A perspective on Packer talk
To the editor:
I hope my perspectives, as I present my take of the Boyd K. Packer debate during the next three months, may bring enlightenment to some and hopefully more hope for peace relative to the whole debate. You’ll see my bottom line is that we imperfect “sinful” people (all of us) need to get rid of the anger and learn to live in peace, love, or at least respect.
Ever since the 2008 election, I’ve heard overtones and even accusations that the LDS Church is “homophobic.” Sadly, people consistently rely on such simplistic descriptives to portray people or groups as automatically “good” or “bad.”
Life is seldom so one-dimensional. Of the 35 speeches at the two-day General Conference on Oct. 2-3, Brother Packer’s talk was the only speech alluding to homosexuality, but he never mentioned that term. His discourse was explicitly aimed at the joys of repenting of any kind of immorality, homo- or hetero-, and very heavily aimed at pornography. Each of the other 34 speeches contained general, and highly inspirational, admonitions about righteous living. Is the LDS Church worried or “afraid” (i.e., “phobic”) of homosexuals? Not even hardly. We just want to live a good life, and what Brother Packer mentioned is part of it.
Next, I’m really confused about all the anger over his statement that people can change. What repercussions would have resulted if he would have said something like (our “gay” friends seem to be saying), “You homosexuals cannot change and you’re just going to have to live with it. Period.” Such an absurd statement would have really ticked off a lot of people. The fact is, people change (and even repent) every day.
Indeed, I’ve been hearing angry statements to the effect of, “Well, anybody knows that people are born (this way or that way).” As an educator, I consider such talk to be my enemy. I fight it vehemently —in general terms — every day. Also, I’ve searched the Internet and I find no credible research of a genetic link associated with homosexuality. But if there was such a thing, it obviously has to come from the parents, which would take several generations to be evidenced, (assuming that the carriers were procreating — which would in itself be quite a paradox). The suddenly high numbers of practicing homosexuals today vs. the numbers in our last generation just don’t fit such a pattern. Such radically increasing numbers are more consistent with a social fad.
I’ve merely shared some things that I believe to be true. You may have another version of truth. No problem. Is not diversity a part of a full life? Let’s talk. I’ll be back in 30 days with some interesting statistics.
David McClay Logan