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mb20

Mormon prejudice against blacks

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"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, Vol. 10, page 110.

"This will always be so." Was Brigham Young wrong, or are our modern day leaders wrong?

Why did you omit the rest of the sermon? Is that honest?

If the Government of the United States, in Congress assembled, had the right to pass an anti-polygamy bill, they had also the right to pass a law that slaves should not be abused as they have been; they had also a right to make a law that negroes should be used like human beings, and not worse than dumb brutes. For their abuse of that race, the whites will be cursed, unless they repent.

Brigham Young, "The Persecutions of the Saints, Etc.," Journal of Discourses, reported by G.D. Watt 8 March 1863, Vol. 10 (London: Latter-Day Saint's Book Depot, 1865), 110.

I ask you...was BY wrong? Are our modern leaders wrong? You tell us.

We say again, as we have said many times before, that we believe that all men are the children of the same God and that it is a moral evil for any person or group of persons to deny any human being the rights to gainful employment, to full educational opportunity, and to every privilege of citizenship, just as it is a moral evil to deny him the right to worship according to the dictates of his own conscience.

Hugh B. Brown, The Abundant Life, p.235

“Not long ago the First Presidency and the Twelve issued a public statement from which I quote: “It is morally wrong for any person or group to deny anyone his or her inalienable dignity on the tragic and abhorrent theory of racial or cultural superiority. "

 

Russell M. Nelson, “Teach Us Tolerance and Love”.  Ensign (May, 1994): 71.

“We must not be partisans of any doctrine of ethnic superiority. We live in a world of diversity. We can and must be respectful toward those with whose teachings we may not agree. We must be willing to defend the rights of others who may become the victims of bigotry.”  President Gordon B. Hinckley,  “This is the work of the Master”, Ensign (May, 1995): 71.

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...I'd love to hear why MB20 thinks the priesthood ban is such a terrible thing.  I'd especially like to hear if he think it was a more horrific thing that, oh, say, burning down a black church, or public lynchings, or segregated bathrooms....

I'd even like to hear whether mb20 thinks the long-dead priesthood ban was as bad as the 'forever' ban on Moabites and Ammonites being permitted to enter the congregation of the Lord (Deuteronomy 23:3-4; Nehemiah 13:1-3). I'd also like to hear what mb20 has to say about Jesus' reference to Canaanites as dogs (Matthew 15:21-26). :P

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However, to ordain blacks with God's approval ("called of God by prophecy and by the laying on of hands") and then say that God says we shouldn't, is a contradiction.

Not to start a fight, but add a little perspective.

My guess is there are more "contradictions" in the RLDS/CoC scene than the LDS.

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I spoke with our Bishop and his first counselor this evening (both of whom are African American and both were members prior to 1978) and asked them if they felt that an apology was in order.

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Galatians 3:28 (New International Version)

28There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

This is why the LDS "church" was not talking to God when they decided blacks were a "cursed" race. I just love it when any group blames God for their hatred.

You are not into context, are you?

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Once again some of you are justifying the church's racism because the church's actions were not nearly as horrific as in other religions at the time. I give them credit for that. However, it was still racism and requires an honest apology.

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Once again some of you are justifying the church's racism because the church's actions were not nearly as horrific as in other religions at the time. I give them credit for that. However, it was still racism and requires an honest apology.

I don't think people are justifying racism. They are saying that the Church wasn't being racist. People will claim the CHurch is racist, it's "sexy." Unfortunately, for you and people like you, the Church isn't racist.

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Once again some of you are justifying the church's racism because the church's actions were not nearly as horrific as in other religions at the time.  I give them credit for that.  However, it was still racism and requires an honest apology.

I don't think people are justifying racism. They are saying that the Church wasn't being racist. People will claim the CHurch is racist, it's "sexy." Unfortunately, for you and people like you, the Church isn't racist.

Telling the truth about racism is sexy? Wow, I guess everyone should be flocking to me right now.

The church was racist and that is a fact. The only question is whether or not they were justified in that racism. I personally do not think racism is EVER justified.

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To MB20,

If it helps, SORRY. I wasn't involved. I was 20 years old, having a root canal, when the announcement came. If it helps, sorry. I think we should look at the fruits of what is happening. Our congregations are integrated. Are the other denominations and non-denominational churches even addressing this? NO. So please, as you point your fingers at the Church demanding some facietous apology which means little more than the paper it is printed on, we meet together. Whether one is black, white, blue purple. As I have stated earlier, there is only one race, the human race. Let's remember what was stated in the film "The Barbershop" "We don't need recompense we need restraint" and my favorite, " if we get renumeration, that would only make Cadillac the number one car company in the world" (the Barbershop quotes were put for my entertainment. That was one funny film). Finally, what would the apology accomplish? The reformed Mormons, in their feel good theology have already apologized for all wrongs to all creatures. If someone is already a member of the Church, there is no need for an apology. If not, that person wouldn't care anyway. One Suggestion from the sage Norm of Cheers (you know the guy that looks like me on cheers. That's right the fat one) drink six beers and lighten up.

Dr Fatguy

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Once again some of you are justifying the church's racism because the church's actions were not nearly as horrific as in other religions at the time. I give them credit for that. However, it was still racism and requires an honest apology.

I don't see anyone justifying anything...except you. You think the Mormon church was racist while bravely decaring yourself to be above it all. You also have a very bizarre belief that one person apologizing for what dead people did or thought is a very effective antidote. You have produced no evidence that it is. I have produced evidence that it is not. You also refuse to address what the Mormon church accomplished in the blink of an eye while other religions will have forever divided congregations because they forced blacks out long ago.

What label should we have for sort of prejudice that targets one group for accusations while refusing to address others? You are good at labels...what should we call that?

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To MB20,

If it helps, SORRY. I wasn't involved. I was 20 years old, having a root canal, when the announcement came. If it helps, sorry. I think we should look at the fruits of what is happening. Our congregations are integrated. Are the other denominations and non-denominational churches even addressing this? NO. So please, as you point your fingers at the Church demanding some facietous apology which means little more than the paper it is printed on, we meet together. Whether one is black, white, blue purple. As I have stated earlier, there is only one race, the human race. Let's remember what was stated in the film "The Barbershop" "We don't need recompense we need restraint" and my favorite, " if we get renumeration, that would only make Cadillac the number one car company in the world" (the Barbershop quotes were put for my entertainment. That was one funny film). Finally, what would the apology accomplish? The reformed Mormons, in their feel good theology have already apologized for all wrongs to all creatures. If someone is already a member of the Church, there is no need for an apology. If not, that person wouldn't care anyway. One Suggestion from the sage Norm of Cheers (you know the guy that looks like me on cheers. That's right the fat one) drink six beers and lighten up.

Dr Fatguy

Dr Fatguy,

You have a point. Thankfully racism is diminishing even though it still shows its ugly head every once in a while.

The point I am trying to make is not that the church is currently racist, but that they never acknowledged that they were wrong for being racist. The fact that there are a lot of black members that are able to look past the racist history of the Mormon church says a lot of good things about those black members, but the church has done nothing to deserve their membership.

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The point I am trying to make is not that the church is currently racist, but that they never acknowledged that they were wrong for being racist. The fact that there are a lot of black members that are able to look past the racist history of the Mormon church says a lot of good things about those black members, but the church has done nothing to deserve their membership.

It's going in one ear out the other, isn't it? You refuse to hear - THE CHURCH WAS NEVER RACIST!

Why can't you accept that? No matter what anyone says, or shows to you, you continue to believe what you want. It makes you feel better, I guess, to think that it was. It just isn't the case, though.

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Galatians 3:28 (New International Version)

28There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

This is why the LDS "church" was not talking to God when they decided blacks were a "cursed" race. I just love it when any group blames God for their hatred.

They didn't have to talk to God. The Protestants had already established that blacks were descendents of Cain and that they carried the curse. But when they realized that being that close to Adam would put blacks the image of God they changed it to Ham. You did know that it was only Darwinism that established that blacks were not a different species...right? Meanwhile, those rasty Mormons were insisting that blacks were not only human, they were children of God along with every other race who would receive the promises of exaltation. How do you explain that from such a racist bunch?

Should we allow that Cain's mark which was set upon him by the Divine power, was that of a black skin, this would not prove that it was derived from Adam's veins, but from a curse rather. 

Josiah Priest, Bible Defence of Slavery , 6th ed., (1853;  reprint, Detroit, MI :Negro History Press)161.

Notice the date of publication and the number of editions of this popular book.

"The story of Noah's Curse was so ingrained into the orthodox Protestant mind that it was sometimes invoked far from the pulpit.  Speaking before the Mississippi Democratic State Convention in 1859, none other than Jefferson Davis defended chattel slavery and the foreign slave trade by alluding to the "importation of the race of Ham" as a fulfillment of its destiny to be "servant of servants.". . .Speaking before the Mississippi Synod of the Presbyterian Church shortly after the US Supreme Court's landmark desegration decision in the case of Brown v. Board of Education (1954), the Reverend G.T. Gillespie reaffirmed his belief in the Genesis account.  The white-supremacist Citizens' Council of Greenwood subsequently distributed copies of the address under the title "A Christian View on Segregation." 

Forrest G. Wood, The Arrogance of Faith:  Christianity and Race in America from the Colonial Era to the Twentieth Century (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1990), 107.

Every religion has a long way to go in order to heal the wrongs that were done to blacks. But if you only willing to hold Mormons responsible...you are part of the problem. Race-baiting is just not a popular activity anymore and it is really not appropriate to use a race as a brickbat.

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It's going in one ear out the other, isn't it? You refuse to hear - THE CHURCH WAS NEVER RACIST!

Why can't you accept that? No matter what anyone says, or shows to you, you continue to believe what you want. It makes you feel better, I guess, to think that it was. It just isn't the case, though.

I also noticed that mb20 never addressed the scripture references from the Bible. Was God racist for forbidding two entire nations from entering into the congregation of the Lord? Was Jesus racist for referring to Canaanites as dogs? If not, why not? Mb20, we want to know what you think about this! What thinkest thou?

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The fact that there are a lot of black members that are able to look past the racist history of the Mormon church says a lot of good things about those black members, but the church has done nothing to deserve their membership.

Interesting. What have these religions done to be so deserving?

Why Christians Should Support Slavery

Key reasons advanced by southern church leaders

Many southern Christians felt that slavery, in one Baptist minister’s words, “stands as an institution of God.”  Here’s why:

Biblical reasons

~Abraham, the “father of faith,” and all the patriarchs held slaves without God’s disapproval (Gen 21:9-10).

~Canaan, Ham’s son, was made a slave to his brothers (Gen 9:24-27).

~The Ten Commandments mention slavery twice, showing God’s implicit acceptance of it (Ex 20:10, 17).

~Slavery was widespread throughout the Roman world, and yet Jesus never spoke against it.

~The apostle Paul specifically commanded slaves to obey their masters (Eph 6:5- :P .

~Paul returned a runaway slave, Philemon, to his master (Philem 12).

Charitable and evangelistic reasons

~Slavery removes people from a culture that “worshipped the devil, practiced witchcraft and sorcery” and other evils.

~Slavery brings heathen to a Christian land where they can hear the gospel.  Christian masters provide religious instruction for their slaves.

~Under slavery, people are treated with kindness, as many northern visitors can attest.

~It is in slaveholders’ own interest to treat their slaves well.

Social reasons

~Just as women are called to play a subordinate role (Eph 5:22; 1 Tim 2:11-15), so slaves are stationed by God in their place.

~Slavery is God’s means of protecting and providing for an inferior race (suffering the “curse of Ham” in Gen 9:25 or even the punishment of Cain in Gen 4:12).

~Abolition would lead to slave uprisings, bloodshed, and anarchy. Consider the mob’s “rule of terror” during the French Revolution.

Political reasons

~Christians are to obey civil authorities, and those authorities permit and protect slavery.

~The church should concentrate on spiritual matters, not political ones.

~Those who support abolition are, in James H. Thornwell’s words, “atheists, socialists, communists [and] red republicans.”

                ~The Editors

Reprinted with permission of Christian History, a product of Christanity Today, Inc., in: Richard O. Emerson and Christian Smith, Divided by Faith:  Evangelical Religion and the Problem of Race in America.  (New York: Oxford University Press, 2000),  p 35.

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? You refuse to hear - THE CHURCH WAS NEVER RACIST!

As we view racism today, the church did engage in that kind of thinking and behavior. It is not comfortable to read of how some black church members have historically been treated.

What these very selective critics are ignorant of, however, is that the very concept of racism did not exist until the twentieth century. Those who held these views thought that it was not only correct and biblical...they thought it was scientific.

We have very self righteous suicide bombing going on here. Whatever they throw up against the Mormon church will take down their own churches and society. That is why they will never admit that Mormons have never lived in a vacuum and inherited the prevailing societal beliefs.

Despite our failings, I remain in awe that the declarations of the worth of a black soul has been consistent from the beginning while society questioned their membership in the human race and religions created convoluted justifications from the Bible for the most barbaric and cruel treatment imaginable.

As openly racist as the southern faction was, it had no monopoly on white supremacy in the Baptist church, even in those places where leaders boasted  of their antislavery zeal.  There was probably no situation more bizarre than the one in Massachusetts where members of a black family discovered that a pew they had purchased in a previously all-white Baptist church had disappeared.  Refusing to be intimidated, they sat on the open floor--only to find the flooring removed the following Sunday.  Undaunted, they stood through the services. As late as 1834, a petition calling for the immediate emancipation of all slaves had been signed by only eleven ministers from New York and New England, the region with the largest number of Baptist churches in the nation and claiming the most  abolitionist clergymen. 

Forrest G. Wood.  The Arrogance of Faith:  Christianity and Race in America from the Colonial Era to the Twentieth Century.  (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1990), 328.

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It never ceases to amaze me... why does anyone besides us LDS care what happened and when in reference to blacks receiving the priesthood? It's not like we prevented blacks from having food, shelter, or other vital needs - we simply followed what we believed at the time was a mandate from God to prohibit them from acting in His name with His authority until He wanted to change such. If you don't believe in the priesthood or any of our claims for that matter, why does it matter? If you are a believer, then you ought to have enough faith to believe that we're on the right course, and despite need for corrections, there is no need to apologize for God's discretion.

Seriously, folks - what's all the fuss? The Restoration is true, Blacks were ordained (pre- and post-prohibition) according to God's purposes and plans. I love my black brothers and sisters as much as any other in this world we live in. So do our church leaders, even Christ himself.

Skip Rynearson

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If you don't believe in the priesthood or any of our claims for that matter, why does it matter?

I think that such things matter. But I think that it matters more that other religions accomplished much the same thing by simply barring blacks from seminaries so that they could not have leadership positions....or putting up so many barriers that they left in droves to establish their own societies (which remain today). It would have been much better for public relations if the church had been less public as well, I suppose.

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How many early leaders were adamant about blacks being equal, human, and children of G-d that went against everything that society thought at the time? How is THAT being 'racist'?

I suggest that you start with Young and Gray's series, Standing on the Promises. which can be found in the FAIR bookstore.

I cannot see how it helps us at all to insist that everything was rosy. It was not. Even though JS was a champion of all races and advocated that the government buy all the slaves to free them...he held the prevailing view that races should be segregated. There has been discrimination throughout our history. What I object to is the race-baiting. I'm not going to try and sugar coat things that I find shameful. Mormons were no less vulnerable to their surroundings than anyone else. I wish that we had done more (as does every religion in hindsight)...but I also think that we did a better job than most others considering that we were being targeted with all sorts of bigotry ourselves. To pick out Mormonism...which has directly addressed the problem in little more than a century...while giving religions a pass who not only started the problem but still have not resolved it after several centuries is appalling.

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The members of the Church are certainly not operating in a sociological vacuum, nor are they impervious to human emotions. It also bears remembering that in the early days of the Church there were no third and fourth (and more) generation members. They came to the Church from all walks of life, bringing with them the baggage of their backgrounds, good and bad.

I still am curious to find out how many of the folks who are so very concerned about this issue on this board are actually black. Anyone here? I have trouble finding black members in my home stake who are concerned about it.

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How many early leaders were adamant about blacks being equal, human, and children of G-d that went against everything that society thought at the time? How is THAT being 'racist'?

I suggest that you start with Young and Gray's series, Standing on the Promises. which can be found in the FAIR bookstore.

I cannot see how it helps us at all to insist that everything was rosy. It was not. Even though JS was a champion of all races and advocated that the government buy all the slaves to free them...he held the prevailing view that races should be segregated. There has been discrimination throughout our history. What I object to is the race-baiting. I'm not going to try and sugar coat things that I find shameful. Mormons were no less vulnerable to their surroundings than anyone else. I wish that we had done more (as does every religion in hindsight)...but I also think that we did a better job than most others considering that we were being targeted with all sorts of bigotry ourselves. To pick out Mormonism...which has directly addressed the problem in little more than a century...while giving religions a pass who not only started the problem but still have not resolved it after several centuries is appalling.

Yes, I agree with you. You do not need to defend your feelings to me on this. I know that members and church leaders - such as those you pointed out - held some negative views that would be considered racist today (I already stated that).

All I'm saying is that the 'Church', as an organization, was not racist. It was not set up, nor lead by Christ, to be racist. Yes, blacks couldn't hold the priesthood, but in every other way -in the church mind you- they held all the same privileges as any other member.

No, everything wasn't rosy, but that was throughout society. Members of the church held no different views than were found anywhere else.

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. . . the church has done nothing to deserve their membership.

What a strange concept. Too present in too many areas in current society, that's for sure.

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WILL SOMEONE "PLEASE" CALL D.R PHIL TO HELP GET OUR CRITICS TO UNDERSTAND ???, GRACE.

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WILL SOMEONE "PLEASE" CALL D.R PHIL TO HELP GET OUR CRITICS TO UNDERSTAND ???, GRACE.

Maybe us Marminz need help understanding that our critics don't want to understand.

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