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Friday, November 13, 2009


Greetings and Salutations to All my Kith and Kin and All the Ships in Outer Space:

One of my sisters, who is not a member of The Church of JESUS CHRIST of Latter-day Saints, and who resides in Dewey, Oklahoma, inquired about my reaction regarding the recent official announcement from Church Headquarters in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Here is the text of the official announcement made at a meeting of the Salt Lake City Council on Tuesday 10 November 2009.


Good evening.
My name is Michael Otterson, and I am here tonight officially representing The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
The nondiscrimination ordinances being reviewed by the city council concern important questions for the people of this community.
Like most of America, our community in Salt Lake City is comprised of citizens of different faiths and values, different races and cultures, different political views and divergent demographics.
Across America and around the world, diverse communities such as ours are wrestling with complex social and moral questions.
People often feel strongly about such issues.
Sometimes they feel so strongly that the ways in which they relate to one another seem to strain the fabric of our society, especially where the interests of one group seem to collide with the interests of another.
The issues before you tonight are the right of people to have a roof over their heads and the right to work without being discriminated against.
But, importantly, the ordinances also attempt to balance vital issues of religious freedom. 
In essence, the Church agrees with the approach which Mayor Becker is taking on this matter.
In drafting these ordinances, the city has granted common-sense rights that should be available to everyone, while safeguarding the crucial rights of religious organizations, for example, in their hiring of people whose lives are in harmony with their tenets, or when providing housing for their university students and others that preserve religious requirements. 
The Church supports these ordinances because they are fair and reasonable and do not do violence to the institution of marriage. 
They are also entirely consistent with the Church's prior position on these matters. 
The Church remains unequivocally committed to defending the bedrock foundation of marriage between a man and a woman.
I represent a church that believes in human dignity, in treating others with respect even when we disagree – in fact, especially when we disagree. 
The Church's past statements are on the public record for all to see. 
In these comments and in our actions, we try to follow what Jesus Christ taught. 
Our language will always be respectful and acknowledge those who differ, but will also be clear on matters that we feel are of great consequence to our society. 
Thank you.


The following e-mail text was my response to my sister's inquiry.



I am familiar with that decision by Salt Lake City, enacting an ordinance granting homosexuals special protection from housing and employment discrimination, a city ordinance which was endorsed by The Church of JESUS CHRIST of Latter-day Saints, as I read their daily newspaper, the DESERET NEWS, every day on the Internet.

This was a horrible, devastating blow to faithful members of the Church.

I immediately responded with a comment voicing my objection, but they wouldn't print it.

They rarely print anything I write.

Naturally, I'm opposed to what has been done, for a couple of reasons.

First and foremost, I believe anyone who owns their own property or business should be able to discriminate against anyone, for any reason.

I don't see anything wrong or unnatural with having feelings of discrimination, bias, preference, or prejudice.

I regard those personal feelings, usually acquired through observation or experience, as natural survival instincts instilled in us by our God.

I don't think any government entity should be telling private citizens what to do with their own personal business or property.

Certainly, if a homeowner or apartment manager thinks homosexuality is an evil aberration, and doesn't want homosexuals in their home, then the property owner shouldn't be compelled to violate their own conscience or religious faith.

A business owner or operator should be able to hire and fire whoever he pleases, for he knows what's best for his own business.

When a government regulates how a private business must operate, then we are repeating the same mistakes committed in Russia, Germany, and Italy during the Nineteen Thirties.

Secondly, I am obviously opposed to homosexuality.

Our scriptures have made the issue quite clear.

Even in our contemporary society, we can witness the terrible damage that's being done to individual lives and families.

Homosexuality is not an innocent, harmless, alternative life style.

What else can I say?

As I struggle with this, I remember the lesson of JOHN 6: 66-69.

This isn't the first time that Church officials have said or done something which tried my faith, and it probably won't be the last.

Each time, I turn for solace and reassurance to JOHN 6: 66-69.

I just need to concentrate on living my own life in the best manner that I can, for as one lone individual, I can't really do very much to affect the Church or the Nation, although I do try.

As a member of The Church of JESUS CHRIST of Latter-day Saints, ordained to the Priesthood, I have entered into sacred eternal covenants with Heavenly Father, and I must make every effort to remain true to those sacred covenants.

So, even if the leaders of the Church are doing something I regard as wrong, I must remain faithful to my covenants, and try to keep my own life on the straight and narrow.

I don't know what else to say.

Thank you.

John Robert Mallernee
Official Bard of Clan Henderson
Washington, D.C.  20011-8400

NOTE: "My unpopular and controversial personal opinions are independent of my Scottish clan."


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