The Dilemma of an Obama supporter

I should say from the outset that I like Sen. Obama and will probably be voting for him in the fall. Tonight I watched the press conference where he discussed his separation from Trinity United after video has surfaced of his church welcoming and cheering on a nutty, pandering white preacher named Rev. Michael Pfleger. Read more »

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A Warning About Facebook Slide Spam

This evening I received a notification in Facebook that someone I knew (who was in my friends list) had sent me a message on my FunWall (as it is called).  I logged into Facebook to see what it was and was surprised to see an inappropriate image with the message “press forward to see what happens.”

I know the person who inadvertently sent this to me, and she would never have done this deliberately.  It’s just not her style.  But I know why it happened because I fell for the same trick.

I was very perplexed as to WHY this person would forward THIS image to me and in my moment of confusion I used my cursor to hit “forward” just as it told me to do.

In that same moment I realized that this action had forwarded this same inappropriate image to all the people in my friends list.  Very embarrassing.  To say the least.

Whoever created this little spam message figured out how to code it so that it would automatically mark off all the friends in your list and knew how people would reflexively respond to the message.

I’m more than just a little embarrassed that this happened and I’ll probably have some explaining to do.

Since I fell for it, I just want to warn anyone who reads this post.  If you get a similar message with a message to “press forward to see what happens” … DO NOT DO IT.

I googled about this problem and found that it is being referred to as “slide spam.

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What Would YOU Do?

I have a stake calling in the Young Women’s organization and it has been quite an education. I have not worked in Young Women’s since I was a Laurel myself and I have not previously had a calling that required so much oversight and coordination.

Someone somewhere (before my time) decided that next year, our stake would do a Trek for Youth Conference. The idea does not thrill me, but clearly other people are interested, so I will not protest on the sole basis of not wanting to wear a bonnet (although I will not wear a bonnet). We traditionally do Youth Conference in early September, which is an awkward time for the youth, so had wondered about choosing a different time. Apparently, more important people than myself selected and approved a new month for Youth Conference next year: February.

Yes, a Pioneer Trek in February. In upstate New York. Read more »

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Opting In vs. Opting Out

Does the Book of Mormon have a special Memorial Day message for us, a message in regards to military service? Read more »

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Happy Memorial Day! Thank a Veteran!

Last week, my son and I were coming out of the YMCA in Marblehead and my son wanted to go to the park nearby. We went there where there were several large monuments to those who died in wars. The Civil War monument had 135 names on it – this for a town of 5-10,000 at the time. Many of the names had the same surnames suggesting some families lost 3 or 4 members in the Civil War. They also had 50 names from World War II and 10 or so from Vietnam. It struck me how much has been sacrificed for the freedoms we have. Freedom that allows us to argue about politics, religion, and anything else. Freedom to worship how, where or what we may. Happy Memorial Day!

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Relaunching the Marriage Brand

The question of gay marriage, and what to do about it, has been examined from a moral, political, legal, and sociological framework, and no doubt will continue to be so for some time to come. The Church may choose to advocate (and even provide support to) various political initiatives as they see fit. While those initiatives may be worthwhile and worth the effort, ultimately, I think they are doomed. I could be wrong about this, as my powers of political prediction are quite poor. So while I wish the Church luck in whatever political initiatives they choose to undertake, and will try to help where I am able, I strongly feel that there is a much more effective approach available to it, one that plays to the LDS Church’s strengths.

My proposal is to look at traditional marriage not as a question of constitutional law, civil rights, or even sociology and the protection of children. All those areas are framed in such a way to work against the Church’s position. No matter how right they may be, they’re going to come out sounding defensive, if not hateful and divisive.

For these reasons, though it sounds crazy, I am convinced the Church needs to fight the good fight for traditional marriage in the domain of branding and trademark law. And instead of playing defense, they need to start playing offense.

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First Xango, then Noni, then Gojin, now Zrii?

The Salt Lake Tribune has a story on the launch of Zrii.  It is endorsed by Deepak Chopra and made of a fruit grown at the base of the Himalayas.  If the history of this market is any guide it will taste like liquid crap, which it will make up for by being ten times as expensive as orange juice and just as beneficial.  If you hurry, maybe you can get in on the ground floor of this amazing opportunity and be on the fast track to a big house on the hill, a Hummer, and a home theater room that will make your kids the envy of their cousins.  Make some use of the persuasive skills you honed as a missionary and sign everyone you know up to be below you in the pyramid today!

Too bad that the launch doesn’t coincide with the release of a remake of a classic LDS film

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Covering Obama

(Update on next screening of Nobody Knows: Saturday June 14th at 12:30 p.m. at the Museum of the African Diaspora, as part of the San Francisco Black Film Festival.)

It’s no secret on the bloggernacle: My family supports Barack Obama. Bruce went to the Utah Democrats’ convention and got a bunch of Obama signs and bumper stickers. Our son put one on Bruce’s car.

Now comes the problem. Or not. We are aware that some people have rather passionate ideas about Democrats, and about Obama in particular. I would guess our neighbors all support McCain. We don’t worry so much about our neighbors, but taking our politics into the Missionary Training Center is another matter. So Bruce has devised a little cover for the bumper sticker, which he puts on as soon as he arrives at the MTC. Read more »

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“It Was Only One That Died, Don’t Worry, You Have Other Kids”

The recent Earthquake in China has been a terrible tragedy. I have read several articles from CNN, AP and others that speak about China’s One Child Policy making parent’s pain and suffering worse when their only child was killed in the quake. To me that is one of the stupidest things I have read in awhile. I found this from the Shanghai Daily which was very interesting.

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Ambivalence in California

There was a recent post at Times and Seasons about the California gay marriage decision, and like the discussions of Pres. Beck’s “Women Who Know” talk 2 conferences ago, this conversation about gay marriage was lamentable in that it often degenerated into a back-and-forth of Who’s on the Lord’s side, Who?

I would submit that there are several reasons why some of us are not happy with gay marriage and the Church’s approach to it.  Blake and others in the Times and Seasons discussion decry the California Supreme Court’s “creation ex nihilo” of a right to gay marriage, but what is our insistence on monogamous heterosexual marriage, if not a system created “ex nihilo?” Read more »

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Book of Mormon Stories that my Teacher Taught to Me and I don’t want to pass on

Book of Mormon Stories

When I was young, Primary children, including myself, sang this little dity using questionable hand motions. By the time I was a Merrie Miss, though, we weren’t doing the actions anymore, because they were deemed (rightly so, I think) offensive. Read more »

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Is Charity a Gift of the Spirit?

I keep hearing that charity is a spiritual gift. Searching of LDS.org for “charity is a gift” or “gift of charity” will reveal many references. Yet as I read the lists of spiritual gifts in the Scriptures (I Cor, Moroni 10, D&C 46) I don’t see charity listed. What am I missing? Is charity a gift? If so why aren’t the scriptures more explicit in calling it a gift? If it is a gift does that change our understanding of how we can or cannot develop charity?

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Obama Lied. Children died.

Building on his popular “The World Is about Me” theme, Barack Obama expressed the hope that that he was the target of Bush’s recent remarks about appeasement:

The fight against terror and extremism is the defining challenge of our time. It is more than a clash of arms. It is a clash of visions, a great ideological struggle. On the one side are those who defend the ideals of justice and dignity with the power of reason and truth. On the other side are those who pursue a narrow vision of cruelty and control by committing murder, inciting fear, and spreading lies.

This struggle is waged with the technology of the 21st century, but at its core it is an ancient battle between good and evil. The killers claim the mantle of Islam, but they are not religious men. No one who prays to the God of Abraham could strap a suicide vest to an innocent child, or blow up guiltless guests at a Passover Seder, or fly planes into office buildings filled with unsuspecting workers. In truth, the men who carry out these savage acts serve no higher goal than their own desire for power. They accept no God before themselves. And they reserve a special hatred for the most ardent defenders of liberty, including Americans and Israelis….

There are good and decent people who cannot fathom the darkness in these men and try to explain away their words. It’s natural, but it is deadly wrong. As witnesses to evil in the past, we carry a solemn responsibility to take these words seriously. Jews and Americans have seen the consequences of disregarding the words of leaders who espouse hatred. And that is a mistake the world must not repeat in the 21st century.

Some seem to believe that we should negotiate with the terrorists and radicals, as if some ingenious argument will persuade them they have been wrong all along. We have heard this foolish delusion before. As Nazi tanks crossed into Poland in 1939, an American senator declared: “Lord, if I could only have talked to Hitler, all this might have been avoided.” We have an obligation to call this what it is — the false comfort of appeasement, which has been repeatedly discredited by history.

(That senator, by the way, was William Borah, a Republican from Idaho known as “The Lion of Idaho”)
Read more »

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A Soft Answer???

Last weekend, we screened Nobody Knows: The Untold Story of Black Mormons in Boise, Idaho. The response was MOSTLY positive, but I did have an e-mail from an audience member which indicated that all were not satisfied. Since at MM we’ve talked about whether or not to raise controversies in public settings, and how to respond to someone whose views we find — oh, what’s the word — appalling, I thought I’d give everyone some practice.

How would you respond to this (only a snippet of what I received): Read more »

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As Long as They’re Changing Things at CES…

Margaret Young mentioned at BCC that CES (Church Educational System) is no longer CES. A quick look at the organization’s website seems to confirm that it is now Seminaries and Institutes of Religion. As long as they’re messing with the name of the organization may I suggest a few other changes as well?
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"Mother’s Day Massacre" And Other Mother’s Day Stories

Mother’s Day Sacrament Meetings are always filled with many interesting experiences for me.
The "Mother’s Day Massacre" was one of the most memorable for me. The term was coined by our Bishop at the time – a 50 something engineering professor who was big on getting things done, but not so warm and cuddly – his wife was a stay at home wife and a wonderful warm woman who could pick up the pieces from his can do, "damn the torpedoes" attitude. The two counselors in the Bishopric had wives who were fairly liberal – one kept her maiden name and worked as a professor at a University (she was also the Relief Society President at the time). I was HP GL and observed a lot of this from the peanut gallery (also the counselors were both my great friends).

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Let’s Keep It That Way

A good friend of mine was quite the ladies’ man in High School. During General Conference, he took a particularly, ahem, frisky, girl with him down to the Tabernacle to attend a Saturday session. After the session they went back to his truck, which was parked along first avenue just a block east of the Church Office Building. They took advantage of the warm spring day and indulged their youthful passions in an enthusiastic makeout session.

They were horizontal in the truck when they heard footsteps approaching through their rolled-down window. My friend didn’t think too much of it at first, so focused was he on the attractive young woman in the car. But the footsteps got nearer and nearer, until they finally stopped right beside the truck. My friend looked up and saw L. Tom Perry looking down at the two of them.

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I blame Hillary

I am too chicken to wear pants to church. I want to. Every Sunday I look in my closet and think– I really want to wear these nice black pants or those comfortable nice gray pants, but then I end up putting on that same A-line black skirt or some other skirt and shirt combo. Why am I so hesitant to wear a nice pair of slacks? I am mostly afraid of what others would think of me — assume I am not respectful of the Lord’s house, or that I am trying to make a political statement. I think people would assume I have radical agenda and demand the priesthood or something. Really, I just like pants. I personally think nobody serving in the nursery should have to come in anything other than sweats, but that is another post.

So, ladies, do you ever wear nice pants to church? Do you know anyone who has worn pants to church? If you do know of women who have worn pants to church, were they all “feminists” (whatever that means)?

Men, what do you think of women who wear nice slacks to church?

Has Hillary Clinton ruined the LDS perception of the pantsuit?

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Welcome Pilgrims: Your guide to Palmyra, NY

Should you find yourself en route to the Hill Cumorah Pageant this year, I thought I might lend you my local expertise:
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There Was a Little House

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