Saturday, October 4, 2008

Proposition 8

I was recently sent this video about California Proposition 8 and thought I would share it with you. I'll be as fair and balanced as Fox News I assure you.

I can appreciate and see the fear in the eyes of those who believe homosexuality is learned and not inherited or born with. And as such I applaud the man for standing up for what he perceives an unrighteous brainwashing of his child. I don't have an answer for when we should begin to implement real world examples to our children. Obviously, Maloy children (Payson, Utah) will be less likely to encounter social differences being in the predominately white middle class Mormon socio-culture. That's okay.

Shelby children (San Diego, CA) currently experience something different, not better or worse, just real world different. Hannah is the only Mormon in her class and is one of two or three white kids. There is a significant Muslim population locally with children who attend the school and the majority of students are Hispanic with a roughly 2 to 1 ratio of parents (a rough estimate) that prefer English to Spanish. I'm okay with diversity. I speak Spanish, I work in Mexico. I'd like to live in Utah for it's relatively lower cost of living...but I digress.

Diversity exists outside of our infinitesimal Mormon subculture here in America. 13 million members worldwide, less than half in the United States. Mormons make up 2.1% of US citizens. As of 1990 we had 533,741 member in California ( I will grant a high estimate and say that number has doubled. 1.07 million members in California but 50% activity and we're back to 533,741 active members in a state of 36.5 million (

We make up 1.4% of the population in California (or 2.8% if you include all the inactive members) and are trying to implement our social and moral code upon the other 97.2 to 98.6%. Who is the minority trying to push their agenda now?

Talking about real world situations is not the end of the world. Sarah Palin was taught science in high school but her religious convictions still allow here to believe dinosaurs walked the earth 6,000 years ago and she could be the first woman Vice-President. Satanic teachings on evolution and archaeology had no effect on her despite evidence after evidence placed before her. So come one religionists, don't sell tradition short. If Sarah Palin can deny evidence with faith, so can your children. Homosexuals aren't born gay. Have faith that your children will follow the truth. Righteous brainwashing (aka: teaching your children correct moral principles) can still occur after children have been exposed to elements outside their core belief system. It requires parents to be parents and take responsibility for their upbringing of their children.

However, if it is in the school curriculum to discuss family dynamics and there are children that have inter-racial, single-parent, gay, adoptive, living with grand-parents or other family not an immediate parent...those discussions should probably occur WITHOUT the fear of ridicule or embarrassment in school setting. Let the child go to church to realize how their home-life is an abomination in the eyes of God, not school. Let those trying to teach the message of the merciful loving Christ be the ones to cast the first stone.


Christopher Maloy said...

Wow, it sure is hot in here...oh wait I have died and I am in hell...better save a seat for my brother TJ.

HEY!!!! We have diversity in Utah we just don't have all the white man guilt I normally got in California. Besides we scored in the 80 percentile on our Standards Aptitude Test for Elementary. I guess it does make a difference if classes are taught in English...who would have knew. I mean those are the kind of scores that the Japanese are getting in Elementary... but I digress

The real reason I wanted to comment is because I agree with you 100 percent. Our kids have to be taught in the home and not left to the state or outside world. Schools are merely tools to help produce good, smart voting citizens capable of taking the mantle from all of us old guys when it is our turn to move aside. There are other tools that can be used as well, and individual families get to decided what to use. I LOVE FREEDOM!!!

Story time: I have a friend from California (moved to Utah) that makes his kids put their heads down when driving through Las Vegas because he doesn't want them to see the girlie posters and the mistreatment of women. I think the guy is totally wrong in his thinking.

As much as we try to protect the kids I think it is a deadly serious mistake to try and shield them from the world (especially if they are the minority in way of thinking) and especially if we want them to ever try and integrate with reality in any way.

Protecting children is NOT shielding them. Protecting them is teaching them and helping them learn to be good citizens of the world, tolerant, capable of making their own decisions based on what they believe is right and respecting the thoughts, feelings, property, and lives of others.

Our children are NOT stupid. The are individual and curious beings capable of free thought and action. One day our kids will cut the apron strings of mommy and daddy and sail off.

One last thought on this video...I hate when debates turn to the children. How do you win over votes? You bring in the kids. It is a subject we all hold dear, but it can go both ways.

Scott H. said...

I like what you said Chris: "Protecting children is NOT shielding them. Protecting them is teaching them and helping them learn to be good citizens of the world, tolerant, capable of making their own decisions based on what they believe is right and respecting the thoughts, feelings, property, and lives of others."
I am the guilty party who sent this to TJ to see what he thought, so here we are again.

I enjoy diversity as well and that's one of the reasons I want to stay in CA. While yes, Chris the kids may be just as average(?) in test scores, the Utah bubble is a very real thing and you know it. It's not skin color diversity, but belief diversity that I think TJ was driving at.

Isn't 5 years old a little early for schools to be teaching a child about homosexual relationships? Yes there is parental responsibility, and our society as a whole has almost completely abandoned that principle, but at 5 years old? When I have kids I never thought I would have to teach them about such a difficult topic as homosexuality before they were even 5 years old (to prepare them for school).

Yes, I believe kids should be educated and not shielded as Chris put, but shouldn't it happen at an appropriate age? Yes TJ, you're correct in asking: Well when is it? Who knows?

As for required reading of books like King and King without informing the parents, I think that is kind of wrong. In High School or Junior High if there was a book with potentially offensive material (that some might consider acceptable) of the teacher will make accommodations for the teen and they can have an alternate project. Again not saying when is appropriate, but I think parents have a right to be informed of when material being like this is being taught.

Sorry to get you fired up again TJ.
One last thing...while yes the Mormon population is very small in CA, lets go with your 1.4% active number, the general populace still approved a bill similar to this with about 60% saying "yes, marriage is between man and woman only." That means that about 58.6% of non-mormon voters agree with our opinion on this subject as well. It isn't just a tiny section trying to push this on everyone else.

I have many issues, on both sides, about this. But oh well. Thanks for the interesting post and providing commentary on the video. Again, sorry to raise the issue again.

Christopher Maloy said...

Yes, I do believe 5 years old is too young for anyone to tell my kids about anything sex education related. If they sent home a book on how mommy and daddy do it, without my consent, I would personally pay a visit to their teacher and principal and punch them in the face.

I had to go find this book on LW and read it. The book doesn't preach about homosexuality like I thought or teach sex education.

Once again though the choice on what schools buy to put into their library is power that is exercised at the local level. If your school district finds it is ok to buy those books then you have to deal with it. Teach your kids how you want while they live in a diverse social society. If I lived in North Carolina where my kids only had men riding dinosaurs (not in the Biblical sense) or no books on fossils and evolution, I would make sure my kids learned from books I bought. I would have to deal with it. You live in a state that is almost resoundingly going to vote "No" on Prop 8, so that is something you are going to have to deal with.

Yes, Utah does have a bubble when you compare our belief diversity to California, but that is getting less and less. We are much better than many other states though, simply for the fact that we have so many young people coming back from serving missions all over the world and the immigration of people from other states. What do you expect, the Mormons settled this place with the belief and doctrine that they were establishing Zion (ONE heart ONE mind people) before going back to Independence Missouri.

T.J. Shelby said...

Scott, first off don't apologize for bringing up an issue that you and others feel strongly about. If it's important to you and others than it should be discussed.

I most definitely agree with Chris in his analysis on the difference between protecting (parent and state share responsibility) and shielding (parental discretion). I know that I had many Utah companions whose eyes were opened for the FIRST time in the mission field.

If you shield your children from everything, how do you know how they will react when not in your presence? Alas, we digress again because to me, this has nothing to do with a yes or no vote on Prop 8.

The question whether or not we believe in equality for all or whether we'd like to join the moral majority and make a law restricting rights based upon our religious code. 60% passed a similar bill but all that says to me is that 60% of Californians do not understand the concept of American life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

Christopher Maloy said...

I agree, don't apologize. This is a discussion and your points are very valid.

Anonymous said...

I stumbled on your blog and for being a Mormon you sure don't behave like one. Your views are twisted and yet you say you believe in the gospel yada yada yada but you do not support your prophet. Prop 8 is being supported by alot of Christians not just Mormons who want to protect marriage as it has been for centuries. I will teach my children all they need to know but I do not feel that the state should interfere with this aspect of my child's education. This is one blog I will not be visiting. It is a waste of time and energy.

T.J. Shelby said...

Dear Anonymous,

Thanks for the condemnation on my actions based solely upon a few paragraphs. You should read my other prop 8 postings and you'd have some real ammo. This one was mild.

I feel I do support the Prophet. I believe in the sanctity of marriage. The dilemma with Prop 8, for me and MANY other faithful members, is how do we follow the prophet AND uphold the Constitution? Because to do one in this case means abandoning the other.

I am happy that you have come to your own decision and that you feel passionate about it. I wonder if it was the Mormons in the victim role if you'd be so quick to dismiss Constitutional rights.