Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Glenn Beck v. The Mormon Ethic of Civility

Can you guess which is which?

The political world is astir. Economies are faltering. Public trust is waning. Individuals feel vulnerable. And social cohesion wears thin. Meanwhile, stories of rage and agitation fill our airwaves, streets and town halls. Where are the voices of balance and moderation in these extreme times?

So here you have Barack Obama going in and spending money on embryonic stem cell research. . .  Eugenics.  In case you don't know what eugencis led to; the Final Solution.  A master race!  A perfect person. . .  the stuff we are facing is absolutely frightening.
During a recent address given in an interfaith setting, Church President Thomas S. Monson declared: "When a spirit of goodwill prompts our thinking and when united effort goes to work on a common problem, the results can be most gratifying."

You self-centered, self-righteous, socialist, out-of-control, dangerous, man-hating bitch. Shut your mouth. We might have bought into this crap in the 1960s because too many people were doing LSD. We’re not on LSD anymore. You need to start making sense.

Further, former Church President Gordon B. Hinckley once said that living “together in communities with respect and concern one for another” is “the hallmark of civilization.” That hallmark is under increasing threat.

Speaking to a Muslim Congressman:  "I have been nervous about this interview with you because what I feel like saying is, "Sir, prove to me that you are not working with our enemies". . .  And I know you're not.  I'm not accusing you of being an enemy, but that's the way I feel, and I think a lot of Americans feel that way.

So many of the habits and conventions of modern culture — ubiquitous media, anonymous and unsourced online participation, politicization of the routine, fractured community and family life — undermine the virtues and manners that make peaceful coexistence in a pluralist society possible.

Mary Landrieu is "a high-class prostitute".

The fabric of civil society tears when stretched thin by its extremities. Civility, then, becomes the measure of our collective and individual character as citizens of a democracy.

Every night I get down on my knees and pray that Dennis Kucinich will burst into flames.
A healthy democracy maintains equilibrium through diverse means, including a patchwork of competing interests and an effective system of governmental checks. Nevertheless, this order ultimately relies on the integrity of the people.

Progressivism is the cancer in America and it is eating our Constitution, and it was designed to eat the Constitution, to progress past the Constitution.

Speaking at general conference, a semiannual worldwide gathering of the Church, Elder D. Todd Christofferson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles asserted: “In the end, it is only an internal moral compass in each individual that can effectively deal with the root causes as well as the symptoms of societal decay.”

[Hilliary Clinton] is the stereotypical bitch, you know what I mean?

Likewise, Presiding Bishop H. David Burton emphasized that the virtues of fidelity, charity, generosity, humility and responsibility “form the foundation of a Christian life and are the outward manifestation of the inner man.”

Person 1:  I don't hate women, they're very convenient to have around.
Person 2:  They just shouldn't be voting.
Person 1:  Of course not.

Thus, moral virtues blend into civic virtues. The seriousness of our common challenges calls for an equally serious engagement with reasonable ideas and solutions. What we need is rigorous debate, not rancorous altercations.

Cindy Sheehan "a pretty big prostitute" and a "tragedy pimp".

Civility is not only a matter of discourse. It is primarily a mode of engagement. The technological interconnectedness of society has made isolation impossible.

I think she is a racist.  I think she decided things based on race.  I think she says that a Hispanic woman, with the experience of being a Hispanic woman, can make decisions that a white man can't make.  I can't imagine saying that.  That's like saying Hispanics can't make money decisions like them Jews.
Of all the institutions in the modern world, religion has had perhaps the greatest difficulty adjusting to the reality of give and take with the public.

I beg you, look for the words 'social justice' or 'economic justice' on your church Web site. If you find it, run as fast as you can. Social justice and economic justice, they are code words. . .  If you have a priest that is pushing social justice, go find another parish. Go alert your bishop.

Rather than exempting itself from the rules of law and civility, the Church has sought the path of cooperative engagement and avoided the perils of acrimonious confrontation.

These vampires are not going to be satisfied by just sucking the blood of GM's top guy, the AIG executives or any other business or businessperson. Their thirst for power and control is unquenchable and there are only two ways for this to end: Either the economy becomes like the walking dead or you drive a stake through the heart of the bloodsuckers.

Some people mistakenly think responses such as silence, meekness, forgiveness, and bearing humble testimony are passive or weak. But, to "love [our] enemies, bless them that curse [us], do good to them that hate [us], and pray for them which despitefully use [us], and persecute [us]" (Matthew 5:44) takes faith, strength, and, most of all, Christian courage.

The most used phrase in my administration if I were to be President would be "What the hell do you mean we're out of missiles?"
The moral basis of civility is the Golden Rule, taught by a broad range of cultures and individuals, perhaps most popularly by Jesus Christ: “And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise” (Luke 6:31). This ethic of reciprocity reminds us all of our responsibility toward one another and reinforces the communal nature of human life.

I'm thinking about killing Michael Moore, and I'm wondering if I could kill him myself, or if I would need to hire somebody to do it. . .  No, I think I could.  I think he could be looking me in the eye, you know, and I could just be choking the life out.  Is this wrong?

The need for civility is perhaps most relevant in the realm of partisan politics. As the Church operates in countries around the world, it embraces the richness of pluralism.  Thus, the political diversity of Latter-day Saints spans the ideological spectrum. 

There are three reasons that an illegal immigrant "comes across the border in the middle of the night:  One, they're terrorists.  Two, they're escaping the law.  Or, three, they're hungry -- they can't make a living in their own dirtbag country."

Individual members are free to choose their own political philosophy and affiliation. Moreover, the Church itself is not aligned with any particular political ideology or movement. It defies category. Its moral values may be expressed in a number of parties and ideologies.

Good for you, you have a heart, you can be a liberal. Now, couple your heart with your brain, and you can be a conservative.

Furthermore, the Church views with concern the politics of fear and rhetorical extremism that render civil discussion impossible.

This president I think has exposed himself over and over again as a guy who has a deep-seated hatred for white people or the white culture. . .  I'm not saying he doesn't like white peopel, I'm saying he has a problem.  This guy is, I believe, a racist.
Latter-day Saint ethical life requires members to treat their neighbors with respect, regardless of the situation. Behavior in a religious setting should be consistent with behavior in a secular setting.

You got to have an enemy to fight.  And when you have an enemy to fight, then you can unite the entire world behind you, and you seize power.  That was Hitler's plan.  His enemy: the Jew.  Al Gore's enemy, the U.N.'s enemy: global warming.  Then you get the scientists -- eugenics.  You the scientists: global warming.  then you have to discredit the scientists who say, "That's not right."  And you must silence all dissenting voices.  That's what Hitler did.

The Church hopes that our democratic system will facilitate kinder and more reasoned exchanges among fellow Americans than we are now seeing.

There are good Muslims and bad Muslims.  We need to be the first ones in the recruitment office lining up to shoot the bad Muslims in the  head.
In his inaugural press conference President Monson emphasized the importance of cooperation in civic endeavors: “We have a responsibility to be active in the communities where we live, all Latter-day Saints, and to work cooperatively with other churches and organizations. My objective there is ... that we eliminate the weakness of one standing alone and substitute for it the strength of people working together.”

When I see a 9/11 victim family on television, or whatever, I'm just like, "Oh shut up."  I'm so sick of them because they're always complaining.


Laurel Nelson said...

Wow...and the sad thing is, in a recent testimony meeting, I heard a lady in my ward get up and say how much she liked Glenn Beck because she learned a lot of history from him. Oh save us!!!! I was in the foyer, but I couldn't stop myself from making an awful face when I heard that.

Anonymous said...

you have taken all things out of context,and twisted them.

Anonymous said...

There is no context to the statements. There doesn't need to be as the context doesn't matter. The post is about civility. You can have a righteous anger and still be civil.

Jacob S. said...

Those are direct quotes, how could I have twisted them? Are you suggesting that I misquoted him? If so please point it out and I'd be happy to correct any mistakes.

And I'm sorry, but there isn't enough context in the world to make those quotes, or dozens of others like them that I didn't include, more palatable or civil or okay in any way. And don't tell me he was merely joking, because jokes are often more biting and uncivil than anything else. But if you have some context for any of those quotes that takes them from the uncivil to civil, please share and I'll make any corrections necessary.

Finally, as for righteous anger, I'm not sure calling someone a prostitute, or a bitch, or a racist, or equating any peaceful political philosophy with which you disagree with Nazism, can be labeled righteous anger. It is sensationalism and uncivil and everything the Mormon Ethic of Civility is counseling against.

But by all means let's have a discussion about it. I would love, honestly, to hear someone put forth a nice cogent argument for Glenn Beck not violating the MEC.

Dr. Logos said...

It appears your Michael Moore quote is missing some information. The full quote gives a slightly different impression of Glenn: "Would you kill someone for that?...I'm thinking about killing Michael Moore...I could kill him myself, or if I would need to hire somebody to do it,... No, I think I could. I think he could be looking me in the eye, you know, and I could just be choking the life out. Is this wrong? I stopped wearing my What Would Jesus — band — Do, and I've lost all sense of right and wrong now. I used to be able to say, 'Yeah, I'd kill Michael Moore,' and then I'd see the little band: What Would Jesus Do? And then I'd realize, 'Oh, you wouldn't kill Michael Moore. Or at least you wouldn't choke him to death.' And you know, well, I'm not sure."