Saturday, April 30, 2011

Utah County Republicans put party over religion

If you've been following the immigration issue in Utah, you know that Utah recently passed an immigration law, and you know that the LDS church supported the law. The law is actually a collection of laws--a comprehensive immigration reform. Anti-immigration types call it unconstitutional (which it might be) and amnesty.

So how do members of the church respond? In Utah County (where more than half a million people live, the majority LDS) Republicans voted to repeal it. Or at least part of it. Wow. The church has come down pretty hard about it's opinion on immigration lately. And many members are in denial, while others lean towards apostasy (especially, apparently, many in Provo and surrounding cities). Meanwhile, the church has to repeat itself to members who don't believe it means what it says.

Over two years ago, a missionary from what was formerly the Cincinnati mission was deported. (I know because I was here, in Cincinnati, at the time). He had gone to high school in the U.S., and the prophet sent him on the mission even though he wasn't legally in the U.S. Now a branch president in Utah is being deported. Part of me wonders if a member of the church in his stake reported him. The church newspaper, the Deseret News, didn't have a single article about the missionary. Fortunately, they've changed their approach now and did an article about the branch president. They've also done other articles about members who have been deported. (The Salt Lake Tribune, of course, reported about both the missionary and the branch president). The church has made itself more than clear--some things matter more than our immigration laws. Unfortunately, those who put politics over their faith aren't getting the message. That's their right, but they need to understand that that's what their doing, and that their church disagrees with them. They need to understand that while they can still be members in good standing, they are in exactly the same position as LDS opponents of Proposition 8 were a couple of years ago. They are disagreeing with church leadership.

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