Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Obama Stuff

For the past few weeks I've been reading and hearing a lot from the anti-LDS Obama Supporters. People who are offended that an actual member of the LDS church could be an Obama Supporter. I've heard it from family members, during testimony meeting, blogs etc. I felt like it was time I stood up and defended myself and my decision to vote for Obama during this election. I asked Jack to guest post on my blog for this sole purpose.

First of all, the Church has deliberately never endorsed a party and it never will. It is a blatant mistake to think that the church sides with the republicans based on only two issues that Presidents have little to no influence over.

Abortion. President Bush has been "pro-life" as it's called, but because the US constitution is about protecting people's freedoms, he hasn't reduced abortion rates at all. In fact, abortion rates are the highest they've ever been, since the Republicans in power are against sexual education for high school students, which is the number one deterrent of unplanned pregnancies.

As for Senator Obama's thoughts on abortion, here's what he said in the last presidential debate:"The last point I want to make on the issue of abortion. This is an issue that -- look, it divides us. And in some ways, it may be difficult to reconcile the two views. But there surely is some common ground when both those who believe in choice and those who are opposed to abortion can come together and say, we should try to prevent unintended pregnancies by providing appropriate education to our youth, communicating that sexuality is sacred and that they should not be engaged in cavalier activity, and providing options for adoption, and helping single mothers if they want to choose to keep the baby.Those are all things that we put in the Democratic platform for the first time this year, and I think that's where we can find some common ground, because nobody's pro-abortion. I think it's always a tragic situation."

The other reason why many LDS members struggle with the idea of electing a Democratic president is the party's view on gay marriage. They voted for Bush 8 and 4 years ago under his promise to define marriage in the constitution as between a man and a woman. He didn't. In fact, there are more gay marriages taking place in the US than ever before. Here's the problem. The real reason that we think gay marriage is wrong is because our loving, perfect, and all knowing Father in heaven told us so. If you've come up with another reason, it's not God's reason, it's yours, and it's probably crap. That's why the US Supreme court will never outlaw gay marriage.

The premise that many citizens have this faith and so they want their religious beliefs to become the law will never pass in a nation that has separation of church and state. It would be unconstitutional as well as in opposition to the 12th article of faith, in which we are subject to the law. In essence, we can fight against it, but I promise that gay marriage will become more and more prevalent. The responsibility lies with parents to teach their children the values that they believe in.

As Senator Obama said, "But there's one last ingredient that I just want to mention, and that's parents. We can't do it just in the schools. Parents are going to have to show more responsibility. They've got to turn off the TV set, put away the video games, and, finally, start instilling that thirst for knowledge that our children need."

I'm sure it's a surprise to many of you that Barack Obama, a Christian man, has opposed gay marriage. I think you would be hard pressed to convince someone from another country that the Republican party, who favors free markets and large corporations, and ignores the poor, needy and the sick, that they have anything to do with any Christian group.

The reason Jesus made an impact on the whole world during his time on earth is not only because of the atonement. It was because He said things that no one had ever said before. He said that we are our brothers keeper, that we should love our enemies. He said the new commandment was to LOVE ONE ANOTHER! How have we become pro-war and still think of ourselves as Christians? The Republican base has racists and hateful tendencies towards Muslims, yet Jesus Himself was from the middle east.

I'm not saying that the Democrats are innocent by any means. In fact, I think that political parties serve only to divide America. I am saying that to vote Republican based solely on the premise that your are LDS is an opinion formed without thinking. On a side note, I am very disappointed in the LDS people I know who actually endorsed Mitt Romney. This guy was a slime ball. He had the most dishonest campaign of anyone in either party during the primaries. He has no convictions that he'll stick to. For all the complaining that I heard from people about how some Americans wouldn't vote for Romney because he was a Mormon, there is equal hypocrisy in voting for someone merely because he is a Mormon.

I know lot's of LDS people who are dishonest, immoral jerks, and you probably do too. Romney is not excused from that list because of his religion, and I hope that none of you would make that hypocritical mistake.

I'm not telling you that you need to vote for Barack Obama. I'm telling you that God sent us to earth to make choices, and if you vote without thinking and choosing, you're wasting that chance. - Jack Ady October 2008

And there you have it. I am extremely grateful to a loving Heavenly Father who gave me the right to choose. I plan on using that right on November 4th. I hope you will too.


Karen said...

Send this to the Tribune.

Jack Ady said...

Wow, poorly written, but a really good point. ;)

Action Steve said...

So Dayna, I love your point here. Wait, was it yours? :P

JameeMaLee said...

Hi.. I really enjoyed reading this post. I learned a lot and totally agree with a lot of the points you made.. At this point I don't really endorse either McCain or Obama. I believe that children should be taught in the home of things that may be of a sensitive nature, including sex education, homosexuality. I don't think we can blame the republican party for the increase in un-wanted pregnancys and abortions. If parents fail to educate their children on these things the blame lies squarely on their shoulders. I don't believe the republican party is pro-war either. We have the duty to protect our nation. I agree that Bush has made many mistakes in the war, however he is doing the best he can to protect our country and our freedom. Pulling troops out of Iraq and squandering those efforts would be foolish at this point in the game. We must finish what we've started. I don't believe God is against the war. I'm sure it makes him very sad to see his children fighting this way. However we can look to the BOM to see that this has happened MANY times before. I believe a loving Heavenly Father would have us defend our freedoms. Christ being from the middle east has nothing to do with the situation we engage in today. If the "middle easterners" AKA terroists would leave us be then none of this would have happened in the first place. Anyway this is a book..sorry. I agree with many of the points you made. Not sure who I will be voting for though.

Action Steve said...

I feel I have to point out that "Middle-Easterners" aren't terrorists. I know many of them myself. Declaring an entire region of the world to be terrorists, for whatever reason, will always be wrong. The vast, vast majority of followers of Islam and people living in the Middle East are kind, generous people.

Femme Facetious said...

Very well-written post, Ady. (I call you Ady beacuse that's what Steve calls you, I hope that's okay.) I like your comments on the separation of church and state, especially. We don't live in a theocracy (as much as some of us might like to) and it's not right to force it on everyone else, either. That's what America is all about--differences. Melting pots. It's what makes this country interesting. It causes a lot of unique problems, sure, but I that's what we have to put up with to enjoy the freedoms our constitution provides. Living in America means we have to resign ourselves to listening and allowing for differing political opinions, different lifestyles, different religions, etc etc.

But guess what, JameeMaLee--this may surprise you--it's not just you putting up with the liberals and the gays and the "middle easterners"--they live in this country too. It's their America too. Did you ever think that they might be putting up with you as much as you're putting up with them? That *your* ideas are as scary to them as theirs are to you? Sorry, this might seem like it's coming out of nowhere, but I read your blog post about politics that Daynalee commented on, and your comment on here, and I wanted to respond.

I don't want this to come off as terribly rude (though I am sure it probably will anyway), but I want you to go out and talk to some liberals (though keep politics out of the picture, as that probably wouldn't be the best topic of conversation right now). Go make friends (GASP) with some homosexuals. Have dinner with some "middle-easterners, aka terrorists". You'll find that the people you feel are so very different from you actually aren't, when you get right down to it. Everyone wants the best for their kids, even liberals. Everyone wants to be loved and have a family, even gays. Everyone wants to be able to go to the grocery store or a restaurant without being stared at and accused of being a terrorist, even the so-called "middle-easterners". And they should be able to. This is America. This is supposed to be a safe place for the huddled masses yearning to breathe free and all that.

This is supposed to be a country for everyone, not just the people who agree with you. Your blog post about the current political situation makes it seem like that is pretty much the way you think, so correct me if I'm wrong on that.

JameeMaLee, you said, "I don't believe the republican party is pro-war either. We have the duty to protect our nation. I agree that Bush has made many mistakes in the war, however he is doing the best he can to protect our country and our freedom."

If you don't think the republican party is pro war, you haven't been paying attention. They even have a reputation among THEMSELVES for being pro-war. It's no big secret. And yes, we have the duty to protect our nation, I agree. The Taliban was based in Afghanistan, not Iraq. When we went into Iraq, they had done nothing to us. The WMDs did not exist in Iraq, which if you remember is why we invaded in the first place (so we were told). And if Bush has made that many mistakes in the war, then he is obviously NOT doing the best he can to protect our country and our freedom. If that is his best, then that is very very sad.

By the way, don't move to Canada. I hate it when people say that, because they obviously know nothing about the country itself. If you think it's getting too liberal here, Canada will blow your mind.

David said...

Unfortunately, it appears that many like you support Obama because of what they believe he will do as president based on what he says in speeches and in his books. It would be wiser for them to take a look at what he has done in the past to better predict what he will likely do in the future.

I find that his voting record indicates that he does not support, and it many cases opposes those values that LDS Church and other Christian denominations believe in.

The complete voting records of both of the candidates can be found in various places, but a consolidated source is:

At that site there is also a section that lists the ratings given to the candidates by various special interest groups. These ratings are a good indicator of where the candidate stands on issues that are important to each of us as voters.

I find that a number of them are very troubling as a member of the LDS Church.

Here are a few of the ratings. The reader can check out each special interest group to see what they stand for.

Also, this is just a small sample of the listings at Remember, these ratings are given by the organization itself.

* NARAL Pro-Choice America (2007)
Obama 100%
McCain 0%

* Planned Parenthood (2006)
Obama 100%
McCain 0%

* National Right To Life (2005-2006)
Obama 0%
McCain 75%

* Family Research Council (2007)
Obama 0%
McCain 44%

* National Organization for Women (2005-2006)
Obama 91%
McCain 13%

* Secular Coalition (2006)
Obama 90%
McCain 20%

* ACLU (2007)
Obama 80%
McCain 50%

* Americans for Tax Reform (2007)
Obama 5%
McCain 70%

* Citizens Against Government Waste (2007)
Obama 10%
McCain 100%

* Conservative Index - John Birch Society (2007)
Obama 0%
McCain 43%

* Eagle Forum (2007)
Obama 7%
McCain 46%

* AFL-CIO (2007)
Obama 100%
McCain 0%

Jack Ady said...

You seem to have missed the point completely. What I find offensive to the church, and what you should find troubling too, is John McCain's clear record of disregard for the poor. As Christians, that should be our first priority, is to love one another.

As for the abortion issue, I think it was made clear earlier that outlawing abortion won't work because of the constitution, and the longer that people viciously try to accomplish that, the country will only become more divided.

I was shocked to hear Obama's stance on abortion at the last debate, because the day before (this is actually true) I had made the exact same case, point by point.

Again, I doubt very much that abortion should be a deciding factor in your choice for President, especially considering the lack of results that Bush has shown.

The President will have four main areas that he can influence: economic factors, education, health care and the military. On those issues, McCain is way behind.

I know I have gone on and on, but I think I need to speak about how it is inherently immoral to think that God wants one of these men elected and that's why you're voting. I have heard it at McCain rallies and from his supporters that God wants him elected and not the brown one. It is wrong. McCain is not a holy man, and there is no reason to believe that God would favor him over Senator Obama.

David said...

I haven't missed your point, I just don't believe that the right way to provide for the poor is to forcefully take money from one group and give it to another. I do believe that the right way to deal with the poor is exactly the way that the LDS Church deals with it - voluntary contributions of both money and labor that directly benefit the poor.

As to God's interest in who the leader of is, I believe that this is a land choice above all other lands. I believe that God is very interested in both the leaders and citizens of this land. That's not to be construed to be that one candidate is more "holy" than the other, but rather that one would be the better candidate to lead the country in the right direction.

My prior post was just to state that I believe that there is a difference between what Obama says he will do as president and what he has done in his political life in the past.

two hippos said...

Thank you for this post. I love seeing people being *thoughtful* about their election choices and looking beyond 1-2 issues to consider candidates in all their complexities. Moreover, I appreciate your willingness to think through the particular touchstone issues.

Nikki said...

Dear Dayna,

Please do not take personal offense to this. I am a friend of Jameemalee and wanted to see what your rationale behind voting for Obama was. While I can sympathize with your frustration with the current Republican president not doing what he says he will, I think you need to take a closer look at Obama's track record. As for taking care of the poor, I don't believe the way to do that is by bailing them out and giving free handouts. I still believe there should be some assistance but this whole redistribution of wealth is immoral. People should not be penalized for being successful. Truly, I would support a flat tax: Everyone pays the same percentage of taxes. Just like tithing. If you have more, you pay more; If you have little, you pay less. Business owners provide employment opportunities which in the long run do more good than welfare checks. Those who cannot work should recieve disability benefits and I support that and also healthcare assistance because as a nurse I believe that taking care of children and elderly is important. However, socialized medicine promotes mediocrity in medicine and I am a true capitalist and believe in free enterprise. Also, Mitt Romney is a very smart man. He is a very successful businessman and may have had the skills needed to help turn this economy around. I don't think he should be scrutinized for the money he spent on his campaign. If he wants to do that, then more power to him. It's his money. Also, Femme Facetious, you don't know Jamee and who she associates with. While, I believe her blanket statement of all middle easterners was innacurate...I don't think that was her intention and she has a point, Have you seen the turmoil in the middle east? It has always been a very volatile place in the world. If left unchecked,it could get ugly. While I think President Bush has not always made the best decisions regarding the war and our borders..etc.etc, I still support this war. It actually is working. Let me make it completely clear, of course noone believes all middle eastern people are terrorists. Also, while I don't know if I really need to say this, I would like to point out many of us have friends/family who are gay/lesbian. It doesn't mean that I agree with their lifestyle.

Action Steve said...

I know I should let this go but I just can't. It is election day and now is the time when we all get to make our voices heard. The thing I can't stand is when someone assumes that I, a good LDS boy, am voting for Obama because I haven't "looked closely at his record." I've read the senate reports for pete's sake. I've gone over in intense detail every relevant thing both candidates have said. I am guilty of the same thing in reverse, I often think that those voting for McCain haven't looked very closely at his record. After the scrutiny I gave him, I can't believe people would vote for him. However, I am more than willing to admit that when people have thought about the issues and have decided after thoughtful reflection that McCain is their man, they should vote for him. It is their duty to vote for him. Nikki, it is clear to me that you have thought about these issues. I have rebuttals for most of what you've said, not all of it, but most.

I'm not going to write them. You are entitled to your beliefs about politics, but I wish everyone would understand that just because a belief is held by a great many members of the church doesn't mean that view is held by the church itself. I am not going to hell for voting Obama today. I am following my conscience. I allow you the privilege of having an informed opinion about Senator McCain, please allow me the same with regards to Senator Obama.

Nikki said...

Action Steve,

I truly didn't mean to offend you nor was I actually responding to your comment. I too have put a lot of thought into who I voted for and I would afford you that same privelege. Also, while I am disheartened by the outcome of this election and truly anxious about the economic policies that Obama will put into place... I truly hope that he recieves some inspiration in leading this country and hope for the best. Anxiously. Feel free to browse my last and final commentary on my blog on this if you want to. It's basically just me expressing my anxiety about this.