The majority rules.
That’s the way it’s been since the conception of our country, but we’ve got to ask ourselves the question: Just because the majority thinks something is OK, does that mean it’s, indeed, the right thing to do?
Whether or not the moral, ethical, cultural or religious decisions of the majority are beneficial to mankind, it’s no secret that being in the majority is the easiest thing a person can do. Unfortunately, this comes at the cost of other people’s rights.
It’s incredibly effortless to be a community member in an area where the majority of the populous have the exact same beliefs. In St. George, for example, it’s safe to say that if you’re Mormon and conservative, then you’re already a part of the in crowd.
And this is reflected in our media outlets. It doesn’t matter which publication I turn to; I see a whole lot of playing safe. We’ve got religious columns written by retirees who’ve served multiple LDS missions. we’ve got opinion articles written by LDS mothers, and we have local talk shows that focus on the conservative demographic and a basic understanding that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is law.
But the minority, unfortunately, is sorely underrepresented. And no, I’m not just talking about being a liberal gay guy, so don’t think I’m beating this dead horse I keep around just for fun.
I’m talking about people of multiple faiths: Judaism, Catholicism, Protestantism, Hinduism, Buddhism, Paganism and any other religion that falls outside the LDS realm.
I’m speaking about people of different races: Hispanics, Asians, Europeans, Africans, islanders, tribe members and everyone whose skin happens to be a different shade than your average Utah vanilla.
And I’m talking about people with political affiliations outside of the conservative realm: liberals, green activists, libertarians, socialists and even Communists.
These demographics make up just a fraction of the white LDS-saturated southern Utah population, and actually, that’s OK. What’s not OK is when the majority of said saturation tries to enforce, nay, inflict the majority belief upon all classes, colors and religions.
The sad thing is I think a lot of St. George’s residents are fine with equality, but they’re just too afraid to be open about it for fear of retaliation from the vocal minority of the majority.
Yeah, wrap your head around that for a second.
St. George is a beautiful place full of beautiful people, but it’s also a harsh environment for those of us who don’t subscribe to the general way of thinking. The truly different of us are beaten into small social groups, thus putting an emphasis on the “minor” in minority.
Those who refuse to be corralled are usually those who have given up trying to be members of the St. George community and end up either skipping town or just plain conforming.
I certainly hope this isn’t the goal of our town’s majority. After all, didn’t our LDS ancestors come to Utah because they’d been constantly driven out of numerous places due to their religious beliefs? Weren’t the early settlers scrutinized because they believed in polygamy as God’s law? Didn’t the Mormon faith eventually conform to the majority’s demands in order for Utah to gain statehood?
Well, I suppose that last one is up for debate depending on what your religious views may be.
My hope is that we’re not living our lives hypocritically. In lieu of a review this week, I’m just offering a challenge: Hold yourself to your highest moral standards and live up to your beliefs. Make yourself the person you expect everyone else to be. And then leave it at that.
Let the rest of the people be who they want to be and live up to their own beliefs. Now spread the love. We don’t have to agree, but we don’t have to hate those we disagree with, either.
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