The post that will get me excommunicated

I didn’t pay any attention to Ginrul Confernz, as my BYU brethren were wont to pronounce it. I spent the weekend pubbing and clubbing in my hometown. (It’s the rather sprawly one with the horribly oversized airport on the lower right corner of the map.) The advantage of this laziness is that I can reap the fruit of everyone else’s labour.

Looks like most of the talks were the usual — follow the prophet, gender roles, tithing, missionary work et cetera et cetera. Apart from honourable mention given to the soppy yet sweet talk on gratitude by CEO Monson, the headline-grabber was Boyd K. Packer’s latest assault on The Gay.

This evening @porlob put forth the question: “Anyone else starting to think Boyd K. Packer is a big ol’ closet-case? He’s always had hangups on sex and and gayness.”

The answer: Yes. Unequivocally, absolutely, unreservedly. No person who devotes as much of their professional career as Packer has to sexual repression and denial can possibly be a healthy individual. Given the timely release of the most comprehensive study of American sexual behaviour ever, it seems that 8% of American males are gay or bisexual. (My guess is that the number is likely a percentage point or two higher, given that homosexuality is very likely to be under-reported due to stigma.) Eight percent. Let’s see. There are twelve apostles in the LDS church. What’s one divided by twelve? Gee whiz, it’s eight percent.

Based on pure statistics, somebody in the quorum is just a little more fabulous than the rest. My money’s on Packer. He was the 10th of 11 children; younger sons are more likely to be gay. Each older brother increases the probability of being gay by a third. Packer is the fifth son.

It’s interesting that all published accounts of Packer’s courtship with his wife, Donna, show her as the initiator. The story goes that Packer was asked to give a talk in a ward he did not usually attend. His future wife was present and thought to herself “Now, this is the type of man I would wish to marry.”

If there’s one central theme to Packer’s career, it’s self-denial. Glancing over the greatest hits of his career, it’s easy to see the signs of a deeply conflicted man who represses himself so badly that he can’t ponder a world where all men don’t need similar restraints. This is a bloke who disdains art and music if it doesn’t serve a utilitarian function of promoting “The Spirit.” I found a fairly comprehensive list of his speeches, and a disproportionate number are addressed at the youth, and a disproportionate number address masturbation, sex and pornography. It is nearly impossible for him to give a talk that is aimed at youth without sexualising them to some degree. These highlights stuck out at me, and I think they offer us a glimpse into his state of mind when we consider that his talks may be aimed at himself as much as they were at us:

  1. 1965: I’m a Person: In an uncharacteristic speech, Packer tells us we should “feel free, perfectly free, uninhibited” and affirms the importance of feeling like “a person” with “eternal worth.” This hardly sounds like the mean-spirited old man we hear from today.
  2. 1970: The Path to Manhood: Packer’s appropriately-titled début as a member of the twelve highlights the necessity of marrying a woman in the temple and pillow talk with his military bunkmate in which he asks “What did I do wrong?” He relates how a military supervisor told him that he was too uptight and needed to go out and have some fun. Packer congratulates himself for never giving in to self-gratification.
  3. 1972: Why Stay Morally Clean?: Packer tells teenagers to stay out of each others’ pants. Sex is only for procreation, and nobody has any reason to grope one another.
  4. 1976: To Young Men Only: Don’t touch yourself. Self-gratification is evil. Gay sex is evil. If you touch yourself, you will go gay. If someone tries to get gay with you, beat them up.
  5. 1981: Marriage – Divorce is evil. Sex is only permitted in marriage. Do not lose faith in marriage. Do not lose faith in marriage. Do not lose faith in marriage.
  6. 1986: Little Children – The top two gravest threats to children are the idea that any two adults can have sex even if they aren’t married and “misuse of that procreative power in degraded acts of perversion is widely promoted as the right of consenting adults.” The biggest threat to kids is two people enjoying themselves in a consensual relationship. Not lack of access to education, physical abuse, or malnutrition.
  7. 1989: To Young Women and Men – AIDS and crack and Satanism is your doom if you give into temptation.
  8. 1993: Talk to the All-Church Coordinating Council – Gays, lesbians, feminists and intellectuals (all groups that advocate self-acceptance and explosion of stigmatising gender roles) are the greatest threat the church faces.
  9. 1996: The Unwritten Order of Things – Even when you are dead, you don’t deserve to have some attention for yourself. Even your funeral needs to be co-opted as a marketing tool for The Church. High-ranking priesthood leaders should never indulge themselves and come down from the stand to sit with their families during church. Don’t ever ask to be released from a calling.
  10. 1997: The Father and the Family – Packer begins with an overtly sexual definition of why people have families but later reprises his wish that everyone can feel like “a person.”
  11. 2009: Counsel to Young Men – Stay pure and worthy. Don’t wank and don’t let anyone else wank for you.
  12. 2010: October Conference – Gay is a choice. The church will continue to try to stigmatise homosexual relationships by preventing them from gaining social and legal standing.

It makes sense that a man who refuses to confront his own sexuality would give sermons demonizing free thought demonising self-indulgence. The most telling passage, for me, comes from “For Young Men Only.” Dim the lights and read this passage aloud to yourself in a sultry voice. It quickly becomes clear that no person comfortable with their sexuality could have possibly imagined that the following would have any value in a meeting meant for spiritual education:

Now a warning! I am hesitant to even mention it, for it is not pleasant. It must be labeled as major transgression. But I will speak plainly. There are some circumstances in which young men may be tempted to handle one another, to have contact with one another physically in unusual ways. Latter-day Saint young men are not to do this. Sometimes this begins in a moment of idle foolishness, when boys are just playing around. But it is not foolishness. It is remarkably dangerous. Such practices, however tempting, are perversion. When a young man is finding his way into manhood, such experiences can misdirect his normal desires and pervert him not only physically but emotionally and spiritually as well. It was intended that we use this power only with our partner in marriage. I repeat, very plainly, physical mischief with another man is forbidden. It is forbidden by the Lord. There are some men who entice young men to join them in these immoral acts. If you are ever approached to participate in anything like that, it is time to vigorously resist.

Now skip to the following and imagine yourself alone in a room, penning these words, tears trickling down your face as you force yourself to believe them:

There is a falsehood that some are born with an attraction to their own kind, with nothing they can do about it. They are just “that way” and can only yield to those desires. That is a malicious and destructive lie. While it is a convincing idea to some, it is of the devil. No one is locked into that kind of life. From our premortal life we were directed into a physical body. There is no mismatching of bodies and spirits. Boys are to become men –masculine, manly men –ultimately to become husbands and fathers. No one is predestined to a perverted use of these powers.

Verbal self-flagellation if I ever read it. If you are trying to force yourself to believe such words, the best method would be to get others to believe them too. The level of obsession is ridiculous. Packer’s in the closet, but the door is made of glass. The cheap shot that I simply can’t avoid taking is the irony of a repressed self-loathing gay man with the surname of “Packer.” He is someone to be pitied and loathed. When he shuffles off the mortal coil, the world will be a better place. In different circumstances, he could have led a happier and more productive life. However, the part of me that wants to forgive him for being the victim of a system that assaulted his identity from birth is overwhelmed by the part of me that holds him responsible for the deaths of countless LGBT youth.

Come out of the closet, Boyd. It isn’t too late. You can’t take back the years of agony you inflicted on the trusting souls who believed you spoke for God, but now that you’re at the end of your life and your health is beginning to fail, would it really be so bad to go through the last rite of honesty?

57 thoughts on “The post that will get me excommunicated

  1. But isn’t it, like, incredibly obvious that Packer is gay??? Can this really be a revelation to anyone? Who out there seriously thinks he’s straight? And, better yet, who wishes to be part of a religion wherein he’s a praiseworthy individual? Even at my most Excited For Religion–and I’m still pretty excited for religion, just not this one, or maybe I just prefer to believe in God without the social pressure–I never thought this dude was anything but a complete crackpot. Most TBM’s I know who are halfway decent people just sort of ignore him. Is there anyone out there, on any point in the Mormo spectrum, who takes him seriously? I would really, really like to hear from this person.

    • Yes there is. It’s not me but there is a facebook page supporting him look at it’s full of people saying “we love and support you”. I was brought up Mormon and am a lesbian it was very bloody hard tell my family and the abuse i got for years was terrible but i love them and 12 years on it’s alot better. Because of the pamphlets Paccker wrote my Dad told me i would be better off dead than be a lesbian. My sister said i was not to be alone with her children as i was a peadophile. It was and still can be hurtful but thats what they(may be not all) believe. x

  2. I guess I just “came out” on my blog, at least to some extent. I pointed out that BKP isn’t much of a Christian. As for how he got in, well, if you deny that homosexuality exists–and if it does, then it’s an “affliction” suffered only by psychopathic serial killing types, and/or strippers with HIV–I guess it’s fairly easy to deny the problem.

  3. OMG this made me laugh out loud! “somebody in the quorum is just a little more fabulous than the rest.”

    but seriously, I completely agree.The man doth protest waaaaaaay too much

  4. Packer is, has been, and continues to project his personal shame on everyone else. This post is awesome, excellent, and all that. Even fabulous. Loved it. If you’re excommunicated for it, I’d wear it like a badge of honor if I were you.

    • …and I would be extremely jealous.

      my husband isn’t ready to resign so i’m not, but i’ve been asking for it for a while now. nothing! nothing!

      go out in a hail of gunfire, girl. this is the time to do it.

  5. You know, it occurs to me that it’s Packer who explicitly set out the policy of Faithful History: the policy/threat that church historians ought to study, write about, and discuss only those aspects of the LDS church’s history that are faith-promoting (or, in his words, “useful”) while covering up, obfuscating, or ignoring any aspects that out the church or its leaders in even a slightly negative light. (Wow. That was one long sentence.)

    In some significant ways, this policy is *very* similar to what he’s done to himself if indeed he’s closeted: ignoring, distracting, and bottling up aspects of himself that he doesn’t like or finds embarrassing. At the very least, it’s *exactly* what he’s encouraged generations of teenagers and adults with normal sexual appetites to do to themselves.

    • How are kids who grow up with this policy supposed to understand the concept of honesty in any meaningful way? If your supposedly “respectable” church leaders–who claim to speak for God–say, “well, you have to tell the truth, unless of course the truth makes you look bad”, what principles, if any, define honesty?

      The sad thing is, I see so much of this attitude in my own family situation. Whatever “promotes the church” is true, even if it’s a) factually not true, and b) there’s substantial evidence to prove it. The person who agrees with the church is clearly right, even if it’s a man beating the shit out of his wife. He’s doing everything he’s doing while spouting BOM-related drivel, therefore, he’s the paragon of virtue in the room.

    • Bang on. (Pun intended.) It is NO surprise that the man who laid out the historical application of Doublethink has quite a few things he wishes to ignore himself.

  6. You can just see Packer’s mind churning over his homosexual wants and needs, and you don’t even have to read between the lines! It’s blatantly right there for everyone to see in the text he’s written.

  7. haha, and i thought i was the only one who thought of this. not of packer, so much, but “hmm, lots of anti-gay zealous christian men are getting caught with their pants down. wonder if the same is going on in our church.”

    it would seem packer stepped up to the plate. dude, get a boyfriend. rub one out. tell the truth, at least, and admit it’s totally okay. you’ll feel lots better.

  8. Interesting. I had this similar thought but I approached it from another angle… Having been very active LDS for most of my life, served a mission and held several callings I recalled a unique characteristic of that environment. On my mission, if you admitted to not liking the big city, for example, that is where the mission president would send you. If I ever hinted to a ward leader that I hated making phone calls I would invariably be called to be the Bishop’s executive secretary. In that calling with several bishops I encountered the same sort of inspiration for callings… that they were tools or weapons for teaching people to overcome their weaknesses.

    I don’t know how much the GA’s select their own topics to speak on at different events but I can only wonder if the 1st Presidency somehow has known from very early on what BKP’s “weaknesses” might be and given him assignments to speak on those very topics?????

    Or maybe it’s just him doing it to himself?

    • You are probably right he may have those feelings. I might respect him if he said to all or all gay men or gay women who are married in the LDS Church “I have feelings towards men but i have chosen to be in the church and married if you are gay and you want to try to live this way i’ll let you know how i cope with it. It’s the fact that Packer claims you can change and that is so damaging to LDS Youth that believe they will be changed. I believed it and went on a mission i have never changed i choose to love and accept myself.

  9. One question… it looks like you did quite a bit of research into BKP’s past public comments. Someone said that he had preached against interracial relationships back in the day… Did you find anything like that while you were perusing past talks?

  10. What a great blog, I was able to laugh, finally after such flat dragging Sunday. I felt sleep during conference and I remember waking up and taking a quick shower to wake up, then while still in the bathroom I overhead the Packer talking. I came into the living room and tried to follow. I do not remmember hearing his “main artillery” but I did feel a let down after his speech. It was like something had deflated the general good feeling I usually have during conference.
    Now I realize what was my feeling about it, the Packer had spoken once again. I am so sorry for feeling this way and writing this but I is my truth.

    • Fair point, and this very well may be the breaking point for me. It makes me positively ashamed to have any formal association with LDS Inc., to hear things like this said at Conference, which many members regard as doctrine.

      • I don’t think they’re really doing the whole ex-communication thing anymore. I wish you luck getting out. I’m trying!

    • Try resigning (getting your name taken off the church records) it doesn’t work i tried years ago called up church head quarters and wrote to the local bishop i recieved a letter inviting me to a church court i called the bishop and said i asked for you to take my name off the records he totally ignored me and said we will still be having the church court. (this bishop was a friend of mine when i was in my teens) he sent me a letter a few weeks later saying i had been excommunicated due to my immoral life style and wrote a whole page of how he was so dissapointed in my choice and that i should repent.

      • Did you know you can sue the church for this? The second they receive your letter you are no longer subject to church discipline. If you still have that letter you should get a lawyer.

  11. @dadsprimalscream

    “We’ve always counseled in the Church for our Mexican members to marry Mexicans, our Japanese members to marry Japanese, our Caucasians to marry Caucasians, our Polynesian members to marry Polynesians. The counsel has been wise.

    Things are not always easy when we receive counsel, whether the counsel is to return to serve among our own people or whether it is counsel to marry among our own culture and racial backgrounds. Always there is a decision. Always we can say, ‘We’re an exception.’ But I say, in the words of that Relief Society sister, ‘As for me, I’m going to follow the rule first; and then, should there be an exception, perhaps that will be made known.’ “

    • Do you not see something wrong with that advice? That is really scary as that is racist. God loves all his children equally regardless of race it’s totally disgusting as it causes so many rifes through families. My LDS Father drummed two things into us 1) Don’t ever bring a black boyfriend home and 2) None of my children will be gay it is next to murder. It’s very damaging to some people mental heatlh to be taught that kind of stuff i feel it is disgusting and wrong but hey thats my opinion.

  12. I dunno. I rather suspect that Packer’s concept of Mormon masculinity is compromised by the thought of bottoms. To him, any male who would have passive anal sex is simply no longer a man–not quite a woman, but not a man–and is not a candidate for eternal godhood. Thus his obsession with attacking male homosexuality, particularly in youth-oriented addresses. Or it could be that Packer’s narcisissm leads him, even at age 86, to look at gay men and wonder, “what’s he thinking about doing to me?”

  13. Excellent analysis. I have to agree. At this age I doubt he’ll ever come out and be the Mormon Ted Haggard though.

    And, hey, I was honored to get a linky-link in your string of links about Boss Packer’s talk being the headliner of this confrunz.

  14. Psych. I posted the following on right after I read Boyd’s flaming talk (not sure the hyperlinks will paste):

    Flamboyant homophobes like Boyd K Packer are 90% always repressed, self-loathing homosexuals. It’s now a rule of religious psychology that the more extremely anti-gay a person is, the more likely they are to be same-sex attracted themselves. Examples are on this Ranklist of the top anti-gay secretly gay politicians, but there are also a ton of historical examples.

    Boyd K Packer has been obsessed with gays his entire adult life, he rants about gays at every GC since the 70s, it’s like he dreams about gay sex. I’m a 1 on the Kinsey Scale of sexuality and I’ve never had a thought about gay sex, and I don’t worry about it, neither do any of my genuinely straight friends. Boyd’s infamous warning to the YM about “boys” must represent his secretest desire.

    Only a closet-case like Boyd K Packer could think that same-sex attraction is a choice, because he has been choosing to hate himself for years he thinks everybody else should too. It wouldn’t shock me to learn that Boyd K Packer has some skeletons in his “closet.” His firing of “liberal” professors from BYU was directly related to work that one of them did on gay relationships among the early Saints, which were common and not scandalous. What is President Packer so scared of?

    The bottom line that any gay kid needs to know is that the biggest bullies are secretly queer and they are the most dangerous. It is much more honorable and respectable to be openly gay or lesbian, even if it means leaving the LDS, than it is to be a closeted, self-loathing homosexual like Apostle Boyd K. Packer, who lives a life of bitter hatred.

    • To KeepSweet your message is amazing and i could not agree with you more. Thank you for speaking out honestly and frankly it’s very refreshing.

  15. Honestly, I feel sorry for him. Of course, it’s much easier for me to feel sorry for him, now that I’m no longer embarrassed by my association with him (hey, does anyone else find the, “pause a minute, and consider your immortal soul” pamphlet you get extremely creepy?). Imagine living your whole life being afraid to admit who you are. I think, sometimes, it’s not so much an issue of “gay or not gay” as freedom versus lack thereof. He resents, to the point of hatred, anyone who has the courage to be themselves.

    Gay, straight, purple, whatever, people who are happy in their own lives aren’t threatened by people who live their lives differently. I’m straight, and living next door to a gay couple, having a best friend who is gay, going to school with many people who are gay, etc. has not made me the least bit interested in being gay. The fact that otherwise (at least somewhat) intelligent people think “gay” is somehow contagious just blows my mind.

  16. Excellent Post. I agree with both you and C.J. about this. And part of me is empathetic as I was starting down the path of homophobia myself. But another part of me has no such sympathy for his rhetoric at all because it goes completely against his own religion.

    He should know better! He’s a fucking Apostle for Christ Sake!

  17. OMG I’m dying laughing right now. I recorded Monday’s Dancing With the Stars and just watched it. It shows Bristol Palin giving speeches around the country on “Abstinence” …

    Kind of like BKP talking on”Overcoming Homosexuality”?

  18. I never thought that deeply about BKP when I was a faithful Mormon, but now that I’ve been away from it for more than half my life, it’s patently obvious. The man reminds me of the evil bishop character in that Ken Follett book (made into a movie), Pillars of the Earth. You know, the one that flagellates himself with barbed whips as he prays to god to make him more holy, then goes out and messes with everybody. Only BKP doesn’t necessarily seem to be personally greedy, just majorly obsessed with the gays. Thanks for this!

  19. I’ve been doing a lot of thinking, over the past 24 hours, about the long term effects of living in a culture that breeds hate. To some, that might be an extreme statement, and maybe it is, but it’s been my experience–whether it’s BKP telling people to “protect themselves” by committing hate crimes against the GLBT community, or whether it’s local bishops waving copies of “The Miracle of Forgiveness” at rape victims. This is a religion that rewards rigid adherence to the rules, regardless of the consequences. Therefore, it makes sense that intolerance is rewarded.

    In my own life–yes, time again for another personal revelation nobody wants–I’m going to have to take out a restraining order against Sick Relative, who’s decided (again, with the support of local leaders) that I’m full of “darkness”, “evil”, and “will be punished”. This is an absolutely terrifying situation for my family. As a group, the non-Mormons I know are uniformly supportive of us; not everybody likes everybody, but harassing emails, calls, etc, threats of violence, actual acts of violence (yes, we narrowly averted a catastrophe there, too) aren’t OK. In fact, they’re illegal.

    I have, however, now officially lost all of my Mormon friends except two. The others, having heard about the situation–from the man who’s expressed, quite openly, that I “must be judged” for my “evil”–side with him, as, clearly, he has the Priesthood. Just yesterday, I received a pile of emails from people telling me, essentially, I’d never been anything but good to them, they admitted that, and they didn’t know the facts of the situation, they admitted that too, but that I’d defied a Priesthood holder, etc etc so they could no longer talk to me.

    If you’d told me, a month ago, that things like this happened, I would’ve absolutely thought you were making it up. Never in my wildest dreams did it ever occur to me that otherwise normal (seeming) people could act this way, or turn on me–or anyone–so suddenly, especially when they freely admitted that they had no personal cause to do so.

    So, in the final analysis, I think the threat represented by leaders like BKP is far more far ranging than the GLBT rights movement. Really, we’re all just people, and none of us are safe. Hate spreads; it’s impossible to confine it to any one group of people. There’s no such thing as someone who’s selectively tolerant.

    • It’s a good point; let any hate in and it spreads like disease.

      If people aren’t standing by you when you’re being threatened with violence, they weren’t your friends to begin with. Keep yourself and your family safe.

    • I have been through what you are going through on and off for 12 years. From my LDS Family it is vey hard not to hate but i refuse to hate my family i have done everything in my power keep up my relations with them as i love them and i won’t let the hurtful things they have said stop me from loving them. My Father for instance said i would rather you be dead than a lesbian (just after i came out) and lots and lots of other things have been said i have 9 brothers and sisters so you can imagine. It really hurt and i became very deppressed on and off for years as i lost my relationship for a long time with some of my brothers and sisters who befor i came out loved me to death. But i know that they truly believe in the church and so it’s no wonder they react that why i hated myself for a while as we were taught those gays are all “sexual deviants”. I have one sister that always stood by me and she has taken the flake for she stood up about a gay issue 5 months ago and my Mum and Dad threw her out of the house she moved from Salt Lake to Baltimore the next day. Thats after 12 years of their own daughter being out. Anyway hate is like a disease it nearly over took me and then i realised i’m doing the same as them hating them for who they are. Don’t get me i wish in a perfect world they would hold me and say it doesn’t matter that you are a lesbian we love you wholly for you. But there beliefs cannot allow them to do that as they feel they would be condoning it and for them that is a sin. It’s very hurtful and damaging on both sides.

  20. Thank you for this wonderful post. I linked this on my facebook site. I hope you don’t mind. I hope that many of my friends will read this and allow themselves to think for once.

  21. It seems that you negated some of your own claims. You claim that homosexuality is an inborn genetic condition that you can’t change, then when talking about your supposition that someone is gay, you referenced their upbringing as a factor in your evidence that this person is gay. At this point, there is no conclusive evidence from geneticists either way on whether it is inborn or not, so i decline taking a position. I am intending only to point out a flaw in your logic that prevents me from being able to support your theory fully.

    Likely there are multiple factors that contribute to sexual preference of individuals, meaning that a person may have urges and tendencies towards one or the other and then are nurtured and raised to either support of to rebel from these tendencies. The person you are talking about may have tendencies, but that doesn’t mean they have to follow these urges.

    If this person feels being gay is morally wrong, then he is like every person in the world that has wanted to commit an immoral act such as robbery, rape or murder for self-gratification or some other motivation. Just because you have an urge to kill someone doesn’t make it a morally defensible act, nor does it serve to justify committing such acts. I am not going to state my opinion about the morality or immorality of homosexuality because it doesn’t matter here, what matters is that being human means we are able to control our desires and channel those tendencies to good use.

    • I suspect you are just trolling, but your overly wordy argument falls down for this reason: robbery, rape and murder can objectively be demonstrated as acts that cause harm. When homosexuality is cast as immoral, it is not done so on the basis of any demonstrable harm, only on the basis that it is a taboo behaviour. Love does not cause harm. Prohibiting those who love one another to express that love causes harm.

      The veil you’ve pulled over your homophobia is incredibly thin.

      • lol, yep just trolling for something intelligent to read.

        I find it interesting that you felt you had to quietly disparage me for using words that i feel most correctly express my analysis of your post.

        First, you didn’t respond to my initial and main point, thereby validating that you were were negating your own claims.

        Second, morality has never been based on objective harm, quite far from it, morality has always and forever will be subjective in this world, it is objective to those that hold a certain morality based on their belief on whoever or whatever instituted that moral code. If you can show that morality is somehow objective, please proceed…

        Not once in my comments did i ever state my position and labeling me as homophobic seems like a way for you to escape defending your post, I was simply offering an academic analysis and criticism of your post and nothing more. I don’t have to take a position on the issue, as the opinion of one person is pretty moot on a blog.

        • Actually, in regard to your initial main point, forslice, you posited a strawman. Molly never stated that homosexuality was genetic as you claim she did. She said it was not a choice. There is a major difference.

          Yes, there may be genes that might increase the likelihood of homosexuality, but it’s just one such factor. In fact, Molly specifically points out, for instance, that the more older brothers a man has, the more likely he is to be gay. There’s surely no genetic basis here, and certainly none posited in this post. Indeed that finding is likely due to hwo the levels of circulating hormones in a woman’s body changes with each successive child she has. These hormones can affect fetal development.

          Just because something is innate does not necessarily make it genetic.

        • Indeed Patrick, well said, i’m glad someone was able to defend Molly when she wasn’t able to defend herself. Also, I don’t cloud up my weekends with this like this, M-F flamer only. 🙂
          To your point though, there are generally accepted principles here of where humans obtain traits, nature and nurture. I failed to explicitly state this which is my bad, but it is still valid. We have traits that would exist regardless of how we are raised and traits that vary based on how we are raised, ie nature and nurture. In the original post, I read Molly as referring to homosexuality as a nature trait, one that would exist regardless of how we are raised, then she uses nurture as her support of calling Mr. Packer a homosexual. This is a grave inconsistency in her analysis regardless of what the actual roots of homosexuality are. If homosexuality is nurture, then we do have a choice on whether or not we are homosexual. Likely it is a combination of these factors, but Molly positioned herself as following the generally held belief that it is almost 100% nature and that the individual cannot change their sexual preference.

        • First off, read the post again. She does no such thing. Really, I don’t know where you got that.

          Furthermore, the nature/nurture debate exists only in pop psychology, not in the scientific literature. It is a false dichotomy that is not a useful way of understanding human psychology in any meaningful way and is not taken seriously by the scientific community. You can’t look at a human psychological trait and say “Oh, this one is due to ‘nature,’ but THAT one is due to ‘nurture.'”

          Try looking at this another way: look at our genes as a mathematical formula with some algebraic variables. We all have slightly different formulas, some are more likely to give us certain kinds of results than others. Our environmental inputs (what you call “nurture” but also including things like fetal circulating hormones) are the values for those variables. Once you plug in those values to the variables, you get your result. It’s not a perfect analogy, but I think it’s a closer approximation to reality tan the nature/nurture false dichotomy.

        • You are rather a bore.

          I don’t know what a “nature trait” is. Since that’s not a term recognised by any scientific authority on this planet I can’t respond to that. Your adjective-riddled comments keep putting words in my mouth. You are a troll of the cherry-picking variety; you’ve picked a very small tangent that was part of a larger point, misrepresented it and tried to come off as being insightful by using overly flowery language to obfuscate the weakness of your attack and the thinness of your disguise as a concern troll when you are really just someone who disagrees with me. I won’t take that bait. I prefer someone writing “YOUR WRONG LOL” to this nonsense.

          This is your third strike. You get one bonus round. Keep trolling and you will be banned.

        • There is a difference between making it look like you have changed your sexual orientation to actually changing ones sexual orientation. If a man for instance is attracted to men but does not want to act on it and then gets married to a woman. He is still attracted to men he has just made a choice to live an hetrosexual lifestyle. His sexual orientation does not change he just chooses not to act on it. I would like to say again if Boyd K Packer or any man or woman for instance is secretly gay then shame on them for not saying look i have these feelings now if you want to be married to the opposite sex this is how i cope and manage my feelings at least be honest and then in turn it helps others to 1) be honest and if they find someone of the opposite sex that still wants to marry them regardless of their true sexual orientation. 2) Stay cellibate only if they choose. 3) Be with some they are truly attracted to of the same sex. Honesty is the key. Closet gay people i agree can be the worst towards gay people it’s part of history and is very sad and damaging but if you hate something about yourself you either learn to accept and fully embrace and learn to love yourself or you repress and teach others to repress and hate too.

  22. Pingback: Main Street Plaza » Sunday in Outer Blogness: Damage Control Edition!

  23. “There are some men who entice young men to join them in these immoral acts. If you are ever approached to participate in anything like that, it is time to vigorously resist.”

    If these are not the words of a man who was sexually abused as a child, I don’t know what are. “Vigorously resist” to me equals “I should have resisted, I feel the guilt that all abused children do.” The man needs help.

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