Last Tuesday Californians narrowly passed Proposition 8, which bans marriage between two consenting adults of the same sex. Undoubtedly there are countless reasons why this proposition passed, but certainly one of the major ones--if not the major one--was the influence of the Mormon church. Although based two states away in Utah, Mormons arrived in droves to canvas the state, encouraging the locals to pass the proposition.
Furthermore, they spent around 20 million dollars to do so. That's more money than was spent in many Senatorial races, and even more money than Will Smith gets per movie.
In fact, this was the most intense campaign the Mormons have fought since they successfully helped defeat the Equal Rights Amendment in the 1970s.
The Mormons know their time is limited--although those 65 and older resoundingly supported Prop 8, voters 18 to 29 voted against it 61-39 percent. Sometime in the not-to- distant future, another vote will be held, and the Mormons will lose.
In the meantime, the question remains, if the Mormons have the ability to decide who among us has the right to marry and who among us doesn't, don't the rest of us have that same right? So why not a new proposition for the next election day? Why shouldn't the rest of us decide if Mormons have the right to marry?
Certainly, marriage has never been an easy issue for them, as for many years they encouraged their members not just to marry, but to marry often--five, ten wives at once. Hardly mainstream values. And the news has been filled with stories of so-called breakaway Mormons for whom polygamy is only the tip of a marital iceberg of problems.
With a track record like that, it's clear Mormons don't know how to handle marriage well. So let's take it away from them until they're better prepared, say in two or three decades, when gay marriage is legal.