Sunday, October 3, 2010


After this post I'm going to make sure to do one about the things I enjoyed about conference. But for the moment, I just really need to get this off my chest.

This comes from President Boyd K. Packer's talk.

“There are those today who not only tolerate but advocate voting to change laws that would legalize immorality, as if a vote would somehow alter the designs of God’s laws and nature”

“A law against nature would be impossible to enforce. Do you think a vote to repeal the law of gravity would do any good?”

the power to create offspring “is not an incidental part of the plan of happiness. It is the key — the very key.”

Some argue that “they were pre-set and cannot overcome what they feel are inborn tendencies toward the impure and unnatural,” he said. “Not so! Why would our Heavenly Father do that to anyone?”

When I heard this, I said to myself "I surely must have misheard"--I mean... I often disagree with President Packer... but wow. I thought "The One"-esque doctrine had disappeared in the 80's? Or at least the 90's?

It just left me sick to my stomach but craving to rewind, to listen again, to hear it correctly this time. Maybe this pain that I felt was just a big misunderstanding. I listened to the rest of the session absentmindedly, trying my best to pay attention.. but just not quite making it there. "Why would our Heavenly Father do that to anyone?"...

I tried to talk to one of my best friends about President Packer, but she just... didn't understand. "What you're saying is that you don't like him because he is an old white guy,a product of a bigoted era?" she asked curiously. I knew she was *trying* to understand and I appreciated the effort, but I just couldn't adequately explain how his words affected me. I don't have a problem with him as a man, he is probably a good guy--a nice grandpa and a hard worker. I can't see his words in that light though--those words are hurtful and sad.

I wonder where the real true "doctrine" will end up. I mean, he said that the church's stance would never change... but how is Brigham Young's ban on interracial relationships viewed in this day and age? “Shall I tell you the law of God in regard to the African race? If the white man who belongs to the chosen seed mixes his blood with the seed of Cain, the penalty, under the law of God, is death on the spot. This will always be so.” (Journal of Discourses, Vol.10, p.109)

I'm just hazarding the guess that most people don't embrace this as doctrine today. Goodness, I had never even heard of the whole "descendants from Cain"/"fence-sitters in the pre-existence" theories until I was 14 and had spent the last 3 years of my life with a black girl (she wasn't African-American, it had been like 10 generations since anyone in her family was in Africa). I came to my mom with questions about it and she was surprised I had never heard it. I'm glad I didn't.

I don't know where I'm going with this post. I guess I'm just frustrated. I've listened to this talk in its entirety about five times now--probably more--but I just can't find the silver lining.

This wasn't any easier to listen to with the background that less than two weeks ago, Tyler Clementi, a kid my age, a freshman like me... he killed himself. He killed himself because his roommate taped him having sex with another guy and showed it to a bunch of people online. This kid, he was like me. He was my age, my race, he was a highly driven new college student, struggling like all of us... I don't know what to say, it just saddened me.

On top of that, four days ago Seth Walsh, the Tehachapi 13-year-old who hanged himself from a tree in his back yard after years of being bullied. Because he was gay.

"Why would our Heavenly Father do that to anyone?”.... "Why would our Heavenly Father do that to anyone?”

I don't know. I don't know why kids are born into homes with drug-addicted parents, I don't know why children are molested, mutilated, why children witness murders, sometimes of their own family. I don't understand genocide. I don't understand why children are born with extremely painful diseases that are fatal after they endure unbearable pain. I don't understand, I don't understand. Why would our Heavenly Parents allow that to happen anyone? They love us.

God allows us to struggle, he allows this pain. He allows kids to be born gay, born into a culture where gay-ness is considered of the devil, where an innocent little kid will have to struggle. Where no matter what he or she does, they may not feel like they can quite fit in. Where they shed tears over feelings that they cannot change. That's about all I can say.