I Just Heard A Hilarious Joke About Prop 8

Rusty - November 11, 2008

…because, you know, Mormons have lots of wives!

Get it?!!?

(I promise it was hilariouser the first 4,594 times I heard it. Blame it on my delivery.)

48 Comments »

  1. But I thought it really was the FLDS members in CA donating time and money to the campaign. No?

    Comment by CJ Douglass — November 11, 2008 @ 11:50 pm

  2. hilariouser?

    Perhaps this will be the tuning point where the public in (Roseanne Barr excluded) will finally get it that the LDS no longer practice polygamy.

    Comment by Steven B — November 12, 2008 @ 12:22 am

  3. Steven,
    I disagree. I think it links us yet again to polygamy. People simply don’t get that we don’t do it anymore.

    Comment by Ronan — November 12, 2008 @ 11:01 am

  4. I think guys hooking up with guys is a great idea.

    More wives for me.

    Comment by Seth R. — November 12, 2008 @ 11:38 am

  5. Speaking of initially clever antics that has gone stale, I think it’s time to ban use of the written expression “H8″.

    Comment by JimD — November 12, 2008 @ 12:23 pm

  6. That’s got several years to run yet, JimD.

    Just look at those yahoos at the NFL games with the big D and the stretch of picket fence.

    Comment by Mark B. — November 12, 2008 @ 1:19 pm

  7. While we no longer practice it on earth, isn’t it still a celestial practice? So we still actually kind of believe in it, right? It is still a part of our mormon doctrine even if we aren’t practicing it now. So while the joke does get old, their accusations are not entirely unfounded.

    Comment by Laura — November 12, 2008 @ 4:08 pm

  8. Laura,
    That’s a whole big can of worms but, no, there are plenty of us who don’t believe that polygamy’s a celestial practice and who don’t believe that it will be restored either in this or the next life.

    Comment by Sam B. — November 12, 2008 @ 4:45 pm

  9. I don’t get it

    Comment by Bret — November 12, 2008 @ 5:47 pm

  10. Well it looks like there will be another protest at the LA Temple tonight making my commute difficult.

    But really, we almost went to war w/ the federal gov’t in Utah in the 1850′s largely over polygamy, and had to end the practice in order to gain statehood for Utah, and now we’re trying to tell a different minority that we just don’t want to expand the “traditional” definition of marriage? I can see how they would think it ironic.

    Sam B. said:

    That’s a whole big can of worms but, no, there are plenty of us who don’t believe that polygamy’s a celestial practice and who don’t believe that it will be restored either in this or the next life.

    You can believe whatever you want (and I’m all for that), but I think it’s a difficult sell. The way I see it, either JS, BY, et al really screwed up in a big way, big enough to lead you to question everything else they taught/said, or else polygamy is the true order of marriage.

    Comment by mike d. — November 12, 2008 @ 7:03 pm

  11. I think it’s a tough sell too Sam.

    You can sorta make the argument that polygamy won’t be a REQUIREMENT for Celestial status (but only sorta), but banning it entirely seems awfully sketchy to me.

    If people up there want to live it, what is wrong with them doing so – or more to the point – God approving of their doing so?

    Comment by Seth R. — November 12, 2008 @ 10:57 pm

  12. Yup, yup, yup. Joseph Smith and Brigham Young definitely insisted that plural marriage was an eternal principle. The church still teaches that it is; or why would my uncle be sealed in the temple to both his first (divorced) and his second wives? And just take a look at some of the things said and written by Young and other Church leaders (Mark E. Petersen, anyone?) about the inferiority of blacks, and the “repugnant” idea of interracial marriage.

    I imagine that 50 years or so from now, LDS leaders will have a revelation that gays and lesbians are “normal,” and maybe even women will be given the priesthood in another 75-100 years. We are creatures of our time and place.

    Comment by JenDee — November 12, 2008 @ 11:52 pm

  13. mike and Seth,
    I’m not so convinced that it’s a tough sell. And, for what it’s worth, my opinion is closer to what Seth says–that polygamy won’t be a requirement for Celestial status–plus that it won’t happen in the future. I wouldn’t dream of arguing that past polygamous marriages will be null and void (largely because I’m not convinced that they will be, and even moreso because I frankly don’t have any idea).

    I think a very strong argument can be made, however, that permissible polygamy is the exception rather than the rule, and that monogamy is the default eternal position. I don’t really care if that puts me in a minority viewpoint in the Church; I do think it is a viable viewpoint, and one that a number of good and active members share.

    As to the JS, BY, etc. screwed up big–I wouldn’t dream of arguing that. I would argue though that, in order to obey a difficult commandment of the Lord, they had to internalize it to a degree where it became central and immutible in their minds. To a lesser extent, we have that among the laity and the WoW–although there is nothing eternal about it, we hear people arguing the Jesus drank grape juice, etc. etc. There’s something helpful, I think, in believe that the Church as we currently know and participate in it is practicing everything in the most “true” and eternal way possible.

    Comment by Sam B. — November 13, 2008 @ 9:02 am

  14. I wouldn’t dream of arguing that past polygamous marriages will be null and void (largely because I’m not convinced that they will be, and even more so because I frankly don’t have any idea).

    Would you then dream of arguing that preexisting same-sex marriages (between June 27 and Nov 5 2008) will (or should) be null and void? In both cases, you would be undoing something valid and licit when created.

    Just curious.

    Comment by Dan Weston — November 13, 2008 @ 9:43 am

  15. You know, all this talk of polygamy reminds me of one of the Prop 8 fallout issues; namely will the 18,000 SSMs between June and November no longer be recognized. When Wilford Woodruff issued the Manifesto in 1890 (and Joseph F. Smith, a second in 1904), suddenly a whole bunch of polygamous families were no longer. Ironic parallel.

    I also find the government’s language in Reynolds v. United States (1878) concerning Mormon polygamy interesting:

    “Laws are made for the government of actions, and while they cannot interfere with mere religious belief and opinions, they may with practices.”

    Should the government interfere with society’s religious beliefs concerning the practice of marriage? Should they interfere with the parameters of society’s definition of marriage? Should we find something else to talk about?

    Comment by David T. — November 13, 2008 @ 10:05 am

  16. Dan,

    I think same-sex marriage runs into a very tough theological problem that polygamy does not:

    Mother in Heaven

    Comment by Seth R. — November 13, 2008 @ 10:21 am

  17. Dan,
    I don’t know. See, you’re asking me a question that has an answer that can (and will) ultimately be determined in California, likely by the courts. But I’m not a California attorney and I don’t practice constitutional law (of the federal or state variety).

    There are smart people out there who could probably give you a fair answer (actually, who could probably give you at least two fair answers); I’m not one of them.

    Comment by Sam B. — November 13, 2008 @ 1:52 pm

  18. “When Wilford Woodruff issued the Manifesto in 1890 (and Joseph F. Smith, a second in 1904), suddenly a whole bunch of polygamous families were no longer.”

    That’s not correct. The manifesto did not dissolve polygamous sealings or marriages that were in effect at the time of the manifesto. It only banned future polygamous marriages.

    Aside from banning the creation of new polygamous marriages, the most that it did, and I’m not even 100% sure as I can’t find the documentation, is to stop cohabitation of then-current polygamous unions.

    Can anyone tell me definitively whether or not pre-existing polygamous men were told they had to choose which one of their wives to live with and stop cohabiting with the others?

    I take it for granted that men in polygamous unions at the time the manifesto was issued continued to financially support all their wives and children after 1890.

    Comment by Bookslinger — November 13, 2008 @ 9:43 pm

  19. Dan,

    The answer seems to be that those marriages will remain in effect. Jerry Brown, California’s AG, has said that the state will continue to recognize the marriages, and it’s hard to imagine who has standing to challenge his decision in the courts. Unless some future governor or attorney general changes the policy, the marriages will be recognized.

    Comment by Nate W. — November 13, 2008 @ 10:42 pm

  20. Polygamy seems to be forever fascinating. Although:

    Remember the Father of the Faithful, aka Abraham? Jacob? David? Remember who was also called “son of David”?

    Paul says in 1 Tim 3:2 that a bishop should be “husband of one wife”. Now I don’t know if he meant that he should not have more than one wife so he wouldn’t have too much on his hands, or that he should have at least one wife so he’d know real misery. ;)

    And, really, I am only partly kidding. Polygyny was practiced among Jews until the time of Jesus, although, like in Utah, it was never the practice of the majority. So polygyny is nothing if not traditional.

    Moreover, polygyny and SSM are obviously very different concepts. Traditional practice of polygyny has nothing to do with deviant sexual urges, but is just a way of organizing normal relationships between men and women. The orgies that people imagine taking place in these settings are just fantasies.

    That said, I am not saying that plural marriage is something I am looking forward to be reintroduced any time soon. For most people it was a great sacrifice, and the sacrifice we need to make is different now so we don’t have to worry about it. Still, just as the Manifesto didn’t dissolve the marriages that had been sealed previously, I would be surprised if those sealings would be invalidated in the hereafter.

    P.S. “Polygyny” is not a spelling error.

    Comment by Velska — November 14, 2008 @ 2:26 am

  21. #18 Bookslinger: Can anyone tell me definitively whether or not pre-existing polygamous men were told they had to choose which one of their wives to live with and stop cohabiting with the others?

    The 1890 manifesto definitely did not require the dissolution of already-existing polygamous marriages; a few families chose to have the husband cohabit with only one wife, but most quietly continued to cohabit as polygamous families. In fact the manifesto did not end polygamy on a practical level, with new marriages occasionally being performed for the next decade. Six of the twelve apostles took new plural wives after the 1890 manifesto, only two of whom were eventually disciplined. It was not until 1904 or so that the church really began trying to stomp out new polygamous marriages.

    The use of polygamy in the current gay marriage arguments fascinates me. I see a lot of pro-gay-marriage folks trying to shame Latter-day Saints for not supporting them after having their own non-traditional system of marriage revoked by the US government, but I don’t see a lot of them actually advocating that the polygamy ban was wrong and should be reversed. It’s a rather thin line to walk.

    As I see it, if gay marriage gains national, legal acceptance, it’s only a matter of time before polygamy has to become legal as well. It may take 100 years for anyone to care enough to fight for it, but it is the logical extension of what the gay rights movement is arguing.

    Comment by Bridget Jack Meyers — November 14, 2008 @ 12:22 pm

  22. What people who use this line against the LDS Church also don’t get is that gender is an essential and central attribute of heavenly life. Form of marriage is not.

    Therefore it is entirely consistent with LDS theological concerns to allow polygamy, and yet ban homosexual union.

    That’s what they don’t get – we aren’t opposing gay marriage because it’s “weird” or “deviant” or “unconventional.” We opposed it for ingrained, and somewhat inflexible theological concerns.

    Gender is an essential characteristic of all eternal beings – including God and including us. Exaltation only occurs by becoming one with God. You only become one with God as male and female (for that is what God is – a union of male and female identity).

    There is precious little room in that equation for the sort of union of male and male, or female and female that gay advocates are hoping for.

    Polygamy really has nothing to do with it.

    Comment by Seth R. — November 14, 2008 @ 2:28 pm

  23. [...] from Nine Moons has made another good point in the comments both here and there on why Mormons are bound to oppose gay marriage: The LDS view of the cosmos is not genderless, and [...]

    Pingback by Gays v. Mormons: The new Pirates v. Ninjas! « ClobberBlog — November 14, 2008 @ 6:30 pm

  24. a word of agreement, before Mormonism normalizes gay marriage a whole lot of doctrien will have to change.

    Comment by John C. — November 14, 2008 @ 6:54 pm

  25. FWIW: my great-great-grandmother became the third wife of my great-great-grandfather in Colonia Dublan, Mexico, on 14 July 1898.

    Also, amen to Seth R. (#22) and John C. (#24). There is a rather large heap of doctrine standing in the way of supposed future Church acceptance of SSM. Those same doctrines don’t interfere with polygamy, however.

    Comment by Ben Pratt — November 14, 2008 @ 7:07 pm

  26. [...] I Just Heard A Hilarious Joke About Prop 8 Nine Moons – November 11, 2008 [...]

    Pingback by Northern Lights » Blog Archive » Mormonism and Homosexuality: A Bloggernacle Sampler (11-16-08) — November 16, 2008 @ 8:12 am

  27. That’s what they don’t get – we aren’t opposing gay marriage because it’s “weird” or “deviant” or “unconventional.” We opposed it for ingrained, and somewhat inflexible theological concerns.

    Mormon theology. Now THERE is a joke! Especially on the inflexibility part. Given that Mormonism is more a business than a faith — the most important building in Temple Square being the office building over yonder — I think the gays should be targeting Mormon business interests.

    If they do that, a revelation will surely arrive!

    Comment by Wandering Laughter — November 16, 2008 @ 2:13 pm

  28. Wandering, I’m sure that your experiences of being pooped on by Utah culture have convinced you that you know all there is to know about this religion.

    Hopefully you’ll understand if the rest of us are less than impressed.

    Comment by Seth R. — November 16, 2008 @ 8:49 pm

  29. Yes, please do target “Mormon business interests.” The best suggestion I’ve heard so far is that Hollywood is going to boycott the Sundance Film Festival. Because, you know, there is an example of Mormon business interests if I ever saw one.

    Oh, and just so you know, the Church Office Bldg. isn’t in Temple Square, but shhh, don’t tell anyone. We don’t want people finding out how important it is. Mormons might start showing up there once a month instead of at the temple.

    Comment by MCQ — November 16, 2008 @ 11:42 pm

  30. I think the thing to do is to continue to protest at the cult temples, and then broaden it out to the cult’s business holdings.

    Comment by Wandering Laughter — November 17, 2008 @ 3:05 am

  31. Wandering,
    Bye, bye. Moron.

    Comment by Rusty — November 17, 2008 @ 6:19 am

  32. That, or begin to quote 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.”

    http://www.echols.info/dry%20kindling.pdf

    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?

    Comment by Chino Blanco — November 17, 2008 @ 6:19 am

  33. Sorry Chino, you post doesn’t make sense. The church is not involved in telling the members what candidate to vote for. This is illegal and would cause us to lose our tax exempt status.

    On the other hand, moral and social issues are fair game. The church HAS taken a stand (the correct one as evidenced by the vote)on marriage. We clearly state that marriage is between a man and a woman http://newsroom.lds.org/ldsnewsroom/eng/commentary/the-divine-institution-of-marriage.

    The law clearly states that churches can get involved in social issues. We were asked to join other faiths and did. We made up a small percentage of those that voted and just happened to be very organized (by divine design). Good always wins over evil always.

    By the way Chino, I’ve seen many of your posts on other blogs. What god do you believe in? What church do you go to? I wonder how they see this argument. I wonder why no one picks on them for their stance.
    We are led by men called of god and will continue to be so led. We seek after all things that are of good report. Marriage between a man and a women is one of them. . . ..

    Comment by Rob — November 17, 2008 @ 3:30 pm

  34. Rob,

    Chino is a Mormon. I do not question his testimony – even if I do disagree with his stance on certain particulars.

    I find the personal questioning of people’s faith commitment to be a useless and rather arrogant exercise.

    Comment by Seth R. — November 17, 2008 @ 11:55 pm

  35. Seth,

    Chino has a specific agenda that is not a tenant of his faith if he is in fact still a mormon. I highly doubt that he still is. Somewhere on his mission or after his return, he has developed a hatred. I find it interesting that in his numerous discourses on this issue, there is an underlying agenda aimed at destroying and not building. Bet he hasn’t been on his knees talking to his father in heaven much lately. Sorry, I just call it like I see it. Puts his comments in context.

    Comment by Rob — November 18, 2008 @ 1:16 am

  36. Rob,
    Sorry man, but Seth is right. There is no questioning of testimonies here. Do it again and your comment will be deleted and you will be banned.

    Comment by Rusty — November 18, 2008 @ 8:04 am

  37. BTW, Rob: “tenant” is the wrong word in that sentence. You should probably worry about your own ignorance and stop worrying about others’ testimonies.

    Comment by MCQ — November 18, 2008 @ 8:32 am

  38. And yours really put me in my place, Rob.

    Especially your comment about my “underlying” agenda.

    As the loser in this political contest, I’m certainly wondering now whether I shouldn’t have pushed that agenda, instead of the “overt” agenda that I promoted so openly to so little avail.

    Comment by Chino Blanco — November 18, 2008 @ 8:37 am

  39. #22–Seth R.

    That’s what they don’t get – we aren’t opposing gay marriage because it’s “weird” or “deviant” or “unconventional.” We opposed it for ingrained, and somewhat inflexible theological concerns.

    Oh, we get it. We just don’t think your theology should be the law of the land. Given the LDS Church’s history, I’d think it would have concerns about that as well. But apparently not.

    I don’t know any opponents of Prop 8, or proponents of same-sex marriage, who want to force church’s to renounce their principles and doctrines and practices regarding homosexuality and marriage. But if marriage is a civil institution–and it clearly is–then it ought not to be defined by anyone’s theology.

    Comment by Chris Williams — November 18, 2008 @ 5:09 pm

  40. typo correction:

    “…who want to force any churches to renounce…”

    Comment by Chris Williams — November 18, 2008 @ 5:10 pm

  41. Civil Unions are a “civil institution.”

    “Marriage” really shouldn’t be.

    Comment by Seth R. — November 18, 2008 @ 5:48 pm

  42. Chris w: “I don’t know any opponents of Prop 8, or proponents of same-sex marriage, who want to force [any churches] to renounce their principles and doctrines and practices regarding homosexuality and marriage.”

    What about the big _internal_ fights over ordaining openly homosexual priests/ministers in various protestant churches, such as Episcopalian, etc? Various churches are splitting up over the issue. Isn’t it logical to assume that many of those who have pushed for the ordination of openly homosexual priests/ministers are also for same-sex marriage?

    Ordaining openly homosexual ministers seems to me to be radically renouncing principles and doctrines in those churches who used to call homosexual acts sinful.

    Comment by Bookslinger — November 18, 2008 @ 8:47 pm

  43. Rusty,

    Ouch! Thanks for putting me in my place. Boy did I need that! Glad you could use your powers as a common judge to straighten me out. Keep up the great work you are doing on this thread of the blog. It is very entertaining, works at placing a totally clear light on the faith and when googled allows others to see what we have to offer.

    No need to ban me, I’ll ban myself.

    Comment by Rob — November 18, 2008 @ 10:25 pm

  44. Wow. I recently discovered that Mormons (or Mormon offshoots) aren’t the only religious groups interested in polygamy. There’s a group called “Unitarian Universalists for Polyamory Awareness.”

    If same-sex marriage is ever legalized in California, I expect this group to be next in line clamoring for their “civil rights” to marry whomever (and however many) they want. http://www.uupa.org/

    Comment by Bookslinger — November 19, 2008 @ 8:23 pm

  45. Civil Unions are a “civil institution.”

    “Marriage” really shouldn’t be.

    Seth, if that’s the case, then why is the Church fighting over the definition? Why don’t we just take our marbles and go home? We can marry whomever we want in our churches and temples and the civil marriages mean nothing to us, becaause they are conducted by authority we don’t recognize.

    Comment by MCQ — November 19, 2008 @ 10:30 pm

  46. [...] from Nine Moons has made another good point in the comments both here and there on why Mormons are bound to oppose gay marriage: The LDS view of the cosmos is not genderless, and [...]

    Pingback by ClobberBlog » Gays v. Mormons: The new Pirates v. Ninjas! — May 21, 2009 @ 8:49 pm

  47. I hate echo trackbacks from updating old posts. Feel free to delete that at will.

    Comment by Bridget Jack Meyers — May 21, 2009 @ 11:11 pm

  48. [...] comment on Rusty’s post I Just Heard A Hilarious Joke About Prop 8 at Nine [...]

    Pingback by Zelophehad’s Daughters | My Nacle Notebook 2008: Funny comments — August 31, 2009 @ 1:22 am

Leave a comment

RSS feed for comments on this post.
TrackBack URI