I may choose to ignore people who comment anonymously. I choose never to be anonymous online myself. I have little tolerance for this behavior.

Monday, February 28, 2011

"Hi Moms!" Oh, for Heaven's Sake, Not THAT Again!

In describing the scene at the recent BYU-San Diego basketball games, consider the following statements from news articles in the New York Times and the Salt Lake Tribune:
Students began camping out Tuesday for tickets, and many of them dressed up in white shirts, ties and bike helmets to tweak the attire of Mormon missionaries.
The fans held up oversized cardboard cutouts of, among other things, the face of Fredette’s girlfriend, a B.Y.U. cheerleader.
And:
They dressed like LDS missionaries ... well, LDS missionaries who might have sneaked away to Mardi Gras, or gone off on a five-day bender. They held up signs that had all sorts of messages, some of them actually publishable in a family newspaper, though still edgy, including: “You Need More White Dudes,” and “Jimmer Fredette Is a False Idol,” and “Hi, Moms.”
I drew a blank on the "Hi Moms." Finally, it occurred to me that it was an allusion to polygamy. In trying to ape Mormon dress, demeanor and behavior, it alluded to the notion that the BYU players, or their Mormon fans, might have more than one mother.


What this suggests is that people tend to define Mormons by polygamy but this is not how we define ourselves.


My husband has developed his own version of this silly misconception. You've heard of people creating imaginary friends, he has created imaginary polygamous wives. If I'm too tired to do something he'll say something like, "Well, maybe #33 would be up for it, or maybe #27."


These imaginary wives have no other identity, other than their numbers. He invokes no other numbers other than #33 and #27. Occasionally, he forgets which numbers he's assigned and I have to supply him with them.


Some people I've encountered refuse to believe there aren't closeted Mormons with more than one wife, however much I try to argue otherwise.


So, I will rehearse it one more time, hopefully in a way that can penetrate past the stereotypes.
The “authority” to marry a man to one wife is not the same as the “authority” to marry a man to more than one wife. No Mormon since the 1890 change has had the authority to marry any man to more than one woman. So, in the Mormon view, none of these so-called polygamist marriages are valid, religiously or legally. None of these “polygamists” are Mormons.
Membership in the L.D.S. Church is not a vague identification or feeling of alliance; it is an actual membership record. You either have a membership record or you do not. You either are a Mormon or you are not. There is no gray area. If you try to practice polygamy your membership is canceled and you are kicked out of the Church (excommunicated).
From what I can determine, most of the current polygamist groups in existence today claim that the "authority" to conduct polygamist marriages was secretly given to an early leader and this "authority" has been passed down to a current generation of polygamists.
Any "authority" to do anything in the L.D.S. (Mormon) Church is NEVER given secretly. It is ALWAYS issued through open public channels or it is not valid. So, if these polygamists' so-called "authority" to conduct polygamist marriages was given to them secretly, it is not valid because it must be conveyed through open and proper channels.
Authority is either properly conveyed or it is not valid. So, polygamists’ claim to "authority" cannot possibly be valid. Once again, Mormons can only conclude that these polygamists are engaged in immoral behavior.
Polygamists are not Mormons period. Since their marriages are neither valid nor legal, real Mormons consider the polygamist lifestyle not only illegal but immoral as well. 
Now, can we PLEASE talk about something else?

1 comment:

  1. I apologize to you and your 11 brothers.

    ReplyDelete