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

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The Mormon Moment?

In Being Mormon: Does it matter in public eye? Seattle Times reporter Janet I. Tu suggests:
Consider this: On the one hand, two names that keep coming up as serious candidates for the U.S. presidency are former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr., who last week created a federal political-action committee to raise money for a possible campaign. Both happen to be Mormon.
She then brings up the recent controversy over Michael Young, a descendent of Brigham Young, recently selected as the new President of The University of Washington.
Some Seattle Times commenters expressed that negative view in response to stories on Young's appointment.
"All Mormons support bigotry. Michael Young is a Mormon. So, Michael Young supports bigotry," one commenter said.
This remark makes me wish I still taught logic. Based on how this argument is structured, it falls if you can find one Mormon who isn't a bigot.

Mormons, if they are even aware of the Young controversy, seem to be taking it in stride. Spokespeople for the Church certainly are.
Church spokespeople said the comments were no more vitriolic than those responding to articles on, say, Muslims, Catholics, race or immigration.
"You do not get an accurate perception of anything by reading comments," said Michael Otterson, managing director of public affairs at the church's Salt Lake City headquarters. "I put those in the category of 'alien abductions' — they're so far out there."
I agree with Otterson. I wonder if people could write half of what they do in comments if they weren't cloaked with anonymity.

Still, if all these things are going to throw another intense spotlight on my religion I only hope there are some commentators that can counter the inevitable misinformation and disinformation out there.
The church is seizing on a moment when its growth and the public spotlight seem to be converging.
"A lot of people believe that it's all working together to create a sort of condition where conversations about Mormons are likely to happen," Otterson said. "In that sense, maybe we have arrived at a 'Mormon moment.' "

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