What does that even mean?! I tell you what, I was born and raised in Utah and I don’t see a difference. I have since lived a great many other places, being married to a Coast Guard Member will do that to you, and I still don’t see a difference.
I’ll give you that anywhere you have a large concentration of any religion you are going to see extremes on both ends of the spectrum. However, I will not concede that somehow living in Utah effectively makes you a different kind of mormon. It’s simply ridiculous, and yet, smart and thoughtful people use it as fact and infallible reasoning in crucial decisions.
For example, the following conversation between my husband and a member of the Coast Guard unit he was inspecting in the Chicago area yesterday.
CGM: Standing under pictures of Obama and Biden, “What do you do when both candidates are unacceptable? Do you have to vote?”
DH: “Whether it’s something you dislike more about one than the other, or something you find to like about one more than the other, I think you do need to take the time to make a decision about which one you will vote for. They are not the same.”
CGM: While pointing to a picture of Obama, “Well I know I don’t want him to be President again, but Romney … (long pause). Romney is a thief (leans in closely and whispers), and he’s a Mormon.
DH: Leaning in and whispering back, “I am a Mormon.”
CGM: Taken aback, and visibly trying to figure out how to navigate his course with a superior officer, he apologetically answered, “I didn’t mean it like that. I was just talking about Utah Mormons.”
DH: Leaning in and whispering again, “My wife is a Utah Mormon. What do you mean by Utah Mormon?”
The “P” word quickly came up. To follow there was about an hour long conversation, in which my wonderful husband, with all his diplomacy and understanding, was able to convey many points for this uninformed, but well educated and thoughtful man, to consider.
What exactly is wrong with people in general that we can have such esteem for our own “knowledge” and education and then say things that are completely false as if they are, in fact, significant or even relevant at all?
Whether or not you think someone is qualified for a job should hardly be based upon such trivial things as what state is said before the declaration of a nickname for their religion.
Maybe if we stopped labeling people and took a look at the things that will actually matter in whatever scope is relevant to the situation, we would be able to make decisions based on ability and skill rather than unrighteous judgments. Maybe that’s precisely what the Lord meant when he counseled us to judge righteously, while at the same time warning frequently about passing judgment.
Even if “Utah Mormons” were involved in polygamy, does how many wives you have actually say anything about whether you would be qualified to lead the country at this particular time? Absolutely not.