An Open Letter to the ‘nacle

Remember when you were upset last fall when one poll after another revealed that a substantial number of liberals applied a religious test to Mitt Romney?

I tried to explain to you that people felt threatened by our involvement in racist and sexist discrimination. We resisted racial equality for 24 years after the United States Supreme Court had finally joined the cause of equality. To date, the United States of America remains the only western democracy that fails to guarantee the rights of women in the constitution.

In part, that is because of Mormon efforts headed up by Gordon Hinckley to derail the ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment that had cleared Congress with a bipartisan majority.

Our actions continue to have consequences in the lives of women. Only recently, the Supreme Court ruled that women cannot appeal to courts in cases of pay discrimination if perpetrators can conceal the initial violation of law for 181 days.

If I were a politically aware woman, I would have to take a very close look before I could vote for a Mormon conservative. Lilly Ledbetter, for example, lost thousands of dollars in wages because of the LDS opposition to the Equal Rights Amendment and today her social security benefits are substantially lower than they would have been had she been treated fairly.

Although the consequences of our intolerance continue today, one might argue that the priesthood ban and the Equal Rights Amendment are thirty years in the past.

Unfortunately, our leaders have dedicated the last decade to interfering in the marriages of our gay children and neighbors. As our intolerant agenda continues, our victims have taken notice and are targeting us as the perpetrators of their discrimination.

If we want tolerance for ourselves, we need to stop targeting others. Everyone who demanded a fair shake for Mitt has an obligation to speak out against the homophobic agenda of our leaders. We have no claim on tolerance while we remain a threat to the rights of others and should not be surprised when our friends and neighbors regard us with suspicion.

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8 Responses

  1. Truly Confused says:

    Well said!

  2. Hellmut says:

    Thank you, Truly Confused!

  3. Dulcamara says:

    I have to agree. The question, “You’re Mormon?” is usually followed with a polygamy anecdote. Predictable, and I can counteract. Now I’m being lumped in with the Westboro Baptists and the “God hates fags” crowd. Nice.
    And not only does the rest of the world regarded us as racist, sexist and homophobic, but among my own church I’m “not valiant” or “less obedient” for thinking for myself and not siding with the churches stance on Gay and Lesbian relationships.

    Sometimes you just can’t win.

  4. Wonderment says:

    Excellent point, Hellmut ! I really like your blog — very well done ! – Wondement

  5. Hellmut says:

    Yes, our life could be a lot easier if we respected other people, Dulcamara. And there is nothing valiant about discriminating a small minority. Actually, it’s cowardly.

    Over time, bullies do acquire a reputation. That’s all.

  6. Hellmut says:

    Thanks, Wonderment! I hope that you will come back.

  7. wry catcher says:

    It seems so obvious, and this is very well-stated. I wish mormons could accept it.

    I will never get over the ERA thing.

  8. Truly Confused says:

    Wry-I am on the same page with you on that one. Finding out about the ERA thing is what made me start searching for what else the church had lied about.

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