph he edited on the subject, entitled "What's the Harm?"

    When I say the reactions were 'varied', I really mean it - I think I saw pretty much the full spectrum of reactions from members when the subject came up in conversation. Maybe I had lower expecations to begin with, but I was actually surprised by how thoughtful and open minded the comments were on both sides of the argument. The exchanges here in Perth were far less vitriolic than some of the ones I witnessed on the internet.

  7. Anonymous - because I don't want to be persecuted.
    I actually had a conversation with a member last night. We both disagree on the subject. He sees homosexuality as a choice, or as being akin to alcoholism - you may be born with a tendency, but you are meant to fight it. He is also of the opinion that god has created us male and female. There is no possibility of reasoning with him that this limited view recognises only XX and XY, even though there are variations including XXY XYY. For example, there are people who present as female and have a female oriented brain, but are actually XY - male. Their condition is generally not discovered until menstruation does not start and is investigated. At this point it is discovered that they have a "blind" vagina (no uterus), and undescended testes.
    However, they definitely have testicles, and they have the chromosomal makeup of a male.
    So, according to Mormonism, are they then male?
    I know the answer would be that they look female and have a feminised brain so they therefore are female.
    Are they allowed to marry in the temple?
    So then if forensics came in and did a study, they would discover that two "males" (XY chromosome) had clasped hands on that altar.
    Now I'm confident that nobody in their right mind would insist on classifying an individual with this syndrome as male. However, what if this person was attracted to a female? Technically you then have XY and XX.
    Is that a problem or not?
    And what about someone who is XXY and identifies as a male?
    Or someone who is XXY and identifies as a female?
    They have more Xs than Ys, so are they more female than male? Or is the presence of one Y enough to make them male?
    Do we classify them based on the appearance of their external genitalia?
    If so, then what about someone who is born with a small penis? Male or female?
    Normal sized penis - male or female?
    Normal sized penis, but later discovered to be XX and suffers from congenital adrenal hyperplasia? Male or female?
    In the case of androgen insensitivity, these people tend to be classified according to external appearances (appear female even though they are XY so society views them as female and therefore generally believes they should be attracted to males - XY). But with CAH, you have someone who may appear male, but internally is female. However, because the external genitalia can tend to look "not quite right", this is normally discovered at birth with subsequent life-long medication and surgery to make the genitalia more female in appearance. So they are raised as females. But in both of these instances - and many others - the determination of gender is a somewhat murky area, not clearly delineated by any of the factors such as genitalia, chromosomes or brain gender identification.

  8. (Still me)
    What then of homosexuals?
    They may have genitalia, chromosomes and a brain that clearly identify them as one gender, but be very clearly attracted to the same gender. We now know through various studies on the human brain that brains can tend from the very feminized, to the very masculinized, and that this can be in spite of the other hormones and chromosomes influencing gender. We cannot look at our daughters who are naturally drawn to dolls and frills, and our sons who are naturally drawn to trucks and noise, and believe that this is something that is chosen, rather than something innate. I could no more have made my sons like frills and a lack of noise than get them to grow tails and swing from trees. Actually, growing tails would probably have been easier! But the point is, for some people they are "wired" to be attracted to the same sex. Granted all of these things occur on a continuum, and so for some who are not as far to the extreme of being attracted to the same gender, I am sure that they could meet and fall in love with someone of the opposite sex. But for myself, I am strongly heterosexual and could no more be convinced to have sex with a woman than to bungee jump.
    Most of us are lucky to be born with genitalia that match our mind.
    Some people are not.
    I would not like to walk in their shoes.
    I also will not judge them nor condemn them to a life of celibacy and loneliness just because the gender that society chooses to assign them is attracted to the "same" gender.
    And no, it's not the same as some people who never get married their whole life. We are talking about people who may find someone and fall in love, but get told "no."
    Put yourself in their shoes.
    What if the world was suddenly turned upside down and the church (I'm speaking to the Mormons here) told you that to make it to the celestial kingdom, you had to marry someone of the same gender, have sex with them, and raise children together.
    I mean, really think about it carefully.
    And then try to have compassion for people not lucky enough to be heterosexual.
    It is not an easy life, it is not something that they choose, and it is not something you just "think" or pray your way out of. Homosexual teenagers and young adults have the highest rates of suicide. It is not a choice. It is really hard.
    And Mormons feel that they have the right to condemn this because........
    So the people who condoned plural marriage feel they can take the moral high ground against gays?
    Give me a break!

  9. How refreshing is it to have a "good anonymous" poster! Thank you for posting that information; I learned some new things that I never knew about.

    It all comes down to science. In previous times, the understanding of gender or gender confusion was just not understood completely. People followed the idea of "God said this..." Today, science, not God, has given us the information to help us understand this subject. I love following the counsels of smart/scientific men or women.

  10. I learned heaps! Thanks for sharing all of that information anonymous. You've really got me thinking, since I used to buy into the idea that god could help people to change their sexual preferences... I wonder what other falsehoods I still have in my brain that need to be challenged.

  11. Hi Maureen, I live in Oz {and was raised Mo} -where do you live? Probably not where I do... but thought I'd check anyway. Please respond on email or talk incognito on either of my blogs, no one knows yet...

  12. Hey Natalie, I'll be sure not to mention Mormondom etc on your blogs. I'm in Perth. I'll email you in a bit :)

  13. anonymous, thank you!I have learned even more about the scientific argument for same sex marriage and well same sex anything. I would just like to add that for me, no matter what the reason, no matter how you feel about your own gender/sexuality or physical make up the simple fact is, it's your life. You decide who to love when to love and how to love. Love is a beautiful and amazing thing and should never be seen as wrong no matter what. No one has the right to persecute others for loving someone. Particularly a hypocritical, sexist, homophobic, bigotous organised religion NO MATTER WHAT THE RELIGION. I hope that one day I am lucky enough to witness two people of the same sex declare their love for each other forever and have a legally binding marriage that cannot be so callously taken away. Peace and Love <3