Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Denying Mother Africa's children

Hey, this isn't even a fair doubt! Mormon's haven't excluded people of African decent for more than three decades! This issue is totally behind us. Gordon said so.

So why bring this up at all? Lord knows I was never really all that bothered by the ban as a believing member. Aaronic Priesthood leaders would bring it up from time to time or a mission companion might ask me what I thought of it and sadly my thoughts were usually "What's the big deal? If that's how God wanted things we shouldn't have a problem with it." And obviously that's how God wanted things, otherwise he would have told Church leaders to switch things up.

So why bring this up? Are people trying to suggest Mormons are racist? We're not racist.

Early leaders of the Church were a little bit racist maybe.

"In 1852, President Brigham Young publicly announced that men of black African descent could no longer be ordained to the priesthood, though thereafter blacks continued to join the Church through baptism and receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost. Following the death of Brigham Young, subsequent Church presidents restricted blacks from receiving the temple endowment or being married in the temple. Over time, Church leaders and members advanced many theories to explain the priesthood and temple restrictions. None of these explanations is accepted today as the official doctrine of the Church."

Now they're dead and the "many theories" denied. There's nothing left in the Church that can be accused of being racist. Except for maybe The Book of Mormon.

But maybe all the skin color changing in The Book of Mormon was just metaphorical and not literal. Or maybe the Book of Mormon prophets were just racist themselves. We can't throw the baby out with the bathwater here. The Book of Mormon is amazing! And hopefully not racist enough to disavow.

Well there's also the Book of Abraham that mentions the seed of Cain being kept apart because they were black, and we all know that Abraham lived way before either Brigham Young or the Book of Mormon prophets. How did God get so many racist prophets? What if it's not the prophets, what if it's God who is racist? He is the inventor of race, after all. What if all this racism is more of a product of Joseph Smith? I mean, he's the one who translated The Book of Mormon and the Book of Abraham. Maybe Joseph taught Brigham Young to be a horrible racist. Could he be responsible for such the huge racist mess?

Who knows? We'll just have to take this one on faith, I guess.

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