Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Bananna Bread and Current Affairs

I am so concerned about the confused world we live in.

What does it mean?

Is there black and white?

I am thinking now about teaching my sons, but I fear greatly that the power of the destroyer reigns openly now and is winning on so many fronts, it causes me great fear.

One issue that brought my fear to the front so dramatically was an article in Sunday's Salt Lake Tribune. (A copy of it online).

The article stated that two gay men advocating same-sex marriage were baking some banana bread to distribute, by no coincidence, in the district of Utah Senator Chris Buttars. Senator Buttars has a rather poor public image, to put it mildly.

I have a different view. Turns out, Buttars is bishop of an LDS ward, and my one of my son's wife used to be in his ward in West Jordan. Now on with the news story.

The homosexual advocates staged a visit to Buttars' home and feigned astonishment that he willingly accepted their embassy, and actually even appeared to be listening to them while they pleaded their message.

This was the essence of the article.

To the unaware or uninitiated, there were many things here that were not apparent, and would lead to gross misunderstanding. On that basis, I was so offended that I nearly went into shock, literally. I got out of my rehab bed at the hospital to denounce the article to my room mate. Bob was more sensible and less emotional, but he was also outraged and visibly upset.

First problem is casting Buttars as a bad man, a homophobe, and bigot. Because of my church affiliation and loyalty, and life-long practical experience in such matters, I know without asking that Buttars meets the highest moral and social standards, and is an honorable man in whom I could trust.

Something is wrong here. Whose judgement of morality is the more reliable?

Should I believe the sensibilities of a news editor and some social advocates with an axe to grind, or men who I know are serving the Church of the Living God?

For me, this is no choice at all, but I recognize that this kind of background information is totally missing for most readers of the news article. To them, Buttars is a firmly entrenched homophobe whose Archie-Bunker like heart is melted by kindness and gay love and banana bread.

So it teaches us that gay lovers really know what love is after all, and we are just cold hearted and mean- spirited to say our church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints opposes same-sex marriage.

The position staked out in the newspaper article by the gay advocates is laughable, to any who know the job a Mormon bishop fills.

Bishops are primarily a sort of social counsellor to their congregation, thus they serve first and foremost as a sympathetic listener to the troubled. To any and all who are troubled or afflicted in any way, they can knock on the bishops' door, day or night, and at the very least, unburden their soul to an active and sympathetic listener. The Bishop does more than just listen. He often pays bills for the indigent, soothes the troubled soul of the abused or depressed, gives referrals for professional counselling, provides food or clothing or financial assistance for the naked or hungry or cold, or perhaps just a shoulder to cry on or an ear to share glad tidings when there is no one else. How ironic that these two men come bringing symbols that represent the very essence of what no being on earth could possibly understand better than a man like bishop Buttars. And according to the SLTrib columnist, they feign surprise that he listens to them!

[I am not half done with the issue yet, but I'm much too tired to continue and do any justice to th subject, I thought it would be a idle time in my life, and I can hardly get a word in edge wise, More to come,,,]

THOUGHT occurred to me last night that some might mistakenly think I am attempting to defend bishop Buttars. Or represent his position better than the SLTrib editors and columnists can do. I am not. I am just making my voice heard, for what it is worth, because I think there is a problem with the way the story is being told now, from both sides of the aisle.

I don't know the banana bread makers, nor the SLTrib people, nor Chris Buttars, nor any of the countless others involved in this melee of misunderstanding. I just want the big wheel to stop on a number that is a winning number, that pays off for all. I believe the world was designed very purposefully and carefully to afford us all the opportunity to find our own kind of happiness, if we just take the right opportunities as they come along. We get subtle guidance to help our choices, so we aren't completely alone all the time.

Anyway, more about the news article and the bishop.


pgk said...

Jim, I understand you might not be able to do this, but you need to stop working so hard and rest more, give yourself more time to recover, regain strength, and receive proper care. Rest and recovery is good.

When we've been at our most desperate and harried--and you understand, I think, that my household has swayed beneath tremendous strain--we've avoided news, TV, and other distractions. We turned our energies inward to steady our circumstances and take care of our immediate and often urgent needs.

Like I said, I understand you might not be able to do this right now, but please at least entertain the idea of resting more and finding medical means or other ways to relieve your anxiety.

Chris Buttars will do all right for himself while you concentrate on your recovery.

Anonymous said...

While I agree that the world around us likes to mix up the black and white to a lovely muddy kind of gray, I still believe we can keep things separate. You clearly know how to keep things separate in your mind.

With reference to teaching your sons, I think you've done most of that, and your influence upon them is apparent. They are good men who gravitate toward the light. They hold the Priesthood, and they love you. You've done well. Don't worry so much. Just enjoy them.

As to Senator Buttars, this most recent barrage will not be the last he will receive. Evil people will always use guile and subterfuge in an attempt to make evil appear good and good appear evil. Sometimes they may even succeed, but they will never win the battle.

As long as there are good men and women to stand up for what is right and good and true, the battle will never be lost.

So take heart, ok?

Anonymous said...

Your latest addition to your original commentary is much more calm and rational. This is good. Shows more clear thinking. It is basically the same stance, but a kinder, gentler you! More you and less frustration.

Good stuff.

I love you.