Mocking Mormons is not a new sport
I suppose I should be flattered. There are several sites out there that troll the Bloggernacle just looking for conservative bloggers that take themselves too seriously. I’m probably one of them. So I’m pleased to have been given a nice LOLcat award for some poor wording on a recent post about the Yes on 8 ads and kids being taught about same-sex marriage in public schools.
This California Prop 8 thing has been getting pretty intense in the news lately. It is probably very disconcerting to the more liberal denizens of the ‘nacle who are opposed to the church’s involvement in this issue. It will probably only get more heated over the next three weeks. I hope our political views will not get in the way of our love of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Mormon blogging is a small world
I have a sneaking suspicion that the only people who read my blog are other LDS bloggers. So my original intent in reaching out to those not of our faith was well-founded but perhaps not so very realistic. I have had a few comments from those researching the church but for the most part, I seem to attract readers who are on the fringe – those who are leaving or who have left.
Recently, I read an article about how few Internet Mormons there actually are. The majority of the church members – he calls them chapel Mormons – are not involved. They don’t know about the resources available to answer critics of the church. Nor do they know about amazing discussions taking place each day about the issues facing members living in an increasingly connected society.
Mocking is inevitable
My friend S.Faux posted an innocuous essay the other day about a common phrase used in New Testament times that pressed the “time to mock” button of some modern reader. It was all about the holy kiss, which sounds very unfamiliar in our day, but was apparently common back then. He illustrated his essay with a nice piece of artwork showing Peter and Paul greeting each other.
It is a sign of immaturity to mock things that you don’t understand or find hard to believe. They say it is all done in fun and yes, it can sometimes help to lighten things up when you see it from someone else’s point of view. But I am concerned for our newer LDS bloggers who share their testimonies in great sincerity and then get slammed by some ex-mo who thinks it’s funny.
Desecrating sacred things
It is inevitable in the virtual online world of LDS discussion that some of us inhabit, that we are occasionally visited by these rabid individuals. I am amazed at the talent of some who can craft a response that is intelligent and subtly mean at the same time. Others make every effort to openly offend and have not yet figured out how foolish they appear. It invalidates their point.
And then of course there are those who say they are on God’s side when they take things that are sacred to us and ridicule them in public display. No bolt of lighting comes down to zap them so they are happy to increase their efforts until someone takes the bait or they grow tired of being ignored. They have quieted down lately but you can read all about them over at the FAIR site.
Joseph was mocked
I enjoy my blogging activities about the church and LDS doctrine. Yes, my conservative views are very evident. I am also an older blogger so I see life from a different perspective from many who are proficient in the online world. Mocking on many forums and chat rooms is a common and acceptable practice. It can be a little shocking the first time a new LDS blogger is mocked.
This is not a new practice. It has been around since Joseph claimed he had seen a vision. It has just changed venues over the years until now it seems to reside online more than anywhere else. Some mocking can be said to be good natured, but I suspect most people don’t like it. Mocking is usually the forerunner to more active and serious efforts to tear down and destroy good faith.
The Savior was mocked
Those who lose their faith today are similar to those who rejected the Savior in the meridian of time. I can understand an honest loss of faith due to lack of belief in difficult doctrines. There were many who looked for a deliverer from Roman tyranny and were disappointed when Jesus did not live up to their expectations. They turned on him and mocked him as being weak.
The Redeemer was meek and did not revile. We do then same. The mocking of Jesus was at the zenith when he was taken, judged and placed on the cross. Some decided that he could not have been the Savior because he allowed himself to be crucified. We face similar mocking today as we meekly testify that these are indeed the last days and prepare for his triumphant return.
Summary and conclusion
I like to think I’m good-natured and have a thick skin when it comes to mocking. I try not to take offense at comments that are obviously from an individual who has been hurt and is taking in out on me because I wrote something that reminded him of that pain. I always try to think that it is not me that they are attacking, but the ideas that I espouse that they just don’t understand.
It is good advice to not take ourselves too seriously. That advice is especially applicable as we continue to discuss issues that are at the forefront of our political debate today. Mocking can be fun for those who engage in it and if done with the intent to help, then I suppose it can serve a purpose. It’s just seems so sad that there is no sense of the sacred from those who mock so well.