Sad Day in History

Sad Day in History

I find it a sad day in history.  I saw this based on the actions of the Supreme Court of the United States.  It is based several facts, not just one single notion.

I’m going to restrict most my comments to a few scriptures from the Book of Mormon — it being a type of things that are to come, and a warning voice for the 21st Century.

The first thought about their ruling on ObamaCare and gay marriage was, when did they become a legislative branch?

I remember being taught they can only interpret the law, but here, they are dictating the law to states that in many cases have chosen otherwise.   Their ruling also tramples sovereignty of the states, the voice of the people in those states, and seems to lump us in to one huge state – not the United States, but the Supreme Court’s State.

I find that disturbing.

While many celebrate their rulings, I’m reminded of Alma’s talk to his son Corianton – especially Alma chapter 41:

Now, the decrees of God are unalterable; therefore, the way is prepared that whosoever will may walk therein and be saved.  And now behold, my son, do not risk one more offense against your God upon those points of doctrine, which ye have hitherto risked to commit sin.  Do not suppose, because it has been spoken concerning restoration, that ye shall be restored from sin to happiness. Behold, I say unto you, wickedness never was happiness.

And now, my son, all men that are in a state of nature, or I would say, in a carnal state, are in the gall of bitterness and in the bonds of iniquity; they are without God in the world, and they have gone contrary to the nature of God; therefore, they are in a state contrary to the nature of happiness.

(emphasis added)

One cannot substitute sexual sin for “love”.  Wickedness never was happiness, nor is it ever love. Nephi, son of Helaman (Helaman 7:5) wrote:

Condemning the righteous because of their righteousness; letting the guilty and the wicked go unpunished because of their money; and moreover to be held in office at the head of government, to rule and do according to their wills, that they might get gain and glory of the world, and, moreover, that they might the more easily commit adultery, and steal, and kill, and do according to their own wills

And, from Alma 10:

Yea, well did Mosiah say, who was our last king, when he was about to deliver up the kingdom, having no one to confer it upon, causing that this people should be governed by their own voices—yea, well did he say that if the time should come that the voice of this people should choose iniquity, that is, if the time should come that this people should fall into transgression, they would be ripe for destruction.

There are several cases where the voice of the people chose righteously, but then the courts chose iniquity.  In either case, I believe it is setting us up for some troubled times.

To go on the record, I don’t hate anyone.  I do have an abhorrence of evil (or sin as it is also called).  Over and over we read in the scriptures that God sends calamities to deal with the world when it becomes ripe with iniquity (sin, evil).   I believe in the doctrine of forgiveness, and while I work at being a forgiving person, I hope my friends who do not believe the same as me will understand why I cannot, will not, rejoice over todays SCOTUS decisions.  To me, rejoicing would be as abhorrent as getting excited about someone who over-doses on heroine because it made them feel good.  It goes against everything I’ve been taught to be good.   I hate smoking, drinking, drug abuse, adultery, yet I have friends who engage in some or all of those activities, and in spite of their vices, they are still my friends.

Latter-day prophets and apostles have voiced their warning too:

We warn that individuals who violate covenants of chastity, who abuse spouse or offspring, or who fail to fulfill family responsibilities will one day stand accountable before God. Further, we warn that the disintegration of the family will bring upon individuals, communities, and nations the calamities foretold by ancient and modern prophets.

On a brighter note…

The Book of Mormon also tells us if we’re found doing what we should be doing (keeping God’s commandments) we need not fear as we read in 1 Nephi chapter 22:

Wherefore, he will preserve the righteous by his power, even if it so be that the fulness of his wrath must come, and the righteous be preserved, even unto the destruction of their enemies by fire. Wherefore, the righteous need not fear; for thus saith the prophet, they shall be saved, even if it so be as by fire. …

And the righteous need not fear, for they are those who shall not be confounded. But it is the kingdom of the devil, which shall be built up among the children of men, which kingdom is established among them which are in the flesh—

While the righteous need not fear, the calamities will have their impact.  Loved ones will be lost.

Conclusion

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, of which I belong, issued this statement today:

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints acknowledges that following today’s ruling by the Supreme Court, same-sex marriages are now legal in the United States. The Court’s decision does not alter the Lord’s doctrine that marriage is a union between a man and a woman ordained by God. While showing respect for those who think differently, the Church will continue to teach and promote marriage between a man and a woman as a central part of our doctrine and practice.

The statement was followed with a reference to this document:  The Divine Institution of Marriage

Twisting Words

Twisting Words

There are those who, when they don’t like something, start twisting words to make others join in their contentious cause.  Such is the case in today’s victory for religious rights.  Today the Supreme Court upheld Hobby Lobby’s right to follow their conscience.  Reading the “Opinion of the Court” it become apparent the ruling was to protect the owners of Hobby Lobby and their religious freedoms.

Unfortunately, there are those who make this all about a “woman’s reproductive rights”.  One such group went so far to post a meme on Facebook showing a picture of Viagra and a caption stating “covered”, and a picture of birth control pills stating, “not covered”.  Both statements are incorrect.  Most insurance plans under the Affordable Care Act do NOT cover male enhancement drugs.  All plans are required to cover birth control pills.  (Note:  Today’s ruling only allows companies to opt-out of cost sharing for practices or drugs that are contrary to their religious beliefs.  An analysis today by the Kaiser Foundation made it very clear that this ruling does not effect those covered.)

In addition, many are twisting this ruling to be an assault on women.  Even Justice Ginsburg attempts to make this about women, and her dissenting comments seem to ignore the opt-out section of the ruling, and this clause in the ruling:

The most straightforward way of doing this would be for the Government to assume the cost of providing the four contraceptives at issue to any women who are unable to obtain them under their health-insurance policies due to their employers’ religious objections. This would certainly be less restrictive of the plaintiffs’ religious liberty, and HHS has not shown, see §2000bb–1(b)(2), that this is not a viable alternative.

If anything, the ruling was a slap to Congress for not taking care to protect people’s religious beliefs.

Some claim the Greens (owners of Hobby Lobby) are forcing their religious beliefs on others.  Well, they should read the ruling.  Here why it is not…

  • Although the Greens believe life begins at conception, and thus are opposed to abortion, the Greens are not going to fire or not hire someone because they had an abortion.  In fact, it would be illegal for them to ask.
  • As previously quoted, the court is urging Congress to provide the contraceptives.
  • There is no mention of Hobby Lobby’s employees to embrace the owner’s beliefs.

If anything, this was a very libertarian approach to fixing an authoritarian law.  Any law that forces someone to do something against their will, that has nothing to do with the safety of the public, is authoritarian in nature.

I applaud the Supreme Court in this ruling.  It was the right thing to do.

—–

I took some more pictures at the hill.  The stage is progressing nicely.

copyright 2014 db walton
Hill Cumorah Stage Setup

We’re having a heat wave currently.  Hopefully, this will break before pageant starts.

 

What’s the Outrage?

I have never felt it right that people who have money are punished just because they have money.  To tell them they cannot give to a cause or person is wrong.  (I also think it is wrong to have anything other than a flat-tax.  As the saying goes, “If 10% is good enough for God, it should be good enough for the Government.”  Well, if a flat-tax (tithing) is good enough for God, it should be good enough for the Government.)  Thus, I applaud the Supreme Court’s decision.

You’ve got to wonder about what appears (to me) to be the most corrupt administration since Warren G. Harding and their outrage to the Supreme Court’s ruling to remove restrictions on spending by corporations and unions.  I think the answer lies in what I learned in my Organizational Behaviour class at B.Y.U.  It is this – When something is illegal, the price is driven up by the risk factor.  That is to say, the higher the risk, the higher the price. 

Why risk going to jail over something small?

However, once you make it legal, now there is no risk of going to jail, and thus, the price goes down – drastically.   Pot smokers have used that argument for years about the legalization of marijuana.  And, drug pushers are the last ones who want to see marijuana legalized because that would put them out of business.  Thus, legalization cuts into the profits of criminals.

If we were to look at it on the political side, a corporation might bribe a politician with hundreds of thousands of dollars to get them to vote a certain way.  The money is laundered to hide the flow of money because of someone gets caught, it means jail for both the recipient and the donor.  A politician isn’t likely to accept a $10,000 bribe.  It wouldn’t be worth it to risk so much for so little. 

Now, make it legal for the corporation to donate high amounts of money.  The risk is gone so the payments will be less.   No wonder they are up in arms and upset with the Supreme Court.

Another reason they (the dishonest politicians) might be upset is they know that good, honest companies will not make contributions to candidates who support their values (those of the dishonest politicians) .  This is not good for a corrupt politician or corrupt businesses.  They now have to compete openly with people who have scruples.  Gee.  Honest people being able to donate millions of dollars to good candidates.  Now, that would scare the heebie jeebies out of the crooks — especially if we get an honest person in the executive branch!  (For those who are not Constitutional savvy, the executive branch is responsible for enforcing laws.)

It is like the saying goes, “If you outlaw guns, only outlaws will have guns.”  Well, with high campaign contributions being illegal, only crooks will take bribes, and only crooks will make bribes.  The playing field has now been leveled.

To steal a line from the Randy Newman song, “I might be wrong… but I don’t think so.”

—–

As to the day… busy as heck at work.  Not much more to report.