Mormons! The Least You Should Know

Posted on June 4, 2012 by

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A few things that need to be pointed out about Gregory Krieg article “Mormons! The Least You Should Know“.

This article was trying to provide readers with a few facts about the LDS church and relate it into today’s politics surrounding Mitt Romney’s Presidential campaign, things such as Mormons being Christians, drinking alcohol, tithing, race and others are covered briefly. The first area that the author got wrong was about the the Church of Jesus Christ of latter-day saints using tithing money for supporting political issues like proposition 8. Since this is a hot button issue it is worth making sure that this is correct.

Tithing is the duty of all able Mormons, who are asked to donate 10 percent of their annual income to the church. That money is then pooled and used for a variety of things, from the mundane (funding missionary programs) to more controversial endeavors (the Mormon Church, according to a 2008 report in the Los Angeles Times, spent more than $8 million trying to boost California’s Prop 8, which eventually passed, banning same-sex marriage in California).

Mr. Krieg used a 2008 Los Angeles Times as his source that the “Mormon Church” spent 8 million dollars fighting Proposition 8, here is the correct information from that article:

Mormons have been active participants in the campaign both as volunteers and financial contributors, giving an estimated 43 percent — some $8.4 million — to the Proposition 8 campaign, according to the Web site mormonsfor8.com.

As you can see the 2008 Los Angeles Times article says Mormon volunteer and contributors, not “the Mormon Church”. This may seem like a small issue but it is a big deal. When people want to punish The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for taking a stand for traditional marriage, one weapon they try to use is encouraging the government to revoke the 501(c)(3) status of the church. Regardless of the position you take about prop. 8 and the influence of a 501(c)(3) organization in that referendum, the correct information needs to be reported.

The second correction that needs to be pointed out is the part focusing on the LDS church and race:

The church’s history with Race is a chronicle of contradictions. The earliest believers were persecuted for a number of things, one of which was their opposition to slavery. LDS founder Joseph Smith was an abolitionist, but when he died and the church came under the control of Brigham Young, things changed. From the beginning of Young’s time in charge (1849) until 1978, people of black African ancestry were banned from the priesthood. They were also excluded from taking part in a number of important sacraments. The church, though, has never prohibited black men and women from joining its rank-and-file.

Mormon Fact Check’s focus is correct information, using the correct words when writing about the LDS church is important. The author pointed out that people of african decent were banned from “important sacraments”. It is important to know that the Mormon church only has one ordinance called “sacrament” and it would be better form to refer to the “important sacraments” as ordinances.

http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2012/05/mormons-the-least-you-should-know/

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