Welcome to MormonVoices. Our volunteers respond to public discussions and comments from public figures that misrepresent The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We encourage and direct Mormons to get involved in online discussions and thereby help shape the public understanding and perceptions of the Church. Please join your voice with ours, and become a member of MormonVoices.

MormonVoices is an independent organization that is supportive of, but not
controlled by or affiliated with, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

6 January 2011

Manning Apologizes to Mormons

January 6, 2012

Kennesaw Patch (Georgia)

State Rep. Judy Manning apologized Thursday for her comments this week about Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s Mormon religion.

“I have made a terrible mistake with my reckless words,” the Marietta Republican, whose district runs into Kennesaw and West Cobb, wrote on her Facebook page.

Those “reckless words” appeared in Wednesday’s Marietta Daily Journal in response to Romney’s eight-vote victory in the Iowa caucuses.

“I think Mitt Romney is a nice man, but I’m afraid of his Mormon faith. It’s better than a Muslim,” said Manning, a supporter of New Gingrich’s.

http://kennesaw.patch.com/articles/manning-apologizes-to-mormons

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Don McKee: Gallup looks at effect of Romney’s Mormon faith on Republican voters

January 6, 2012

Marietta Daily Journal (Georgia)

State Rep. Judy Manning, Marietta Republican, made what could be the most startling remarks of the year so far when she said of Mitt Romney, “I’m afraid of his Mormon faith,” adding, “It’s better than a Muslim.”

The comments were reported Wednesday in a Journal article by Jon Gillooly, giving the views of several Cobb state legislators about the Iowa caucus results. Afteward, Rep. Manning, a supporter of Newt Gingrich for president, said on Facebook: “I sincerely apologize to Mitt Romney and for offending people of Mormon faith.”

http://mdjonline.com/view/full_story/17003985/article-Don-McKee–Gallup-looks-at-effect-of-Romney%E2%80%99s-Mormon-faith-on-Republican-voters?instance=lead_story_left_column

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

The eternal wackiness of (some) Georgia politicians

January 5, 2012

Atlanta Journal Constitution (Georgia)

On Wednesday, state Rep. Judy Manning, a Republican from Cobb County and a Newt Gingrich supporter, made news with an attack on Mitt Romney’s religion, suggesting that it disqualified him from office.

“I think Mitt Romney is a nice man, but I’m afraid of his Mormon faith,” she told the Marietta Daily Journal. “It’s better than a Muslim. Of course, every time you look at the TV these days you find an ad on there telling us how normal they are. So why do they have to put ads on the TV just to convince us that they’re normal if they are normal?”

So … “normal” good, Mormon bad, Muslim worse? You better memorize that, because we have to keep such things straight if we hope to protect the Constitution and American freedom.

http://blogs.ajc.com/jay-bookman-blog/2012/01/05/the-eternal-wackiness-of-some-georgia-politicians/

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Georgia State Rep: ‘I’m Afraid’ Of Romney’s Mormon Faith, But ‘It’s Better Than A Muslim’

January 5, 2012

Think Progress

One obstacle that Mitt Romney may face as he asks for the support of Republican primary voters is bigotry against the Mormon faith.
A Marietta Daily Journal story published yesterday demonstrates the bigotry that Romney may have to overcome. The Journal quotes Republican state Rep. Judy Manning saying that she’s scared of Romney’s Mormon faith. But at least he’s “better than a Muslim”:
“I think Mitt Romney is a nice man, but I’m afraid of his Mormon faith,” Manning said. “It’s better than a Muslim. Of course, every time you look at the TV these days you find an ad on there telling us how normal they are. So why do they have to put ads on the TV just to convince us that they’re normal if they are normal? … If the Mormon faith adhered to a past philosophy of pluralism, multi-wives, that doesn’t follow the Christian faith of one man and one woman, and that concerns me.”

http://thinkprogress.org/politics/2012/01/05/398857/georgia-state-repafraid-mormon/?mobile=nc

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Judy Manning, Georgia Legislator, Apologizes For Anti-Mormon Comment

January 6, 2012

Huffington Post

“I have made a terrible mistake with my reckless words,” the Marietta Republican, whose district runs into Kennesaw and West Cobb, wrote on her Facebook page.

Those “reckless words” appeared in Wednesday’s Marietta Daily Journal in response to Romney’s eight-vote victory in the Iowa caucuses.

“I think Mitt Romney is a nice man, but I’m afraid of his Mormon faith. It’s better than a Muslim,” said Manning, a supporter of New Gingrich’s.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/06/judy-manning-georgia-legi_n_1189081.html

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Only in America: South Carolina, Romney, Santorum, Mormons and Catholics

January 5, 2012

Jewish Telegraph Agency

Here’s Jonathan Alter on Wednesday night on MSNBC explaining why Rick Santorum could end up beating Mitt Romney in South Carolina:

I think he’s in very good shape going forward. You know, in presidential politics, money follows momentum. So as long as he can keep things going, he’s going to have the resources to be competitive. He’s not going to match Romney dollar for dollar, but he sure didn’t in Iowa and he matched him in terms of votes.So if he can beat the expectations gap spread in New Hampshire, which is not going to be difficult — that doesn’t mean winning New Hampshire. It means doing better than single digits, which is where he is now. And then South Carolina will be a good state for him. That is a Mormon unfriendly state. I hate to say it, but that`s the facts.

I’m not giving a pass to religious bigotry. But just to be clear, if folks in South Carolina settle on a Roman Catholic because Romney is a Mormon, well… in the context of American history, that’s progress. Sort of. The folks at Bob Jones University must be pulling their hair out.

http://blogs.jta.org/politics/article/2012/01/05/3091045/only-in-america-south-carolina-romney-santorum-mormons-and-catholics

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

I’m a Mormon–and I Play One on TV

January 5, 2012

Bloomberg Businessweek

On Dec. 19, Mitt Romney appeared on The Late Show with David Letterman to read “The Top Ten Things Mitt Romney Would Like to Say to the American People.” He gazed into the camera and deadpanned, “Isn’t it time for a President who looks like a 1970s game show host?” He also poked fun at his helmet hair and took a jab at Newt Gingrich. One thing absent from the list: his religion. In speeches, Romney often talks about faith and prayer but rarely mentions that he is a devout Mormon. Perhaps that’s because national polls show many Americans–particularly evangelical Christians he needs to win–know little about the religion and are suspicious of it. A June Gallup poll found that 18 percent of Republicans wouldn’t vote for a Mormon for President.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is out to change that. In late December the church aired a slick television spot in cities across the country. It features a folksy American named Norman Tolk talking about balancing science with faith. “I’m a physics professor,” he says, smiling. “I’m a father. I’m a grandfather with 17 grandkids. I play with lasers. And I’m a Mormon.” On Dec. 27 the ad ran 31 times on stations from Seattle to Indianapolis during The Dr. Oz Show, The King of Queens, Wheel of Fortune, and other popular programs that attract conservative audiences.

The ads are part of a broader TV, Internet, and billboard campaign designed to introduce the public to a diverse group of real-life Mormons, who bear no resemblance to the creepy, polygamist character portrayals on such fictional TV shows as HBO’s Big Love. Characters in other “I’m a Mormon” ads include an African-American high school student, a former pro football player of Samoan descent, and an Italian beekeeper.

http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/im-a-mormonand-i-play-one-on-tv-01052012.html

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Remembering the Mormon president who may have grappled with depression

January 5, 2012

Salt Lake Tribune

One aspect of Smith’s life, says blogger Jonathan Stapley, is missing from the church manuals: his lifelong struggle with “what appears to be some sort of chronic depression and anxiety disorder.”

Stapley, who writes at bycommonconsent, thinks that is a shame.

Modern Mormons all “know someone who has or have ourselves taken antidepressants, stimulants, lithium or AAPs,” Stapley writes. “We live at a time when we can all safely view mental illness as a biological problem, like cancer, that needs to be treated.”

Some of those who deal with mental illness, he writes, “still feel stigmatized, and some yet think that it is simply an emotional or spiritual failing.”

It would be helpful for such members to know, Stapley speculates, that “you can suffer from mental illness and still become the president of the church, sustained as a prophet, seer and revelator.”

http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/blogsfaithblog/53239901-180/stapley-smith-writes-church.html.csp

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Romney’s evangelical problem rooted in Mormon theology

January 5, 2012

Salt Lake Tribune

All of which begs the question: Why does Mormonism make some evangelicals uneasy?

“At root, this is a theological argument,” said Patrick Mason, a professor of Mormon studies at Claremont Graduate University in Southern California.

Among the disputes are the nature of God, the doctrine of the Trinity and the acceptance of revelations and books beyond the Christian Bible.

“For the people on the inside of these kinds of discussions, these are not just matters of life and death but of salvation. There is nothing more important for them than having a proper relation to God and idea of who Jesus is,” said Mason, author of The Mor

http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/lifestyle/53240274-80/mormon-god-evangelicals-romney.html.csp

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

On Mitt’s Mormonism, Are Evangelicals Witnessing Christ?

January 4, 2012

Patheos

I don’t mind it when the world criticizes evangelicals for believing what they ought to believe and doing what they ought to do. But I do grow concerned when my fellow evangelicals present a caricatured view of Mormonism, when they nastily criticize evangelicals who support a Mormon for the presidency, and when they show something less than the extraordinary charity and grace that Jesus showed to those whose beliefs differed from his own. Right now, many Mormons are showing in their actions that they are moral, loving, hard-working, patriotic people. And right now, unfortunately, some evangelicals are showing in their actions that they are uninformed, ungracious, and more “us against them” than “let us reason together.” Again, some of my friends raised legitimate concerns, and legitimately are concerned about them. For others, I fear the arguments are cover for their personal dislike of Mormonism and Mormons.

So please, if you must oppose a Mormon because he is a Mormon, do better. Do it with a massive, meticulous commitment to the truth. Do it with an equally extravagant grace, love and humility. And don’t simply assume that because you believe Mormonism is wrong or weird, that you must oppose a Mormon candidate for the presidency.

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/philosophicalfragments/2012/01/04/on-mitts-mormonism-are-evangelicals-witnessing-christ/

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

SC governor predicts Romney victory in SC primary

January 5, 2012

San Francisco Chronicle (California)

Haley says she believes that Romney’s Mormon religion will not be a liability in South Carolina.

Evangelical voters are a potent force in GOP politics in South Carolina, and some believe that Mormons falsely claim to be Christians.

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2012/01/05/national/a172149S08.DTL

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

The Republican Religious War

January 5, 2012

Technorati

Make no mistake – if Mitt Romney was a Baptist this thing would be over. But Citizen’s United unleashed a ton of Mormon money and Evangelicals are running scared.

What’s playing out in the GOP today isn’t a battle between moderates and conservatives – the party no longer has any moderates. In fact, the word “moderate” has become a pejorative. No, the current battle is between collection-plate Christians and the insular financial powerhouse that is Mormonism. They are fighting over which religion will call the shots in the R-Party going forward.

http://technorati.com/politics/article/the-republican-religious-war/

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Kirby: Would the Mormon Church influence President Romney? Duh!

January 6, 2012

Salt Lake Tribune

First, let’s dispense with the question of whether Mitt would actually be swayed by LDS Church leaders if elected. The answer to this question is “Duh.”

No human mind – even a really, really small one like Larry Erdmann’s – is devoid of outside influence. We’re all hostages to what other people think and say, including people who shouldn’t matter.

http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/lifestyle/53239951-80/kirby-president-church-matt.html.csp

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Romney: The Right Republican

January 6, 2012

Huffington Post

It was unbelievable to me that I heard at least three different Iowa voters say they would not vote for Romney because he was a Mormon and then they went on talking about why they did not particularly like Mormons. These people who were interviewed on national television stated that being Mormon had an effect on why they didn’t vote for Romney. Could you imagine if someone said that about a woman, a Black, Jewish, or Latino person? Somehow bigotry towards Mormons gets a pass in today’s political climate. What is wrong with our political reporters in 2012 letting this type of prejudice and bigotry get by without comment? It is really appalling.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-guttman/romney-the-right-republic_b_1186937.html

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

What Iowa Says About the Religious Right

January 6, 2012

Wall Street Journal

Will Mr. Romney’s Mormonism be a negative factor for evangelicals? It will for some, but remember that in Iowa the 60% of voters who identified themselves as evangelicals gave 42% of their votes to a Mormon (Mr. Romney) or a Catholic (Messrs. Santorum and Gingrich), while giving only 38% of their vote to fellow Protestants (Messrs. Perry and Paul and Mrs. Bachmann). So much for narrow denominational prejudices.

One should note also that several prominent evangelicals, such as former George W. Bush speechwriter Michael Gerson, are enthusiastically supporting Mr. Romney.

Even Pastor Robert Jeffress, who may be Mr. Romney’s most vocal evangelical critic and last fall referred to Mormonism as a “cult,” has stated: “If it comes down to Romney versus Obama I’m voting for Romney.” I’ve heard the same sentiment from hundreds of evangelical pastors over the past two months. It’s not that their stance on Mormonism is softening, but that their distrust and fear of Mr. Obama’s policies are increasing.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970203471004577142714087737678.html

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Gov. Deal predicts improved odds for Newt Gingrich

January 5, 2012

News 4 Georgia

Deal also says he does not believe that former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney’s Mormon faith will be a factor for Georgians voting in the March 6 primary. Deal says “Georgians are very tolerant people” and says the state has a significant Mormon population that should not make Romney’s religion an issue.

http://www.news4jax.com/news/georgia-news/Gov-Deal-predicts-improved-odds-for-Newt-Gingrich/-/475792/7652190/-/127ro3z/-/index.html

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Mr. Dadian, the core and purpose of our belief is the same

January 6, 2012

Laconia Daily Sun (New Hampshire)

Mr. Dadian, after reading your letter to the editor (Jan. 5), I felt compelled to respond. As a Mormon, the main takeaway that I had from your letter is that you know very little, if anything, about Mormons and what we believe. I have grown weary of Evangelicals and other Christians thinking that because they interpret scripture one way, any other way is not Christian. In the case of many of the doctrines you brought up, they don’t even come directly from the Bible, but from the traditions, creeds and interpretations that have built up over the last 2,000 years. Believe it or not, I could cite chapter and verse from the Bible to support my interpretation of the doctrines you brought up.

I don’t want to minimize the differences between my faith and that of most other other Christians, because there are wide theological differences between the two. But people like you Mr. Dadian seem to forget that while we interpret certain scriptures differently, the core and purpose of our belief is the same, that Jesus Christ is the Savior. So yes, we can all be Christians together.

http://www.laconiadailysun.com/story/michael-perrone-1-5

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

9 controversial Rick Santorum quotes

January 5, 2012

The Week

Reminding America that some view Mormonism as “a dangerous cult”
Quote: “Would the potential attraction to Mormonism by simply having a Mormon in the White House threaten traditional Christianity by leading more Americans to a church that some Christians believe misleadingly calls itself Christian, is an active missionary church, and a dangerous cult?” (Santorum’s Philadelphia Inquirer column, Dec. 20, 2007)

Reaction: Santorum was responding to Mitt Romney’s famous speech reassuring evangelical Christians that he shares their values, and to be fair, “Santorum’s ultimate verdict on Romney was more or less positive,” says Dan Froomkin at The Huffington Post. But he draws plenty of “distinctions between Mormonism and Christianity that others have avoided lest they seem overly inflammatory.”

http://theweek.com/article/index/223041/9-controversial-rick-santorum-quotes

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Mission Interruption All Part of the BYU Plan

January 5, 2012

Rugby Mag

BYU has lost to services of several players thanks to them going on Mission as members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (LDS, or Mormon).

Among those, the most notable are Jared and Josh Whippy, who were outstanding freshmen for the Cougars, Jared more so as Josh was injured early.

That’s a blow, but it’s one BYU can absorb, especially when you consider they bring back center Paul Lasike, wing Jordan Lowry and lock/flanker Kyle Sumsion. All three are now back from mission, and all three were on the team that won the 2009 National Collegiate Championship.

http://www.rugbymag.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=3048:mission-interruption-all-part-of-the-byu-plan&catid=56:college-premier-&Itemid=224

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

FAIR Examination 6: Overcoming same-sex attraction-Blake Smith

FAIR Blog

January 4, 2012

Blake Smith is a member of the church who has a history with same sex attraction. In this interview, he shares how he reconciled his sexual attractions to men with the gospel of Jesus Christ and how the law of chastity has brought him peace. He begins talking about his unsuccessful attempts at aversion therapy and subsequent failed marriage. He then shares why he decided to stay in the church and what helped him. He talks about the love and encouragement he received from his ecclesiatical leaders and from a support group called North Star. He tells his story of finding true love to the woman of his dreams and of finally overcoming same-sex attraction.

http://www.fairblog.org/2012/01/04/fair-examination-6-overcoming-same-sex-attraction-blake-smith/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+fairldsblog+%28FAIR+Blog%29

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

NOTE: This is posted for those who are interested in keeping abreast what is being said around the world about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and its members. MormonVoices cannot and does not guarantee the validity or truthfulness of any information reported. The responsibility for the interpretation and use of this information lies with the reader. As all information comes from other news sources and has not been independently verified, MormonVoices cannot guarantee or be responsible for the security of links in the clipping service. MormonVoices will attempt as much as possible to exclude news articles containing strongly offensive language or which lead to offensive images, but cannot guarantee that some will not slip through.

Don't panic! You are in the right place!

MDL.org is now MormonVoices.org

Mormon Defense League is now “Mormon Voices” and our new URL is www.mormonvoices.org. You have automatically been forwarded to our new website. Our mission is the same, but our emphasis will be to help members become involved in critical conversations online.