Monday, March 30, 2009

A neighborly response...

Update to my last post:

Though I am not an activist, nor one to pick a fight, I did feel the need to say something about my neighbor's email. I saw him from a distance in church yesterday and I felt the need to say something, but it wasn't the right place and time. I knew that eventually I would have to, and I didn't want to belabor this any more than I already have. So, this morning, I sent (thanks to the wise advice from this community) him this email response:

Dear (Neighbor):
Thank you for your invitation to participate in your neighborhood meeting. I appreciate your passion.
After reviewing the Sutherland Institute's perspective, I feel they do not represent the Church's best interests, nor mine, in this regard. The Church has come out against "gay marriage" but has not come out against civil unions or basic protections (like hospital visitation rights etc.) for same-sex couples. The Church even said they were not against such things in California, and though they sat silent during the last legislative session here in Utah, they did not raise a voice, like the Sutherland Institute did, to treat anyone unfairly.
I feel that we need to use a much more loving approach, as the Savior would use, toward our brothers and sisters (gay or otherwise). Don't you?
So, now what do you think? Did I open a can of worms that I wish I hadn't? I did not send it anonymously and so he knows it is I who sent it. Will this bring down the wrath of God onto me and my family? Will there no longer be accord and brotherhood in the quorum? Will I need to ask for a release from my leadership calling? Will I be brave now and finally step up and become the neighborhood gay sympathizer? Is this good or is this bad?
Fortunately, it was the 5th Sunday yesterday and so there was no audience for a "public announcement" on his part in Priesthood, and with General Conference and Easter both coming up in the next couple of weeks, I hope this will die and go away. Can one hope?
There is always hope.


Bravone said...

Tu sei l'uomo!

MoHoHawaii said...


I thought your response was very respectful.

This was your first step as a gay activist. :- )

Big hugs.

Beck said...

BRAVONE: No, TU sei l'uomo!

MOHOH: Needless to say, you inspired me! I hope this ends good and not bad, but I'm glad I took this baby-step.

Scot said...

"Is this good or is this bad?"

Yes, yes it is :-).

As with all leaps, you could get hurt. But I firsthand know that, in the long run, it feels better to adsorb a hit or two and say what's right than keep under the radar.

Thank you Beck, for speaking your mind, and I think you did it well.

Sean said...

This was perfect! If it causes problems, that's not your fault--it's his! He's the one who can blow it out of proportion. You were very respectful in your response and showed that you had done some research too. Well, done! :)

Public Loneliness said...

I think your answer was spot on, shows that not everyone thinks the same way or has to and that other people have different points of view, rather than the assumption that everyone thinks and feels the same way.

Now that may actually give him and others something to gasp about and I don't think you or your family are in any danger.

Way to go!

Max Power said...

It was perfect, Beck.

Bror said...

Wow, great answer bud. You did well.

J G-W said...

I can't imagine having written a more perfectly, diplomatically written letter. You will of course keep us posted.

Beck said...


No, I haven't heard back from "him", but this baby-step has given me a chance to discuss the "issue" with my wife. I forwarded my email to her and this opened a discussion with her about the politics of the neighborhood that will surely follow.

And the good news is that she is supportive of my letter and is fine with my voicing my opinion (she didn't say hers) to this neighbor. The downside she sees is that he (being as vocal as he is) will stir up trouble against me and make it difficult to be a civil neighbor, let alone his priesthood leader.

But again, as conservative and rigid as she is in her views on this issue, she is okay with my taking the stance I did.

Another baby-step?

Sean said...

One cannot go wrong when following the principles given to us by the Savior.

your comments were and are spot on.

Sarah said...

Way to go, Beck. Welcome to my world!

Evan said...

I like it. I also think such an action was appropriate as well and I am curious as to how he will respond.

Alan said...

Yay Beck! Spot on! Perfect! Crack that closet door just a tiny bit! You struck a perfect balance between honesty and civility. Can't wait to hear of his response.

Wyatt said...

Yes! HOPE!!!!!

Good for you! Why is the Church so bigoted? I don't get it. It's all very confusing to me but you're right. The Savior taught love and acceptance so what's the Church waiting for?

Miss you, man.

Kengo Biddles said...

Beck, it was a well written letter. I hope it holds well.

And can I just say that your pictures in the left column are downright mean? I'm SOOOO "homesick" for Europe now.

I'm going to go home and start some Pane Rustica to eat in spite of you.

Beck said...

WOW! Thanks everyone for your support and encouragement.

I'm actually feeling a bit disturbed that he hasn't responded back. I've had thoughts of whether he is trying to scheme something diabolical or whether he's so shocked that his priesthood leader would respond in this way (even though I was respectful) that he is tongue-tied for the first time.

I'm going to try to not worry about it and move on. We'll see if anything happens and I'll report it when it does - otherwise, life goes on.

Thanks again for your friendship and support and encouragement.

Beck said...

KENGO: I am always "homesick for Europe". If I can figure out how to live in Liguria, I would! I will someday have a rustico on a hillside overlooking the sea - just you wait and see! When you figure it out, please let me know.