Loving a Beast is Normal 

Beauty and the Beast won’t get my money!! Disney, how could you ruin such a great story of implied beastiality with a sideline gay character!!!

Or at least that’s how the uproar over this latest appearance of homosexuality in a major production appears to me.

I mean sure the beast magically becomes human after the girl sees he’s really a good person on the inside, but doesn’t that same metaphor apply to seeing a gay person for who they are on the inside too?

The irony of this great example of cognitive dissonance in religion vs reality is about as high as I’ve ever seen it.

Next time someone goes off on Beauty and the Beast over the implications that being gay is ok, point out the homosexuality is implied no more than the beastiality was long before it made it to the big screen… Girls don’t fall in love with animals (beasts) every day you know!

Maybe the real point of this timeless tale is we should stop judging people by how they look… or the bodies they have! Seems like a good idea don’t you think ?

 

If You are Gay Leave the LDS Church Now

You might be suffering

There are lots of people in the LDS faith suffering from same sex attraction (as the church calls it). It’s a difficult topic for sure. The people in charge are basically telling you that God says you are broken and in need of healing. This isn’t a new concept or policy in the faith, its just the way it is right now. Not unlike how it was for the black people a couple of generations ago.

If you are gay or lesbian, or a transgender Mormon you might be hoping that God will understand. You might yearn for God to tell his leaders you aren’t broken, or the enemy or some sort of deviant in need of help. Because deep down you simply feel misunderstood.

You might even be contemplating drastic action like so many in this same desperate situation have done. To all of you that don’t feel loved by the God you have been taught about since you were little. Please. Please hear the council of the Fridge and hearken to the word.

The LDS Leaders are wrong. You matter, you are valuable, you are worthy, you are fine as you are. If you needed a push, an understanding about these guys and how they really feel about you, just watch this video.

Save Yourself

These aren’t people that care about your welfare. These are old men, stuck in their ways like the prophets 50 years ago. Stuck on the idea that black people had the curse of Cain. There may come a day when they admit their mistake, but it sure ain’t gonna happen while they are alive. Best case given the track record? Fifty years from now they might accept you.

 

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History repeats itself. This just another example of too little happening too late right before you eyes, it follows if you are LGB or T you should leave the faith. Leave it now for your own safety and peace of mind. Don’t fret about where you will go. Thanks to the connectivity of this generation you will find your home quickly. Reach out to those that post on social media about their disillusion with the faith, you will find acceptance and love for who you are. Not for who some old fart wants you to be.

Save yourself my friends. Don’t let your life be wasted by old men so concerned about the insidious ‘gays’ that they totally screwed the pooch and missed the lesson on cyber security about not letting their secrets get leaked online. You will find love for who you are, it can save your life. Trust me on this one. Leave now. Please seek out the better life beyond the hand you have been dealt because it is waiting there for you. Reach out and grab it. Don’t worry about where you will go. There are sympathetic people waiting to catch you. Have faith to take the leap away from the church. You will find your place. I’m sure of it.

 

Calling Evil Good and Good Evil

So all things Mormon have kind of exploded over a new change to church policy preventing kids from joining the church if their parents are gay. Let’s look at scriptural support for this move:

2 Nephi 5 (if it had been written translated in the 21st century):

21 And he had caused the cursing to come upon them, yea, even a sore cursing, because of their iniquity. For behold, they had hardened their hearts against him, that they had become like unto a rainbow; wherefore, as they were happy, and exceedingly fabulous, that they might not be enticing unto my people the Lord God did pronounce them icky. 

22 And thus saith the Lord God: I will cause that they shall be loathsome unto thy people, save they shall repent of their iniquities.

23 And cursed shall be the child of him that livith with the gays; for they shall be cursed even with the same cursing. Even apostate. And the Lord spake it, and it was done.

Ok, supporters of the LDS faith will quickly point out this restriction is only if your parents are in a gay marriage or a have a gay lover. Because apparently as long as these parents aren’t sinning and totally celibate, it’s all good. But that kinda makes your head spin doesn’t it. I mean, if it is about the sin, does that mean soon they will be banning kids with parents that drink coffee? Where will it all end?

Who knows, maybe current leaders are just speaking as men, you know like they did back when they condemned interracial marriage because they thought God cursed people with a different skin color. Given historical evidence on that front we could reasonably expect all this to be disavowed soon since they were willing to even disavow their own scripture once enough time had passed to make it look like they weren’t just following the whims of society.

There are many people upset by this news, people that will be driven to question the veracity of their beliefs, but some won’t. Take a look at this post seen on social media from a member justifying this church action.

Did you get that? God is helping these kids by not bringing them to the church and all that responsibility that goes with it? This particular justification jumped out at me because of an experience I had on my mission.

We had been knocking on doors one evening and came upon a family with a sick baby. They let us in and eventually we offered to give the child a blessing. We did so. I remember the moment vividly because I felt the spirit so strongly. I was sure this child would be healed and blessed it accordingly. We returned to the family the next day and as we approached the home we saw the pastor of a local evangelic congregation leaving. When we entered we saw a very sick baby who was noticeably worse. The parents were very worried and asked for another blessing.  I reprimanded them for not having enough faith that they had called on a different religion to heal their child but said I would bless him again. This time I had a very different blessing pour forth. I blessed the child that if their parents weren’t gonna be baptized and become members that it would be better if he died.

The baby died a day later. I took that as a sign then of the power of God. But now I have to admit I am kind of disgusted in that younger version of me. I am a parent now, I’ve had kids in the hospital, I have lost a child that was like a son to me. And there is one thing I know for sure that I didn’t get as a 19 year old kid. A loving parent would do anything to save the life of their child. Anything within their power to do so would be worth a shot. Putting myself in their shoes now I can’t even begin to condemn them for trying to save that child in anyway they could… And I chided them for it and then blessed their child to die. I am ashamed of that past action.

The baby I blessed to die was buried across the road in a shallow grave not far from their home in the jungles of Guatemala. I remember standing there staring at the mound of dirt, so sure that little spirit was up in heaven getting its celestial glory. I wasn’t that different from this person quoted above in how I justified a bad thing as a greater good. If it is really so good then why wouldn’t you prevent your own child from being baptized? The illogic of faith runs deep, and we often don’t even realize that it is religion that makes us call good things evil and evil things good. It is actually right there in the scriptures for when you are feeling intolerant. Sure there are things that Jesus said like:

“…suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God.” – Mark 10:14.

You often get these quoted to you when the religious are talking about how great their moral guidance is because they follow scriptures. But that is the thing with scripture, seems like there is always a flip side you can apply, you know for those days you are feeling bigoted or intolerant, or maybe just confused. Here is one that applies to the way these kids need to act if they want to be baptized:

“If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.” – Luke 14:26

Here is one I have already seen making the rounds on this particular topic:

“Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.” – Matt 10:34-35

The more I check my internal moral compass with that of what I used to believe the more I realize this was a common way I shelved things that bothered me. You work to somehow call it a good thing. Which is entirely possible to do with the scriptures. You just need to you look for it. You can even justify killing those icky gays if you want, look – leviticus 20:13. Similarly you can justify slavery. Even cold blooded murder of a drunk person is condensed in holy writ. Just do a little digging through the scriptures and liken them to the situation however you please.

So if you want to shelve your discomfort at the idea of God keeping little kids from his one and only true church it is actually pretty easy to do. And that is the problem with religion. The brainwash if you will. It makes it easy to set aside your own moral compass, in fact it even threatens you with eternal damnation if you don’t. You wouldn’t want to risk God keeping you out of the CK by calling out his inspired leadership on this right? 1

Personally I hope to all that is cool in the name of the Fridge that this will be a wakeup call. Something to get people thinking about what their faith is really promoting. Is it love of fellow man or is it hate of someone different than you?

Who is really calling evil good and good evil? 

  1. Besides, if you are as old as me you even promised to never speak a single bad thing about church leaders less your throat would be slit ear from ear. There is plenty of damnation to risk by saying the leaders are wrong, that is for sure. But isn’t that the right thing to do? Do what is right and let the consequence follow?

Marriage = Apostasy


The newest LDS church handbook has an update that stood out to those in the know enough that it is making the rounds in Mormon and ExMormon circles.

Here is what it says: (screen shot procured from LDs.org by someone that has access to these books typically only given to church leaders.)

Note point 4. If you are married (same gender that is) you are now officially an apostate.

I get why they did this, they have to keep gay people from having a valid reason to be married in the temple. It is the homophobia of current leadership manifesting itself. Not unlike the same issue they had with interracial marriage did not that long ago.

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.
                        – Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 10:110


Posts on the Fridge door have mentioned this before. You see one thing that seems to commonly run through church history is initial rejection of an idea until popular support reaches a point that it endangers the lively hood of the church. In this case they can still afford kicking out a few apostates. Even the tithing dollar loss is covered with things like massive 30 billion dollar plus real estate developments that are in the works.

So this move to cast out anyone willing to marry someone of the same sex is of course not that big a surprise from the religion that brought you proposition 8. It is however really ironic. Because you see you can be plural married today, right now in an LDS temple. I have a good friend that became a plurally sealed wife to her divorced husband because he got sealed to a new wife in the temple before they were ever unsealed. Yep thats right a divorce doesn’t automatically breakup an eternal marriage, not in LDS theology that is. Man can’t destroy what God has bound together ‘n all that. So if you are a guy (sorry this doesn’t apply to you ladies) you can totally have a second eternal sealing without nary a blip about undoing the first one. (ladies are required to get their temple sealing removed via proper authority before they can marry in the temple again).

I find it really ironic that the church that today bends its own rule 3 feels the need to create rule 4. Just to make sure those darn gays can’t get into the temples! That is the problem with polygamy, it never has really gone away… So all this its about the family 1 man, 1 woman stuff is really just a smokescreen. An excuse to justify intolerance and misunderstanding. As of today in the LDS church the penalty for gay marriage is now worse than the penalty for infidelity. So have all the gay lovers you want, just don’t make a family commitment with any of them! Families are that important!! <sarcasm font>.

It is getting so ridiculous that it is kind of entertaining, like watching a train wreck because sooner or later the tides will shift, just like they did with interracial marriage. Mark my words as profet. There are those of the rising generation that will see gay marriage in LDS temples one day. (I’m sure that will be at least as accurate as similar predictions of the second coming :))

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Remember To Have Tolerance And Love For Our Mormon Neighbors

I just read this announcement from the LDS church in regards to the gay marriage stuff. I’d been thinking about an appropriate response when I stumbled onto this nearly perfectly made point on social media.1 The Fridge works in mysterious ways and we are often inspired unexpectedly so enjoy the light of the open door and feast on the sustenance therein:2

I just need to clear something up. I don’t hate Mormons nor am I bigoted. I love all living creatures and believe that Mormons should be treated with kindness and compassion. I do not support violence against Mormons or discrimination of any kind. However, I also believe in science and as such I cannot support Mormons’ “rights” to marry and raise children. Science has shown us that this is detrimental to both the children involved and society at large and I cannot pick and choose which scientific evidence to believe.

Science has shown us that Mormon children are much more likely than average to be depressed in their lifetime. Utah boasts the highest suicide rate in the nation among 18-24 year old men and has one of the highest rates of overall depression. LGBT youth raised in Mormon homes tend to fare especially poorly and often bear lifelong psychological scars. Also, girls raised in Mormon homes are far less likely to complete college or achieve financial independence than their non-Mormon counterparts.

Conversely, there is empirical evidence that other demographic groups tend to raise children who fare better than average- same sex couples, secularists, Asians, etc. Because I support science, I believe that such groups are the only people who should be permitted to parent in America.

Plus there’s the fact that the Mormon temple ceremony is degrading to women and that the sealing was created with the specific purpose of propagating polygamy, polyandry, and even child marriage for Mormon church leaders. Pioneer journals show us that these marriages were often coerced and that the girls and women who entered them suffered horribly. While Mormons are not currently advocating for the reinstatement of these practices, by allowing Mormon marriages, we are embarking on a slippery slope that opens the door to this possibility. How can we in good conscience allow this?

Again, I have absolutely nothing against Mormons and am not judging them for their lifestyle. I understand that many of them were born into their faith and did not totally choose it. And I am very accepting of Mormons provided they commit to lifelong celibacy as that is the only way to guarantee they will not reproduce. There’s nothing hateful or bigoted about supporting what science has declared is best for society.

SmithNauvoo marriage

  1. Sarcasmness is next to godliness, thus saith the Fridge
  2. Shared with permission and desired anonymity. I added the links and did a little formatting is all.

Religious Blinders

I love the iconic Stephen Spielberg helmed science fiction film, Minority Report. The concept of a cop whose job is to arrest murderers before they commit their crimes, and then has to go on the run when his name comes up as a future killer is fascinating.

While trying to understand how he could have been identified as someone who is about to commit a murder by the pre-crime program John Anderton has used to put away hundreds of dangerous men, he seeks out Iris Hineman, the woman who helped create Pre-Crime. In what turns out to be a very insightful conversation, Iris tells Detective Anderton that she is the mother of Pre-Crime and Anderton’s supervisor is the father of the program. She then notes that most parents see their children the way they want to see them and not as they really are.

I would argue that people see anything they love the way they want to see it and not as those things really are. More on that in a moment – I’m going to discuss something very personal for a while and come back to it.

I have six siblings and I’m the second oldest. Unfortunately, most of my siblings hated each other and our treatment of each other could be downright cruel. My parents were so focused on themselves and on church responsibilities that they never put any real effort into resolving our issues with each other, instead choosing to side with whichever of us they liked best, causing us to become even more vicious with our vindictive and hateful behavior.

I only had two siblings who I really got along with. A younger sister and my brother, Caleb.1 Caleb and I always had identical interests. Like me, he loved science fiction and fantasy. He enjoyed the same activities – from swimming to playing board games, just about everything he liked, I liked. I liked Caleb enough that I invited him to live with my wife and me after he graduated from high school because there were better jobs in the city I was living in.

Then Caleb went on his mission and things changed. After he got back, he started spending less time around us and, after we left the LDS church, he began avoiding us entirely. However, he always seemed to be willing to spend time with our son, Adam. We couldn’t tell what we had done to offend him, but we were glad, at least that he didn’t take it out on our son.

And then we began to notice weird things. Caleb had two girlfriends over the course of seven years and seemed intent on pushing both of them away from the time he started dating them to the time he dumped them. He insisted that he would never kiss a girl until he was engaged, he would keep his distance from them when they were on dates, and he even dumped one of them a few weeks before her senior prom. The other one complained that he actively avoided her and used his religion to justify it. He took it so far that when she invited him over to watch a movie when no one else was home and he recommended that she spend the time reading the Book of Mormon since she was setting up a situation that could tempt them to sin.

After his last girlfriend, he went 5 years without dating anyone. Considering how actively he avoided women and other things like his mannerisms, his love of broadway, and a number of other things that are bad stereotypes for homosexual men, we began to suspect he was actually gay. At first we dismissed the idea, because we were Mormon and didn’t want Caleb to be gay but then, after we left the church and began to understand that there is nothing wrong with homosexuality, we began to accept that it was probably true.

The idea was partially confirmed when we invited Caleb to accompany us on a trip to a water park in a town several hours away. While we were waiting in line for one of the rides, a group of boys got queued up behind us. Caleb, whose head hadn’t been turned by any of the beautiful young women at the park (he hadn’t so much as given a glance toward them), began chatting up the boys. His normally uptight posture relaxed, he leaned toward them, and his tone was extremely friendly. He was clearly flirting with them.

I definitely didn’t miss the flirtation. For someone who claimed to know that the church was true as fervently was Caleb did, such blatant forwardness with people of the same gender was odd enough, but even worse was the fact the oldest of the boys was only probably fifteen or sixteen. But I figured that maybe Caleb thought the kid was eighteen. However, the youngest was only eleven and my brother seemed to be way more interested in him than any of the other kids in the group. It really didn’t sit well with me at all, but I figured that Caleb was probably trying to impress the oldest boy by being nice to his younger brother.

On the drive home that night, we had a discussion with Caleb about why we left the church and he bore strong testimony to us that he knew the church was true and that he had had a sacred experience in the temple that proved it. I couldn’t help but think that his testimony didn’t stop him from flirting with young boys. I continued to convince myself that his interest in the boys had been because he thought the oldest was older and his extra interest in the youngest was just being friendly to impress the oldest boy by being nice to his little brother.

Then Caleb went back to BYU, where he had just changed his major from business to teaching. Christmas came around and he flew back for the holidays, during which time he volunteered to spend more time around Adam, even though he continued to avoid hanging out with my wife and me. Then my wife found a picture of Caleb and Adam together under a blanket. Even though I thought it was a little bit odd that they would spend time under a blanket, it just seemed like normal roughhousing to me, so I dismissed it, but my wife was bothered by the picture and suggested that we ask our son if his uncle had touched him inappropriately.

Adam told us that Caleb had put his hand on his crotch earlier that summer. We asked more questions about it and it just sounded like it had been an accident. They were in public view where anyone could have seen them, it was over the clothing, his hand wasn’t moving, he wasn’t looking at Adam, and he didn’t ask Adam to keep it a secret. It was very suspicious, but I couldn’t imagine that Caleb would deliberately do anything like that to Adam, so we gave Adam instructions not to sit close to Caleb anymore and to call us immediately if anything like that ever happened again.

Even though we were cautious about letting Adam go near Caleb again, I continued to believe it was an accident. I just couldn’t see Caleb doing that on purpose.

And then, six weeks ago, my parents informed me that Caleb had been arrested for sodomizing young boys. I was shocked. Not by the fact that Caleb might be attracted to kids, but by the idea that he could be so selfish as to damage young children for his own pleasure. By this time, we had forgotten about the hand on the crotch incident, but we asked Adam if Caleb had ever touched him inappropriately and he reminded us of it.

And despite all of the evidence in front of me, I continued to believe that it could have been an accident. However, we felt that we should contact the police and have them determine if it was likely that the hand over the clothed crotch had criminal intent. In speaking to them, they made it clear to us that Caleb’s preferred technique of grooming children for molestation involved putting his hand on boy’s genitals over the clothes, seeing if they reacted, then moving forward from there if they didn’t. Caleb had started grooming Adam to be sodomized.

Chances are that you’re reading this wondering how I could have been so stupid as to not see red flags everywhere after the waterpark and especially after Caleb put his hand on Adam’s crotch. I would like to bring you back to the discussion of Minority Report: people tend to see people they love as they want to see them, not as they really are. I loved Caleb. I saw what I wanted to see.

If I’m being honest, I had no reason to be shocked that Caleb had molested young boys. I had ample reason to suspect the attraction but, more importantly, I knew just how narcissistic Caleb could be. As much as I loved him, I knew that Caleb’s first and only love was himself. He was still holding grudges over minor things that had happened fifteen years ago. He had a habit of using people, then avoiding them like the plague. We had gone out of our way to try to help him on several occasions and he had thanked us by lying to other family members about the help we offered – to make us look bad after we had tried to be kind. He even went so far as to move to another state and send everyone an email after telling us that he had moved and had no plans on staying in touch.

Caleb was just a nasty piece of work and I knew it. Because he had once been my closest friend, I tried to convince myself that he was still a good person. I forgave all of his rude behaviors and deluded myself into believing that if I tried to be kind and supportive, he would eventually be my friend again. It was never going to happen. I saw clear evidence on several occasions that he was attracted to children. But because I loved him, I wouldn’t admit to myself that he was a pedophile and I fully rejected the notion that he could ever harm a child. Even after he had been arrested for child rape, I still clung to the belief that he hadn’t deliberately sexually assaulted my son. Because I loved him and I saw what I wanted to see, rather than the truth.

If you feel inclined to judge me, I fully understand. I won’t claim that I was anything but dangerously stupid and wrong. I know that my insistence on believing what I wanted to believe instead of what the facts clearly indicated played a role in children getting hurt. And I’m going to have to live with that.

What’s worse is that this isn’t the first time I allowed something viciously dangerous to hurt others because I loved it. When I was Mormon, I fully understood that the church was harmful and yet I refused to admit it to myself. I saw five people who were close to me driven to seriously contemplating suicide because they failed to live up to the church’s standards. One of them successfully went through with it.

I knew that there was no way that the true gospel of a God of love could make people feel so inadequate that they would want to kill themselves, but I continued to believe and defend the church because I loved it.

I saw others miss their children growing up because of callings. I knew that no church that was run by God and put so much emphasis on family could ever allow that to happen, but I pretended that it wasn’t really a problem because I loved the church and I saw it the way I wanted to see it, not the way it really was.

I saw bullies and cruel people put into positions of power and abuse their power over others. I saw countless people rely on emotions that they believed were the Holy Ghost for making decisions and I saw them make bad decision after bad decision. I saw families broken apart by people leaving the church, I saw people disowned by their parents for not serving missions, and I saw bigotry instilled into the hearts of many by the church and, even though I knew that if the leader of the church really received inspiration from God, he would put an end to such horrifying practices, they went unchallenged. Despite the clear lack of leadership from God and the pain it was causing so many people, I continued to insist the church was true because I saw what I wanted in the church because I loved it.

Long before reaching this point in the blog entry, many Mormons have already begun working on their justifications for clear problems in their supposedly inspired religion. They might ignore the fact that an omniscient god would be able to present His expectations of people in a way that doesn’t destroy their self worth and say:

“Those people weren’t drive to suicide or the brink of suicide by the church’s teachings, they were clearly mired in sin and sin leads to dark thoughts and dark actions.”

They may say that bishops and stake presidents who neglect their families don’t understand how to prioritize, despite knowing that those people are put in an impossible situation. They will invariably respond to the other problems by trying to claim that the church is perfect but the members aren’t, despite the fact that if their god were really omniscient, he would see the problems in LDS culture and tell his prophet how to put an end to those problems.

Those people love the church. They see it how they want to see it, not how it really is. And by pretending that the problems don’t exist or aren’t serious, they help to hurt other people. And what’s worse is that many of these people not only ignore the way the church abuses, they either blame the abused or actively take part in the abuse. I’ll never get through to those people, but hopefully someone who out there will read this and stop being part of the abuse cycle.

If you aren’t actively speaking out against it, you are part of the problem. And many people end up with just as many emotional problems from abuses in the church as victims of sexual abuse end up with. If you don’t believe me, go ask any of the homeless gay youth in Salt Lake City. Check the suicide rates of homosexual youths in Utah. Look up the depression medication rate in Utah. You can either stop turning a blind eye to the destruction that Mormonism wreaks on its followers or you are just as responsible for the next gay kid who kills himself as I am for the kids my brother sodomized.
blinders-on carrotPlease learn from my mistake, if you are not willing to take off your blinders and see the truth, others may get hurt because of your negligence. What does your conscious tell you to do? Can you let go of something you love to do the right thing? Letting go of what you wish for to do what is right is not ever easy, but it is right. And deep down you already know it.

honest man

 

  1.  Names and some identifying details have been changed to protect privacy of others involved. Although my brother deserves to have his name and his crimes made well known to anyone he may ever come in contact with, if his name is made public, it will make it clear who my son is and my son deserves privacy on this issue.