Mormons and marriage
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Last week, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints proclaimed that it "remains irrevocably committed to strengthening traditional marriage between a man and a woman, which for thousands of years has proven to be the best environment for nurturing children."

Really? Apparently, God wanted the children of Mormon polygamy to be raised in a second-class environment. Just as Mormons want to give gays and their children second-class status today.

Today's LDS Church conveniently ignores that:

• Brigham Young said that monogamy" is nothing but a system established by a set of robbers. … and the Lord's servants have always practiced" polygamy. Like homosexuality today, monogamy was frequently vilified as a threat to family and civilization.

• In 1967, the Supreme Court struck down state laws banning interracial marriage, although that decision did not "reflect the views of a majority of their citizens" (the LDS Church's criticism of the recent decision). Then, only 20 percent approved of interracial marriages. Civilization survived. Now, 86 percent approve.

• Reproduction isn't a requirement for civil marriage.

• Gays and lesbians are often fine parents.

Rewriting history doesn't change history. Popular votes don't trump constitutional rights. And theological views don't determine civil law. It's that simple.

Gregory A. Clark

Salt Lake City