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jedikermit

LDS (Mormon) Temple Groundbreaking

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Don't know if this is interesting or on-topic or not, but they're breaking ground on a new Mormon temple in Draper, a suburb south of Salt Lake City. It'll be 166 feet tall, and has 57,000 square feet. It'll be the third Mormon temple in the Salt Lake Valley--another two are planned for construction in the next few years.

Rendering and more info: http://www.ldschurchtemples.com/cgi-bin/pa...r&announced

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that's interesting stuff,

Do the LDS have a strangle hold on culture and politics in the area still?

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that's interesting stuff,

Do the LDS have a strangle hold on culture and politics in the area still?

Depends on how you look at things. Salt Lake City is about 1/3 LDS, I think, but they still exert a lot of influence. Most of my friends aren't LDS, so I'm not sure what the perception is these days. In the suburbs where I live and teach, it's about 50/50 LDS and not LDS. I don't know that I'd call it a "stranglehold," but there's definitely an influence. And there probably always will be, for good and bad.

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Well that is the perception I have, but it may be more media driven than anything else. I live in Mesa Arizona. Outside of Salt Lake City, Mesa has to be the single largest LDS community. They definately have a stranglehold here in town. For a city of almost 500,000 residents it's very conservative.

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My wife has some family in Mesa. Is it more than just a Phoenix suburb? Whenever I'm down there, everything just kinda blends together. Probably because I make her drive while I strangle the kids after the 12-hour drive.

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My wife has some family in Mesa. Is it more than just a Phoenix suburb? Whenever I'm down there, everything just kinda blends together. Probably because I make her drive while I strangle the kids after the 12-hour drive.

As a relative newcomer to SLC, I'm reticent to make too many more observations about "why things are as they appear to be" than I have already made. I would speculate that since the LDS founded SLC after having fled from persecution, the use of the word "strangehold" would be less appreciated by locals than, perhaps, "sanctuary, protected by substantial political influence".

For newcomers, the realization that the legislature is over 90% composed of those of a particular religious persuasion - any persuasion - is shocking. That a church - any church - is reputed to suggest to its constituents that they ought to be members of a particular political party is frightening. That a church - again, any church, would be comfortable openly seeking to influence political events is terrifying. This then, is the conundrum of life in Utah for those not of the dominant faith/culture.

Our neighbors are, as individuals, simply wonderful people who you wouldn't trade for all of the tea in China, so to speak. Yet collectively, they seemingly inexplicably, do not share our fear (a fear that I think history has proven to be the single-most well-founded of all fears) that there is no greater potential for tyranny than when church and state are one. If you doubt this, then I give you the Taliban, the most recent example of a tyranny which litters the pages of history with intolerance, bloodshed and suffering.

Indeed the rhetoric we hear from the President (who is more popular here than nearly anywhere else on the planet), that religious fundamentalism is a danger to freedom......... in Iraq and/or the Middle East generally,

is a message quintessentially lost here (and, I might add, lost upon the President, himself). I am still trying to square all of this with those polar opposite "truths" I was taught as a child in eighth grade civics class in Charlotte were fundamental to the original American Vision.

A native Utahn perspective would be welcome just about now.

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I agree with a lot of what you said; I am LDS, and a relatively native Utahn (moved here from Texas when I was a pup).

That a church - any church - is reputed to suggest to its constituents that they ought to be members of a particular political party is frightening. That a church - again, any church, would be comfortable openly seeking to influence political events is terrifying.

Most organized religions in this country try to influence political events. The LDS Church hasn't endorsed any given political party since the 1800's; any perception that they have is due to individual church members trying to get people on board with their particular party. I'm neither Democrat nor Republican, but lean a bit to the left. I do wish the Legislature mirrored the actual population of the state more than it does...there's no reason that it should be 90% LDS...the state sure isn't.

I like your insights. Most of my friends are non-LDS, and it's sometimes difficult living as a "minority" around these parts. Even when it's more perception than reality.

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I agree with a lot of what you said; I am LDS, and a relatively native Utahn (moved here from Texas when I was a pup).

Most organized religions in this country try to influence political events. The LDS Church hasn't endorsed any given political party since the 1800's; any perception that they have is due to individual church members trying to get people on board with their particular party. I'm neither Democrat nor Republican, but lean a bit to the left. I do wish the Legislature mirrored the actual population of the state more than it does...there's no reason that it should be 90% LDS...the state sure isn't.

I like your insights. Most of my friends are non-LDS, and it's sometimes difficult living as a "minority" around these parts. Even when it's more perception than reality.

Thanks for your remarks, my friend. I really love it here and as I said, the people are super. Why do you think that church political influence is so strong here? As I know you are aware, the South is loaded with Southern Baptists. They have unmistakable moral views on matters of abortion and the like, yet they are just as likely to be Democrats as Republicans or Independents.

Although they voted on a National level in droves for President Bush, they simultaneously elected, in my home state, at least, a Democratic Governor and Council of State (Attorney General, Labor Commissioner, Secretary of Agriculture, etc.). Even with DOMA legislation on the ballot, this was more or less true throughout the South - split tickets confirming voter independence.

Am I missing something important in the local political equation?

In the South the Federal Government was seen as having re-built an impoverished region under the auspices of the TVA, WPA, CCC, etc. Even into the 1960s, FDR's profile was on the wall of the local hardware store where I grew up (along with the John Deere calendar and the nordic-appearing picture of Jesus). In the sixties, African-Americans were fully enfranchised - again as a result of Federal governmental action. In essence, I cannot imagine that when growing up I would have heard someone suggest that the government (particularly the Federal Goverment) was something to fear or resent - except for someone like J. Strom Thurmond or I. Beverly Lake, whose problems with governmental power had everything to do with race and little to do with freedom.

I have never worried about government's central role in society or feared abuse of governmental power, because I know that my rights are protected under State and Federal Constitutions and that the people who made decisions the that affected my life are accountable at the ballot box or in Courts of Law. Just ask Dan Rostenkowski and Tom DeLay.

Out here, I suspect that few would see things this way. Please help me to understand why.

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Cybear, it stymies me too. No idea. I have conversations with my Very Republican in-laws all the time about things, and when we discuss the issues, they're really pretty liberal in their beliefs. But they refuse to vote for a Democrat. And I think when they were growing up (60s-70s) maybe they felt a religious tie with the Republicans...but now? Who knows.

Wish I had the answer, so I could beat it into the heads of my family, neighbors, students, anyone who would listen.

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Cybear, it stymies me too. No idea. I have conversations with my Very Republican in-laws all the time about things, and when we discuss the issues, they're really pretty liberal in their beliefs. But they refuse to vote for a Democrat. And I think when they were growing up (60s-70s) maybe they felt a religious tie with the Republicans...but now? Who knows.

Wish I had the answer, so I could beat it into the heads of my family, neighbors, students, anyone who would listen.

Thanks, JK, for your candor. Maybe we two can do some contructive things, changing the world one mind at a time. Maybe the local mindset is far less religious than it is cultural. If so, it will be exponentially easier to change others' minds than I had assumed, because we can avoid having to engage in a lose-lose arguement involving matters of faith.

Best of luck to us both.

PS: How about that last minute rescue of the soccer stadium? Do you think this portends a significant change for either the South Valley or SLC at large?

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As a relative newcomer to SLC, I'm reticent to make too many more observations about "why things are as they appear to be" than I have already made. I would speculate that since the LDS founded SLC after having fled from persecution, the use of the word "strangehold" would be less appreciated by locals than, perhaps, "sanctuary, protected by substantial political influence".

For newcomers, the realization that the legislature is over 90% composed of those of a particular religious persuasion - any persuasion - is shocking. That a church - any church - is reputed to suggest to its constituents that they ought to be members of a particular political party is frightening. That a church - again, any church, would be comfortable openly seeking to influence political events is terrifying. This then, is the conundrum of life in Utah for those not of the dominant faith/culture.

Our neighbors are, as individuals, simply wonderful people who you wouldn't trade for all of the tea in China, so to speak. Yet collectively, they seemingly inexplicably, do not share our fear (a fear that I think history has proven to be the single-most well-founded of all fears) that there is no greater potential for tyranny than when church and state are one. If you doubt this, then I give you the Taliban, the most recent example of a tyranny which litters the pages of history with intolerance, bloodshed and suffering.

Indeed the rhetoric we hear from the President (who is more popular here than nearly anywhere else on the planet), that religious fundamentalism is a danger to freedom......... in Iraq and/or the Middle East generally,

is a message quintessentially lost here (and, I might add, lost upon the President, himself). I am still trying to square all of this with those polar opposite "truths" I was taught as a child in eighth grade civics class in Charlotte were fundamental to the original American Vision.

A native Utahn perspective would be welcome just about now.

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Good take AlienCity. I think there are a ton of misconceptions about the LDS church due to ignorant members actions, and those who seem to only seek hearsay and not the truth.

I am also from Mesa, but have spent time in Utah. Its a beautiful state that is moving along and pretty progressive in many ways. I think sometimes, those who live in Utah tend to make things seem a bit worse than reality from a non LDS perspective. It is the complete opposite of San Fransisco, but may seem a little more radical due to the main stream media and sorts. San Fran is very liberal, and the politics and people reflect those ideas. In SLC, more are conservative in many ways, and so are the politics in the area. The area is changing with new ideas. Things such as envision utah may be more of a liberal standpoint in the enviroment and such that many republicans may not worry about as much. These things tend to be influenced and lead by those of the left. But not always.

But then again, some members of ANY church may go certain directions and so forth due to human nature and a connection or similarity with those around them. Its human nature in a way.

Personally, I think SLC area is moving in a good direction, but preserving its culture and history is very important to any region. Then again, I do not want to raise my family there because I want my kids to learn of other cultures and religions and so forth.

Also, I think the comparison of the Taliban to the church is extreme comparison. It also seems a bit ignorant point too due to the lack of understand of ones faith, culture and the US government. Obviously, someone needs do a little more research before speaking os such when they seem to really be off track of what is reality.

wow, I guess we got of topic big time. The temple will be beautiful and enhance the area for a long time.

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