NY Times Article About Mitt Romney


#1

There’s an article in yesterday’s NY Times about Mitt Romney and the factor that his Mormon religion is likely to play in his upcoming bid for the U.S. Presidency.

nytimes.com/2007/02/08/us/politics/08romney.html?hp&ex=1170997200&en=392fd9e5e4d7de08&ei=5094&partner=homepage

Among the interesting paragraphs, this:

““Mr. Romney, in an extended interview on the subject as he drove through South Carolina last week, expressed confidence that he could quell concerns about his faith, pointing to his own experience winning in Massachusetts. He said he shared with many Americans the bafflement over obsolete Mormon practices like polygamy — he described it as “bizarre” — and disputed the argument that his faith would require him to be loyal to his church before his country.””

““Still, Mr. Romney is taking no chances. He has set up a meeting this month in Florida with 100 ministers and religious broadcasters. That gathering follows what was by all accounts a successful meeting at his home last fall with evangelical leaders, including the Rev. Jerry Falwell; the Rev. Franklin Graham, who is a son of the Rev. Billy Graham; and Paula White, a popular preacher.””

““Mr. Romney’s candidacy has stirred discussion about faith and the White House unlike any since Kennedy, including a remarkable debate that unfolded recently in The New Republic. Damon Linker, a critic of the influence of Christian conservatism on politics, described Mormonism as a “theologically unstable, and thus politically perilous, religion.”””


#2

I would never vote for a Mormon for president. As a former Mormon, I know how mentally blind they have to be to believe in LDS doctrine (like Native Americans are really Hebrews) when every scientific fact proves them wrong. They are like a religious flat-earth society. How could we want someone like that with his finger on the button?
Paul


#3

I read this article too. It seems so strange to me that whenever I read or hear something in the mainstream media about Mormon beliefs, the article or broadcast never mentions the enormous difference between Christianity and Mormonsim. In fact, it alwasy sounds like Mormons believe that Christ is God, when in fact they do not believe this.

Here is a quote from the article:

Mormons consider themselves to be Christians, but some beliefs central to Mormons are regarded by other churches as heretical. For example, Mormons have
three books of Scripture other than the Bible, including the Book of Mormon, which Mormons believe was translated from golden plates discovered in 1827 by Joseph Smith Jr., the church’s founder and first prophet.

Mormons believe that Smith rescued Christianity from apostasy and restored the church to what was envisioned in the New Testament * but these doctrines are
beyond the pale for most Christian churches.

If the actual beliefs of the Mormon Church were highlighted, such as eternal progression, polytheism, tri-leveled heavens, polygamy, baptism of the dead, etc., Romney wouldn’t have a chance (Although I would take him over Hillary and Obama any day).


#4

Yeah, that’s kindof a problematic tenet of the faith given the lack of proof (and not to mention a failure of reason). Personally, whether I vote for Romney or not will have nothing to do with him being Mormon. As long as he doesn’t let his religious beliefs unduly influence decisions, I could care less. In the meantime, who knows - maybe they’ll find a burial ground with thousands of Nephite or Lamanite bones somewhere in Kansas.


#5

Though I disagree with Mormonism, I wouldn’t let Mr. Romney’s faith prevent me from voting for him, should I feel he is the best candidate.


#6

Obviously, you are not a former Mormon. So you don’t understand how truly evil and mentally unbalanced these people are.


#7

Enlighten me. Besides their strange, illogical beliefs, explain why every Mormon is evil and mentally unbalanced. I know several Mormons and they don’t quite fit your description. I guess they wait until I leave the room to show their evil and mentally unbalanced natures.


#8

They are taught from infancy how to lie effectively, how to act normal around “gentiles” and how to comfortably embrace two or more conflicting “truths” as true at the same time. George Orwell called it “Doublethink”. Mormons are the reigning experts. You don’t want a believing Mormon in charge of the greatest military machine on earth. Be afraid. Be very afraid.

Really,
Paul


#9

By the way, you should be aware that Mormons only associate with “gentiles” in order to convert them. Once they are certain that you will not convert, they will cease wasting their time on you and will move on to another potential convert.

This missionary technique is known as “friendshipping”. They even have a manual that teaches them how to do it effectively. Only in Mormonism is “friendship” a verb that you do to someone.

I know. I used to be one. Don’t get sucked in. It’s hard to get out.
Paul


#10

Given that this is exactly how anti-Catholics used to talk (and sometimes still do) about Catholics, and given that ex-anythings are usually bitter and unbalanced when speaking of their former religion, why should I listen to you?

I’m not saying you are necessarily wrong. I’m saying that all my experience tells me that the kind of rhetoric you are using is almost certainly distorted and false (not that you are deliberately lying but that your bitterness makes you incapable of fairness). If you are in fact simply telling the truth, you will need to find some way of convincing me that you are different from all the people who have said this sort of thing to me in the past about Catholics (and other groups) and have turned out to be worng.

Also, nd_smc_02, I’m interested in hearing what Mormons believe about Jesus if they don’t believe He is God. My understanding is that they do believe He is God, but they are polytheists so they don’t believe it in the same sense orthodox Christians do (i.e., he is completely separate from God the Father rather than a separate Person sharing the same Essence and thus one God with the Father and the Spirit).

Edwin


#11

Mormons believe that Jesus is A god, not god. In mormon polytheism and “eternal” progression they believe that anyone who is a Mormon can be a “god” so long as they are married “for time and eternity” and keeps the “commandments” of the mormon church. “God hood” comes cheap in mormonism. To them even “heavenly father” their term for God, is only a glorified Man. I could not vote for any mormon, they already tried it before BTW, Jos Smith ran for President of the United States. They really want a mormon theocracy, not a Republic.


#12

I am an ex-Mormon. And I would never, never, never broad-brush the members of a large and well-established religious faith the way you have just done. Your comments represent nothing more than sheer bigotry. The same sorts of allegations are made today by Jack T. Chick about Roman Catholics, and in times past were widely believed by anti-Catholics of bye-gone eras.

So far as Mitt Romney is concerned: I am concerned more about his political views on certain issues than about his faith. I would seldom if ever judge a political candidate based exclusively upon his religious views. I frankly don’t care about Romney’s particular religious views very much. I do want to know his values–does he advocate wife-beating or public nudity or does he sell or use drugs or cheat on his spouse, etcetera–but the religious faith which shapes his values is of only tangential interest to me. I do tend to favor Presidential candidates who are clearly devout and prayerful–it lends them a depth of character that I think will serve them well in the office to which they aspire. I do, finally, also prefer Christian candidates for high office in the United States of America over non-Christian candidates–but my personal reading of history is that the USA was envisioned to be, NOT a secular state, but a Christian nation which tolerated the free exercise of other faiths while giving preeminence to Christianity and Christian values in social, economic, and cultural affairs. In politics there is constitutionally to be ‘no religious test’ for holding political office: I as a voter may (and do) prefer a Christian candidate over a non-Christian; but if the best-qualified candidate to emerge turned out to be a non-Christian, nothing bars that person from holding office.

If Romney emerges as the best candidate the Republicans can muster in '08, I will strongly consider him, though I do have qualms about his commitment to the conservative agenda I believe in and support. My tests for a candidate are, first, their political agendas; second, the values they hold which shape their politics; third, their record of faithfulness to their political platforms and personal values; fourth, their actual likelihood of being effective in the office they wish to hold.

Would I vote for Tom Cruise, the well-known Scientologist, for example? If Cruise had the same sort of extended political career that Romney has, if he were a viable candidate who shared my views and who had some promise of doing the job effectively, yes I would consider him. If Tom Cruise were exactly what we know him to be: an actor, with no political experience and no likelihood of effectiveness as a political figure, someone prone to shooting his mouth off in inappropriate ways and possibly a bit emotionally unstable–nope. But my ‘decision’ was based on factors other than Cruise’s actual religious faith. If Cruise actually began a political career, developed some political ‘legs’, established that he had become more stable, more thoughtful about how he expresses himself in public, and if he shared the same sort of agenda that I embrace–then I would at least give him due consideration. I wouldn’t like that he is not a member of a Christian faith–but if he were the most-viable candidate for whom I could vote, I wouldn’t refuse to vote for him strictly based on his faith.


#13

The two things that stood out for me in the article were his Romney’s characterization of the “obsolete” practice of polygamy being “bizarre.” And, the seemingly obvious fact that a Romney candidacy is going to have a heckuva time bringing the religious right on-board.

If Romney actually believes that Mormon teachings about polygamy are “bizarre” (which, BTW, they are), then he must not know very much about his religion. Either that, or he’s dissembling for political purposes. I tend to believe the latter.

Since he managed to get elected Gov of arguably the most liberal state in the U.S., he must have some pretty cogent political skills. His Mormonism simply must have come up as an issue at some point, unless he’s a Mormon in name only, and he was able to satisfy the people of MA to that effect. As far as the religious right is concerned, he will have to convince them that his religion doesn’t mean very much to him. If the Jerry Falwells and that fat guy down in San Antonio, Hagee, think for a moment that Romney is wearing the Mormon underwear during cabinet meetings, they’re not going to vote his direction, I can almost guar-an-tee it. You take the religious right out of the Republican coalition, and you get a Democrat President.


#14

originally posted by Allweather
If Romney actually believes that Mormon teachings about polygamy are “bizarre” (which, BTW, they are), then he must not know very much about his religion. Either that, or he’s dissembling for political purposes. I tend to believe the latter

A perfect expedient example of what Paul referred to as “doublethink” and “friendshipping” the potential voters.
BTW, hopefully, everyone is aware of the ‘I was for abortion before I was against it’ stand. :rolleyes:


#15

Either he is a liberal, heterodox LDS, or he is “friendshipping”. Either way, so long as he continues to identify himself as LDS, he will bring the far-right wing “Zion Curtain” believers with him. Can he be objective about the violation of human rights in that area of the country?


#16

To answer your question:
When I began my discussions with my Mormon friend about her beliefs, she began to tell me that she was a Christian. I asked her if she believed that Jesus Christ was God and if she worshipped Him. She was surprised at my question and replied “absolutely not!”. She then stated that Mormons believe that Jesus was a man who acheived godhood through divine progression and exaltation and that they only worship god the father. She explained that they do not worship Christ. Therefore…it is easy to see that Mormons are not Christian…simply put, they do not worship Christ.


#17

I believe that is correct, based on things my fiance has said. This was an area that I was completely in the dark about, as I assumed that Mormons pray to Jesus, same as Christians do. Whenever I’d say something about praying to Jesus, I’d get this sort of blank look from her. Then, I found out that Mormons don’t pray to Jesus, but only to Heavenly Father.

Obviously, this is a serious point of division between Mormons and Christians. It helps me now, in discussions with Mormons, to know this about them, so that I can at least speak a little Mormonese.


#18

That is correct. LDS believe that Jesus is God. Here are some references for you to look at:

Book of Mormon, Title Page:

. . . And also to the convincing of the Jew and Gentile that JESUS is the CHRIST, the ETERNAL GOD, manifesting himself unto all nations . . .

2 Nephi 11:

7 For if there be no Christ there be no God; and if there be no God we are not, for there could have been no creation. But there is a God, and he is Christ, and he cometh in the fulness of his own time.

2 Nephi 26:

12 And as I spake concerning the convincing of the Jews, that Jesus is the very Christ, it must needs be that the Gentiles be convinced also that Jesus is the Christ, the Eternal God;

Mosiah 3:

5 For behold, the time cometh, and is not far distant, that with power, the Lord Omnipotent who reigneth, who was, and is from all eternity to all eternity, shall come down from heaven among the children of men, and shall dwell in a tabernacle of clay, and shall go forth amongst men, working mighty miracles, . . .

Mosiah 15:

1 And now Abinadi said unto them: I would that ye should understand that God himself shall come down among the children of men, and shall redeem his people.

3 Nephi 11:

13 And it came to pass that the Lord spake unto them saying:

14 Arise and come forth unto me, that ye may thrust your hands into my side, and also that ye may feel the prints of the nails in my hands and in my feet, that ye may know that I am the God of Israel, and the God of the whole earth, and have been slain for the sins of the world.

Ether 3:

18 And he (i.e. Jesus) ministered unto him even as he ministered unto the Nephites; and all this, that this man might know that he was God, because of the many great works which the Lord had showed unto him.

D&C 1:

24 Behold, I am God and have spoken it; these commandments are of me, and were given unto my servants in their weakness, after the manner of their language, that they might come to understanding.

. . . but they are polytheists . . .

That is not correct. A Polytheist is someone who worships more than one God. Hinduism may be considered a popytheist religion, because they believe in many Gods whom they think can influence their destiny for good or ill, many of which (if not all) they actually worship. They offer them oblations in their temples and such like. (In fact, Catholicism comes a lot colser to that than Mormonism does, because of their practice of saint worship and Mary worship, which we do not have.) LDS worship only one God, the Father, in the name of His Son, Jesus Christ.

. . . so they don’t believe it in the same sense orthodox Christians do . . .

If you mean the absurdity of Trinitarianism—the three in one and one in three absurdity—I suppose you would be right. We don’t believe in that kind of crazy nonsense—and I might add, neither does the Bible. That is a doctrine of the post-apostate Christendom. It is not biblical.

(i.e., he is completely separate from God the Father rather than a separate Person sharing the same Essence and thus one God with the Father and the Spirit).

Yes, that would be about right. That is not what we believe.

zerinus


#19

zerinus
That is not correct. A Polytheist is someone who worships more than one God. Hinduism may be considered a popytheist religion, because they believe in many Gods whom they think can influence their destiny for good or ill, many of which (if not all) they actually worship. They offer them oblations in their temples and such like. (In fact, Catholicism comes a lot colser to that than Mormonism does, because of their practice of saint worship and Mary worship, which we do not have.) LDS worship only one God, the Father, in the name of His Son, Jesus Christ.
zerinus

Here are some definitions of polytheism:
“pol·y·the·ism (pŏl’ē-thē-ĭz’əm, pŏl’ē-thē’ĭz-əm)
n.
The worship of **or belief **in more than one god. The plurality of gods.”

Mormons believe in eternal progression and exaltation that they too may be gods someday. They believe that God the Father and God the Son are separate Gods. Whatever word you want to give it, that it polytheism.

Many non-catholics have been schooled incorrectly in anti-Catholic prejuice about Mary and the Saints. They are taught and assert that Catholics “worship” Mary and the saints. Catholics do not worship anyone but God. The Church strictly teaches strict that adoration is to be given only to God.
The Catholic Church forbids Mary worship because it forbids us to worship anyone other than God himself:

The Catholic Church is the Body of Christ. Death has no power to separate us from Christ and so those in heaven, purgatory and earth are the Body of Christ. We as the communion of saints pray for each other. The communion of saints includes those on earth, purgatory and heaven. Just as we ask our neighbors and friends to pray for us, we ask the saints and Mary to pray for us to God.
Christ is the true mediator. We ask saints in heaven to pray for us following Paul’s instructions: “I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for everyone,” for “this is good and pleasing to God our Savior” (1 Tim. 2:1–4). Mary’s prayers are especially effective on our behalf because of her relationship with her Son (John 2:1–11).


#20

Zerinus knows all of this about Catholics and our veneration of Mary and the other saints. They’re just trolling. You’ve got to remember that the little missionaries don’t actually work for a living, the way most of the rest of us do. They have all day and night to just bang away, bang away, bang away. Banging on doors, hoping for some poor, weak-kneed dolt to open up and let in the devil.


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