Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The problem with Mitt Romney's religion... is that he isn't Mormon ENOUGH?

I'm glad I featured this Salon piece recently, as I've gotten a lot of responses from The Humble Libertarian's Mormon readers, who say if Romney adhered more closely to his church's principles, he'd be more libertarian and a more acceptable candidate.

Reader Carla writes:

I'm Mormon. The White Horse Prophecy is considered more urban legend than actual prophecy by Joseph Smith. The Church officially distances itself from it. So whoever wrote this is missing some key facts.

Including the one where most Mormons support Ron Paul, not Mitt Romney.

And:

Romney definitely goes against official Church doctrine and scriptures all the time. The principle of agency is one of the most basic and important elements of our faith and he doesn't seem to believe in it himself. It leaves me and every other Mormon I know scratching our heads as to where he gets his politics.

And yes, Mormons support Ron Paul in droves. I don't know of a single person who supports Romney.

Reader wurzel writes:

There are three reasons not to worry about Romney trying to establish a theocracy, or taking his direction from Salt Lake City, or whatever the latest scare-myth is.

1) From our Articles of Faith, we believe in "honoring, sustaining, and obeying the law." This is particularly interesting as the church has grown from primarily US-based to world-wide, and has to function within many jurisdictions.

2) Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints have a deeply ingrained concept of stewardship. When one is given responsibility, be it for ones family, a church ward, a job at work, or a political office, we believe we'll be held accountable before God for how well we performed our duties, given the circumstances we were dealt. If Romney accepts a job with the description, "Protect and defend the Constitution" I believe he'll do it.

3) LDS scripture explicitly approves of our Constitution as inspired, and our land as a free land. Furthermore, the scriptures condemn using force to compel others, but rather, persuasion, longsuffering, and patience.

A really good book just came out called LDS Liberty which has many citations from scripture and modern prophets demonstrating why a libertarian society is most in line with LDS doctrine. Indeed, we believe the whole reason we are here on earth is that we fought a war in the preexistence in favor of free choice.

So, perhaps one could say that Romney's Mormon-ness isn't worrisome so much as the extent to which he deviates from it for political reasons?

After reading these responses from two professing Mormon readers, I can't help but think, Gee I wish Mitt Romney was MORE committed to his Mormon beliefs. Maybe then, he'd make a better political candidate!

PS: Do any of my Mormon readers happen to know, are there any good Mormon liberty candidates or politicians out there?




Wes Messamore,
Editor in Chief, THL
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