Polygamy and Port-a-potties

In an illustration of just how silly things can get in the competition between religions, the worlds of Mormons and Evangelicals collided last weekend at the Miracle Pageant outside the LDS temple in Manti, Utah. I’ve never been to one of these events, but I understand it’s kind of a cheesy, glitzy musical production having something to do with Mormonism.

Anyhow, whenever there is a Mormon gathering of more than, say, 100 people, there is sure to be a contingent of Evangelicals protesting loudly that Mormonism is leading its followers down the slip-n-slide to hell. Sometimes they wave temple garments or drag LDS scriptures on the ground (both tasteless and reprehensible acts, I need not say), but usually they are just loud and obnoxious, and they try to egg on the Mormon onlookers (usually someone takes the bait).

This year, however, they did something that I have to say was quite clever. They had 34 women dress in period costumes, each wearing a label identifying them as one of Joseph Smith’s wives (with the age and, I think, the marital status). They didn’t cause a fuss; they apparently just stood there in front of a lot of confused Mormons.

Standing outside for hours on end, they at some point needed to use the rest room facilities. An indignant protester tells us,

Okay, so here’s the latest I know. One night, Friday, the Mormons with police and security said that Christians couldn’t use the bathrooms. Now, from what I understand the bathrooms were on private property. But, they were open to the public. So, everyone was using them. No big deal.

What apparently started the problem were the 34 women dressed sequentially, 1, 2, 3, 4…., as Joseph Smith’s MANY wives. They had signs around their necks saying which of the wives they were portraying. They were standing in a line, polite, smiling, talking, doing NOTHING other than that.

We “heard” that THAT is what upset the mormons. Why? I don’t know. Anyway, they forbade those women from using the bathrooms, which were about 100 feet away. They also forbade other Christians from the bathrooms as well. Apparently, they had ID’d who the “anti’s” were and were segregating which people could use the bathrooms.

Now… was it the Mormon’s right to say who could and couldn’t use the restrooms which were just off of a public street? I don’t know. But, let’s say they did. So………. how galant of them. How loving it was to do that.

So, the next night, I drank only a little water, “held my own” and endured about 3.5 hours of heat, talking, and complete misrepresentation by the Mormons of what Christianity was. But, I have to say that I didn’t see any security blocking the entrance to the bathrooms last night (Saturday).

Would I have given ANY Mormon some water? yep! Would I have let ANY Mormon use “my” bathroom if the situation were different? You betcha! Would I have blessed those who were “persecuting” me? Absolutely!

I’m sorry, but this is hysterically funny. On the one hand, you have people out there protesting and insulting Mormons, and then waxing righteously indignant that the people they insulted won’t let them use the bathrooms.

And on the other hand, it is sort of petty to deny someone the use of a bathroom.

So, if I have to choose between two competing displays of pettiness, I’d say the Mormons are more in the right (but only slightly).

Of course, it goes without saying that I’m being really petty in mocking both sides.


6 Responses to Polygamy and Port-a-potties

  1. Ray A says:

    I think if the Mormons had allowed them to use the bathrooms, and perhaps offered them water and something to eat, then we could all say we really saw Christianity in action that day. I thought this is what Christ taught. But apparently the spirit present was more like that of his disciples who wanted to call down fire from heaven.

    If we take Paul, however, this could be seen as the ultimate act of vengeance:

    “Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head.”

    Sometimes even Christianity doesn’t seem very nice.

  2. uft36 says:

    The endless battle between Christians and Mormons goes on. We are only seeing one part of the picture. The protesters may have cause some trouble early on with the restrooms just to irritate the guests there. You have 34 women dressed in period clothes on a hot June day. Maybe someone decided to sacrifice herself and stayed in a restroom just a little too long just so that no one could use it. Or they could have harassed a few guests before the guests went in. I would not put it past some Christian protesters to do something extreme just to prove a point or spread some false rumors. I can accept protesting on a civil basis but when you start insulting people based on their faith or trashing what they believe in you stop being a Christian. This pageant is no different than the many Easter pageants that most Christian churches put on every year. Put a Mormon label on it and it becomes tacky and pointless, as usual.

  3. Chris says:

    lol @ everyone involved!

  4. I went to the Manti Pageant this year and I have to say I was generally impressed with what I saw from the protesters. The protesters at General Conference are always so rude and noisy. The people at the pageant were, for the most part, very friendly and cordial. They seemed to be far more interested in engaging people on a one-on-one basis rather than yell and offend people. As a result, I’m sure they had a lot more success than the loud-mouthed folk you usually see. In fact I had a few very friendly conversations with a few evangelists. Although our views differed wildly, the communication was friendly and mutually enlightening. That’s how religious discussion should be.

  5. nearlynormalized says:

    You wonder if the Soviet Union did not have it right–no identified religion–I am sure the citizens practiced in private as long as they could trust who was close. Religion to me is a private right between me and my Spirit.
    I must admit, visualizing the many wives of the cult leader Smith, was a funny sight. Rodney King said, “Why can’t we all get along?” Sun stroke to all and I hope none of the wives go bladder infections.

  6. Thaddeus says:

    I’ve never heard of Mormons protesting any evangelical events. Aren’t there more Christian methods of spreading the gospel? The in-your-face attitude just lights the fuse for conflict.

    I like what Jesus said about letting your light shine. People notice and want to emulate good, decent people. Those that go around picking fights are less admirable.

    What Do Mormons Believe?

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