I've been torn about whether or not to blog about this. But then we were asked to. In Elder Ballard's talk during the fireside about Prop 8, he asked us to use the internet to share what we believe. He told us to "go viral". I dislike getting in the middle of controversial issues, but this is just too important for me to gloss over. My family in California has been active in "campaigning" for Prop 8, and they have done what their bishops and stake presidents have asked of them. I am proud of them for standing up for Prop 8 unashamedly.
When I first heard about Prop 8, I was uncomfortable. I thought it sounded--well, mean. And of course it sounded mean--think about the world I've been raised in. "Equal rights" has been elevated to the Most Important Thing Ever. And obviously it's important! It's important for good reasons! However, I do not believe that it is the Most Important Thing Ever. The world shouldn't do something wrong in the name of "equal rights". The right thing should always overcome. (Furthermore, California law already gives homosexual people the same rights that straight married people have.) Anyways, like I said, I didn't like the idea of it. I've been raised in San Francisco; I am no stranger to homosexual people. I am not in the slightest bit homophobic--I know people who are, and frankly it disgusts me. I have homosexual friends and family. I love them, and their sexual orientation doesn't affect that. I want to be very clear about that.
I knew that I would have to consider Prop 8 very carefully and very prayerfully if I was going to come to terms with it--either direction I went. Living in Utah, I felt very removed from the issue. Over the summer, during a road trip, I talked to Christy and Danny about it. Only then did I learn about the letter from the First Presidency about this issue. Only then did I realize the magnitude of what was facing us, and how the Church was standing strongly. After that conversation, I did a little bit of research, talked it over with Kyle, and then did my share of praying about the matter. I got my answer, and I know how to vote. I know it isn't mean. I know that it's the right thing.
This is what the First Presidency said in a letter to congregations:
"The Church’s teachings and position on this moral issue are unequivocal. Marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God, and the formation of families is central to the Creator’s plan for His children. Children are entitled to be born within this bond of marriage."
It is unequivocal. I just can't see how you can argue with that. The PROPHET has stated that in this moral dilemma, his position is UNEQUIVOCAL. He is the mouthpiece of Heavenly Father, and when he says something is unequivocal, I will absolutely believe him and follow him. That is certainly not blind faith, and to say so is offensive.
Elder Ballard addressed some of the repercussions of Prop 8's failure. I know that there is information going around how those exact repercussions are false and misleading. When I saw that, I was like "Oh, okay...I guess people are just paranoid". However, then ELDER BALLARD, our General Authority, one of the Twelve Apostles of OUR CHURCH talked about the truth of those consequences--and so once again, I readjusted my thinking and absolutely will believe it.
Marriage is important. Obviously. Since getting married, my understanding and awe of marriage has only deepened. When I think about the covenants I made in the temple with my sweet husband, I am full of gratitude, love, and reverence. Marriage is essential to Heavenly Father's plan. As I move on to the next step in my life (don't worry, I'm not to that step yet!) I am so full of love for the babies that we bring in to this world. The Proclamation On the Family, as well as the First Presidency's letter about Prop 8, emphasize that "Children are entitled to be born within this bond of marriage". That little sentence makes me cry. The power of family, the importance of family, is central to Heavenly Father's Plan of Salvation. We need to stand up for Families.
There is so much else to say. There are so many reasons to vote yes on Prop 8--but I've already stated the most important.