Recently, I have seen multiple opinions and articles posted on social media from members of the LDS church and non-members. These posts are all concerning Proposition 2, and the LDS church’s decision to email members “strongly-urging” them to vote against Proposition 2. This proposition is the proposition to legalize medical marijuana in Utah.
When I think of churches and organized religion in general, I think of places to discuss spirituality, salvation, and religion. That is why I feel so strongly about the Mormon church’s decision to send out that email to its members.
There is a slight connotation when getting instructions, or urgings from a church. It is saying that God agrees with their message, that God is urging you to vote no. It is because of this connotation that I believe that the leaders of the LDS Church were being manipulative and cruel. While all the members I have discussed this with have been eager to tell me that their agency is not being infringed upon, that’s not the issue I have. I know that the church is not commanding members to vote in the way they want.
My issue comes from obvious emotional manipulation that the leaders are doing.
Furthermore, the legalization of something should have nothing to do with religion, and a religion should have no input on those types of issues. This action of the LDS church can only come from two places in my opinion. The first comes a financial standpoint, as it has become prominently apparent in the past weeks, the LDS church has massive amounts of money invested in pharmaceutical companies. The same companies that would take a financial hit at the legalization of marijuana.
The second issue is also obvious, it comes from a place of bigotry and judgment. Marijuana has had a bad reputation since the “War on Drugs” began. Members and leaders of the LDS Church dislike drugs because they have preconceived notions about those who use or may use drugs.
From either viewpoint, I believe that in this situation, the LDS church’s leaders have acted in a fashion that shows corruptness and unkindness that needs to be rectified. I also believe that members of the LDS Church need to realize and recognize that while they may not like something, it should not be illegal. Those who are suffering and sick deserve treatment, and a religion should have no say in that.
Submitted by: Maddie Carter, SUU Student
Photo by: Michael Fischer from Pexels.com