The Mormon church is coming around regarding LGBT equality?
That seems to be what they're saying today, with one big condition...lay off those of faith. At least, those of faith proclaiming their beliefs in the public square...
"When religious people are publicly intimidated, retaliated against, forced from employment or made to suffer personal loss because they have raised their voice in the public square, donated to a cause or participated in an election, our democracy is the loser," said Elder Dallin Oaks, a member of the church's Quorum of Twelve Apostles.
"Such tactics are every bit as wrong as denying access to employment, housing or public services because of race or gender."
These statements from the church, however, do not apply to church doctrine. That remains unchanged and does not allow for LGBT equality.
Notably, however, Mormon leaders said Tuesday that they would not -- and could not -- alter their opposition to gay marriage, calling such unions, "contrary to the laws of God."
While we all may agree that within churches, their belief systems are their own, statements from the leaders of the Mormon church easily move outside the walls of the church, in direct conflict with their supportive statements.
But religious freedom should also extend to Mormon physicians who refuse to perform abortions or artificial insemination for a lesbian couple, or a Catholic pharmacist who declines to carry the "morning after" pill, he added.
Such statements clearly violate fair and equal treatment and highlight a fatal flaw in their sudden turnaround on LGBT rights. They support rights up to a point, the point in the public square when we get too close to their private beliefs.
Are these statements a reaction to the upcoming June Supreme Court hearings, when marriage equality will likely be ruled into law across the entire United States? Are some in religion and politics softening their condemnation in the face of a critical, impending ruling for equality?
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