Romney’s Defeat: A wake up call for Mormons?

American presidential elections are a bit bonkers but wonderfully diverting.  I’ve looked on with keen interest as  $6 billion dollars in campaign expenditure was gobbled up, and a searing ideological divide was created.  And after months and months of vitriol and meteoric nastiness  the President didn’t even change.  But of one thing I am sure, the cultural ground has shifted significantly as a result, particularly for Mormons.

 

To be perfectly honest I don’t think that Obama deserved re-election.  I’ve struggled to see how he has delivered on his promise to bring about those audacious  ‘yes we can changes’ that so mesmerized the world.   I’m not saying this failure is his problem entirely –  the US political system is a beast, and I think he thought he could wrestle with it bare-handed.   But I’m pleased he’s got another four years to try.

 

Having said that however, I do think what and who he represents deserves re-election.  Obama represents those, who for generation after generation, have been disenfranchised and undermined, and I’m thrilled they have reminded America that they are still there and they still have hope.  The election has demonstrated to the Republicans that it simply doesn’t pay to neglect the young; women; non-white minorities; the working class;  or those at the periphery.  Those who took the winners spoils tonight have claimed emphatically that if America is a nation who truly recognizes that ‘all men are created equal’ then it’s the role of government to do what they can to facilitate and protect that equality.   They’ve said with their ballot that this adage is not merely an economic commodity that can be thrown to the market to manage, it’s a social imperative and a solemn responsibility.

 

For most however Romney is too reminiscent of a bygone era where the political contest both favoured white male plutocrats, and worked beautifully  but almost exclusively in their service.  Sadly for them the world has spun another turn.

 

So where does this leave those Mormons, who Romney so overwhelming represented?  And where might this lead the church?   If the Facebook aftermath is anything to go by, this defeat for Mormon Republicans has been bitter. Here is a post-election sample of some of those comments (apologies to those who I pilfered them from – I promise anonymity):

 

“I am hating being at BYU-Idaho right now, everyone is so full of hate.”

“Why don’t [you] just abort [your] next pregnancy since [you] support Obama?”

“The hatred that is spewing out of all the repubs mouths tonight is unbelievable and totally uncalled for. My own cousin comment on a pic I put on my wall that said “Mormon Mama for Obama”. The hatred and meanness towards me was sickening, I had to block him, I told him to stop making comments and he wouldn’t, so I did what I had to do, rest assured he won’t be bothering me anymore! And he is LDS also and served a mission!”

“Obama’s victory tonight is another sign that Christ’s 2nd Coming is close. Obama and his ilk…his socialist agenda… is going to bring to past the end of this country as we know it.”

“Apparently my sexual preference just changed because I support Obama, or at least that’s what I was told by an RM, amongst other things… That’s news to me and my girlfriends…”

“The Republicans are losing their minds on my page!!!! They are predicting Armageddon, the moving of mountains before morning, the Coming of Christ, etc…How sad for them that they do not accept the voice of the people.”

 

Of note however, the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve were quick to issue their gracious congratulations, and offered Obama the church’s prayers of support.  Clearly, there seems to be disconnect between the church leaders, and the members.  My sense is that church leaders recognise the necessity to push on and past an entrenched, conservative political identity as an indicator of Mormon cultural belonging.   Yet the extremity and violence of these voices might just be a thorn in the side of a church trying to create and manage a cultural, intellectually and politically pluralistic community.  Mormon culture must change, because like the Republicans, if we dismiss the voice of the people, or fail to make the inclusive adaptations that honour ‘the least among us’, we put at risk both our relevance, and our credibility.

 

I have to wonder if the real Mormon Moment isn’t upon the American church now.  It seems to be inviting the American church to create new narratives about our faith life that isn’t bound up with myopic and fixed notions that, upon close inspection, are more cultural than transcendent.  It calls upon the American church to do the difficult task of finding ways of making our faith attractive and relevant for all of those who have been traditionally passed over in the trammel for success.

But right now it calls upon those embittered Republican Mormon Americans to go to church on Sunday morning, seat themselves in a pew next to their Democrat brothers and sisters and with genuine gratitude  say a prayer of thanks for a nation that has given them fellow countrymen who feel as passionate about their country as they do!

 

 

  • Ray

    Beautifully expressed. Thanks.

  • Lindsey

    Love this. My sentiments exactly.

  • http://www.symphonyofdissent.wordpress.com Daniel Ortner

    I agree with you totally. Well said. If only members would actually listen to the Brethren we would be a much more crist-like people.

  • Kris

    Actually, I’d say that President Obama has more than earned a second term, but the rest of this is just dead-on. There a LOT of members of the Church who need to read this.

  • Anon

    There are two forces at work with this. We want to be liked, or at least not seen as negatively strange or to have untrue things believed about our religion and those commercials are great for that. A Mormon running allowed us to, at the least, mention to friends etc. that we are members and for them to see we’re pretty normal people. At the same time though, I think that for many a cultural acceptance or attractiveness means that we are becoming more worldly and rejecting God’s will.
    I have many friends who are lamenting the death of The United States of America, our constitution, families, and self-sufficiency, beliefs that we will be plunged into inconceivable debt and that China will own us. There are comments stating that the President will take away our freedoms and become a dictator and a comment not-so-jokingly joked that this will bring about the zombie apocalypse.
    I think this defeat will bring about a regrouping and harder push to the right.
    Here are a few comments:
    “I want to put this in writing. I predict that Obama will try to run for a third term. We will also see a massive, unprecedented increase in executive orders in the next 4 years without a doubt”
    “I just want to say R.I.P. to the once strong and great United States of America. May she rest in piece. Sad day for America. One day I hope those that voted out of selfish reasons instead of what is best for all will realize their mistake but it will no doubt be too late….”
    “The fit has officially hit the shan.”
    “hard work and making new jobs and education is the answer to this flipping mess! not living of the tit of the the government! shame on my homestate loving their government cheese!”
    “So are the zombies coming tomorrow, or do we have to wait until this is more official?”
    “LONG LIVE THE USA AND THE CONSTITUTION…AND WHEN THE 2ND REVOLUTION BEGINS, I AM IN ALL THE WAY!! Remember, NEVER run from a sniper…you only die tired!!! (I’ll be the one using Christie as cover!!!) God HELP the USA, and if not, I WILL!!! Cause I personally have lost my faith in good winning out over evil!!”
    It’s a discouraging and depressing atmosphere for a left of center member.
    I do have to say that I do have friends who are bummed but not resorting to dystopian predictions and those who know that above any leader there is God, so it’s not ALL bad.

  • http://Www.statslc.com Nicola

    Very nice. I especially liked the first and last paragraphs. I am aghast at the response from some extremists.

  • Mike O

    Gina,
    I always welcome the view from outside the USA. I discovered as a child living in the Caribbean sitting in front of my father’s Zenith Transoceanic radio listening to news from all over the planet that diverse views fascinate me. I also grew up as a member of the Church but in the mid-western USA where I was one of 4 Mormon boys in a high school with 3000 students. I find that being open to other views gives not only the opportunity to hear the views of others from different environments but the reciprocal opportunity to share or explain the view from where I stand. So if I may I’d like to share a few thoughts. These thoughts are offered to foster understanding and maybe make our next election even more entertaining. :-)

    There is some meat here in principle but you may have missed what it is that angers these “Republican Mormons”. Beyond that it is possible to have missed that the things angering them should concern all people of good conscience. I feel it is important to state that anger as a manifestation of frustration does not always have its root in hate as implied in one of the quotes above.

    Here is a short list:

    Most Mormons hold that the law based republic of the USA was divinely inspired for the purpose of creating an environment for the Restoration and all it brings. It is the disregard for that basis, the disregard for the process of law, that causes such consternation.

    It is the misuse of power entrusted to others they reject in principle and practice; in a representative government this is simply insulting. Theologically this echoes the ideology of Lucifer. That ideology was rejected before and they will continue to reject it in whatever form it takes.

    It is the dismantling of freedoms they hold close. It is the abridging of their agency. They witness morally relativistic equating of things they hold dear to things they know to be wrong and are unable to change it because of a predominantly amoral or immoral citizenry. Selfishness prevails. Selflessness is shunned. Calling evil good and good evil as it were.

    It is the dismissal of their view as being myopic and ignorant because it doesn’t match current accepted societal definitions.

    No doubt there is much learning and adaptation that could prove useful. The base of membership grows more diverse with each passing day. To ignore the warnings we all know so well in the name of moral relativism and political harmony will ultimately diminish mankind as a whole and not just the “Republican Mormons” in the USA.

    Kind Regards,
    -Mike

  • Jeff

    A few comments and corrections. The combined campaigns cost $2 billion not $6b – a quibble I know. THe numbers sound obscene to no Americans but it represents a tiny fraction of the US’s GDP and maybe a few hours worth of Federal Government spending.

    I checked by Facebook page and I’ve got a fair number of Republican LDS as FB friends and I found none of the incendiary discussion you posted. Shock, disbeleif, disappointment, a few knee jerk comments but nothing out of the ordinary. I have seen a number of threats on Twitter posted before the election threating riot and violence to Republicans if Romney won. My point is that both sides have a few extremists and we ought not judge LDS Republican reaction and generalise it to the rantings of a few. I know that the vast majority of the faithful LDS that I know will react ultimately with magnaminity to this result and will get on with their lives. The caricatures that you describe are straw men and in no way represent mainstream conservative LDS conduct.

    I’m sad but sanguine at the result – sanguine because my prayer always was not that Romney would win but that the Lord’s will be done and clearly it has. Frankly the work of spreading the gospel I feel would’ve been hampered not helped by a Romney Presidency as every missionary would’ve been blamed for a Republican President’s policy that would only appeal to 50% of Americans and likely only 20% of non Americans.

    True democracies allow the people to speak and so we ought to celebrate the freedom we have. The constitutional separation of powers limits what any President can do so the scope for catastrophic policy changes (that the fearful extremists are warning of) is limited. Obama’s signature law resulted in his party suffering its biggest mid term defeat in 70+ years. Anything too adventurous will be similarly punished in 2014.

    I think the whole candidacy of Romney has been great for the church regardless of your politics. It has resulted in unprecedented attention paid to the church and its beliefs. Unlike what we have had to endure for decades, the mainstream media here in the US report on the church and its doctrines and practices in a largely respectful and accurate manner. It has forced members all over America to answer questions about their faith from non members and that will only lead to more conversions.

    • Gina Colvin

      Figures shmiggers! Anything above six figures is ludicrous.
      You haven’t had the vitriole because you are a Republican! You aren’t the enemy. Try going to church on Sunday and announcing that you had a last minute change of heart and felt Obama deserved your vote!
      I agree with your assessment of the benefits but implications of the candidacy and the potential presidency of Romney. He’s done a groundbreaking thing for Mormonism. I’m picking Huntsman as the perfect Republican candidate for the next battle – he has the right creds and he’s very cool – even if he is Jack.

      • Jeff

        The total spend on elections in NZ as a percentage of GDP is not that far behind what is spent in the US – the US is just such a vastly bigger market and economy that all national expenditures here look eye wateringly huge. But I agree its gotten out of control but then donating to either side is a voluntary transaction and unlike NZ, there is no government matching of funds (this time around at least – McCain opted for the capin 2008 and took Federal matching funds because Obama said he would as well – after McCain committed to it Obama ‘changed’ his mind and eshewed the cap).

        Both sides are capable of this sort of judgemental vitriol. Try telling a group of professionals in NZ that you are a pro-life conservative and who votes Republican – its worse than everyone knowing that you just did that rank smelly fart! I don’t like these sorts of judgements and I try hard to be reasonable when having dialogue with LDS Democrats (like my uncle – we enjoy a very respectful political relationship) but frankly some of this just comes with the territory of partisan politics.

        Huntsman is a reasonable fellow but I doubt whether he would’ve beaten Obama either. The media fawned over him when he was their darling moderate Republican in that field of raging extremists. Had he been the nominee he would’ve been just as ‘defined’ by the Democrats and the media would’ve been just as complicit in that task as they were with Romney. Huntsman however would have no show of ever winning a Republican primary. Despite being articulate and perhaps a more successful Governor than Romney, he never polled much above 2% through the Republican primary. Marco Rubio is a less active Mormon who went back to being a Catholic – now HE would make a most attractive candidate and would bury the Republican old rich white guy problem that Romney sadly personified in the end!

        • Darren

          “Had he been the nominee he would’ve been just as ‘defined’ by the Democrats and the media would’ve been just as complicit in that task as they were with Romney.”

          Huntsman is a filthy stinkin’ rich fellow as well who inherited his fortune from his father. How out of touch is that!!! (This is what the media would have hyped up against Huntsman. Personally, I’m glad he’s rich and I find his father – not John Huntsman himself – the epitmone of American exceptionalism).

          • Gina Colvin

            I personally think that he’d be great for the Republicans because he’s articulate, thoughtful, the consummate politician, intercultural and doesn’t have the ‘history’ that Romney has. Someone like Huntsman could pull the swing votes over quite nicely. Notwithstanding his personal wealth I think he’d be a great choice to restore the Republicans to their traditional platform while at the same time as being informed and forward thinking.

    • Darren

      “I checked by Facebook page and I’ve got a fair number of Republican LDS as FB friends and I found none of the incendiary discussion you posted.”

      Ditto that for me.

      (Originally placed in the wrong box)

      • Gina Colvin

        Then you are lucky! Not so other people.

        • Darren

          I think I’m actualluy more mainstream. Of all my friends I got one post in poor taste who expressed a desire for those who re-elected Obama to no longer procreate. That’s foundless sentimentality whose expression is uncalled for. But, besides that, there’s only been disappointment from LDS Romney supporters. I think that’s the mainstream American Mormon reaction.

          Also include my being at a Boy Scout Court of Honor tonight and no one expressed anything remotely vile against anyone. In fact, politics was brought up by only one person tonight to my wife and I and he expressed not being able to sleep last night. That’s it.

          Do you honestly think that your selected rants reflects mainstream American LDS thought?

          • Gina Colvin

            Not mainstream American LDS thought – its just indicative of a certain element who have conflated Mormonism with Republicanism.

          • Darren

            That makes much more sense but the way you constructed your argument you implicated the whole of the Mormon culture, not one aspect of it.

            “Clearly, there seems to be disconnect between the church leaders, and the members. My sense is that church leaders recognise the necessity to push on and past an entrenched, conservative political identity as an indicator of Mormon cultural belonging. Yet the extremity and violence of these voices might just be a thorn in the side of a church trying to create and manage a cultural, intellectually and politically pluralistic community. Mormon culture must change, because like the Republicans, if we dismiss the voice of the people, or fail to make the inclusive adaptations that honour ‘the least among us’, we put at risk both our relevance, and our credibility.”

            Here’ you argued that the LDS leadership is at odds with Mormons culturally. I fail to see an attempt to isolate anyone in within the Mormon culture in making your argument. Than you later followed by saying:

            “So where does this leave those Mormons, who Romney so overwhelming represented? And where might this lead the church? If the Facebook aftermath is anything to go by, this defeat for Mormon Republicans has been bitter. Here is a post-election sample of some of those comments (apologies to those who I pilfered them from – I promise anonymity):”

            Here you presented Facebook as a whole to reflect what Mormons culturally believe. You than posted some rants the likes of which I came across only once from a Mormon facebook friend.

            Again, I think you make a good point in that there is a general Amercian Mormon mindset that to be a Mormon you somehow must vote on the conservetive side of politics. You’re correct in that there is no such obligation.

            The way I see it, the LDS Church policy of political neutrality allows its members to pursue what they think is best for their respective nation. For me the best political identity which is best for the United States of America is conservativsm. Although it is not “Republicanism” I find Republicans as the best hopes to follow a more conservative line of thinking.

            The founding of the United States is unique to the world. It is a unique blend of Protetantism influenced by the British enlightenment. The founders created a system where the federal government was strong in specific powers and *only* these specific powers granted to them and the rest of the powers (which is the vast majoirty of government powers) was given ot the states. Conservatism best follows this original intent. Liberalism is the antithesis of the founding thining. They believe, and you clearly do as well, that a strong central government should have vast power to spweep in and enforce the law upon anyone anywhere no matter what. I view this and I’m 100% confident to say that the Founding Fathers did as well, as a grave threat to liberty and prosperity.

            I think that since Mormons view the US Constitution as a divinely inspired document, they tend to gravitate towards conservatism. They are free to do so. In fact I’d argue that tge LDS church’s position of political neutrality (a very conservative position for a church to take) helps the LDS members become more conservative. While you are correct in that members world wide are free to practice their civilian duties and follow what they decide is best for their respective country, the LDS still teaches its members ot be prepared, thrifty, and to volunteer their efforts to their own betterment and for others. This is best manifested in American conservatism. American Liberalsim tends to declare people as victims and helpless creastures who need government to make everything fair. This is done by taking from those that have and giving it to those that don’t. I say allow people to choose their own lives (financially prosperous or not) and to be charitable at their own choice. This latter view, I’m convinced, will do far more good for the poor and the needy than anything a big central government can do for them. In fact since Linden B. Johnson’s “War on Poverty”, the nation’s big cities have been run by liberals for decades now and poverty isn’t exactly gone or improved.

            On a slightly different side note, you express wonderment as to how much money is spent in American presidential races, how about our debt? While I was very upset over George W. Bush’s spending, his worse spending over 8 years are still better than the best spending of Obama’s four years.

  • Rachel Sarah Kasyon

    You mentioned “The American Church” several times… were you referring to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints? It is definitely not an “American Church”… it is a global church. I spent a large portion of my life in Mexico and south America where the LDS Church is thriving. The LDS Church is global, and it has ancient roots and it will not change with the changing tide of culture and of this nation. God is a never-changing being, and His commandments and his church will never change no matter what is going on in this world.

    • Gina Colvin

      Yes I did mention the American church because believe it or not the cultural politics that characterise the church in America is so different from the global church. So this ideological divide is frankly an American problem, not a New Zealand one.

      • Mandy

        Not a “New Zealand problem” & “ideological divide” in the same sentence?
        the irony. Welcome! And thanks for adding to the finger pointing degrading dialogue.
        and like being a Mormon from “New Zealand” doesn’t classify you under the same “Mormon” stereotype.

        • Gina Colvin

          I don’t see it as finger pointing at all. Its just a fact. Your political system is a deeply entrenched first past the post duopoly. Your political rhetoric is deeply ideological (never more so than this election) and order to win a candidate and a party needs to be distinctive. You also have a long history of a majority of Mormons in the US voting for the Republicans – fact. This simply doesn’t exist to the same degree in other advanced Western democracies. I’d make my bet that most Mormons I know in New Zealand vote left of centre – but if you don’t it doesn’t make you any less a Mormon! So I’m afraid I’ll stick by my guns here – this is most definitely an American Mormon issue.

          • Mandy

            have you ever studied up on why maybe “most American Mormons” vote that way? Because legalizing Marijuana, same sex marriage, free give aways, illegal entrance & payouts if you are already here in the US illegally is totally acceptable in the “American Mormon” ideology. <— that's some, not all, of the reasons I voted for Obama.

  • Darren

    “The election has demonstrated to the Republicans that it simply doesn’t pay to neglect the young; women; non-white minorities; the working class; or those at the periphery. Those who took the winners spoils tonight have claimed emphatically that if America is a nation who truly recognizes that ‘all men are created equal’ then it’s the role of government to do what they can to facilitate and protect that equality. They’ve said with their ballot that this adage is not merely an economic commodity that can be thrown to the market to manage, it’s a social imperative and a solemn responsibility.

    For most however Romney is too reminiscent of a bygone era where the political contest both favoured white male plutocrats, and worked beautifully but almost exclusively in their service. Sadly for them the world has spun another turn.”

    Interesting you’d say that:

    Mia Love lost her congressional race ot a white male Democrat.
    Rep. Allen West thus far lost his seat to a white male Democrat. Allen, however, has officially contested the results and has asked for a recount.

    http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2012/11/07/matheson-bests-mia-love-in-utah-house-race/
    http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2012/11/07/West-demands-recount

    Also, tell me where’s the hate?

    http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Hollywood/2012/11/07/sore-winner-beyonce-tweets-mitches

    I do agree that Republicans need to do more active campaigning to argue their cause before minorities, but please don’t think that the Republicans, the party that freed the slaves, doesn’t care for minorities. And government’s role is not to guarantee equality. It’s to treat people equally under the law.

    Now that Obama’s inhereited a horrible economy from Obama perhaps the blame George Bush will still win over certain groups, and perhaps even yourself to his support, but you cannot admit that such a result would make sense.

    “Clearly, there seems to be disconnect between the church leaders, and the members. My sense is that church leaders recognise the necessity to push on and past an entrenched, conservative political identity as an indicator of Mormon cultural belonging. Yet the extremity and violence of these voices might just be a thorn in the side of a church trying to create and manage a cultural, intellectually and politically pluralistic community. Mormon culture must change, because like the Republicans, if we dismiss the voice of the people, or fail to make the inclusive adaptations that honour ‘the least among us’, we put at risk both our relevance, and our credibility.”

    For those who vehemently rile against our nation’s re-elected president, than a simple reminder that Jet Blue’s offer may still be valid would be a proper response.

    http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/lifestyle/2012/10/jetblue-will-fly-upset-voters-out-of-the-country/

    Frankly though I think you’re cherry picking the crowd. I find the web posts you’e cite in very poor taste by the authors. I cannot stand Obama’s policies and find them racially motivated (see New Black Panther exoneration), radically un American (moves from individualism to collectivism which doesn’t prosper nation anywhere), biased towards Great Britain and Israel (two of the nation’s greatest historical allies), and will improve nothing until a more conservative Congress sweeps in and Obama is forced to compromise (and Harry Reid is no longer majority leader in the Senate). But I sincerely pray from his peace and well being.

    When has the Lord’s covenant people ever appealed to the masses? Yes, there’s been times to clean house from social and cultural prejudices but I don’t think a “Mormon moment” will be by changing its cultural norm but by serving others. Putting yellow shirts on the Mormon first responders has been a stroke of brilliance. This servic, of course, is about Mormons serving their God by serving others.

    http://www.lds.org/church/news/members-on-the-east-coast-begin-cleaning-up-wreckage-from-storm?lang=eng

    • Gina Colvin

      Buddy – I think I rest my case!

      • Darren

        Huh? What part?

        • Gina Colvin

          Sorry Darren – I don’t know what I was on when I wrote that. Mmmm???

          • Darren

            “I don’t know what I was on when I wrote that”

            Probably your keyboard. ;>)

          • Gina Colvin

            funny guy!

  • Darren

    “I checked by Facebook page and I’ve got a fair number of Republican LDS as FB friends and I found none of the incendiary discussion you posted.”

    Ditto that for me.

  • Emily

    I’m glad someone has addressed this. While I was disappointed Romney didn’t win, I’ve been trying to be optimistic about the next 4 years. WE THE PEOPLE create this wonderful country we live in. I wish people would look past the labels of Democrat and Republican and see that we each are trying to live our lives in the pursuit of happiness.

    I am embarrassed for those who post hateful, ridiculous comments regarding any political person. Those who are members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints need to uphold the standards they have been taught and not check their religion at the proverbial facebook door. The world is not going to end because of one election!

    If anyone wants to make a difference in the world, they must become the change they want to see in it and become active in their communities to promote it. Posting something on facebook does NOT change the world for better. I hope people are intelligent enough to realize that.

    • Gina Colvin

      Cheers Emily!

  • Kathy

    I think there have been negative comments on both sides, it is time for all to stop and take the opportunity to show Christ-like loving-kindness to all our fellow American’s. There are kind and unkind Democrats, Independents and Republicans, thank goodness there are more of the former! God Bless America…

    • Gina Colvin

      Well said kathy!

    • Don Harryman

      Thanks Kathy–I wonder if your recognition that (gasp) there are good Democrats might extend to the realization that they are good gay people too? Your Church and its members seems to think otherwise, as it sets about spending millions demonizing homosexual families and trying to make us unequal under the law. While you allow that there might be good Democrats, will you also throw us a bone? or is being an ex Mormon, Democrat and gay person simply too much to bear?

  • Martin Holden

    For once Gina I agree completely with you. I think “the American church” would be surprised at how little emphasis “the worldwide church” places on the US constitution, (inspired, well yes but I am sure that we could argue that the British one is inspired too etc) and after all most members outside the US would be democrats in US voting terms. The problem may come in the future – if the church really grows and becomes a worldwide church( it is now but only in very small numbers) then many American saints will find it difficult when American culture ceases to dominate the way the gospel is conveyed.

    • Gina Colvin

      Hence the need for some decent research on the ‘international church’!!

  • Noel

    Glenn Bck will prosper as he spews conspiracy theories on his Radio. You know we all have times when our team does not win. I think your fears about Obama are exaggerated. There are plenty of checks and balances. Pick yourselves up and work out why your boy did not win and join your party to make changes. It seems many of the young ones working for Obama have proved to smart for the GOP.The LDS is changing, you have TBMs Liberals, socialists etc. Live with it.

  • Noel

    Glenn Beck will prosper as he spews conspiracy theories on his Radio. You know we all have times when our team does not win. I think your fears about Obama are exaggerated. There are plenty of checks and balances. Pick yourselves up and work out why your boy did not win and join your party to make changes. It seems many of the young ones working for Obama have proved to smart for the GOP.The LDS is changing, you have TBMs Liberals, socialists etc. Live with it.

  • arthur1526

    Hi
    I should share this:

    Be certain of this, that the highest aim of creation and its most important result is belief in God. The most exalted rank in humanity and its highest degree is the knowledge of God contained within belief in God. The most radiant happiness and sweetest bounty for jinn and human beings is the love of God contained within the knowledge of God. And the purest joy for the human spirit and the sheerest delight for man’s heart is the rapture of the spirit contained within the love of God. Yes, all true happiness, pure joy, sweet bounties, and untroubled pleasure lie in knowledge of God and love of God; they cannot exist without them.
    The person who knows and loves God Almighty may receive endless bounties, happiness, lights, and mysteries. While the one who does not truly know and love him is afflicted spiritually and materially b y endless misery, pain, and fears. Even if such an impotent, miserable person owned the whole world, it would be worth nothing for him, for it would seem to him that he was living a fruitless life among the vagrant human race in a wretched world without owner or protector. Everyone may understand just how forlorn and baffled is man among the aimless human race in this bewildering fleeting world if he does not know his Owner, if he does not discover his Master. But if he does discover and know Him, he will seek refuge in His mercy and will rely on His power. The desolate world will turn into a place of recreation and pleasure, it will become a place of trade for the hereafter.

    From Risalei Nur collection by Said Nursi.
    http://www.nur.gen.tr/en.html#leftmenu=Risale&maincontent=Risale&islem=read&KitapId=499&BolumId=8783&KitapAd=Letters+(+revised+)&Page=262

  • CT

    Well, this is all every well and true and there a Mormons complaining, but it is not just the Mormons who are upset, it is several people of various faiths and beliefs. Personally, I am all about following the Brethren’s advice, and support my country, pray for my country and have faith in the future. It’s not all doom and gloom. I liked this article, though.

  • Beverly

    “The world is not going to end because of one election!” Well said Emily.

    “Everyone may understand just how forlorn and baffled is man among the aimless human race in this bewildering fleeting world if he does not know his Owner, if he does not discover his Master.” Arthur, not everyone feels that way. Some people don’t acknowledge an “Owner/Master”. They believe they are their own owners and masters. They obey the government and their own conscience. What do we do about people like that? They’re the ones controlling the vote. Not us. Not now. Not ever again.

  • Jim in San Diego

    My mother in Utah certainly went on a vile rant about Obama. I think she gets most of her news from Coast to Coast radio which is hugely popular in Utah.

    Mormons need to come to grips with the fact that they are not mainstream – something they are DESPERATE to achieve.

    I think Romney was good and bad for the Mormon church. I have always been critical of the soft spoken, almost feminine way of speaking that Mormon men take upon themselves to appear spiritual. It is very purposely cultivated among bishops. Turn off the volume on the debates and look at Romney’s facial expressions. He sat there with that faux spirituality look the whole time. It is an expression that looks like a disingenuous smile and the head is slightly tilted. People were commenting to me that he almost looked high. Believe it or not people see right through that. You can’t fake spirituality folks. It looks creepy to most people and I believe it is the number one reason Romney didn’t connect with the electorate.

    I truly believe Romney is a good man! I just think the ways Mormons try so hard to prove that undid him.

  • Dan

    I agree that SOME people of the Mormon faith need to take a ‘chill pill’ and stop the hate speech and comments. I am LDS and the majority of my FB friends are as well. I only had 1 that was making hateful comments and many people that were LDS were scolding her for this.

    I think your article is inaccurate to say that there is a disconnect with the Church Leaders and the Members. Rather there is a disconnect with SOME members and the principles that they are supposed to uphold. I have met people from many faiths all over this great country and overseas. I can tell you that there are hateful people in all sects of religion.

    I have not said one hateful thing and no one close to me has either. So based on my experience there is no problem – but see what I did here is what you did in the article, you can post a handful of comments but that doesn’t speak for the millions of members. We need to move past stereotypes, we also need to move past telling people that they need to conform – conforming is not the answer

    • Gina Colvin

      I appreciate what you say, but sometimes its just not helpful to say that because there isn’t a general problem, there isn’t a problem. Its hurtful to those who have/are experiencing this, to say that it shouldn’t be an issue because ‘I’ or ‘my friends’ can’t relate to it. Perhaps I should have used ‘some’ but that tends to let others off the hook. It hasn’t happened to me, but that doesn’t mean its not happening to ‘us’. As long as its happening to some of ‘us’ we all need to be concerned.

  • Norman Fobert

    I too checked my Facebook page and I am a Republican who also happens to be LDS. My LDS parents have been life-long Democrats and I have not seen any of the sentiments expressed in this article. Many Republicans I know were disappointed at Romney’s moderate stances to begin with, but understood that politics is in play. We are not standing around moping because he lost, especially when many of us did not vote for him. We are now praying for the leaders of our country. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is a worldwide church, with over half of its membership outside of the United States of America. People are going to have to realize “Mormonism” is not an American Church. It is an international community of faith that recognizes there will be opposition in all things. It’s a law of physics and expressed in terms of G_d versus the devil. I was a little insulted that the writer of this article has it figured out, and has advice to offer. I’m over it already. I only hope I done end up regretting that I made this Post Comment.

    • Gina Colvin

      Norman – I really don’t have it figured out – seriously! In the market place of ideas I’m simply one small voice with an opinion – and opinions are just more ideas for whoever wants to, to think about.

      As I’ve said to other commenters, just because you haven’t experienced this backlash doesn’t mean it hasn’t happened for others. And, as far as I’m concerned, if its happening to some LDS folk, its happening to us all.

      Other than that, I think we are completely on the same page! Don’t regret your post! I enjoyed it.

  • Carl

    “Yes I did mention the American church because believe it or not the cultural politics that characterise the church in America is so different from the global church.”

    Thanks Gina. This is 100% my own thoughts and many others of the members in Sweden. We have to fight all the time in having to extract and remove american culture taught and mixed with gospel principles. It’s a constant struggle and quite exhausting in the long run, but still worth it, as it hurts the members, the membership as a whole and the investigators sucess in recieving a testimony of the gospel, if the cultural aspect is ignored and not removed.

    ” … many American saints will find it difficult when American culture ceases to dominate the way the gospel is conveyed.”

    Amen to that. And the advancement of the gospel in other regions in the world will be much slower and problematic as long as we keep teaching westernized, American norms and culture, as part of the gospel.

    • Gina Colvin

      Amen and amen Carl! Hey, I’d love to have a chat with you about what’s happening the Swedish church. Would you mind if I emailed you?

  • Ritchie

    “American presidential elections are a bit bonkers but wonderfully diverting. ”

    Love it! That pretty much sums it up. I am one of those heretical Mormons who voted for Obama.

  • Don Harryman

    I think the First Presidency might have an inkling as their measured and I think sincere post election statement indicates, but it is clear that most US Mormons, especially in Utah have made a mistake becoming too closely identified with the Republican Party–that Party that for 8 years racked up trillions in deficits, including trillions on at least one war based on nothing but a pack of lies, deregulated Wall Street almost to the ruination of our banking system, and which has relied on racist, hateful division instead of solutions. This same Party has not yet, from what I can see, come to realize that the American public did not fall for the cynical ploy of trying to blame the black man for not cleaning it up fast enough–it is no accident that NO ONE in the GOP ever mentions GWB. That the shape shifting, lying Mitt Romney was nominated out of a clown car of crazies because he was the least objectionable didn’t bode well–and Romney’s gracious concession speech might have left a better lasting impression had he not repudiated it by sulking openly about the 47 per cent of those unwashed he so obviously looks down on who didn’t vote for him. Instead, he will be mostly remembered as a haughty elitist who failed to grasp that actual qualifications–not an overblown sense of entitlement are necessary to become the leader of the free world. I think Mormons should be grateful–as Mitt slinks away and as the Republican establishment falls all over themselves to distance themselves from him– at least you won’t have 4 years of Mittens being the face of Mormonism. You dodged a huge bullet.

  • pat

    Iv been lds my whole life. And can say sounds like all you back biteing lds people need to look to the ground for a answers to your problems and. Hoply you see that it s not Oboma you need to talk about its the distance beetween your neez and the ground … And pitch in and help save yourself firt than you see big pic. Shame on you.. God don’t need man Man needs God. So live wat all you learn I will go i will do wat the loard commands look to him not are gov, you put your trust in the arm of man and you have been curst or do you think Mit realy save this country or will God..Two feet is the shortist distace to your problems not the white house.


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