Friday, June 24, 2011

The Mormon Question

CNN's Religion blog has posted a story entitled "Explain it to me: Mormonism." The post is by Dan Gilgoff, CNN's Belief Blog Co-Editor.

The post lists 10 facts about Mormonism, including its official name, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and the persecution the Church endured in its early years, including the murder of its founder Joseph Smith.

Apparently this persecution continues to some degree even today.
As of this posting, some 12 hours after CNN posted its story, over 1,200 comments have been made to the story. One commenter, drjaz, noted:
The hate and vitrol towards the mormons is nothing short of amazing. I haven't seen anything else compare. You'd think the mormons were jews and this was the inquisition. . . . When Joseph Smith was just a poor young backwoods no name kid with no prospects for the future he said that the angel told him his name would be had for good and evil all across the world. That's one prophecy these mormon haters have ensured has been absolutely and undeniably fulfilled.
Beyond reading the original CNN posting, viewing the reader posts provides a glimpse into public attitudes toward Mormons.

To read the CNN post, click here.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Two Hispanic LDS Branch Presidents in Utah Deported

On the heels of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS) issuing a new statement on illegal immigration, a statement which both discourages members from entering a country illegally and calls for an opportunity for undocumented immigrants to "square themselves with the law," KSL reported today that two Hispanic LDS congregational leaders in Utah are being deported.

Beyond the story itself, the comments posted to the story show the feelings readers have regarding this issue.

To read the KSL story, click here.
To read the comments, click here.
To read the Church policy statement regarding Illegal Immigration click here.

Monday, June 13, 2011

New LDS Statement on Illegal Immigration

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has issued a new statement on illegal immigration. To read the statement, click here.

The statement notes that it is Church policy to discourage "its members from entering any country without legal documentation, and from deliberately overstaying legal travel visas."

However, the statement also recognizes that how to deal with the estimated 12 million undocumented immigrants currently residing in the United States, "is the biggest challenge in the immigration debate."

For the Church, "[t]he bedrock moral issue . . . is how we treat each other as children of God."

The statement expresses concern that legislation that only contains enforcement provisions will "fall short of the high moral standard of treating each other as children of God." The statement goes on to say that "[t]he Church supports an approach where undocumented immigrants are allowed to square themselves with the law and continue to work without this necessarily leading to citizenship."

Saturday, June 4, 2011

The Supreme Court Upholds Part of the Arizona Immigration Law, but what does that mean?

In May, the United States Supreme Court upheld aspects of an Arizona anti-illegal-immigrant law which punishes employers who hire illegal-immigrants. (This is not the more well known anti-illegal-immigrant law SB1070 which punished illegal-immigrants more directly.)

Jennifer Rubin, writing in the Washington Post, draws together the opinions of Hans von Spakovsky of the Heritage Foundation, and Lyle Denniston of the SCOTUS blog and concludes that if the dispute over Arizona SB1070 reaches the Supreme Court, it will likely find a sympathetic majority.

Read the Washington Post story here.

You may also wish to read Did arizona Really Win at the Supreme Court? by Bill Ong Hing writing for the Huffington Post.

Arizona-Style Illegal Immigrant Crackdown in Alabama?

Alabama Governor Robert Bentley is weighing whether or not to sign an Arizona-style anti-illegal-immigrant bill into law.

Fox News reports that Cecillia Wang, director of the ACLU Immigrants' Rights Project, refers to the bill as "an outrageous throwback to the pre-civil rights era."

Read the Fox News story here.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Elementary School Students are taught that Gender is a Spectrum

Children and teachers in all grades at Redwood Heights Elementary School in Oakland, California received instruction in anti-bullying from a group called Gender Spectrum. Fox News, reports that Joel Baum, director of education and training for Gender Spectrum, taught that "Gender identity is a spectrum where people can be girls, feel like girls, they feel like boys, they feel like both, or they can feel like neither."

To read the Fox News report, click here.
To read the report of the story, click here.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

For the First Time Ever, Less than Half of U.S. Households are Married Couples

News sources are reporting that Census figures show that only 48% of U.S. households are made up of married couples. Further, only a fifth of households were married couples with children, down form 43% in 1950. The New York Times states that the "iconic image of the American family continues to break apart."

CNN reports that the percent of married households tends to increase in border states "where large Hispanic households represent a growing portion of the population."

Utah has the highest number of married households with 61%. New York has the lowest with approximately 44%.

To read the New York Times story, click here.

To read the CNN story, click here.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Five Steps to Kill Innovation

TechRepublic writer Jason Hiner enumerates five ways to kill innovations in his article How to kill innovation, in five easy steps.

His five steps are:
  1. Don't give ownership of projects,
  2. Create too many layers of management,
  3. Ignore brainstorming rules (which he enumerates),
  4. Rely too heavily on data and dashboards, and
  5. Under-resource your hidden opportunities.
TwoMinuteBriefing recommends his article, which can be accessed here.

New Date for the End of the World

Fox News reports that the minister who predicted that the world would end on May 21, 2011, has announced a new date for apocalypse. Minister Harold Camping apologized for an error in his calculations, but not states that the world will end on October 21, 2011.

Camping also asserts that rather than a day of Rapture, May 21 was instead a "spiritual" Judgement day in which the world was placed under Christ's judgment.

Read the Fox News story here.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

For the First Time, Most Americans Support Same-Sex Marriages

A new Gallup survey reports that 53% of respondents felt that same-sex marriages should be legally valid. This is a major shift from previous surveys.

...............Should be valid ...............Should not be valid

2011 ..................53%....................................45%
2010 .................44%....................................53%

The shift in opinion appears to be driven by a shift in opinion among those who identify themselves politically as Democrats or Independents.

Read the Gallup report by clicking here.