Outside the Gates of the Temple

One of the largest financial backers of Prop 8, the initiative to take away fundamental rights & set the stage for an entire rollback of equal rights for all, was the leadership of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (aka Mormons, LDS). That’s why civil rights activists took to the streets again yesterday outside the Mormon Temple in Newport Beach to speak up for equality. Let me tell you what happened as we stood outside the gates to the temple.

I’ve been amazed in these last few days by this birth of an organic grassroots movement to complete the promise of full equality made by civil rights leaders many years back. I guess all it takes is a robbing of people’s rights to get them up & active. And again, that’s what I saw at the gates to the temple.

I saw married gay & lesbian couples who are furious that a few powerhungry religious leaders want to disrespect their relationships to grow political influence. I saw ex-Mormons who were disgusted by how church leaders spread outright lies about people to “win” an election. I saw numerous young people, gay and straight, who want to see a California and an America where people are no longer hated for who they love. Out of the ashes of a frustrating and saddening campaign, a new and exciting civil rights movement has been born.

Sure, there were some parishoners who felt “inconvenienced” by our presence. There were a couple of people driving on Bonita Canyon Road who shouted expletives at us. Yes, there were even a couple counter-protesters trying to start an ugly scene. However, they were far outnumbered by all of us… And all those driving by who showed their support! Heck, we even had a group of young women coming out of the temple who loudly expressed their support for our cause!

But above all else, it was great to be out educating people and making our case for equal rights. Believe it or not, we’re not alone. Not even here in Orange County are we alone. We have support and we’re making a difference in speaking out. The courts are noticing, the voters are paying attention, and the entire nation is now watching.

If you’d like to be a part of this new civil rights movement right here in OC, drop a line to ocequality@gmail.com. Now is our time to make change happen. Overturning Prop 8 and securing marriage equality is just the start. Let’s go out and replace this storm of hate with a spirit of love!

  5 comments for “Outside the Gates of the Temple

  1. November 17, 2008 at 6:53 am

    Joseph Smith:

    “With regard to elections, some say all the Latter-day Saints vote together, and vote as I say. But I never tell any man how to vote or whom to vote for. But I will show you how we have been situated by bringing a comparison. Should there be a Methodist society here and two candidates running for office, one says, ‘If you will vote for me and put me in governor, I will exterminate the Methodists, take away their charters,’ etc. The other candidate says, ‘If I am governor, I will give all an equal privilege.’ Which would the Methodists vote for? Of course they would vote en masse for the candidate that would give them their rights.”

    How sad is it that contemporary Mormons have now utterly failed to live up to their civic duty in the eyes of their original prophet?

  2. Rob
    November 17, 2008 at 12:33 pm

    The notion that the folks against Prop 8 merely seek equality and civil rights is a red herring!

    They skew their true M.O.

    Such disingenuous ranting discredits any notion of rationality!

  3. November 17, 2008 at 2:04 pm

    Chino Blanco-

    Good points.

    Rob-

    Was that snark? Serious question.

  4. El Dav
    November 17, 2008 at 4:21 pm

    This is purely an equality and civil rights issue – how blind can you be? The gay community went to bed with equal civil rights and woke up without them! Here is the rationality: our state constitution does not discriminate on the face of sexual orientation the right to marriage/the pursuit of happiness. This was decided upon by a majority Republican state Supreme Court, because there was no other way to read the Constitution’s intent. This was not an activist decision but a literal reading of the Constitution. When people try to amend our beloved Constitution to legislate discrimination, we have a tyranny of the majority. This is the same majority that would have kept women as property, that would die to maintain slavery, that would keep women and minorities from voting, and would prevent inter-racial marriage (all in the name of the Holy Bible!) Our gay citizens have every right to the privileges of their straight neighbors – we would never think of denying them the right to vote, the right to free speech, the right to bear arms. Why is this so difficult to understand? On which side of the fire hydrant do you want to stand?

  5. yawn
    November 17, 2008 at 10:04 pm

    “I WENT TO THE MIDDLE EAST TO PROTECT YOUR RIGHTS!”

    Wrong!

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