In the previous post on my blog Dehlin and Bennett Put on Notice, I was surprised that the discussion of April Young Bennett’s resignation of the board of Ordain Women, instead of John Dehlin’s pending excommunication. (Incidentally, Dr. Nancy Ross of Dixie State University in St. George, Utah and Jessica Finnigan at King’s College London are conducting a poll asking about opinions about Mormon feminist activism and some of the recent changes in the LDS Church.)
The discussion turned to the question of (1) proper terminology in talking about Ordain Women, and (2) how to appropriately agitate for change. For example, some commenters felt that April’s comment that the LDS church was guilty of “censor[ing] ideas” by forcing her to resign her position in Ordain Women. There is a sentiment that the term “censoring” is an inflammatory term that conjures images of book burning, which the LDS Church clearly doesn’t do. However, the dictionary definition includes the ideas of
1) an official who monitors books, plays, news reports, etc. For the purpose of suppressing parts deemed objectionable on moral, political or objectionable grounds. 2) any person who supervises the manners or morality of others.
It seems that the LDS Church is suppressing ideas here, and is certainly supervising the morality of Mrs. Bennett. Is “Censorship” an appropriate term when the church attempts to discipline church members with respect to Ordain Women?
Some think Ordain Women should be classified as an apostate group, yet Elder Christofferson recently responded to a question about Ordain Women and those members who support Gay Marriage, saying
“There hasn’t been any litmus test or standard imposed that you couldn’t support that if you want to support it,” Christofferson said, “if that’s your belief and you think it’s right.”
Any Latter-day Saint can have a belief “on either side of this issue,” he said. “That’s not uncommon.”
How do we respond to LDS members who are so adamantly opposed to Ordain Women or Same Sex Marriage? Is it good enough to merely point to Elder Christofferson’s statement?