This post is by Heather B. I’m not a member of the LDS church, although I was once. I’ve had many members ask me over the years, why we left. When I try to explain, I tend to get cut off mid sentence, with protests about how the sources or people I am quoting are Anti-Mormon (insert ominous music here).
I have been accused of being an Anti-Mormon myself more than once. Usually this happens in a conversation with a member of the church, when they feel backed against a wall, with nothing but a testimony to prove their point (Well you may say Joseph Smith had many wives, and that some were legally married to other men, but I KNOW that he just wouldn’t do something like that!). In my experience, the label seems to be used to summarily dismiss those who don’t agree with the more correlated version of Mormonism that many members have been taught.
The Ensign, General Conference talks, and other church publications members are warned not to look at or read anything Anti-Mormon, but it is very hard to pin down exactly what the church leaders feel falls under that banner
So what say ye? Where does the line fall?
Are you Anti-Mormon if you visit a DAMU site regularly?
What about the New Order Mormons?
What about Feminist Mormon Housewives?
What if you own a Micheal Quinn book?
How about one by Fawn Brodie?
What if you ask about Joseph Smith destroying a printing press in Sunday School?
What if the temple makes you uncomfortable?
What if you have your name removed?
What if you stay on the rolls, but you never attend any meetings?
What if you just really don’t agree with something that the Relief Society President said in Conference?
Or the prophet?
What if you won’t let the missionaries in your door?
What if you can’t stand Mitt Romney?
What if you support gay marriage?
What if you belong to a church that sincerely worries for LDS souls, and believe that your own church is One and True?
Where do we draw the line?
I ask these questions knowing that there ARE Anti-Mormons out there. There are people who truly hate and wish for the destruction of the church. But how big is that tent? How does this kind of labeling affect the church’s ability to build relationships with other denominations, or to reach out to current and former members who disagree with the church on various issues? When the church encourages it’s members to “hear no evil”, is it protecting it’s members or hurting itself, in the long term?