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January 19, 2022

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RandyJuly 15, 2015

This truly makes me sad. I don't know how you can defend traditional marriage without appearing as someone who is judgemental. This is why it makes more sense to me to approach the recent events with acceptance and love. While I may keep my religious beliefs, I don't have to let it hurt others. We are all equal under God and He is the ultimate judge. Why should I be thinking what is right or wrong for another? Why should I feel the need to take another persons rights away? To truly be Christlike, we must humble ourselves and treat everyone with equality no matter our disagreements.

Bryn St.ClairJuly 13, 2015

Frank, I think what happens when same sex couples come to church and want to participate, is that people will be loving and welcoming, just as we are to someone who smells of smoke or has a baby out of wedlock. When they want to teach Sunday school the bishop will tell them, please keep the commandments, be baptized into full fellowship and then of course, you can teach Sunday school if you teach the doctrine of Christ in word and in deed. This is not a fearful thing, we have seen this in many countries where people live together unmarried and want to join the church. Please come, we say, the church and commandments are for everyone. We don't need to react or pre-act in fear, we know who we are and we problem solve.

SKS HelloJuly 11, 2015

Interestingly enough, many people that I know that are not LDS are finding that their personal beliefs align with the Proclamation, and also the Brethren. When I share things that come from them, it is met with approval and encouraging comments. Yes, it seems to be a larger split in the belief system, and there should be no surprises here. I am glad to share this article with them. They, as I, will approve wholeheartedly.

FrankJuly 11, 2015

I'm not convinced that the comparison of pro life and same sex marriage is accurate. Very few people celebrate abortion. It is mostly a private act. Access to abortion is sufficient. However, everyone wants to celebrate marriage. Add to that the desire to have their homosexual feelings justified and accepted means that there will be continued pressure from LGBT activists to accept them and their behavior as normal. What will happen when the married gay couple and their adopted children want to attend and participate in church meetings and teach in Primary and Sunday School? It will happen.

Mary Louise MinerJuly 11, 2015

Thank you for this article. It has helped me put more pieces of the puzzle together in defense of traditional marriage.

MichelleJuly 10, 2015

I thought this speech was very well done & brought up some great points. I hope the American people will not clam up & succomb to the social & media pressure to accept gay marriage & ideals as normal. Heavens, we all know the gay agenda has infiltrated nearly every tv show & movie these days. That kind of indoctrination of our society is what worries me. The pro-gay attitudes of the media seek to normalize homosexuality in all our minds so this generation of kids, teens, & young adults will be totally comfortable with homosexuality having grown up with it being discussed & shown as commonplace in the media much of their lives. People in general & the media don't discuss & strive to indoctrinate everyone that abortion is perfectly acceptable as much as they do with the gay issue. I think this may be a defining difference that will truly affect how our society reacts to & handles this SSM issue in the years to come. We definitely have to speak up as you said within our homes & to others in an articulate calm manner to help persuade & teach of the societal effects that will truly take place in the years to come if SSM & homosexuality is supported as being normal & becomes totally commonplace. This all worries me but is so evident of the signs of the time when our society will call good evil & evil good. A time where many people will become more & more like those who were in Sodom & Gomorrah.

Richard S. HixsonJuly 10, 2015

Good article. Enjoyed it! Question: How or what can we as individual citizens, living on any street in any community, best be "supporters of traditional marriage and...not retreat...not be intimidated into silence...not give up trying to find the right words and arguments...and stand as witnesses and living examples of the goodness of their beliefs...and stand up for the right of others to dissent?

DanJuly 10, 2015

It's quite apparent the path that this will follow. It is naive and wishful thinking to assume any path but the racism path. After all - abortion is a choice and race and sexuality (per current perspective) are not. The argument has already been made and will undoubtedly be reinforced culturally that if one cannot control the decision, the acceptability of that decision then cannot be questioned by society. Efforts to throw up perpetuation of species, AIDS, rectal cancer and homosexual pediphelia are at best straw men arguments which will be met with overpopulation and scarcity of resources, Heteosexual AIDS (ala Magic Johnson), other forms of behaviorally induced cancer (lung, oral, etc), and even the recent FBI raid of Subway's hetro family man Jared. Not to mention that traditional marriage supporters who spout those rationale sound dangerously like segregationists did decades ago. Supporters of traditional marriage must resist the sensationalism of comparing homosexual marriage to pediphelia, bestialuty, polygamy etc and focus instead on the virtues of their own standard and it's outcomes. Therein lies a path that might (albeit unlikely) allow religious freedom an equal stage on this issue.

TimJuly 10, 2015

Good try. Kind try. Sometimes well-reasoned try. Even a compassionate try. So, true thanks. That said, I didn't want to offend anyone -- well, maybe that's OK -- but I disagree with the thought that this piece is totally well reasoned. Yes, it has lots of well-reasoned part, for sure. Except the parts that aren't. In my humble opinion! :-) You equate support for or opposition to abortion with support for or opposition to same-sex marriage? Hmmmmm, I would argue that the very distinct difference in the two is that in the case of the abortion debate, the main point of contention is about whether or not a fetus is a human; that is, the debate among rational, respectful, neighborly people (such as us!) is the detail of at what point does a fetus become human and have rights. Yes, there are "constitutional rights" issues argued too, but the fundamental brawl is about whether or not a fetus is a "baby" and at what point does that become true. People have different opinions. Imagine. (Including rational other-siders who don't think aborting a two-week-old fetus is "the bloody dismemberment of little" babies." But, NO ONE is arguing that the parties in same-sex relationships are not human. (No one except truly creepy people.) The distinction, I think (and I'll go with that "I think" thing), is that the discrimination is literal and pointed: "You, LGBTQ person, are, in fact, part of the "all (men) are created equal" dynamic, yep, but I still think I can allow you to be treated unequally." Note that I didn't say that "I (the speaker) want to treat you unequally." Because people have the right to not jump into it themselves, or to perform same-sex marriages, or to like "Will and/or Grace" or look at rainbows or own Pottery Barn catalogues. What is not allowed, according to Supreme Court, is society-wide discrimination -- soften the word or not, that's where it falls. Sorry, the problem I have with this opinion piece is that for three quarters of it it seems to caution care, respect and accommodation, but in the end -- heck, they are his words, not mine -- he still argues for standing up and refusing to be silenced. Nope, I don’t think at all that the author is in any way hateful or viscerally bigoted; I just think he’s hiding a wolf that's in him with a column filled with ba-ba-baaaaaaa's. And he's calling out other hungry wolves. OK, what's with the wolf thing, but I'm in that loop. Never mind that part. Just be nice to my sister. How about that?

ScottJuly 10, 2015

The difference between the abortion issue and the SSM issue is that those opposed to abortion have been able to show and discuss an immediate result to abortion-the ending of a life. The negative effects of SSM will take time to be fully realized in our society. In fact they already exist all around us like water in a fish bowl. SSM is only another symptom our degrading society. Because SSM is couched in the ideas of love, fairness and equality, I am afraid that the path for those opposed to it will be like the cake bakers, flower arrangers, photographers and CEO’s who have already suffered as social pariahs. Opposition to SSM needs a simple, compelling, factual, non-religious message to turn our society from this path. A little Sodom & Gomorrah hail and brimstone would help as well.

Carol ColtrinJuly 10, 2015

What a well, thought-out article. Your insight is honest, balanced and refreshing. Thank you. Your last two paragraphs will go on my bulletin board. It is so helpful to see just what we face and how to face it. I have a sister that is totally different than me in just about every way. Do I love her? Yes. Do I join in her activities? No. Do I tolerate her? Yes. Do I respect her? No. Do I acknowledge her free agency to choose her own life? Absolutely! Why do I do that? Because, I hope others will do the same for me.

Ralph C. HancockJuly 10, 2015

Great insight from a religious freedom attorney with great practical experience in this area. He sees the reciprocal influence of politics-law on the one hand and ideas-culture on the other. Lawyers often imagine the law as a technical instrument largely independent of culture; and culture warriors often imagine that their efforts to affect ideas and "private" practices are removed from the powerful teaching force of the law. Mr. Dushku sees the connection, and offers the political-legal-philosophical reponse to Roe v. Wade as a model that can give us some hope in standing up to the joint legal and cultural force of the Obergefell disaster. I'm having trouble mustering optimism, but he shows the form it would take. I suppose I would just add that the counter-cultural pushback morally and philosophically will have to dig even deeper than in the case of Roe. That is: the premises of "progressive" liberalism will need to be questioned even more deeply and thoroughly. We'll need to be both very smart and very brave to do this.

Nancy KriegerJuly 10, 2015

Thank you for this timely and very thought provoking article. The recent ruling by the supreme court has been upsetting and I have understood how I, as a citizen cannot sit idly by and throw my hands up in the air, without having the courage to speak out kindly but stand up for what I believe, as you state that we must do. if we want the our values to be respected and reflected in our culture, we must do our part so that we have a collective voice, with a strong body advocating our values.

Merle LamsonJuly 10, 2015

I can only agree with the article, and am grateful for the writer thereof.

AnnJuly 10, 2015

Thank you for this thoughtful article on how we may stay true to the deep held belief as proclaimed in the Proclamation on the Family. I appreciate the counsel on how to stand up for what I know to be true while allowing others the same right of belief. Respect and courteous conversation will be a vital component in any discussion.

GrimalkinJuly 10, 2015

There are reasons why, in the long term, racism and abortion are being treated and thought about differently. The more people learn about racism, the less defensible it becomes. The separation, discrimination, persecution, and violence are repugnant and indefensible wihen actual deeds done in the pursuit of racism become better known. The opposite has happened with abortion as more knowledge becomes available of the effects, and especially the effects on the baby. The bloody dismemberment of little bodies, or the struggles to live of aborted babies, and the knowledge of the very human movements and reactions of babies in the womb create a whole new understanding that this is destruction of a human being. Only time will tell if the treatment of those who disagree with same sex marriage follows those who disagree with abortion. If it starts to become apparent that same sex marriage has major harmful effects on people and society then public opinion will begin to turn. Otherwise it will continue to seem like discrimination. Other arguments need to be looked for such as that gay marriages don't lead to perpetuation a of the species, the physical health problems from gay relations: AIDS and increased rectal cancer risks, and the awfulness of homosexual pedophilia.

AlanJuly 10, 2015

Maybe your "pie in the sky" of "it's okay to be pro life" works in Utah, but it does not work in the real world. I get trashed continuously when I say that I am opposed to abortion. Anti abortion protesters regularly have things thrown at them and are seen as part of the lunatic fringe or troglodytes or oppressing women. The same will happen to those of us that also oppose gay marriage (not much trouble in Utah, lots of trouble in the real world).

BobJuly 10, 2015

I believe that society is best served when the traditional understanding of marriage as a union between a man and a woman for the purpose of rearing a family is the norm. I think we have made a mistake as a society by focusing on the legality of the marriage relationship instead of its fundamental role from a social and spiritual perspective. When we allowed marriage to become a legal institution, requiring licensing and subject to tax law and governmental policy, we allowed the state to get involved in this most private and sacred matter. I believe the solution is to recognize that within society, marriage has both contractual and spiritual aspects. Let the law handle the contractual aspects and the church handle the spiritual aspects. Give unto Caesar what is Caesar's. I think it might be best to remove the legal imprimatur from marriages performed by churches. This would solve the legal problems. Marriage before the law of the land can be relegated to a contractual agreement that is filed jointly by the interested parties. Marriage ceremonies can be private affairs held by families, churches or communities and can take on their own meaning within those societies. I also think it would be appropriate to remove the application of tax policy from favoring marriage. Marriage will stand on its own without tax policies to favor it. Insurers can decide how to write policies and to what extent they cover families, and who is included in a family. Legal contracts should establish people's rights to make decisions for each other. As long as we focus on legal responses to societal issues, we will fail ourselves. Remember the Pharisees? As people, we keep trying to refine the law to define ever greater detail and miss the forest for the trees. When we focus on moral (moral meaning integrity, how we treat others, not primarily sexual) issues instead of legal issues, we can better guide society.

kevin jkJuly 10, 2015

I'm betting that it will follow the path that the abortion debate took. There are legitimate moral objections to both abortion and SSM while really none exist opposing mixed race marriages. Even those morally opposed to mixed marriages still recognize the right of those entering such to do so. That may be the key. If there was a move to deny tax exempt status to churches who don't perform SSM, there would be a constitutional amendment even supported by many liberals a gay activists that would prevent that. Religiously based hospitals can still refuse to perform abortions without losing their tax exempt status so I don't see a serious effort being put forth to deny tax exempt status for groups denying SSM benefits. In some liberal states, there may be a push to deny conservative clergy the ability to perform legally recognized marriages, but that wouldn't be a big deal. Couples would simply go to City Hall and get married and then return to their churches for a religiously based ceremony. We LDS do that in a number of countries.

B FloydJuly 10, 2015

Thank you for this article. Thank you for giving us hope. I stand with you.

CharlieBrown2292July 10, 2015

When many European nations authorized massive immigration from North and West Africa, locals were subdued into welcoming Newcomers in the name of tolerance, equality and brotherhood. The strategy took thirty years to backfire, and Europe is now being faced with the rise in power and influence of political parties of the Far Right that threaten the very fabric of democracy. Such phenomenons take time to surface, but their effects are all-the-more devastating to society, as well as to the very people that prove to be unreasonable in their demands for ever more rights.

Tom IsaacsonJuly 10, 2015

This is a very good article.

MimiJuly 10, 2015

"If we will hold fast to the Church's proclamation on the family, we will see that we hold the jewels, as it were, that can enrich so many other things. Let the world go its own way on the family. It appears to be determined to do that. But we do not have that option. Our doctrines and teachings on the family are very, very powerful, and they are full of implications for all the people on this planet." Neal A. Maxwell, "Insights from My Life," Ensign, Aug. 2000, 7

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