|Stones, seen and unseen, seer and otherwise.
||[Aug. 8th, 2015|06:28 pm]
Phrembah (a potato-like mystery)
I never had much skin in the Mormon game. I was born into a Mormon family of handcart pioneer and English immigrant stock in Salt Lake City, but . . . I left the Church at the age of eight because I couldn’t commit to the baptism belief requirements. And, miraculously, nobody stopped me.
However, I always identified myself as a Mormon from Utah. As an adult I used to amuse myself by listening to evangelical colleagues run on about how weird and cultish and un-Christian Mormon beliefs and practices were. These folks had no idea that a) I was technically a Mormon, but b) I didn’t believe a word of my religion or theirs. So I would let them go on and on and then I would announce that I grew up a Mormon in Salt Lake City and I had no idea what they were talking about; I had grown up in a church-attending temple-going family and I had never heard anything about these weird beliefs. They couldn’t refute my refutations because they had no real information to go on, everything they thought they knew about Mormons was all hearsay from other non-Mormons at their church, so they just turned red and twitched, much to my delight.
But when Uncle Mitt was nominated by the Repubs in 2012 and I decided to actually Google “magic underpants,” imagine my chagrin to find out that the hearsay and gossip repeated by my evangelical acquaintances was mostly true. Truth be known, because I had so little invested in my Mormonism, I just laughed and laughed. I laughed at myself and laughed at the Church. The irony—that these malicious lying detractors of the Church were actually right! And the more that came out about the history of the church, the righter they turned out to have been.
The train wreck that is Brighamite Mormonism is a story that I can’t look away from. It’s fascinating. Some friends and relatives ask me why I care. I don’t. I care about Mormonism in the same way that I care about the “Dune Chronicles"—it’s a great story.
That’s not entirely true . . . I do care about people, especially kids, who’ve been turned out of their homes because of their lack of belief or their sexuality or whatever. It’s very, very sad that crap like that has to happen. Maybe as the Church cops to more and more of the truth about itself, people will take it less and less seriously and its potential for harm will diminish.