Mormonism at its Worst
Some of you may have read the op-ed piece in the New York Times the other day, I’m a Mormon, Not a Christian by David Mason. I found this piece to be troubling. Personally I could not care less if Mormons are Christian or not. It is all hocus pocus to me. What troubled me was the last paragraph:
“Whatever happens in November, I hope Mormonism eventually realizes that it doesn’t need Christianity’s approval and will get big and beat up all the imperious Christians who tormented it when it was small, weird and painfully self-conscious. Mormons are certainly Christian enough to know how to spitefully abuse their power.”
This is why I blog. When you get down to it, I am tired of people saying that most Christians (or Muslims, or whoever) are not like X. X can be many things, misogynists, xenophobic, bigots, etc. I am tired of it because it does not matter. I would agree that most religious folks do not display all of the negative aspects of their chosen faith. However, most of them do exhibit some of those traits. Taken as a whole community, it is downright terrifying.
Mason’s words, while perhaps not representing all Mormons, certainly represent a decent slice of that population. I would argue that he is correct in asserting that it represents a decent slice of the populations of the monotheistic religions.
The religions of the bible are violent by nature. Look at the history of the Catholic, Protestant, Jewish and Muslim faiths. Each of them will seek to eradicate non-believers when they have the power to do so. Mason is simply pointing out his belief that Mormonism is no different. I see no reason to deny him his claim.
Religions are like viruses. I do not necessarily mean that in the derogative way it sounds. Rather I mean that they seek to spread and are difficult to eradicate. At their core, the main purpose is self-preservation and growth. They will stop at nothing to ensure their survival. This has been demonstrated through countless wars. When dominant in a society, they will often use any and all means necessary to spread their beliefs while removing any trace of other beliefs. This has been demonstrated through many genocides and ethnic cleansings. Has Mormonism had a particularly violent past? No; at least not compared to other religions. Is there any reason to think that Mormons would act differently if they were dominant? Absolutely not.
Religious people may do much good in the world through charitable organizations. I would argue that this work would get done just as efficiently through secular means. Religion does not make the world a better place. They make our planet more hateful, ignorant, spiteful, and dangerous.
This is why I blog. I read statements like Mason’s and they make me cringe. Religion needs to be eradicated from our species. This is no easy feat. I fully support the freedom of religion. People have the right to believe in whatever superstition they choose. It is my hope that we can sway the masses to make the same choice that I and many of you have—to walk away.
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