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Lawmakers, LDS Church brainstorm

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  • Bob
    Jan. 19, 2008 12:55 a.m.

    Its rather amusing how the Church is so hard core when it comes to obedience -- except when it comes to obedience to immigration laws. I think it must have everything to do with getting illegals to join the Church. And please don't edit this comment out Mr. Cannon. I mean if you're going to run an article about the Church touching on a controversial political subject, you have to allow comments.

  • Saul
    Jan. 19, 2008 1:38 a.m.

    To Bob: The Church is not supporting disobedience, but rather reminding people that this issue is about more than just illegal actions. It is about treating everyone as a child of God. I am very much opposed to illegal immigration. However, I believe that we should be civil in how we deal with the issue. We can hold people responsible for their actions according to the law and still treat them with respect. Deciding to join the church or not is up the them. We just want them to know that there is a God, and that he loves them very much.

  • Brad
    Jan. 19, 2008 1:44 a.m.

    I don't see anywhere in the article where the Church advocates disobeying any law? What did you read BOB? Please help me see your point of view

  • From AZ
    Jan. 19, 2008 1:47 a.m.

    I applaud the LDS leaders for taking this stance. Moreover, many of us in Arizona would appreciate it if some LDS leaders could pass on the message about being humane about immigration laws to state Rep. Russell Pearce. The man's words are fanatical and frankly embarrassing to anyone with a sense of human decency. The neo-Nazis eat what he says up like candy, and even worse, he's quoted them in return to support his position.

    Bob, do you mean to say that there's any greater law than the one Christ gave: Love God, and love your neighbor? Do you think the Lord exempted illegal immigrants from that? I agree with the church's feelings here: Illegal immigrants should not be treated inhumanely. It's not a question about who does or doesn't join the Church. Come on, Bob, that's just flat-out silly.

    Penalties that match the severity of the crime can definitely be discussed. (Pearce's *better* ideas, for instance, best apply to illegal immigrants who commit felonies.) But we should never forget that illegal immigrants are people, too, and deserve humane treatment. That's the core principle here.

  • Keiki
    Jan. 19, 2008 1:51 a.m.

    They haven't said anything about being against 'obedience to immigration laws'. They stated that when looking at ways to deal with the illegal immigration issue, we all need to remember we're dealing with people, families, children, etc.

    So I don't understand how you can find it 'amusing' that a religious organization is promoting the idea that we deal with people humanely and compassionately.



  • Carl
    Jan. 19, 2008 1:59 a.m.

    I thought that the LDS church believed in being obedient to the laws of the land? I find it hypocritical that they are now compelling our lawmakers to indulge our illegal immigrant population in their law breaking ways.

  • I could call Bob a retard but th
    Jan. 19, 2008 2:26 a.m.

    Bob, you misinterpret the position of the Church on obedience. The Church isn't hard core on obedience to any law or commandment. Instead, the Church is trying to help people come closer to God. Never has the Church spoken without compassion or love for those who fail to keep or live all of the laws and commandments of God and generally don't judge its members harshly when it comes to them keeping the laws of the land especially when those laws are controversial (i.e., if Rosa Parks was a member they wouldn't have excommunicated her for breaking the law and refusing to sit at the back of the bus).

    The Church regularly calls on its members to not be full of hate towards those who suffer from a sin or temptation and to remember that they are people. Furthermore, the position of the Church has taken on this has nothing to do with current immigration laws or people failing to keep them instead it's about the immigration debate and the tone it has taken.

    To accuse an entire Church of having malignant or sinister motives because they speak of compassion indicates that this issue has gotten out of hand.

  • Republicans hate LDS Democrats
    Jan. 19, 2008 2:44 a.m.

    Litvack commented in the article that, "As Mitt has been treated unfair, targeted for being Mormon, so too have some LDS Democratic candidates been targeted in Utah as somehow unworthy of election," and then went on to note "And it is not fair to bring religion into our own campaigns here. I hope people remember this in Utah local elections later this year."

    I agree with Rep. Litvack, who isn't LDS, that it is something that LDS Democrats deal with and what really offends a lot of us is how Romney supporters use his religion as a tool to get votes and support for his campaign.

    Simply because someone doesn't like Romney doesn't mean he loses a primary because the people are anti-Mormon. It's probably because he is lacks character and experience since that is why I, a Mormon, will not vote for him.

    Even if sompe people were anti-Mormon it's offensive to Mormons for Mormons to use our religion as a way to say "look at poor me. People aren't voting for me because I'm Mormon" when a lot of Mormons in Utah don't vote for people because they see them as not being Mormon or good Mormons.

  • Timj
    Jan. 19, 2008 3:07 a.m.

    It's rather telling that Bob believes Mr. Cannon is personally sitting at his computer at one in the morning, personally editing comments out that he doesn't like.
    The church didn't say illegal immigration was ok...they said that we should retain our sense of humanity. Unfortunately, there are those who will refuse to listen...including Mr. Hickman and his friends.

  • Foxgoku
    Jan. 19, 2008 3:09 a.m.

    Before each general legislative session, legislators meet with a special affairs committee of the LDS Church? I thought the Church stayed out of politics except when moral issues demanded it. What am I missing here? This article needs more explanation as it begs the question.

  • Ray
    Jan. 19, 2008 3:46 a.m.

    Bob, I see nothing wrong with having compassion when addressing our illegal immigration issue. However, the editor of any newspaper should have enough integrity and not hide behind a cloud of misrepresentation that compassion is the only issue to be considered in order to be respectful to the wishes of its owner as our nation embraces the rule of law. This surely is not good journalism. I do give credit for your article that you have finally have come out of the closet by informing the public that you have these special meeting prior to each years legislative session which includes the hierarchy of the LDS Church.

  • RE: Bob
    Jan. 19, 2008 3:53 a.m.

    Who said anything about obedience? Obedience implies that there is a law to obey. I don't know if you noticed or not, but the church officials are talking to law MAKERS. They never said anything about obeying or disobeying the law, they just want them to use compassion in their law making process. Or is it contradictory for the church to teach compassion? You know if you try real hard you can find a way to criticize the church for every single action they take, but I don't really know why you would want to waste time doing that.

  • LLanquihue
    Jan. 19, 2008 5:37 a.m.

    Compassion is always important to include in any of these matters. That said, the situation of those illegal aliens who have broken the law is trumped by the compassion for citizens of the U.S. Specifically, I am thinking of the families lives destroyed by the rampage of drunk driving illegals, the murders and rapes and many other crimes. This is secondary to the mexicanization of neighborhoods and in some parts of the U.S., whole cities.

    The article is correct to state no need to hate or demonize but there is also no reason to tolerate this ongoing cultural invasion. If we don't get control of this situation, in 10 or 20 years, the balkanization in parts of the U.S. will produce much more chaos and anarchy that we already see reigning around our country.

    After all, it is our country; let's begin with the idea of national sovereignty and then let's re-establish our Americian culture. Multi-racial U.S. is fine; multi-cultural U.S. will not work. Cultures by nature want to and will dominate. I am unaware of any foreign culture that we should allow to be installed as the standard in the U.S.

  • Latino
    Jan. 19, 2008 6:10 a.m.

    Thank you LDS Church!! It's about time they say something about how our lawmakers should deal with immigration.

  • Barry
    Jan. 19, 2008 6:13 a.m.

    Bob you are biased in your thinking. Obedience does not supercede compassion, love thy neighbor and respect for human life. You cannot legislate morals. That is why the church is stressing obedience. I have never read in the scriptures anything about immigration laws. They do stress obedience to the law of the land except when they are in violation of moral principals.

  • Bob....your silly
    Jan. 19, 2008 6:13 a.m.

    What part of what was said do you disagree with. We should not show compassion? The only reason they want them to be treated compassionately is they can will join the church, just a tad synical aren't we? Believe me, I am not here to defend the church, haven't attended church for over 20 years, but if you can't have a little compassion for some of these families then I feel sorry for you. I know of many families in this predicament, they are good families, just trying to survive. Hopefully you will recognize that dark spot in your chest where your heart used to be.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 19, 2008 6:16 a.m.

    Ah yes Bob, always an ulterior motive right? Get real. It has nothing to do with getting illegals to join the Church and everything to do with treating them humanely and not deamonizing them....gee, I think that's just what the article said...imagine that Bob.

  • Mike
    Jan. 19, 2008 6:20 a.m.

    Bob,

    It's because current federal immigration laws are uninforcible and newly proposed state laws are bordering on inhumane. You can see ulterior motives where ever you want to find them but the truth of the matter is that these immigrants are human beings, regardless how much the right wing politicians, pundits and bigots want to demonize and criminalize and marginalize them.

  • Nyron
    Jan. 19, 2008 6:27 a.m.

    Bob, that is a falsehood!

  • ron
    Jan. 19, 2008 6:35 a.m.

    yea, bob. I am amused, but not for the reasons you put forth. Humanity is not a word you seem to understand. That makes me saddened and amused.

  • liberal larry
    Jan. 19, 2008 6:38 a.m.

    I'm always amazed at how reasonable, and compassionate, Mormon authorities are when they come on social issues. I wish the leaders would speak out more and enlighten the brethren on issues such as evolution, gun control and global warming.

  • oldman
    Jan. 19, 2008 6:47 a.m.

    Once again we hear how Mitt is being picked on. Boo hoo. The church fails to discuss what it has done/ continues to do to others. The church sums it up with its favorite statement - "We are the only true church." Those of us who have been members and have left knows just what the church is capable of.

    As far as immigration - I agree with the last poster. The church consistently strives to baptize anyone they can get their hands on. Most ILLEGAL immigrants laugh at American laws. They believe America is theirs and we are the intruders.

    Those in other countries join the church with hopes it will offer them a way to America.

  • Texas
    Jan. 19, 2008 6:53 a.m.

    Interesting how we each take something different from the article. I did not read don't obey, I read a request to show compassion and humanity as the issue is discussed and the laws prepared. Not living in Utah, maybe I don't read with the same critical eye, but I did not read anything about a request for casual enforcement. The "Church" comment seems very much like very other church comment in Texas or across the country . . . remember that we are talking about people, not just politics, when immigration is discussed.

  • Grandma C.
    Jan. 19, 2008 7:21 a.m.

    I appreciate the Deseret News publishing this article about the meeting between spokespersons for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and leaders of the (Utah?) legistature. For those of us residing outside Utah, this news is an item of interest. Thank you.
    I take issue, though, with a common misconception presented here. Missionaries for the church do not "get people to convert." The statement suggests coercion and arm twisting strategies. Instead, missionaries teach the Gospel of Jesus Christ to persons who are interested. Those who are taught are encouraged to pray to Heavenly Father about their choice. The large number of persons choosing baptism in Latin countries is a measure of missionary success in that the missionaries are teaching those the Lord has already prepared for membership in His church. I hope my words clarify this for the DN writers.

  • phebe
    Jan. 19, 2008 7:22 a.m.

    It is my understanding that the LDS Church teaches that we should obey the laws of the land. Illegal immigrants are law breaking people and should be treated as such.

  • edwin smith
    Jan. 19, 2008 7:23 a.m.

    It is interesting that so many people in this state and nationally wish the LDS church would simply hide its head in the sand, say nothing on any issue and ignore the moral environment around it, when its members come from every race creed and culture in the world. The purpose of religion is to promote the spiritual and emotional well being of the human race in the manner it feels God has directed. Not all will accept that premise, but how can any position of faith be considered strong enough to lift its constituency if it remains mute on issues that affect the souls of its members. The powers of opposition will always wail and detract, but those of faith and virtue cannot wilt and cower when facing its wrath, no matter what the issue.

  • to Bob
    Jan. 19, 2008 7:34 a.m.

    I agree. I was really appalled when I found out the Church didn't obey the legal order to exterminate Mormons back in Illinois when the order was given. In fact they ran from the law. Such hypocrites. I mean, after all, if it's the law, it must be right, and therefore must be obeyed.

  • provojoe
    Jan. 19, 2008 7:34 a.m.

    The Book of Mormon says that no one will come to this country unless they are led here by God.

  • RRC
    Jan. 19, 2008 7:43 a.m.

    The Church is 100% correct in telling political candidates to apply a little compassion to the immigration issue. There is too much hate out there, much of it based on racism. Step back a bit and ask yourself why these people come here. They come for the same reasons as the Irish did in the 1800s, for the same reasons as other groups have over the years. Building a wall on the border, evicting 12 million people and other draconian measures will not work. We need to give people a reason to want to be in their home countries, and that means helping them build economic opportunity. We can do a lot to make the world a better place, and the demogogues running for office are only exploiting hate and fear. This is not Christian behavior. We enjoy the contributions of the immigrant population, whether legal or not. Let's find a way to rationally deal with this matter, not driven by ugliness. Teh GOP candidates need to stop dealing in hate and fear, and act like compassionate Christians as they claim to be. By their acts you shall know them.

  • Herb
    Jan. 19, 2008 7:51 a.m.

    Humanity & High moral character in an illegal immagrant? Isn't that an oxy-mormon? If I'm illegaly in this country how can I qualify for being worthy of participating in US citizen programs paid for by your tax dollars or for that matter holding a calling or a temple reccomend? I'm confused by the rational...? Yes, we should treat all people with the love of God while administering the law that protects the interests of the United States of America! "One nation under God, With liberty and justice for all!" Now that is high moral integrity for all.

  • Not in Utah
    Jan. 19, 2008 7:52 a.m.

    The point on LDS members attitudes towards Democrats is right on target. The Chuch has become identified with the GOP, both in the U.S. and overseas. Being a Republican is, in effect, a de facto obligation of Church membership - at least that is the attitude of many. Even many missionaries carry the message. As an LDS Democrat, I have been told many times that I could not possibly a good member of the Church. These people cannot even comprehend the idea that a Mormon can be a Democrat! This attitude must be snuffed! I can let it roll off, but many others cannot for various reasons. This connection between the GOP and the Church is HURTING the Church around the world. If the Church is serious about its mission to spread the Gospel and represent the Savior, it must deal with this major problem, not just throw P.R. at the world.

  • russ
    Jan. 19, 2008 7:57 a.m.

    Huh? The Mormon church leaders sit down with the elected officials before the sessions and tell, er, explain the church's view of issues?
    Is this America? I don't live in Utah anymore, but I can tell you one thing. If that happened in my present state, the citizens would ask loudly and clearly: WHY????!!!?? This is perhaps a very good reason to keep whathisname out of the white house. Soon the Mormon church will be sitting down with Mitt about ... well how to conduct the public's business. The public's business. You know, the public. The mormons and non-mormons business.

    Really? Does the Mormon church feel so insecure that it has to keep the collar on its own people who got elected to office? And these sheep obey?
    Control freaks is only phrase that comes to my mind.

    Tell the Mormon church, the "we don't get involved in politics" church, to use the front door like everyone else. To hold open meetings like laws try to make happen. No wonder non-mormons in Utah feel oppressed. Imagine for a moment if the Baptists did that in...SC... how outraged mormons would be. If the shoe fits, you have to wear it.

  • Reply
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:01 a.m.

    I did not take it that the church is against stoppping the illegals. I think the Church wants to make sure when ilegals are caught that they are treated as humans and not like livestock that have wandered from the pasture. Whether Americans or not, they are still Heavenly Fathers children. But they need to also be obedient to the laws, and be deported back to their country. I think if you really listen to what Mitt Romney,he is saying just that. When they come here illegally they broke our laws, and they need to go back and get in line with the people from all the other countries that are not land tied with the US. It is that simple, I do not understand why this subject is always made to be so difficult. Just like any other law, you break it you suffer the consequence.

  • Jerry
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:01 a.m.

    To Bob. Get a life. Do you see a conspiracy under every bush!
    No one complains when the evangelicals elect people to office!
    It must be nice to complain about everything all the time! No responsibility for anything!

  • alum
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:01 a.m.

    i agree somewhat with Bob. LDS people are supposed to honor and sutain the law, be upstanding citizens whereever they live, and oh, yeah, obey the law. Violation of immigration law and obedience are in fact mutually exclusive - you can have one or the other, but not both. People cannot in good faith be allowed to join the LDS church when their very presence is defiance of law.

  • Utah Valley Resident
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:03 a.m.

    My feeling about the issue of illegal immigration is simply this...The borders need to be regulated and no undocumented entry should be allowed into the United States. This is an issue with all of the states in the country who border Canada and Mexico. These borders need to be totally regulated...no entry into the United States period unless the entry is legally documentated. What's so hard about that? Citizens of the United States cannot go into other nations of the world without documents. What is inhumane about that? I don't care what nationality these people are. This is a country with border and people come here under the laws set up to govern immigration. This has become nothing but a selfserving political football. It is crazy. It will have to start with laying down the law with Mexico and Canada obviously. We can't even tell by the census how many illegals let alone citizens are in this country. It's not a matter of humanity, it is a matter of the law. If law cannot be enforced and we have no borders, we don't have a country, it is that simple. The bottom line is our lawmakers haven't the stomach.

  • agree w/ bob
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:03 a.m.

    violation of laws of the land and faithful obedience are mutually exclusive - they cannot exist together.

  • jason
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:05 a.m.

    adding an 'element of humanity'? How about the church's teachings about honoring and sustaining the law? Enforcement first!

  • Mark H
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:06 a.m.

    Bob-

    It has nothing to do with letting illegals join the Church. Don't let the axe you have to grind with the Church cloud your judgment and get in the way of rational thinking.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:10 a.m.

    There is always room for compassion and it is surprising how contention and misunderstanding melt away when it is present. msm

  • north carolina
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:12 a.m.

    anyone that can't see why this immigration debate is more of a human issue (not so much a moral issue) than most other legal debates is missing something. As such, wouldn't you expect any church that espouses Christian principles to show some compassion on these people, most of whom are trying to improve their living standards? To try and read some ulterior motive into the church's comment is a bit paranoid in my opinion.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:18 a.m.

    I thought the church stayed out of politics. But, here they are beaking off about something very political.
    I figure they ought to be considered a 'think tank' or something like that. And pay taxes.

  • A True Patriot
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:37 a.m.

    I'ts rather amusing how people who say the law must be obeyed period, therefore we must crack down on immegration, think nothing of speeding or several other laws that they (as we all do) break all the time.

    Face it, the United States does not have clear title to all of its land. There were broken Indian treaties, the war of unprovoked agression against Mexico by which got all the land from Mexico and slavery. Face it, the Unites States has not always been the best of world citizens, and we must accept this bad heritage just as we so gladly accept that portion of our heritage which is positive. Unless one believes that by taking something by force, one can gain clear title, then one can't believe we have clear title to much of our land therefore we need to be accomidating to those we took it from.

  • Disturbed
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:39 a.m.

    Do the GOP and Dem leaders meet with leaders of other faiths before general sessions to be told how to run things too? I find this really disturbing. The LDS Church has always said it stays out of politics yet here they are directing how the legislature should approach various issues. And don't get me started on the incredibly stupid liquor law...let's move over-the-counter cough suppressants to the liquor stores too...

  • DWR
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:43 a.m.

    It seems as if the LDS church would stress obedience to God's laws, not state or federal law. I personally see a distinction. So I don't see anything amusing about it at all.

  • Obedience???
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:47 a.m.

    The article was not about the Church not wanting to obey the immigration laws. It was about the Church asking for us to be more humane and less hatefull when it comes to making laws and discussing illegals. The 12th article of Faith of the Church says that members of the church believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers, and magistrates, in obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law. Bob, it seems as though you are looking to find fault where there is none.

  • Fredd
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:53 a.m.

    All the idiots on the "alcopop" forum can stuff their "the church has a right to get involved in moral issues" stance. This article says every year leaders of both parties meet with leaders of the LDS church. Yes I have a problem with that. Don't call me an anti or say i'm mormon bashing. But as a non LDS person I think these legislative leaders should be impeached. the LDS church gets their say every Sunday for 3 hours. that shoulds be enough.

  • Non-believe
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:54 a.m.

    TheChurch needs to continue to stay out of politics, including immigration. I was surprised that the Church is trying to influence state politics. Why don't we just let everyone in Mexico into Utah and then the Church can convert them. NOT But that is what it sounds like. I con't have a problem with the stand on alcohol but your policy of staying of politics seems to be weakening. Brethren, don't pretend to be bi-partsian and then try to influence the issues under the table. Mitt R is getting exactly what he should have expected. I don't know why anyone is surprised.

  • He that is without sin ...
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:55 a.m.

    Not only the LDS church. Jesus himself wasn't a stickler for following the Law either. When the woman caught doing adultery was taken to him, rather than tell them to carry out the law, he told them, "let he who is without sin, cast the first stone".

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:57 a.m.

    "Special Affairs committee"? Will Mit have one of these too if president?

  • Re:Bob
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:59 a.m.

    "eveything to do with getting illegals to join the church..." Are you suggesting that they are easily manipulated? There's no conspiracy dude. And just because someone is an "illegal" doesn't mean they are incapable of making a knowledgable decision regarding religion.

  • To Bob:
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:03 a.m.

    Did you read the article, Bob? The church took NO POSITION on the issue. They just wanted legislators to remember that they were dealing with humans when making their decisions. Don't try to spin this as disobedience to immigration laws, otherwise you just make yourself look ignorant.

  • DN
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:05 a.m.

    Bob, take a chill pill! As for myself I believe we need to enforce current laws regarding illegal immigration and deal with the illegals that are currently here. Border security....have never figured that one out on why we haven't put more emphasis on it in the past. In regards to the Church's stance, (Making sure we remember the humanity) side of things is great counsel. We get so caught up in the emotional and hate side of things that we do not think things clearly through. Keeping cool heads is paramount. As for your snide remark regarding the church getting illegals to joint the church...UMM, that's what the church does whether you are legal or illegal. Teach the fulness of the gospel to ALL.

  • PJ
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:07 a.m.

    Sad but true. Illegal immigration fuels church growth, and the Utah economy. Utah sold its soul, exchanging a once-beautiful valley for a polution-fouled expanse of concrete and asphalt.

  • Diana Butler
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:09 a.m.

    I don't think the Church is condoning breaking the laws. I think they are trying to follow Jesus' example of compassion for others. If we are only compassionate to those who obey the law then we will have very few opportunities for compassion. Christ's example with those seeking to stone the woman taken in sin is something we ought to keep in mind. "He who is without sin cast the first stone"...

    This doesn't mean that there should be no consequence for illegal immigration. But I have been shocked by the venom projected towards these people in many of the discussions I have heard. I can't help but think that our self-righteous persecution (yes, persecution) of these people is the greater sin. Compare Jesus' comments on the sinners versus what he says about the hypocrites - or have you never broken the law?

    The Church is a religious institution trying to save souls. I think they are totally justified in their counsel. What will be interesting is to see how many "good members" will listen and find constructive solutions.

  • Travis
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:12 a.m.

    If you're referring to Rep. Chris Cannon, he works as a Congressman, not for the Deseret News.
    I think you're right to some extent--the LDS Church has a lot of success among Hispanic immigrants in Utah. But they also know that the majority of Hispanics that come to Utah remain Catholic. I think it has more to do with the fact that the LDS Church is an international church, and a large part of its membership is in Central and South America. The Utah Church has a closeness to its Hispanic members worldwide. And they would rather have their members stay there, where the Church is weaker, than immigrate to Utah.
    I think it has more to do with compassion. The Church isn't condoning disobedience of the law; it's trying to influence what the law is. And it hopes that immigration laws and policies don't ruthlessly split up families and deport everyone without any consideration of circumstances. I think that the Church would not want its members in Latin America to think that the Utah leaders don't care about how they're treated.

  • Exmormongirl
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:13 a.m.

    There is a major problem happening here on so many levels. First, An obvious breech of seperation between church and state. Of course the LDS church wants illegals here. The reason why the church's membership numbers are growing the fastest in 3rd world countries is because they make promises of better lives to people who have very limited resources and are vulnerable. If the church follows its own party line, which is to obey the laws of the land, then there should be no question of support for deporting illegals and making sure they receive no benefits (through the church or otherwise) that take away from legal citizens. I am not uncompassionate, but illegal immigrants are just that...illegal. The church sees the illegals pouring across the borders and they see their membership numbers on a drastic up-swing. Nobody ever tells the truth when it comes to the LDS church influence.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:23 a.m.

    No representation without taxation!

  • NonUtahn
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:25 a.m.


    I applaud the LDS church for trying to put compassion back into laws. Obviously the LDS church isn't perfect and so as a citizen I feel it is my duty to encourage them to do good continually.

    as for Bob's comments, the immigration situation isn't as black and white as you would want. The US for years has encouraged illegal immigration. These immigrants would like to earn a living for their families. Is that hard to understand? Obviously they broke a law but so did you when you pulled the tag off your mattress.
    As a citizen I encourage the LDS church to come out in favor of legislation that helps families and discourage laws that harm them. If the LDS church wants to be seen as Christians they must come out in defense of all that is Holy in a compassionate way.

  • Shocked
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:26 a.m.

    I thought that we were supposed to have separation of church and state in the United States. Except in Utah!!!

  • Jerry
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:27 a.m.

    I guess I missed something concerning the LDS church condoning illeagl immigration. To be humanistic is not the same as condoning or ignoring the laws of a country.

  • SRS in AZ
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:30 a.m.

    I thought we were supposed to obey the laws of the land. It is against the LAW to enter this country illegally. Is the church being hypocritical on this?

  • arc
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:32 a.m.

    I agree that we need to be "Civil" about those that are her illegally. Many came here legally. Our own immigration laws have put them in a no win zone. We do need to solve some basics, and need to start there.

    We need to stop people coming in to the country without knowing who the are. Secure boarders.
    We need to stop the identity theft system that many illegals use, and create some alternative way of tracking them. Fines for using someone else's identity should be harsh.

    We do need to fix the system. If people can't get work here, they will go home. It is amazing that people have been in this country for decades and are not legal. It takes a broke system to create that nightmare and it isn't going to be fixed by getting a train a shipping illegals back to Mexico...
    What boarder do you send them to, as many are from all over the world?

  • Ray
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:33 a.m.

    All they said was, "Be compassionate. Remember that these are human beings involved." How can anyone in their right mind take exception to that?

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:33 a.m.

    Why is everyone so paranoid about Desnews editing out comments? There are always so many controversial and opinionated comments on here...I just don't get it.

  • TBrooke
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:35 a.m.

    This is a tough issue. I live in Calif and just recently they made 3 Spanish Dependent Branches in our Stake. These are good members. Just throwing them across the border is not the answer. Who will run the dairies, mow our lawns, and do whatever manual labor we as a society have grown acustom to? You might notice the economy is trouble. This will make it much worse.

  • Barbara
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:36 a.m.

    this is exactly how it would be if romney were elected president. the LDS would control his actions.

  • Bob, settle down
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:38 a.m.

    You're reading things into this article that just aren't there. Where did anyone say anything about not obeying immigration laws? And no, it wasn't implied, either. I am a staunch conservative and strongly believe that illegal immigration is a significant problem that has to be reigned in, but I, like the church, have been appalled at some of the vicious, bigoted things and outrageous generalizations that have been said about the illegals themselves. It is entirely appropriate for everyone on all sides of this issue--or any issue for that matter--to take a step back and remember that real people with real families, though different from our own, will be affected by what we do. Don't just assume that the LDS church is being disingenuous or implying anything other than exactly what they said. Is everything an LDS conspiracy to you?

  • Dawn Davis
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:43 a.m.

    Re: Bob I don't think it has anything to do with illegals joining the church.
    I think it has to do with remembering who we are and who they are and realizing that we are not so different. That they and our ancestors came to America for the same reasons. To have a better life.
    I don't know how to fix the laws, but I do know that I should be nice to my neighbors and accepting of those who are different.

  • Mimi
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:45 a.m.

    Rob, are you referring to obedience to Christ's commandment to love one another?

  • Ummm
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:45 a.m.

    Ok Bob, they aren't breaking the law! They are simply reminding people that yes, we do need order and rules, however, there are those who are forgetting that we are dealing with people here, not animals. They are reminding people to keep that fact in mind. They are not telling them to step aside and let them all do as they please.

  • Just curious Bob
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:45 a.m.

    Did Mr. Cannon edit any of your ramblings out?

  • Frank
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:59 a.m.

    The crime rate of illegal aliens is sky high. Those sitting in high places in the church are like the politicians in Washington. They are not exposed to these criminals in their everyday lives and want to send their welcome messages to them. I am going to re-evaluate my desire to pay tithing to the church who has liberals who go against the law and the laws of the church. Just read the 12th Article of Faith. (We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers, and magistrates, in obeying, honoring, and sustaining the LAW.)

  • Stewart
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:59 a.m.

    "We should not demonize" illegal immigrants." The Church is right about this, and it shouldn't have to be said. However, it doesn't mean that we shouldn't "demonize" the cheap labor employers that hire them. The illegal aliens in a way are victims of the cheap labor employers and our government that has enabled them. Also, it doesn't mean that we shouldn't pass and enforce laws that stop the employment of those that are illegally in the country, so that they will simply leave, as work becomes difficult to find.
    Remember the LDS Church(and Catholics as well) has its own reasons, just as cheap labor employers do, in enabling illegal immigration into the United States. That is their right, but it is also the right of citizens (including Mormons) to act in what they feel is the best interest of the state. The Church in this case has had a tendency to ignore that pesky 12th Article of Faith. The Church has a world wide missionary program that can save souls in any country south of the border just as well as the in the United States. This is not a moral issue, it is economic.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 19, 2008 10:00 a.m.

    If there was a god, Joseph Smith would have been still born to save humanity his arrogance.

  • Tongue in Cheek
    Jan. 19, 2008 10:04 a.m.

    I think all illegals should be rounded up with their families, piled in the back of trucks like cattle, and deported. Oh, and while your at it throw in Bob and Carl. Seems like they ALL missed the point.

  • Watch out, Brethren
    Jan. 19, 2008 10:12 a.m.

    The church entered the debate a couple of years ago with a subtle, hardly noticed, change. They now will allow illegal aliens to serve as missionaries without returning to their home country. This puts the church in the position of aiding, abetting, and harboring. They are fully aware of the immigration status of the missionary and make his mission assignment to compensate (hence, they serve in the US to avoid crossing any borders).
    Prior to that, the church could claim that they are not immigration agents and they have no business in members' lives until convicted.
    So, the LDS version of "don't ask, don't tell" crossed the line.
    As for being humane in our laws, how do they expect to create any semblance of deterrence without getting strong on enforcement? When the church has a General Conference talk encouraging members without lawful presence to return to their homeland and grow the church back home, give us a call.
    Talks on tolerance are what got us here in the first place.

  • What?!
    Jan. 19, 2008 10:26 a.m.

    How dare the Church allow Democrats to be members. That's just wrong!

  • To pose a question
    Jan. 19, 2008 10:28 a.m.

    The laws of the land are intended for people; therefore, only people can obey, or violate the laws. Therefore, interjecting a "compassion" factor because we are dealing with "humanity" is essentially meaningless as we are always dealing with "humanity" with regard to the violation of laws. Obviously, this just a cover for another agenda.

    Mass illegal immigration has caused deterioration in the quality of life, ruined the schools, and massive budget deficits in California. Many Californians have come to Utah to escape that wretched mess. So why create incentives for more illegal aliens to come, or stay, in Utah??

    They have broken the law, and should return to their native countries. This is the consequence of violating the law, and I, and most Americans, see nothing wrong, or uncompassionate in that.

  • Wayne
    Jan. 19, 2008 10:58 a.m.

    To Provojo: How simple miinded are you? Does your view mean terrorists were led here by God?

    Re Church comments on treating all people as human beings: Of course, but enforce the law...OK, do it with compassion, but enforce it. To me, the inference of the article is the Church wants illegals to be accepted.

    I am also amazed that leaders meet with state politicians annually. Really?

  • Matt E.
    Jan. 19, 2008 11:01 a.m.

    I wonder what the church means by "compassion". It's not like any of Utah's lawmakers have denied that illegal immigrants are human beings or have argued against immigration itself. The issue the lawmakers are concerned with is line-jumping -- what to do with those who push others waiting in line to get what they want. There are many people in Mexico and around the world waiting in line to emigrate to America, and "compassion" would seemingly require us to protect the rights of those playing fairly, which means making those who pushed their way to the front to go get back in line.

  • An experienced immigrant
    Jan. 19, 2008 11:05 a.m.

    I'm not an immigrant but my wife is. Her and I have attended a Spanish speaking branch in Salt Lake. Calling the issue to a direction of humanity couldn't be more appropriate. My wife and I have tirelessly complied with the laws that are in place. Though I could become resentful toward those who fail to comply with these federal laws (which can be similar to filing taxes), I yet must say that I've felt that there are very specific elements (too boring for the average person to read) of the law that need to be altered so that there is a greater incentive by those who need to come forward and become a part of the society at large. I don't like taxes in general - I don't like thinking that my taxes went to pay the Uintah cop who tazered an innocent citizen. I don't like thinking that my taxes go to pay for a 'department' that rejected my sister-in-law a tourist visa (so that she could attend her sister's wedding) for absolutely no explainable reason. I support Mitt Romney as a whole, but on this issue I don't trust that he's merciful enough.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 19, 2008 11:08 a.m.

    What ever happened to separation of church and state? Why does the LDS church think that it should be allowed to have a say in anything around here? What about my rights to have a fair and just government, without undue influence or bias?

  • DR Don
    Jan. 19, 2008 11:11 a.m.

    I, too, feel love and compassion for illegal immigrants. I would love to compassionately move them all back to their country of origin, be it Pakistan, Mexico, Ireland or China.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 19, 2008 11:14 a.m.

    Key to the whole thing, the LDS Church wants more converts, obeying the laws, honesty does not come into play, we can look to our very ethical law makers to know that. Send the families home and let Mexico or whatever government step up and educated and take care of their own. As a legal immigrant that had to go through the ropes, it makes me angry the the "CHURCH" is supporting illigal aliens - wonder if they would help take the burden of the tax payer and pay for the schooling and medical costs of their new illegal converts

  • read the article
    Jan. 19, 2008 11:44 a.m.

    I believe the lds church says that it comments on moral issues. The article mentioned that both the Republicans and Democrats were also meeting with another group of various religious leaders. I also believe that religious leaders such as Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Billy Graham and the Teletubby guy meets regularly with government officials regarding moral issues. Don't accuse the church of being secretive and then not let them speak out on their views.

  • Bottom Line
    Jan. 19, 2008 11:53 a.m.

    The bottom line here is that the church knows that Utah has a huge percentage of its population that are hispanic and that a huge percentage of those hispanics are illegal aliens, and a large percentage of those illegal aliens are part of families and neighborhoods with huge church membership which equates to tithing, offerings and free labor for the church in those communities.

    The Church preaches compassion and a more liberal view of the law only when it serves their financial interests. If the gay population of the church accounted for enough financial input, you can be sure that they would be more compassionate and liberal in their view of same-sex marriage and civil rights.

    Utah is a shadow theocratically based legal system, wherein the Church acts as a lobbyist in purely secular affairs. Having their cake and eating it too... that's what Christianity, Judaism, Islam, and yes... Mormonism is about when push comes to shove. Theocracy is the antithesis of Democracy, as sectarianism is the antithesis of secularism. The Founding Fathers knew this which is why they established a government by the people, of the people, for the people... not churches!

  • Speeding
    Jan. 19, 2008 11:55 a.m.

    That comment (above) about speeding is a good one. Utah is a state that made it nearly impossible to use a PhotoCop in West Valley City, something that actually stopped people from speeding (believe me, I drove through there every morning, and it was the only place on Bangerter that was moving at the speed limit).

    I think the attitude in Utah is not "we must obey the laws." The attitude is "YOU must obey the laws, but I know what I'm doing and don't need to obey them."

  • Jerry
    Jan. 19, 2008 11:59 a.m.

    Clearly the Lord blesses all of his children. He just blesses the Republicans more, since it is clear that we adhere to His principles today. The democrats can be loved too, with counseling. The church clearly is demonstrating a Masterstroke here by reaching out to all parties.

  • we are all of imigrant heritage
    Jan. 19, 2008 12:01 p.m.

    I wish people really understood what is happening with the new immigration laws. I am an employer and I have a young father who has lived here since he was 5 years old went to school here graduated from high school at Provo High School. Obtained a tax ID number and has been working since he was 12 to help support his mothers family. He is now married to a local "american citizen" and they have 2 children. He only knows american culture and american ways but his mother never applied for citizenship for the children and now he is faced with trying to get a SS # and the prospects are grim. The imigration attorney we are working with to help him has indicated the very best case senario he might be able to get one in 6-8 months, worse case he will be shipped back to Mexico. That would leave a mother and two children on Welfare, devistate this man who loves his children and shut down a thriving business (he is the forman of my shop). I think we realy need to take a look at the human side. This only scratches the surface.

  • RayD
    Jan. 19, 2008 12:21 p.m.

    I live in Ohio. I have lived in Alabama and Massachusetts. Every large Christian denomination finds ways to express its views and concerns and feelings about political issues - and MOST do it in a much more intrusive way than holding meetings to discuss them. Most actively pick candidates and support them in very blatant ways.

    If you think this is disturbing, live in the Deep South for a while. Evangelical and Southern Baptist leaders make Mormon leaders look like Boy Scouts in this regard.

  • Christian Evangelical
    Jan. 19, 2008 12:22 p.m.

    I am not Mormon, I am a Born Again Christian with strong evangelical views on life. But I admire the mormons and their church leaders for making sure the politicians remember God when they create laws. I applaud the mormons for doing this. We do the same thing in the Southeast, in the bible belt. Baptists, evagelicals, Assamblies of God, and others, WE LOBBY! Of course, we need to do it to protect our christian rights!

    The Mormon Church has the right to lobby and counsel and advice politicians just as Billy Graham counseled several U.S. presidents.

    We sould learn from the mormons and do the same thing in other states in the country.

  • disturbed 2
    Jan. 19, 2008 12:23 p.m.

    I agree 100 percent with "Disturbed" & "Utah Valley Resident" above. The real issue here is what the church says, and then turns around and does something complete different. The laws already in place are NOT being enforced. The church has it's hands in too many kettles to say it's not involved in politics.
    Yes they can express their wishes but done this way they are nothing more than a lobbyist and should abide by lobbyist rules and full disclosure.

  • Voin Campbell
    Jan. 19, 2008 12:24 p.m.

    The LDS Church has, for many years, maintained a posture of not endnorcing political parties or candidates. That what they mean by staying out of politics, nothing more and nothing less. As the leadership its members everywhere, the LDS church has always spoken out and, hopefully, always will speak out on issues that directly impact the spiritual well being of its members, especially issure of principle and morality. For LDS leaders to do otherwise would be to abandon its membeship in the heat of a great moral battle, in which eternal souls are at risk.

  • Alan of Orem
    Jan. 19, 2008 12:28 p.m.

    On Church influence in the legislature:

    The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (CoJCoLDS) does not "direct" the legislature in anything. As a prominent institutional citizen of the State, it requests, and is freely granted by both parties, an opportunity to express views. This is not coercion, but a freely agreed-upon meeting. IOW, the CoJCoLDS is free, like any citizen of Utah, to express (not impose) its views, and lawmakers are free to listen, which they choose to do.

    On treatment of undocumented immigrants:

    1. Only a relatively small proportion of Utah hispanic immigrants are LDS, or ever will be.

    2. When Hispanic immigrants choose to join the CoJCoLDS, or seek temple privileges, they are *not* asked about their immigrations status. Not the Church's job.

    3. I suspect that the CoJCoLDS is largely concerned about tearing families apart.

    My own view:

    - First: Build and use "the fence". Do it now.
    - *After* it's built, drop most barriers to *legal* immigration. Quotas, etc.
    - National ID system to track those who come in through airports as students, tourists, etc.
    - Don't treat this is a culture war. Our society is, should be, and will remain a multicultural melting pot.

  • fredd
    Jan. 19, 2008 12:36 p.m.

    The story here that many glaze over to discuss immigration is that BEFORE EVERY GENERAL SESSION church leaders sit down with leaders of the house and senate. Don't ever tell me the mormon church is not involved in Utah politics. And yes there is a seperation of church and state in this country and yes this is a bviolation. Last year there was an article that said whenever a controversial bll is being considered they run it by the church because, 'without thier support it would never pass." This should end any discussion of the Mormon church running Utah.

  • Orson
    Jan. 19, 2008 12:42 p.m.

    Wow. Most of the commenters here just don't get it. The church was talking to the lawmakers. That is, the people that make the laws, which are the things which determine if something is "illegal" or not.

    We in this country have a terrible system in place. We tempt immigrants to come here to fuel our economy with their labor, then we punish them with a bureaucracy that makes it impossible for the legal immigration process to keep up with our demand for immigrant labor. A man who has been working in this country for years because our economy relied on his labor, and has a family, if deported, would have to take ten years working the system (with the help of a stateside immigration attorney) to get back in.

    We're not talking about the Church thinking it's okay to break the law. We're talking about the Church urging compassion in crafting the law itself in the first place! We're not talking about "illegal" being okay. We're talking about having more compassion in determining what's "illegal."

    Ignorant people always like to blame their problems on minorities. The label "illegal" simply gives us license to indulge in hatred and xenophobia.

  • Love and inforcement
    Jan. 19, 2008 12:43 p.m.

    We can show human love at the same time we round the illegals up and shipem back. Ship back whole familys together. Bus fulls train fulls what ever it takes, but do it with love. Thats what I hear here.

  • An experienced immigrant II
    Jan. 19, 2008 12:50 p.m.

    The church has a three fold mission - 1. Proclaim the Gospel, 2. Perfect the Saints and 3. Redeem the Dead. - it doesn't just 'want more converts' to have 'more converts' - 'it' "the church" has a work as well which is "to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man". In answer to the anonymous comment about the separation of church and state - I'm a member of the church and I live in this state. I served a mission in Panama and I've traveled to Mexico, Venezuela, and Peru. The people in Panama welcomed me with open arms when I was there. An LDS temple in Panama is being completed. I have very good friends there. I also have very good friends in Peru and Mexico. If there were to want to visit me, I wouldn't want to burden them with exhaustive interrogation. I can guarantee that they'd welcome me into their homes if I were to go there. They fed me and were extremely generous. There's elements of the current immigration situation that simply don't feel right. I also submit that justice is necessary, but without mercy justice is inhumane.

  • To Phebe,
    Jan. 19, 2008 12:58 p.m.

    WHAT is your problem? I am assuming you are a member of the LDS Church. And from your message, it seems clear you think you are greater, smarter, and better than the general authorities to issued this call for humanity and compassion. If you're not willing to concede to basic compassion, called for by the highest leaders of your church, and you actually do think you are better and smarter than the general authorities, perhaps you'd better high-tail it OUT of the church, and keep your nasty opinions to yourself. They are making us all look terribly bigoted. If you are not a member of the LDS church, then good. I'm relieved.

  • Paul
    Jan. 19, 2008 1:01 p.m.

    I think that immigration is a sensitive issue, but immigrants should have the opertunity to come into the U.S.A if they can fill jobs,i think the stance on immigration on the American continent is too strong, it should be like most of Europe were people are allowed to move freely between countries.

  • happened to be born in america
    Jan. 19, 2008 1:11 p.m.

    I think if any of us were born in a country where we couldn't make enough money to support our family even with an education, couldn't trust the police or receive protection from them, but knew that across the border we could work hard and be safer with our families, I think we would probably jump the border too. It's easier to take it for granted just because you happen to be born a little further north. That's the human element. Certainly there has to be regulation, but these are still people whose motives are not so hard to understand as we pretend. Sure, there is some criminal element, but anyone who believes that those make up the majority is being purposefully ignorant to the facts. I think if you're standing in a picket line next to minutemen and members of the ku klux klan or skinheads then you should probably reexamine your stance on illegal immigration.

  • Park City Resident
    Jan. 19, 2008 1:18 p.m.

    It's one thing to be compassionate, quite another to totally disregard the law of the land and ignore illegal immigration into our state. Seems that nearly every crime news story now involves a hispanic perpetrator. I reject the notion that all of these people are peace loving folks just here for a better life. Just take a look at the 10 most wanted on Parks City's own police website. Also remember all of those Utah citizens killed at the hand of hispanic violence due to gangs or drunk driving (remember the Ceran family).

    Compassion is a warm bus ride back to Mexico!


  • Disgusted
    Jan. 19, 2008 1:21 p.m.

    Translation of "Humane Treatment" = keep the illegals here and maybe, as Oren Hatch proposes, send their kids to college on taxpayers money.

    This is the most serious problem in this country today and aiding and abetting the illegals is beyond stupid.



  • Frank
    Jan. 19, 2008 1:24 p.m.

    I must say that I agree to any proposal, comment, article, etc. that asks us to treat all people as humans?

  • RE: To Phebe,
    Jan. 19, 2008 1:27 p.m.

    May I ask the poster: What is YOUR problem? You post drivel like that and have the nerve to call anyone *else* bigoted? Shame on you. You want to know who's making the church look bigoted--take a good, hard look in your mirror. Sheesh!

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 19, 2008 1:27 p.m.

    Whenever there's a letter to the editor about immigration, the comments section lights up such hateful rhetoric, it's hard to believe its coming from fellow Utahns. That church leaders have asked our representatives to tone it down seems also to have toned down the invective here. Good for them. I've said this here before, but immigrant laborers pay do pay taxes and receive few services. Of those of you who want all these people to get in line, tell me where is that line. It doesn't exist. Our immigration policy is out of date. The numbers do not reflect reality.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 19, 2008 1:42 p.m.

    You can thank the conservatives for all of the hatred hurled at their fellow human beings.
    It's the times we live in.
    A nasty, nasty lot are the conservatives.

  • Another from AZ
    Jan. 19, 2008 1:44 p.m.

    I second the other from AZ.
    LDS leaders could you pass on the message about being humane about immigration laws to state Rep. Russell Pearce? He is a member of the church and as a LDS I am embarrassed when non-members friends ask me if all the mormons feel the same about immigration.

  • Missing the Point
    Jan. 19, 2008 1:48 p.m.

    Are people too busy bashing on "Bob" to read each others' posts? The key issue here is NOT whether the Church turns a blind eye to illegal immigration and obedience to laws (untrue, OK?). The key issue is whether we ourselves have the human decency to find a humane solution to this problem. That's what the church supports. Period.

    Those of you who support mass deportations of all illegals--why don't you just build the concentration camps while you're at it? Those of you making noise about some alleged cultural conquest--back up the conspiracy-theory truck a few miles, will ya? North American culture isn't about to be torn apart by people trying to make a better life for themselves and their families. And people blaming immigrants for crime--some illegals do commit misdemeanors and felonies, yes. Punish THAT group severely. Keep out the Mexican drug gangs and foreign terrorists as we value our lives, too. But the vast majority of crime is committed by people who've been life-long Americans. Many crimes would happen WITHOUT illegal immigration.

    Bottom line: Don't turn a land of liberty and opportunity into a police state--or worse--over xenophobia and bigotry. Be humane, decent, and charitable.

  • Mormon4ever
    Jan. 19, 2008 1:59 p.m.

    "Let us be more merciful. Let us get the arrogance out of our lives, the conceit, the egotism. Let us be more compassionate, gentler, filled with forbearance and patience and a greater measure of respect one for another. In so doing, our very example will cause others to be more merciful, and we shall have greater claim upon mercy of God who in His love will be generous toward us." President Gordon B. Hinckley

  • Romney Stance
    Jan. 19, 2008 2:08 p.m.

    Romney has taken a very tough stance as to dealing with illegals. Mike Huckaby promote a "Kind and Gentle" approach which is similar to the LDS Church stance of "Humane and Compassionate Treatment".

    The problem is that 90% of the LDS members support Romney and his stance where only 10% support Huckaby and the LDS Church. The church leaders need to take a second look at their meddling in the affairs of government.

  • Jorge Ramos
    Jan. 19, 2008 2:21 p.m.

    Do the Utah state congressional leaders meet with the LDS hierarchy every year? Is there any other state in the Union where this happens? What in the name of dog has happened to the separation of church and state in Utah. BTW LDS, and the follows of this cult, wants the ILLEGAL ALIEN slave laborers because they and their ILK can profit off the backs of these peons. Isn't that what mormonism is all about? Accumulate for the next life?

  • Eric
    Jan. 19, 2008 2:26 p.m.

    Most of the comments already posted are in vain, as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has not made a statement about immigration other than it does not take a position. We only have Mr. Litvack and Mr. Clark's interpretations of what the Church conveyed to them (although I agree with them and believe they are consistent with Church policy).
    Anonymous and others have blamed conservatives for hatred towards our fellow human beings. General statements such as that create hatred in and of themselves. Consider and research the views of Ron Paul on immigration, a true conservative. His economic and foreign policies would bring economic stability to the countries form whence the illegals are coming (the most compassionate thing a country can do) and maintain the sovereignty of our country.

  • Undocumented ! ! !
    Jan. 19, 2008 2:45 p.m.

    Talk about undocumented -- this blog is plastered with UNDOCUMENTED claims and theories, by Anonymous people. Will you show us where you get this stuff?

    And many of you were TOLD "A-B-C", but HEARD "B-C-D", and don't seem to know the difference.

    The LDS representatives are visible, with good track records. Who are you?

    Then the "Church-owned" newspaper reported it, not covered it up. And gave you a forum to post your opinions from the sidelines. Where's the evil?

  • Emigration
    Jan. 19, 2008 3:07 p.m.

    Our son just spent his Christmas vacation in Mexico, with 82 other US students, each at their own expense, building basic homes for natives.

    When he called home after just a couple of days, he had already seen firsthand why so many of the people there want to "emigrate" legally or not. The poverty, drugs, the corruption at all levels of government, lack of opportunity, crime, cops on the take, and more crime, porn, lack of sanitation, poor education, etc., etc.

    We're going back with them next vacation. The more sanitary homes and good opportunities we can help them build, the more they will want to stay and help others build a better life and better country, and the fewer will see a need to come north illegally.

    And while this organization is not LDS, most of the youth who go are, acting on their faith.

  • The deranged are making an issue
    Jan. 19, 2008 3:17 p.m.

    Russ (7:57), "I don't live in Utah anymore, but I can tell you one thing. If that happened in my present state, the citizens would ask loudly and clearly: WHY????!!!??"

    First, it is typical in most states for legislative leaders to meet with various representatives from Churches. For example, in Tennessee, "The diocesan leaders met with Gov. Bredesen at the conclusion of Day on the Hill, discussing many of the same issues with him." Just in case you are ignorant. The term Diosesan is a Catholic one and not Mormon. The main difference between legislative leaders meeting with representatives from the Public Affairs Department of the LDS Church in Utah and legislative leaders meeting with Church officials outside of Utah is that deranged people blow it out of context in Utah.

    The ignorant feel to realize that every action taken by the legislative will have an impact on the Church and its members os they so they have every right to express their views just like the ACLU, the NRA, NAACP, Sierra Club, etc has the right to meet with legislators and have their views heard. It's not reasonable for any Church to be quiet on things affecting them.

  • Give it a rest nutjobs
    Jan. 19, 2008 3:32 p.m.

    Jorge Ramos, yes it does happen in other states. In fact, the majority of state legislatures meet with Church leaders and representatives from most major religions and there are even days when Muslim leaders (gasp) will meet with members of the Legislature. Your ignorance of what they are talking about in the article indicates your lack of knowledge about what happens in a legislature.

    For example, an article in Post-Standard of (Syracuse, New York) titled "Bishop and Legislators to discuss public policy" stated "Moynihan and other Roman Catholic leaders from New York are expected to meet with legislators..." Do you get it yet. Every Church has its special affairs or lobbying arm because there are issues which affect that Church which they like to bring to the attention of legislators.

    Routinely during legislative sessions organizations will meet with legislators to discuss their interests and the interests of their members whether that organization is a Church or the Sierra Club. This is a basic concept of democracy that you seem to know understand. Maybe taking a High School civics class might benefit you and dispel the ignorance.

  • Idaho Kid
    Jan. 19, 2008 3:33 p.m.

    It has been intresting to note the comments that have been made on this simple statement. To show a little more compasion towards others. What's wrong with that? It seems like some people just have a deep seated need to hate something. If it's not the Mormon Church, or something a Church official says, They are going to find something else to hate. Just think of it. How would it be to go through life hating one thing or another. What a waste.

  • Fredd
    Jan. 19, 2008 3:49 p.m.

    The difference in Utah is that the state motto is "Follow the Bretheren". And the state song is "Praise the Man". If the Church proclaimed the driving age must be raised to 18 you'd see a bill and a substantial following for no other reason then the church wants it.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 19, 2008 4:05 p.m.

    Any measure to humanize the plight of poor fellow human beings trying to survive, is a good thing.

    Anything to counter the onslaught of the Nazi-like hatred directed towards today's new scapegoats (The Mexicans), is the Christian thing to do.

  • DahktaD
    Jan. 19, 2008 4:13 p.m.

    These country is NOT run by theogracy, but the LDS, Catholics, Methodist are determined to run this country by their prospective pulpits. Our immigration problems are hampered by these theologists who insist laws written by congress, that the citizens of this country demanded, are ignored, disobeyed, or made a mockery of. Like the lady in Chicago, ILLEGAL, who hid a catholic church for a year with the complicity of the church protecting her! I am fed up with churches getting into the middle of what is good for the country and what the taxpaying citizens DEMAND from our government. If the churches insist on input, then their tax exempt status should be immediately revoked!

  • I'm just saying
    Jan. 19, 2008 4:15 p.m.

    Who were the first illegal immigrants in Utah? That's right, the Mormon pioneers. Utah belonged to Mexico all those years ago. Keeping that in mind might help us have more compassion for the current round of illegal aliens trying to make a better life for themselves, just like my ancestors did 150+ years ago.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 19, 2008 4:26 p.m.

    The cost to identify, single out, round-up, prosecute, and transport millions of people, (at taxpayers expense) is cost prohibited.
    Aren't you illegal-haters paying attention to the economy?

  • Bobby
    Jan. 19, 2008 4:28 p.m.

    TO: "I'm just Saying" Try selling your compassion to the families of people illegals have murdered or otherwise violated! If you feel so guilty about the Mormon Settlers civilizing Utah then perhaps you should go live in Mexico so you could feel better.

  • DahktaD
    Jan. 19, 2008 4:30 p.m.

    I also find in amusing about the proclaimation of being humane. What bunch of hypocrits! What about the honest business owner who obeys the law by NOT hiring illegals, but looses his business to one who does because that corrupt church going buiness owner HIRES illegals to under bid honest competitors?! Or our rising violent crime problem with illegals and their gangs?! Or our hospitals, schools, public services are maxed out due to illegal immigration?! We are a country of immigrants...LEGAL IMMIGRANTS! All the church is doing is making an excuse for amnesty...how dare the church try to influence our lawmakers to try swing things the "church's way". But then they will get their way since religious bias is used in this state to elect mormons only.

  • Today's Youth
    Jan. 19, 2008 4:41 p.m.

    People, illegal immigration is bad. It's ruining our country's future. Instead of funding something like a cure for cancer, we are funding people who shouldn't even be here. They give them privileges like tutors when they should just be in Mexico or wherever they came from. Schools are now forcing students to learn Spanish when the funding could go toward something else. The 'No Child Left Behind' program is slowing classes down for people (like illegals) who can't catch up, ruining chances for smart kids who are ahead even more. Nobody should be supporting this catastrophe.

  • Humane?
    Jan. 19, 2008 4:50 p.m.

    I wish the church would take into account that the victims of illegal aliens are also human. Whether you've been raped, had your identity stolen or been involved in an accident with an illegal without insurance, there are real victims out there.

    Reading between the lines, it appears that the church is implying that if any of the anti-illegal bills pass, the church will consider those lawmakers to be demonizers of illegals.

    I say we treat illegals with utmost respect and human dignity as we round them up and invite them to return home. If they refuse we can politely escort them. That's our right.

  • Today's Youth
    Jan. 19, 2008 4:55 p.m.

    Even if they're not supposed to be here, we can be nicely send them back to their country. Having illegals stay here and have a low-income job is NOT the answer.

  • Clarity
    Jan. 19, 2008 5:11 p.m.

    Stop and think about who the audience is here. The Church is not advocating the violation of existing laws. It is addressing the makers of future laws, not the enforcers of current laws. Remember the three branches of government? Shaping the direction of laws that may in the future be drafted is quite different from advocating the violation of existing laws.

  • AZ resident
    Jan. 19, 2008 5:22 p.m.

    The immigration issue is one complex, heart-breaking, frustrating struggle for many--politicians, Christians, tax-payers, citizens, legal immigrants and illegal immigrants. As one who has seen an entire neighborhood lose its culture, the neighborhood school lose all anglo children, and the crime rate soar, racism rears its ugly head. Racism, however, is NOT the issue. People make choices. Those adults and parents who chose to enter illegaly must expect to pay consequences. Were they honesly expecting to forge documents, steal ID's, and forge social security numbers forever? Did they really expect the city, state, and federal social services to support them and their children? The tenets of civilized behavior include abiding by the laws of the land.

  • Hmmm
    Jan. 19, 2008 5:39 p.m.

    I thought the "Church" did not involve itself in politics. See why some of us are scared of Romney

  • dean
    Jan. 19, 2008 6:00 p.m.

    I believe in treating all humans fairly, showing the same compassion for all. I do wonder why there can be two sets of standards for those who come here illegally and those who choose to obey the laws of the land. How can we send illegals to the temple when they have disobeyed a law?

  • Don't tell me who to hire tyrant
    Jan. 19, 2008 6:02 p.m.

    DahktaD, Churches have every right to insist that they have a voice in a government that affects them. If you don't want a Church to have a say then make sure that none of your damn laws apply to the Church. You think being tax exempt is such a great thing but it's not when the laws of the land still apply to you.

    How dare you say that the people affected by your vote and the laws passed by legislatures are wrong for speaking out. That is their right and that is the right of every organization that is affected by the laws of this country and anything less then that is tryannical. You are a dictator who wants the Church to obey the laws but have no sayin those laws. That proves to me that you are horrible person and your hateful comments need to be responded to.

    I agree completely that we are a country of legal immigrants and therefore think the laws passed by people like you should be repealed and these illegal immigrants should be legal while you can shut up and mind your own families business and not mine.

  • Hmmm is a tryant
    Jan. 19, 2008 6:10 p.m.

    Hmmm, the Church has repeatedly stated that they do not get involved in politics which means they don't support specific candidates or political parties but the Church will maintain its right to speak out on issues that affect the Church and its members like every Church maintains. This isn't the same as getting involved with politics instead it's getting involved in government which is a huge difference.

    But of course you believe the Church should just shut up and obey the laws of the United States while not having any say in them because you think this is a country where Churches are subject to the state but have no say. You feel that they should obey the laws but not have a say in them. You think they should keep their mouth shut, mind their own business and honor and obey the laws passed by our country but not have a say. You and those like you are tryants and people need to condemn you for it.

    If good people don't speak out then people like you will win and entire organizations will have to obey our laws while not having a right to speak on them.

  • Latino
    Jan. 19, 2008 6:13 p.m.

    Thank you LDS Church!! Very nice way to address this very important issue. I hope Rep. Glen Donnelson and other Lawmakers realize that thier statements are as close of an endorsement for immigration reform. Don't forget its the "element of humanity" that we must take into account. The Utah Minuteman and their supporters need to be reminded of this important principle.

  • Religious freedom gives us right
    Jan. 19, 2008 6:18 p.m.

    The best comment on this issue is "In a democracy that is free and robust, an opinion is no more disqualified for being religious than for being atheistic, or psychoanalytic, or Marxist, or just plain dumb. There is no legal or constitutional question about the admission of religion to the public square; there is only a question about the free and equal participation of citizens in our public business. Religion is not a reified thing that threatens to intrude upon our common life. Religion in public is but the public opinion of those citizens who are religious. As with individual citizens, so also with the associations that citizens form to advance their opinions. Religious institutions may understand themselves to be brought into being by God, but for the purposes of this democratic polity they are free associations of citizens. As such, they are guaranteed the same access to the public square as are the citizens who comprise them."

    Those of you who have a problem with this are tyrants by nature and feel that Churches should have no say in the laws they must live under but still be bound to do so.

  • Experienced Immigrant III
    Jan. 19, 2008 6:55 p.m.


    I'd again like to bring to attention the generosity of the people I know in Central and South America. I know of hundreds of families in Panama who worked extremely hard to have a temple in their country. Even though it's a smaller temple, their temple is a symbol of unspeakable sacrifice on their part. There isn't a temple in Central or South America that hasn't come into being without stories of tremendous devotion and honesty and testimony and good will. I'd submit the same for anywhere in the world. The church is a worldwide organization of brothers and sisters. In regards to immigration as far as I'm concerned it's like being on one side of the bedroom v.s. the other. One thing I would say to anyone immigrating to the U.S. from Central America is that there sure are a lot of natural resources you guys have down there that we don't have up here - in Utah at least -. We certainly don't have any beaches - especially this time of year. I'd wish the best for anyone, and we get more of that with being members of the church.

  • Carl
    Jan. 19, 2008 7:09 p.m.

    If it means more "numbers" for the Church, they will rationalize around the law - then wink and nod and go forth and say there are higher laws!

  • Moap Box
    Jan. 19, 2008 7:33 p.m.

    "LDS Church leaders have told legislative bosses"

    These words made me cringe. Like nails on a chalkboard. Like all of my hairs stand on end. My stomach flip-flopped.

    The FACT that "THE" COJCOLDS 'tells' our government ANYTHING sends me REELING. If "THE" COJCOLDS isnt going to lean one way or the other on an issue, officially, then why BOTHER.

    It is soooo wrong.

    A star should be removed from Our Flag. Utah doesnt deserve one.

  • russ
    Jan. 19, 2008 7:38 p.m.

    Not a new idea but a good one: illegal immigration? Legal immigration?

    Big fence, big gate. Verify all who enter and who are already here. Toss back those who won't comply.

    A nation without secure borders is not a nation. And a nation without a heart and soul, is not one worth living in. I love this country.

  • questions
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:23 p.m.

    Mormon leaders appear to be moving inexorably to the liberal side of the political spectrum. Who in church leadership is pushing "element of humanity."

    That brings up the question of the humanity of illegal immigrants whose demands on our system from criminal, educational and welfare costs have become enormous. Not all American students can get state resident college tuition as some states allow for illegals.

    Precisely what does "element of humanity" mean. It appears that the statement is primarily directed at Hispanics as most of the comments in this stream shows, when in fact, illegal immigration spans a wide swath of ethnicities.

  • Some more facts
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:37 p.m.

    Corrupt governments in the world have over 5 BILLION people living in them. Are you willing to accept them all? Just how much do you believe that the U.S. citizen taxpayer can afford? Our economy is already in the toilet!

    Have you seen the problems of the California budget? IT is rapidly approaching impossible to resolve. The governor just proposed a huge decrease is EVERY state function. It was 10% across the board. What do you think would happen to our education system if we did the same? It IS coming if we do not deal with the problem of overloading our schools with the children of illegal immigrants who are NOT here legally.

    We had a state audit that determined that the cost of illegal immigration to our education system was at least 58 million, perhaps as much as 85 million - or more. Which one of you pro-illegal alien folks are willing to pick up the tab for these people?

  • Betrayed
    Jan. 19, 2008 8:39 p.m.

    Deal with the issue "humanely"? I'm sorry, but what's "inhumane" about denying illegal immigrants driver's licenses? What's "inhumane" about denying illegal immigrants in-state tuition? What's inhumane about denying them bank accounts or bank loans or public education or birthright citizenship or fining employers who hire them?

    This isn't about treating illegals "inhumanely." This is the LDS Church acknowledging what many of us have long suspected: that they are fully in favor of illegal immigration. Two reasons, I suspect: one is baptism arbitrage - a member baptized in Latin America who moves here illegally is far more likely to remain a member and will pay a whole lot more in tithing over the long haul.

    The other is that so many of the Church's richest members benefit financially from illegal immigration: the Ivorys, the Marriotts, the Holdings, the Peerys, the Fultons, etc. The LDS Church has always taken a special view of its rich members.

    Another thing I'd like to know: when the Church speaks out in support of "right-wing" causes (anti-abortion, etc.) the leftists in this state are quick to jump on the "separation of church and state." Why are they so quiet now?

  • Alan
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:00 p.m.

    Amazing, I am not a mormon and I am not here to defend your church, but some of you that criticize the LDS church need to chill. I have lived in NC,Texas, Mo., and Az,you can bet your sweet arse that other religions make trips to their legislators to make sure that they know what their positions are. the Church of God in Mo. The Baptist in Texas,and NC, and yes the Catholic church in Arizona they all do. You are naive to think otherwise.

  • dave 4197
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:33 p.m.

    Glad to hear the LDS Church is speaking out against the ugliness of the immigration debate. We certainly need more compassion for our fellow human beings. Utah should be an example of this. I have written several posts in the DesMoNews, and in the SLTrib, consistently pointing out that we are a wealthy people, and we can afford to help those poor among us.
    We need to invest our money and our time in helping our poor neighbors, by hiring them in good jobs, by educating them and their children in our schools, and by investing in building their economy in Mexico. People's quality of life is more important than an arbitrary line on a map. It's less expensive than many think.

  • To Just Saying
    Jan. 19, 2008 9:39 p.m.

    Actually, since the U.S. Mexican War was in progress during the first Mormon migration to the mountains, Utah actually belonged to the U.S. (rightly or wrongly) by the time the Mormons arrived.

    Timing is everything!!

  • Thoughts of J. Lennon
    Jan. 19, 2008 10:18 p.m.

    Here's some thoughts about
    people getting along:

    Imagine all the people living for today

    Imagine all the people living life in peace
    Nothing to kill or die (and hate) for

    Imagine all the people Sharing ALL the world
    No need for GREED or HUNGAR

    Imagine a Brotherhood of Man

    You may say I'm a dreamer,
    but I'm not the only one

    Hope someday you'll join us
    and the world will live as one...

  • Emil Stanstead
    Jan. 19, 2008 10:37 p.m.

    I more or less agree with their position, but I also still have to say they've no business wading into the argument. Stay out of the legislature, congress, and the presidency. Our churches should be places of a doctrine common to believers. Our governments have to be places of doctrine common to most, if not all, citizens.

  • Jew
    Jan. 19, 2008 11:14 p.m.

    The Mormons have all the right in the world to meet with politicians and whomever they want. All the whinners need to get a grip and go take a hike!

    This is America, the land of the Free!!!

  • That humbled me.
    Jan. 19, 2008 11:25 p.m.

    Oh that I could have more of that spirit of empathy and compassion. I know without a doubt that when the church teaches throughout the world that we believe on honoring and obeying and sustaining the laws of the land, they mean it. I do not know how many illegals were Mormon's when they came over, but if they were, they would know better. Sometimes we citizens take for granted this great land we live in, others are so desperately wanting to be here. When the little dutch boy stuck his finger in the dike, that was a start to a major problem that needed to be fixed. We need to have a start with illegals and that is to secure the borders. Then we need to without hesitation get the ones who are committing crimes out of here. Then there comes the heart wrenching one, and I really need to understand the pain and anxiety that the good people who were trying to better their lives, but did it the wrong way are facing, that is what to do with them. Every case is different and we do need to have compassion and kindness, no matter the outcome.

  • bball3212
    Jan. 20, 2008 12:06 a.m.

    If you bash LDS church leaders for doing this, then you better well bash the evangelical leaders who not only try and get candidates elected, they preach politics from their pulpit and have no shame in doing so.

  • I agree that people need to chil
    Jan. 20, 2008 1:02 a.m.

    Alan (9:00 p.m.), "Amazing, I am not a mormon and I am not here to defend your church, but some of you that criticize the LDS church need to chill. I have lived in NC,Texas, Mo., and Az,you can bet your sweet arse that other religions make trips to their legislators to make sure that they know what their positions are....You are naive to think otherwise."

    This is very difficult for people to accept in Utah because they choose to make everything about the LDS Church when it doesn't have anything to do with the Church. We saw how our legislature and people really listen to Church leaders when it came to repealing prohibition. The Church took an outspoken position on the issue and yet Utah was instrumental and crucial to repealing prohibition. So, I think that people do need to chill out and realize that every Church has the right to speak to the issues they feel are important to their Church and its members. Anything less would mean that a Church is subject to the state but has no right to influence the state. That is tyranny!

  • Voice of Reason?
    Jan. 20, 2008 1:50 a.m.

    I'm shaking my head reading some of this stuff. Thanks to the non-LDS folks here who defend the church's right to make its voice heard--NOT in the interest of getting new members (huh?), but in the interest of promoting overall humanity and decency.

    Three reasoned possible solutions:

    1) Agreed, being humane DOESN'T mean we open our borders to Mexican drug gangs, human smugglers, and foreign terrorists, while allowing those among the illegal immigrants who have committed aggravated misdemeanors and felonies to remain. So we secure the border against certain groups we REALLY don't want here, and deport illegals with criminal records--to SOUTHERNMOST Mexico.

    2) We give immigrants whose ONLY crime was entering without full legal permission, in the interest of feeding their families, a humane chance to make good. Let them pay the appropriate fines--with ample mandatory backing from their U.S. employers--and apply for legal work permits *from here.* Require them to return to Mexico to apply if they don't comply within 6 months.

    3) We streamline the visa application process to make it less intimidating, but permanently revoke visas for those convicted of aggravated misdemeanors and felonies--and deport them, again to SOUTHERNMOST Mexico.

    Humane yet just enough?

  • OC Surfer
    Jan. 20, 2008 2:01 a.m.

    I support the Church's position by showing "compassion" by unifying all illegal immigrant families living here in the U.S. back to their homelands. Their anchor babies are welcome to join them as well.

  • cjp
    Jan. 20, 2008 5:33 a.m.

    Can't believe the all Mormon bashing in the comments --- The LDS leaders just want to remind us that these people are for the most part diecent human beings and deserve to be treated accordingly.

  • LOL!
    Jan. 20, 2008 5:48 a.m.

    You think Billy Graham never met with political leaders? Do you also think the Pope never met with political leaders? Do you also think that Jewish and Muslim leaders are not also sat at the table to meet with those in political powers? The fact is that religious leaders, including LDS, do indeed meet with those that politically represent us for the simple fact that we as a people also follow those religious leaders.

    Perhaps the mormons understand the immigration issues because it has the potential for being like the polygamy issue in which fathers were thrown in jail just as fathers may be sent back to Mexico.

    Nope, I'm not a mormon either.

  • joining forces
    Jan. 20, 2008 7:26 a.m.

    The Catholic church has been embracing the Statue of Liberty's "Give me your tired, your poor ..." in aiding the poor and impoverished masses for a long, long time.

    Can you imagine the impact on the world today by the combined efforts of the Catholics and the Mormons in this regard?

    What an incredible example it would be!

  • Gordon
    Jan. 20, 2008 9:32 a.m.

    If the Mormon church leaders meet with the Utah legistlature then they will meet with Mitt about US policy. That is the point and that is why we are very concerned about Mitt, and Huckabee is no better.

  • Family of 7
    Jan. 20, 2008 9:44 a.m.

    I have believed all my life in obeying the Law of the land as the church has said. However, I find much of this far too hypocritical. I will no longer will remain a member.

  • Real JEW
    Jan. 20, 2008 10:05 a.m.

    I think it is large mistake what the church is doing and as a Jew I would never agree. I do not have the right to really voice my opinion on LDS laws. Although, me and my family as true legal Americans of 2 generations, do not enjoy the many illegals in this country. We do not enjoy freeloaders. We as a family have had to work extremely hard for what we have. Nothing has ever come free to us. However, the Jewish culture is much different than that of Mexican culture.

  • numskull
    Jan. 20, 2008 10:46 a.m.

    provojoe said "The Book of Mormon says that no one will come to this country unless they are led here by God."

    Huh? Where's that? Where does the Book of Mormon say that those who come to the United States of America (often from other countries in the Americas) are led here by God? It doesn't. You're probably thinking of 2 Nephi 1:6-7, where Lehi refers to "this land." Not "this country." I think most scholars agree that when Lehi made this prophecy he was in Central or South America, so if you want to correlate "this land" to a modern country, it wouldn't be the USA. More likely, Lehi means all of the Americas. If so, then many of the current illegal immigrants or their ancestors were already in the promised land, having been led there by God, before they crossed the border into the US in violation of US law.

  • Dawes
    Jan. 20, 2008 10:57 a.m.

    The LDS Church is NOT a law making branch of our government. And should stay out of it, especially if it is gong to start acting like a political institution like the Catholic Church has done in past history. Law makers should not even have to go talk to a special LDS committee.

  • numskull
    Jan. 20, 2008 10:58 a.m.

    I read the entire article, and found the title misleading. It comes down to the impressions and recollections of two legislators (Clark and Litvack) about the meeting and what they think LDS Church representatives meant. It's hard to tell how close what they said is to being a quote or just an impression. In fact, in one place Litvack is quoted as saying, "I interpreted what was said as . . ." The only actual statement reported to be from the Church is that it has "taken no position regarding currently proposed immigration legislation".

    This is just lousy journalism, and it gives the impression, based on interpretations and impressions, that the Church is taking a position on immigration legislation, when the only real quote from the Church says otherwise. If the Church representatives did give that impression, then lets see some quotes and hear from more people present. Otherwise, I don't see how anyone can draw any conclusions.

  • St. George guy
    Jan. 20, 2008 11:12 a.m.

    Not allowing someone who has no legal right to be here, to get a job is just and humane. I have compassion for every one in prison for every crime. But christians need to remmember that God believes in justice too.

  • Randy
    Jan. 20, 2008 11:26 a.m.

    Maybe the Church can pay for their healthcare - food stamps - ect ect. I know I am tired of my tax dollars doing it.

  • Fred
    Jan. 20, 2008 11:35 a.m.

    The lousy writing, headling writing and editing have opened a hornet's nest. Let's hear what the Church REALLY says on this issue - instead of through the filter that was applied by the "spokesman" and the "reporter". The article raises more questions than it answers. Are ILLEGALS welcome in the Church and in Utah? Should we humanely send ILLEGALS back to Mexico to build up their stakes there? Or does the church really believe that we should bend the "law of the land" and succor and nurture our poor ILLEGAL brethren? What part of obeying and sustaining the law should we disregard? This is BIG! Let's get the story right!

  • Movin out!
    Jan. 20, 2008 11:54 a.m.

    I can tell you right now, and as well having a very large family, and paying full tithing, IT will now end! To fund illegals in our LDS faith is out of the question COMPLETELY. I have a tendency to agree with Family of 7 above. Thanks but know thanks! I cannot tolerate hypocrisy of any kind! I work my darn and my fingers to the bone and have always been supportive. But no longer!!

  • Sort of Skeptical
    Jan. 20, 2008 11:59 a.m.

    With regard to the LDS church meeting with the Utah State Legislature I suppose they have a right to do so. However, with 80% of the legislature being LDS, and the LDS culture, if not doctrine, stating that the church leaders are to be obeyed without question leads to some serious questions about the separation of church and state in Utah.

    Some poster's incessant "traffic ticket" analogies to violating a country's territorial laws are specious at best. I suppose extortion, embezzlement, and burglary are also comparable to doing 50 in a 45 MPH speed zone.

    The argument that illegal immigrants are not treated "humanely" enough is ridiculous!!! Where else but the United States can an illegal immigrant get free health care, free schooling, and endless appeals (all paid by our tax dollars) so they cannot be deported. Of course, Utah adds drivers licenses and in-state college tuition benefits (how did that happen????).

    Bottom line is the Utah State legislature should perform its sworn duty and represent the desires of the vast majority of Utahns and aid in the deportation of illegal aliens. That is what the citizens of Utah and the nation want, not a thinly disguised "amnesty".

  • insane
    Jan. 20, 2008 2:10 p.m.

    The "church" cant even cover up their lies anymore. YES they meet with state officials and tell them how to vote, and YES this is agianst everything that America stands for. Please get a clue LDS and stay out of our policy. I cant wait until Utah finally decides to enter the union.

  • Larry B
    Jan. 20, 2008 2:13 p.m.

    Massive mind-blowing illegal immigration is destroying this nation before our very eyes. This is not a time to "step back and take a deep breath". This is a time to take immediate action to confront an invasion that is surging rapidly and threatening our citizenship, sovereignty, and rule of law. It is a time to put pandering and quisling politicians feet to the fire so they will be forced to secure our borders and enforce immigration laws in the workplace and in our jails and prisons while there is still time.

  • delquattro
    Jan. 20, 2008 3:41 p.m.

    As a LDS, I would hope that the church is suggesting that the human lives it is concerned with are the Americans'. Afterall, it is their country, their republican government, their standard of living, their hospitals and their constitution. BTW, does the church still endorse the 12th Article of Faith?

  • Georgia
    Jan. 20, 2008 6:36 p.m.

    The LDS Church is just after the numbers and the Tithing dollars that comes with fast growth. They are a business, and their stance on immigration is a reflection of their business interests. A majority of their membership growth comes from Latinos, so they want to support an immigration policy that enables their ambitious Latino growth.

    And what do you think Mitt Romney will do about immigration? You bet he will push for policies that help his church become even larger and grow faster, regardless of the impact on the US economy or security issues or healthcare meltdowns in border states...

    Watch out! The corruption of the ancient Christian Church happened just like this!

  • RE: Church Position
    Jan. 20, 2008 7:10 p.m.

    A letter dated 29 Jan 2007, given to legislators the night before the bill to end in-state tuition for illegal aliens died for the want of one vote.

    Title: Statement on In-State Tuition For Undocumented Students

    First paragraph:
    "The Alliance for Unity today announced its unanimous opposition to HB 224, a proposal currently before the Utah legislature. The proposal would repeal current laws permitting undocumented students {read illegal aliens} who reside in Utah,...to pay in-state tuition {rates} at an institution of higher education in the State."

    One of the many signers of this letter:

    "M. Russell Ballard
    Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints"

    Does anyone actually doubt the position of the church in respect to illegal aliens? I don't!

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 20, 2008 7:39 p.m.

    There in never going to be a Great Wall of America. There is never going to be a purging of millions of Mexicans.
    It is cost prohibited and our country is near bankrupt funding the Bush Doctrine's perpetual war.

  • DahktaD
    Jan. 20, 2008 7:41 p.m.

    Between Organized Religion, Democrats, Republicans, and the politically correct leftist/special interest groups, the once Great United States of America, will become a socialist, third world nation within 25 years...unless true patriots of the US do something about it. First vote the spineless politicians out of office and replace them with politicians who swear to uphold and ABIDE by the US Constitution; 2nd, personal religious freedom is one thing, organized, non taxpaying 'religious' institutions should not be allowed ANY influence with US or State law.

  • LDS
    Jan. 20, 2008 7:48 p.m.

    The immigrants are not illegal, they are Lamanites and LDS and they are the rightful owners of this land. We are the illegals, just read your book of mormon and appreciate the kindnss of the book of mormon people in permiting us to live here.

  • Bobby
    Jan. 20, 2008 9:19 p.m.

    Comments are monitored.Any comment found to be "abusive", "offensive", ...........,

    So many blog sites have this statement or a version of it. These restrictions reveal some kind of agenda by the blog site. It is utterly against the Western tradition of having a free exchange of ideas between the citizenry. It is censorship, Soviet, communist, nazi, style--no matter what excuses you use for it. Thus we can see the slow, creeping, corruption of the internet with regards to "free speech".

  • Experienced Immigrant IV
    Jan. 21, 2008 1:00 a.m.

    I have an answer to the problem as it is and I speak from first hand experience as my wife is from Peru and here legally. What needs to happen is that there needs to be a window of time where we tell all illegals here that they must register and be identified. We provide a non-threatening incentive for them to step forward to where they're not threatened that they'll be deported. We give a window of time to document and account for the illegal population. A deadline is put in place and from the deadline forward any undocumented person found in the U.S. is deported. I'm simplifying a much more complex problem but in essence the government can't expect people to step forward and submit"I'm illegal deport me", nor has the government provided sufficient or has it been responsible in regards to deportation (nor should it break up families) - what it needs to do is to provide a window whereby the illegals themselves can help resolve the problem themselves and whereby they have incentive to do so and to be honest. Dis-honest are then sent home and the sifting happens.

  • Cherilyn
    Jan. 21, 2008 1:51 a.m.

    Humanity cuts both ways. Illegal aliens stole my car. The eerie details of the incident terrorized both me and my daughter for two weeks before the car was miraculously found.

    As the legislature defines what "humanity" means, I hope they will remember that those willing to come illegally are probably not the kind of citizens we want. The police department handling my case told me that the overwhelming majority of crimes in Utah are committed by illegals.

    Romney's got the right idea on compassion: Give illegals already here time to get their affairs in order and then compassionately give them a second chance to come back in legally by getting in line.

    Teddy Roosevelt made it clear that they must learn to speak English before they are admitted. That would be an excellent definition of compassion because they will be better prepared to be hired in higher paying jobs to support their families.

    As for the Book of Mormon stating that everyone that comes to America is led by God: I'm not so sure the Book of Mormon had in mind the terrorists we've allowed to illegally breach our borders and kill innocent husbands, wives, mothers, fathers, sons and daughters.

  • Sleepless in Ohio
    Jan. 21, 2008 4:21 a.m.

    It's so relieving that I live in a Gentile state where I can sit back and laugh at those who have such a hard time with lobbyists. Go to Rhode Island or Massachusetts and you'll see tons of Men of the Cloth in their black shirts and pants mingling with Legislators. It's no different for Utah or the LDS Church. Stop crying.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 21, 2008 7:29 a.m.

    Uh-Oh!
    Methinks somebody is stumping for more converts.

  • About Lamanites
    Jan. 21, 2008 7:31 a.m.

    Message from LDS above indicates the illegals are Lamanites. Perhaps we should include DNA testing before legalization. If they pass the tribe of Joseph test, they can stay. Otherwise, they don't. Sound OK to you? If you insist they are Lamanites, read 3 Ne 20 beginning at about verse 15 to see what's in store for the infidel Gentiles. Let's stick with the "obey the laws of the land", shall we?

  • russ
    Jan. 21, 2008 7:49 a.m.

    to Experienced Immigrant IV: you are correct. with 12 million plus illegals we are not going to ship them all home to where ever by what ever means. So we have to create a more workable solution. You and I and others did not create this mess, but we have the brains to logically, humanely and legally solve it. Give illegals so many months to come forward, get documented, and then let them get back to their jobs, pay taxes this time, and move on. Those who choose not to, they get the boot when caught. I have no idea how many will step forward, but they will if the idea is thoroughly publicized, leaders step forward to endorse it, and the means are available to be documented. We have the technology and the brains to organize this. But do we have the compassion and logical constructs? Not yet. It takes leadership. I listed to Mitt try to alibi his way past it. He was depending on luck. McCain is trying. But leadership needs to say: big fence, big gate, and let's give people their last great chance to be freely documented.
    Maybe the democrats will have this answer. Eh?

  • john
    Jan. 21, 2008 8:17 a.m.

    From the article:
    "We communicated our policy ... The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has taken no position regarding currently proposed immigration legislation"

    Gosh, I really wonder what was inside the ellipses?

    Seems to me the LDS church EITHER "communicated their policy" OR they had "taken no position" the answer is obviously in the edited out portion of the quote. The double-speak is pure Orwellian.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 21, 2008 11:29 a.m.

    Don't ya just LOVE how a Theocracy works?

  • SG
    Jan. 21, 2008 12:07 p.m.

    Sorry, but this article is quite confusing to me. I'm seeing some extreme double standards going on here. It doesn't intense my faith any. Thanks for the article... It makes me re-think everything I have been taught.

  • Taxman
    Jan. 21, 2008 12:29 p.m.

    If the lds church is going to have any type of influence or say in what laws should be passed (not that they don't already, hello zion curtain)....

    I think it's due time they started paying taxes! This state could greatly benefit from taxing the billions of dollars they generate each year.

  • Robin
    Jan. 21, 2008 1:00 p.m.

    The laws of our land should be upheld. The current law on the books reads if you are in the country illegally you are to be deported. Come to this country LEGALLY. The law protects all who are in the U.S. LEGALLY.

  • ediddy
    Jan. 21, 2008 2:21 p.m.

    This is so late into the discussion that I doubt it will get printed or read, but I suggest that those who have turned this, as usual, into a bash the LDS church session, or a church and state issue, should go back and read the original sunbmission. 1st, who is blind enough here to think that no other church or social organization sits down with legislative representatives before legislative sessions. Jews, Catholics, various independent and collective Protestants etc, all have representatives that meet with legislative leaders on a wide variety of issues of importance to them. That the article specifically mentions LDS leaders, does not mean they had exclusive access. 2nd, there is no mention that the LDS church advocated the abrogation of the "law of the land", only that it ouight to be remembered that even illegal immigrants are human beings and that compassion ought to play a role in decision making. Please tell me why an organization of any kind would not advocate the compassionate treatment of its members, even those who have broken the law? 3rd, Where does ripping on someone else or their church, club, wealth or whatever, ever increase your stature one iota?

  • Shelly
    Jan. 21, 2008 3:13 p.m.

    RE ediddy,
    Perhaps you are missing the point as well. People like you are partly the problem. As far as bashing going on here looks like you have joined the crowd. Everyone has a reason to comment. I believe as others on have written on here, about obeying the law of the land including church authorities. Read the 12th article of faith.

  • ediddy
    Jan. 21, 2008 4:23 p.m.

    Shelly,
    I've bashed no one, am well versed in the "12th article of faith", and wonder what your point is or why I am part of the problem? I simply maintain that this has become a chat room instead of an ongoing commentary on the original point of the original article. The commentary so often devolves into the same old slams that it loses cognitive objectivity. I do not believe the DS church has violated the law in meeting with legislative entities to voice it's opinion. If legislative representatives would spend a little more time listening to their constituents, singly or collevtively, from any and all interests, maybe we'd get more from government than we now do. Rather than rag on the LDS church, perhaps the those of differing interests would be better served to lobby their own cause. Others do, and if you don't think so, you're not paying attention. UEA, Eagle Forum, ACLU, Sierra Club to name only a few.

  • Fredd
    Jan. 21, 2008 5:01 p.m.

    My guess is when catholiics lobby the massachusets government they are not speaking with authority as much as informing. In the LDS culture it is expected the membership will obey when leadership speaks. When is the last time someone voted not to sustain the bishop in their ward? When the church had a letter read directing members to oppose same sex marriage a BYU professor wrote an op-ed opposing the church position. He was fired for disagreeing with the church. add the 80% plus majority in Utah state legislature and the church will get what it wants even if the indidual legislators disagree with church policy, We elect the legislator with an expectation of their votes. Not the votes of the first presidency.

  • Shelly
    Jan. 21, 2008 8:43 p.m.

    RE ediddy,
    Illegal immigrates are law breakers. As for me, I don't plan to pamper, hinder or egg on the problem. Supporters of law breakers are no better than the law breaker. Lets practice what we preach here! Live by-- and sustain all the laws of the land... No excuses!

  • jfrazier
    Jan. 21, 2008 9:21 p.m.

    Shelly,

    You do have a point, but let me put say something that may take the edge off the obvious infraction of the law. I, like you, believe that laws should be enforced. However, let's suppose that we are discussing the penalty phase of the crime in question. Do you not agree that there is a range of penalties with various degrees of harshness? Say that your son breaks a curfew law and this is his only infraction? Should he spend a month in jail? That is too harsh and I am sure you would agree. I think what is being said here is that these are otherwise very good people (okay, not all, but most) we are dealing with here so the punishment should fit the crime and how justice is applied should be done appropriately.

    As a member of the LDS religion I believe that laws provide order to society and without enforcement there is anarchy. Justice must be served, but it must be appropriate. I think the church leaders are just cautioning against mob mentality as opposed to thoughtful reasoning and putting things in proper perspective.

  • sammy
    Jan. 21, 2008 10:02 p.m.

    I agree with Shelly.

    I say send them packing. They chose to break our laws to come here. So they need to leave on their own without force if possible. Nobody is getting violent here. The illegals, however, have brought violence with them, along with breaking many of our laws. I have no compassion for ID, murdering people, thievery nor violence. We as Americans just simply want these people to leave by word.

    If my kid was causing trouble to the point of being in jail no matter how much I would hate it then so be it...what are my choices? NONE!!

  • RE: Russ -
    Jan. 21, 2008 10:57 p.m.

    I was discussing this solution with my father. I'll submit as well that with modern technology I'd think that some type of lazer fence of somekind that detects traffic would be much quicker and more efficient to use than a physical big fence - (although I know a big, physical, literal fence has been proposed etc.) - - - To any deportation Nazi's out there though, it's just un-realistic to somehow change things from how they are now (and that's that ICE - "Immigrations and Customs Enforcement") won't do anything until you have proof of someone's illegal immigration status. What incentives are there for anyone who associates with the public to go around narking on illegals and who has the time or heart for it? - It must be a negotiation rather than a dictatorial process where force is used, and the solution to the problem must come from those who have caused it. As it is in many ways the USCIS i.e. says, "come to the U.S. legally or don't come at all" but in the same breath they make it nearly impossible for some to come at all. My sister in law was one.

  • Jay
    Jan. 22, 2008 4:41 a.m.

    This is a poorly written article. Where are the "editors" at DMN?

  • Shelly
    Jan. 22, 2008 6:07 a.m.

    The problem with criminals (illegals) is that they don't seem to reason as that of a normal thinking person. So this means it make take force to get them out of this country, and to take their crime and drugs along with them. It's supporters and people like 10:06 pm who are part of the problem.

  • Neo-Nazis
    Jan. 22, 2008 6:43 a.m.

    I see the immigration issue has stirred up our Neo-Nazi Mormons on this blog.
    These conservatives truly are a wonder to behold, aren't they?
    Now I know what it must have been like in Nazi Germany when the same type of people wanted to round up everyone they didn't like.
    A nasty people they are indeed.

  • DahktaD
    Jan. 22, 2008 6:56 a.m.

    Ah Frazier...how do you compare a curfew violation with a violation of federal law? Whether you know it or not, most likely not, Title 8 USC 1325 clearly states the entry of a person into the US is in fact a crime, punishable with up to 6 months in jail...
    And under your religious guidance, we are to simply ignor the illegal misdeeds, and give them permanent residence as a reward. Under your simplification by just allowing by-gones be by-gones, should the same attitude be held on the narco traffickers, human smugglers, terrorist who have enter the US illegally as well? Or is your mind so narrow as to think only Mexicans cross our borders illegally...rather racist of you, isn't it?
    What I find remarkable in all this discourse about illegal immigration, is the blarring ignorance. Immediately when one mentions "illegal immigrant", all eyes move south to Mexico. Well, granted we do get quite a few from Mexico... but I wonder why China, Pakistan, Canada, India, Ivory Coast, Ireland, Germany, Iran, Russia, etc, just never seem to get on the radar screen? Look at the entirety of the problem, it is immense, and dangerous.

  • Shelly and Sammy
    Jan. 22, 2008 8:16 a.m.

    Do either of you ever speed? If so, you'd better turn yourselves in, demand a sentence of 15-20 years in prison, and fines of $500,000 for all the damage you did to society--both directly and indirectly. If not, congratulations for at least being partially consistent with your position. But maybe you'd better start advocating the death penalty for speeding to make yourselves FULLY consistent.

    Come on, you two and all you in the "illegals are lawbreakers and deserve harsh punishment" mob. Don't you people recognize there are some violations of the law that are more serious than others? And that merely crossing into our country illegally is a less serious violation than many others on the books?

    Now when illegal immigrants go on to commit far *worse* crimes, lock them up and throw away the key. As far as you can throw it! Fine with me! But part of being humane about illegal immigration is recognizing this: If entering the country illegally is your ONLY crime, and that you're just here to feed your family, you don't deserve the same punishment as a thief, rapist or murderer.

    That, folks, is ALSO the rule of law!

  • Grandma C.
    Jan. 22, 2008 8:25 a.m.

    Why all the venom and hatred here?
    The U.S. government is required to treat terrorists and war criminals in a humane manner. Church officials have suggested similar treatment for those who come to our country without the proper sanctions.
    To declare all illegals criminals is hateful and unnecessary. And reflects poorly on the values of the one who perpetuates such thinking.

  • h
    Jan. 22, 2008 9:04 a.m.

    The Law-of-the-Landers aren't fooling anyone with their not-so-cleverly-disguised hatred for people different than them.
    Nazi Germany also started off with legal reasons why some people in their midst should not be welcome.
    History shows what happened with this xenophobic, racist mindset.

  • a bit of history
    Jan. 22, 2008 10:34 a.m.

    Between 1933 and 1934, Nazi law of the land was fairly moderate, not wishing to scare off voters or moderately-minded politicians (although the eugenics program was established as soon as July 1933). The Nazi Party used popular anti-semitism to gain votes. They blamed poverty, unemployment, and the loss of World War I all on the Jews and the left-wing. German woes were attributed to the effects of the Treaty of Versailles. In 1933, persecution of the Jews became active Nazi policy. It only became worse with the years, culminating in the Holocaust, or so-called Final Solution to the Jewish Problem, which was decided by Hitler during World War II and officialized at the January 1942 Wannsee Conference.

  • Sandy
    Jan. 22, 2008 10:34 a.m.

    Grandma C.... go watch your grand kids. they need you.

    To anonymous 8:16 who always goes without a name on here. You are constantly saying chomping on the same old issue over and over again. Your behavior is biased and races. If you happen to be an illegal, I suggest that you leave this country and take your speeding and hit run car with you. ILLEGALS ARE LAW BREAKERS!!!!

  • jfrazier
    Jan. 22, 2008 11:31 a.m.

    DahktaD,

    Wow, you make some very large leaps in your logic that are completely unfounded. Your twisted logic and exagerations are exactly what the religious leaders are cautioning against. Take a breath and relax and perhaps you will start to make sense with your ramblings.

    I was just pointing out that the punishment should fit the crime. Jump to an extreme position on this if you want, but by doing so you quickly lose credibility. So do you propose we round up all illegal aliens, rough them up and lock them in our jails for six months, then deport them? I agree they ought to be deported expeditiously, but busting down doors and treating them the same as rapists, drug trafficers, etc. is a bit harsh considering in other respects they may be good citizens. As for those that commit other felony crimes, lock them up and then deport them. They deserve the rough treatment.

    It really is funny reading your rant. You call me racist but I never once mentioned a nationality...you did. I don't care who they are, but apparently you do.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 22, 2008 12:21 p.m.

    America has a big problem with illegal immigration, but a big part of it stems from the word "illegal." It pollutes the debate. It blocks solutions. Used dispassionately and technically, there is nothing wrong with it. Used as an irreducible modifier for a large and largely decent group of people, it is badly damaging. And as a code word for racial and ethnic hatred, it is detestable.
    Our right-wingers are wackier than normal on this issue where as usual, to the them, there are never any gray areas to the issue.

  • jfrazier
    Jan. 22, 2008 12:45 p.m.

    Anonymous 12:21,

    Well, that is a bit too P.C. Is it also badly damaging to call drug addicts, drug addicts rather than chemically dependent people? Sure, sugar coat it any way you want, this group of people have broken the law of the land. I am for humane and civilized methods of dealing with the issue, but call it what it is. I am very conservative, and maybe even right-wing wacky according to some, but let's think this problem through and do what is best to preserve the laws of the land and treat these people with dignity while fixing the problem.

    I think a lot of the harsh edge has originated from the lack of government action on the problem. Generally, the vigilanty mentality, and its associated hatred, evolves from frustration with the system.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 22, 2008 2:02 p.m.

    You would think that in this situation, cooler heads would prevail.
    But look what happened when people tried to stop the Bush Doctrine's War on Iraq.

  • words, more words
    Jan. 22, 2008 2:18 p.m.

    At least "undocumented" and an even better word, "unauthorized" contain the possibility of reparation and atonement, and allow for a sensible reaction proportional to the offense. The paralysis in Congress and the country over fixing our immigration laws stems from our inability to get our heads around the wrenching change involved in making an illegal person legal. Think of doing that with a crime, like cocaine dealing or arson. Unthinkable!

  • Fed-up!
    Jan. 22, 2008 2:37 p.m.

    Ive always been a loyal member of the church, however part of this illegal problem I blame on the church. If they weren't telling these people they were Lamanites-choke-choke! We would not have them coming here and breaking our laws, and pretending to love the church, and falsely hiding in the shadows of the church. I am extremely tired of all this silliness as are most LDS. This is profoundly ridiculous! Everyone is aware of DNA nowadays--DA!

  • DahktaD
    Jan. 22, 2008 6:24 p.m.

    Large leaps? Unfounded? In what way, please do tell oh worldy one.

    It seems you have brought on a tangent of kicking down doors. Quite the contrary, if found an illegal should pay as the law prescribes, do you have an issue with that? Then after plea to 30 days, they should be removed from the country, permanently. As far as a mass round up of some 12-20 million, obviously no do-able. However, removing the magnets of illegal immigration, ie - jobs, medical care, social services, 'driver privilege cards', et al...the problem will cure itself in due time. In the meantime ICE and the Border Patrol should continue to pursue enforcement of OUR US laws to the extent possible, expeditiously at that. With the pending recession and loss of jobs, it will become more apparent to the public at large who is removing food from the dinner table of US Citizens and LEGAL residents. Patience Frazier, patience.

  • LDS in Texas
    Jan. 22, 2008 7:43 p.m.

    Whoa! Do you folks in Utah really think the immigration issues are the fault of the LDS church? If so, please explain why the same problems exist in Texas ... and Arizona ... and California ... and Florida.

  • RE: LDS in Texas
    Jan. 23, 2008 12:15 a.m.

    Nah--in Utah, EVERYTHING'S the church's fault! Illegal immigration, global warming, lead-paint-laced products, the Iraq War, high gas prices, and Uncle Elmer's toenail fungus--it's all on the Mormons' doorstep! Even your own problems! Believable or not, find a way to blame the church! It's fun--at least if you're spiteful! It's easy--at least once you learn to ignore facts and logic and spew vicious emotionally laden rhetoric instead! And it's free--of human compassion and decency!

    Welcome to the poisonous cultural/religious politics of the Beehive State, where anti-religious schizophrenia is a way of life for some people. It's like a really, *really* twisted and venomous version of pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey--complete with people who actually think the tail's been pinned in the right spot, wherever it lands, and immediately start shooting to kill the poor creature.

    Someone else nearly a century ago in an otherwise enlightened European nation began blaming a particular religion and those who followed it for his own country's woes. Pity the blind bigots who follow his lead today.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 23, 2008 5:46 a.m.

    Meanwhile, out on the edges of the debate edges that are coming closer to the mainstream every day bigots pour all their loathing of Spanish-speaking people into the word illegal. Rant about "illegals" call them congenital criminals, lepers, thieves, unclean and people will nod and applaud. They will send money to your Web site and heed your calls to deluge lawmakers with phone calls and faxes. Your TV ratings will go way up.
    This is not only ugly, it is counterproductive, paralyzing any effort toward immigration reform. Comprehensive legislation in Congress and sensible policies at the state and local level have all been stymied and will be forever, as long as anything positive can be branded as "amnesty for illegals."

  • jfrazier
    Jan. 23, 2008 7:47 a.m.

    DahktaD,

    The leap in logic was to lump all crimes into the same category. There are degrees of crimes and those that pose an imminent threat and those that don't. Likewise, the treatment of these varying degrees of criminals should be appropriate. That's all I was saying.

    All your other latter comments I agree with.

    As for patience, I am proposing patience in dealing with this issue. Let's not try to solve this problem overnight by causing unfounded harm to otherwise good people. I just hate to see mobocracy take over. I agree wholeheartedly that if we take away the attractant and tighten the borders we will then be able to deal with those that are here now. I have a real problem with Mexico being so casual about this. If they would improve conditions in their country the people would not have to come here to survive.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 23, 2008 8:52 a.m.

    We are stuck with a bogus, deceptive strategy a 700-mile fence on a 2,000-mile border to stop a fraction of border crossers who are only 60 percent of the problem anyway, and scattershot raids to capture a few thousand members of a group of 12 million.
    None of those enforcement policies have a trace of honesty or realism. At least they don't reward illegals, and that, for now, is all this country wants. Especially the nasty far-righters.

  • Star
    Jan. 23, 2008 10:16 a.m.

    I think I have a tendency to believe a bit more of what "jfrazier" is trying to say. He seems to be one of the few on here who knows what he is talking about and not shouting hostilities.

    Oh holy one, DahktaD, you need not be so patient. This is the time our country needs us all. Americans need to take action now, for our country is in VERY BIG TROUBLE.

    Nevertheless, I enjoy reading the two of you jfrazier & DahkaD. Great insight!

  • Re: To Just Saying
    Jan. 23, 2008 10:44 a.m.

    You're right timing is everything. When the Mormon pioneers arrived in the valley they were on Mexican soil. Just because the Mexican-American War was in progress when they arrived doesn't mean that the land wasn't Mexico's. The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, which ceded Utah to the US, was signed on February 2, 1848, well after the Saint's arrival.

  • sage
    Jan. 23, 2008 11:07 a.m.

    I had an ancestor who helped free this land from Mexico. Go read about the Mormon Battalion. This part of Mexico was bought and paid for by Americans. it truly belongs to USA.

  • DahktaD
    Jan. 23, 2008 11:13 a.m.

    My good man Frazier, I see we are in agreement in total. Well said!

    My dear Star, no I am not a holy one, just a resident heathen. But I do agree that our country is in "very big trouble", and Amercians do need to take action now. The question that confronts us all, is 'what' action do we take and 'how' do we go about doing it?

  • Star
    Jan. 23, 2008 11:27 a.m.

    RE: DahktaD,

    Perhaps you and jfrazier can talk some sense into some of the people that read this site. There are some who just don't get it. I don't believe that the the church realizes the seriousness of this problem with the illegals. However, I could be wrong. I more or less just enjoy the reading. Keep up the good writing on here. I find it extremely interesting. I hope DN as well keeps this site.
    It was good that you dropped the T heathen. It just wasn't working out...lol!

  • DhaktaD
    Jan. 23, 2008 11:40 a.m.

    My dear Star...to talk sense into one, they must be receptive to a differing point of view and have a moderate grasp of reality. I am remiss to report, the astounding level of prozac use in this fair state does have a detrimental effect, clouding the cognizant abilities of so many of the pulpit pundits.
    I therefor result to consume a moderate amount of Chivas to be equaly clouded when having a discourse with those from the pulpit thereby equalizing the playing field, I dare say.

  • jfrazier
    Jan. 23, 2008 11:48 a.m.

    DahktaD,

    When reasonable people (if we may be considered such) take the emotion out of things and discuss/debate things intelligently, agreements can certainly be reached. We never were really that far apart, however.

    I find the whole right/left political debate on many issues comes down not to WHAT we want to acheive, but rather, HOW we aim to acheive it. That's where things get a bit tough.

    As to Star's comment on the seriousness of the problem: even though, perhaps, the leadership may not view it as a big problem, rank and file members certainly do. All the conservative members of the church that I know (which is about ALL the members I know) are very concerned about this. However, since local LDS organizations are apolitical, there is not a mechanism to convey local political concerns up the chain of leadership. I am strictly speaking from my own perspective, mind you.

  • Wilkey
    Jan. 23, 2008 12:44 p.m.

    "When the Mormon pioneers arrived in the valley they were on Mexican soil. Just because the Mexican-American War was in progress when they arrived doesn't mean that the land wasn't Mexico's. The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, which ceded Utah to the US, was signed on February 2, 1848, well after the Saint's arrival."

    The land was not Mexico's. Mexico had a claim on the land, and nothing else. It would be like me claiming to own the moon - irrelevant.

    There were virtually no Mexican settlements in the ceded territories, including none at all in Utah. The Treaty of GH allowed Mexicans in ceded territories to remain and keep their lands - even so, the total population of California in 1850 was less than 100,000 people.

    The US certainly stole land from the Indians - who are NOT Hispanic - but they did not steal it from Mexico.

  • J. Smith
    Jan. 23, 2008 12:52 p.m.

    All the Church was saying folks is don't forget these immigrants are human beings. Never did they say they were in support of illegal immigration. The fact of the matter is that church policy states if an individual is an illegal immigrant they cannot be baptized a member of the church, until everything is worked out.

  • Star
    Jan. 23, 2008 1:03 p.m.

    DhaktaD & jfrazier,
    About people on prozac, I believe they are numbed by its effect. The drug is spiritually disabling to those who take it. They become non-caring. I believe this is what prozac was meant to do. It makes me think though, that this is what has caused much of the blindness and coldness among people here.

    The illegal problem is just another episode of what happens from the numbing of ones brain function, and to many people run church and government who take the drug. Sadly, Utah members are the biggest victims of abuse. Drugs are drugs. Medically prescribed or bought simply off the street. The illegals prefer the streets, and bring them here to survive.

  • Be Compassionate
    Jan. 23, 2008 1:04 p.m.

    The LDS Church is not trying to influence law makers or the laws they pass. A meeting is something between two parties. They didn't go there looking to be told what laws to pass and they weren't. Rather, they were given good sound advise that all of us need to follow it sounds like. Have compassion. Remember those people who are affected by these laws are infact human beings. They are not second rate citizens. Illegal immigration is a huge problem in the U.S. but to date the way these laws are being carried out has been ludicrous in many cases seperating a child from his/her parents. Let's take a look at how we can be fair, just, and compassionate.

  • Funky Monkey
    Jan. 23, 2008 1:19 p.m.

    re: Wilkey,

    I suppose you could as well write that the European Conquistadors, who were as well from Spain, also stole the land from Mexico, and all of the rest of south America. However, I believe God gave the earth to all human beings who dwell upon. Humans have always moved around and about on this earth, invading the lands of others. That will never change. Nonetheless, lets stick to the illegal problem of the day. It is not going to get any better if people can't abide by laws.

  • Capt., Crunch
    Jan. 23, 2008 1:30 p.m.

    to: J Smith

    Maybe the church should as well advise these illegals if they are aware of it to go home. They need to make that clear with members. If they claim to be true believers, then sustaining the 12th article of faith is part of it. Don't you think?

  • Huh?
    Jan. 23, 2008 1:40 p.m.

    Be Compassionate,

    Give me a break. You make it sound like the illegals don't have a brain in their heads. Therefor we should feel compassion for them breaking our laws?...ummmmm??? Somehow that is the silliest thing that I have ever heard. I hope you are kid and not an adult with that kind of thinking.

  • sodie
    Jan. 23, 2008 1:41 p.m.

    Re: "Who will run the dairies, mow our lawns, and do whatever manual labor we as a society have grown acustom to? You might notice the economy is trouble. This will make it much worse."

    It wasn't very long ago that I was in college and was mowing lawns, doing landscaping, hanging drywall and even working as a housekeeper to pay my way through school. How could getting people to work their way through school instead of getting themselves deep into debt be bad for the economy? How could stopping the vast amounts of cash from being wired south of the border be bad for the economy? Right now they are talking about further nonsense of printing more money as a 'stimulous package' rather than looking at why we have a problem to begin with. How could having a decrease on welfare, school, healthcare demands in this country be bad for the economy? The country simply has too look at the total cost of this 'cheap' labor. They aren't saving as much as they think.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 23, 2008 2:12 p.m.

    Let me get this straight -
    If they become legal, they can STILL be exploited, right?

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 23, 2008 2:35 p.m.

    "The LDS Church is not trying to influence law makers or the laws they pass. A meeting is something between two parties. They didn't go there looking to be told what laws to pass and they weren't."

    Yep - the LDS Church just happened to decide to have a meeting with lawmakers, right before the legislative session. And, of course, they weren't at all trying to influence policy.

    Spare me.

  • Capt., Crunch
    Jan. 23, 2008 2:44 p.m.

    They just need to get their acts together and go through the proper channels to become a American citizen. It seems we are all back to the same old feel sorry for illegals game on here.

    Although, until they learn to keep the American laws, which are important to the well being of the USA, they will only exploit their own people. Sad, but the truth of the matter lies with them. Lets try to be honest in this country. Compassion will follow.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 23, 2008 3:09 p.m.

    Is it okay for undocumented Mexican workers to help build the US version of the Great Wall of China?
    I hear they work very cheap.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 23, 2008 3:26 p.m.

    It seems to me the LDS church's primary concern is to humanize the problem for those who can go further than see undocumented workers as "illegals."
    It's the same thing the far-right has done in demonizing the word liberal.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 23, 2008 7:14 p.m.

    "It seems to me the LDS church's primary concern is to humanize the problem for those who can go further than see undocumented workers as 'illegals.'"

    No, the LDS Church's primary concerns are to:

    1) Boost membership numbers. Since English-speaking Americans aren't joining anymore they need illegals.

    2) Bring converts form Latin America, where inactivity rates are low and they pay almost nothing in tithing, to the US, where they'll pay in tithing and are more likely to stay active.

    3) Make life hunky-dory for rich church members like the Ivorys, Fultons, Marriotts, Peerys, and Holdings, who all benefit financially from high rates of immigration and cheap labor.

    4) To piggyback on the cause du jour. They missed the boat by about 2 decades on the last one (civil rights) and they don't want to get blindsided again. They think amnesty for illegal immigrants is the moral equivalent of civil rights for black Americans. Well, they're wrong.

  • BIG Tithe Payer
    Jan. 23, 2008 7:38 p.m.

    WOW, Anonymous 7:14

    You look like you are in the know of things. I would have to AGREE with you 100% on what you have said here. I know quite a few people in the church who have similar views who are as well active members of the church. This is all so very true!
    I wondering what the future holds for my religion. It's really starting to lose faith with many people. Or as they would put it, we are losing the faith...Ok whatever.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 23, 2008 8:01 p.m.

    When an organization places itself before the individual - that organization is a monstrous one.

  • Re: Anonymous 7:14
    Jan. 23, 2008 8:19 p.m.


    If you've never been accused of 2nd guessing a person's or an organization's motives then I'm going to do it to you here and now. I'm a member of the church and my wife is from Peru. I didn't marry wealth. I've worked extremely hard. Her and I were married in the temple. Don't find a few wealthy members of 'the church' though and cast a bone you have to pick with them. "The Church" if full of many people - handicapped, sick, sinners, repentant, blessed, not so blessed, healthy and strong and faithfull and doubtfull - - - I can tell you being a member of the church that I don't have ulterior motives anywhere near the ones you've mentioned. I'm in fact writing to you because I care about you. You've obviously been frustrated with elements of mortality that all of us are frustrated with sooner or later. I share your frustration in many ways. At the head of the church, however, is Jesus Christ and his teachings and words and life and everything he did and does is and taught and teaches is what 'the church' stands for. You're not perfect and I'm not either.

  • Wilkey
    Jan. 23, 2008 8:52 p.m.

    ***"If you've never been accused of 2nd guessing a person's or an organization's motives then I'm going to do it to you here and now."***

    So much of what the LDS Church does happens behinds closed doors. It makes decisions on how to spend money behind closed doors. It makes decisions on doctrine and policy behind closed doors. It selects its leadership behind closed doors.

    It doesn't HAVE to, but it DOES.

    If it did these things openly then you could make more of a legitimate claim about how bad it is to second-guess what they do.

    ***"At the head of the church, however, is Jesus Christ and his teachings and words and life and everything he did and does is and taught and teaches is what 'the church' stands for."***

    No, Jesus Christ is not at the head of the Church. Who is referred to as its president? Not Jesus, but Gordon B Hinckley. The fact is that these men make decisions on their own, without Jesus's help.

    They may purport to speak for Jesus Christ, but it's up to us to decide whether that claim is true or not. I've made up my mind.

  • Anonymous
    Jan. 23, 2008 8:54 p.m.

    Re: Anonymous

    You keep telling the same story over and over again. We have heard time after time about your wife being from PERU. I cannot help it that it bothers you so much. It is no ones fault who you married. So quit trying to put everyone on here on a guilt trip. Please give it a break, friend.

  • re: Wilkey | 8:52 p.m
    Jan. 23, 2008 11:08 p.m.

    In reference to your quote: "They may purport to speak for Jesus Christ, but it's up to us to decide whether that claim is true or not. I've made up my mind."
    Instead of spending so much time on these blogs, why don't you do something about it. You and others that are members of the church that can be so critical about it and it's leaders fail to understand you have the capability to express an opinion. And I don't mean across these blogs.
    And how to do it... In April, there will be a general conference. At all conferences there will be a sustaining of officers. If you and others like you have so much hatred for the church, here is your opportunity. When they ask for any that oppose the leadership of the mormon church, why don't raise your hand? Here is your day to make history. Take it and raise your hand to the square and vote NO for the mormon church leadership.

  • dootee2
    Jan. 24, 2008 8:58 p.m.

    My father emigrated here back in the 1930's from the Philippines. He learned English, joined the US Navy and fought in WWII and in the Korean Conflict. For his service he was able to earn his citizenship, but he still had to take the test like everyone else. Now...there's an idea! Why not have the illegals earn their right to be here by serving in the military? Or is that asking too much?

  • April
    Jan. 28, 2008 8:01 a.m.

    As a Protestant Christian, I'm all for compassion, but the law is the law. MILLIONS of ILLEGAL ALIENS have been willfully invading our country, working the system -- signing up for welfare, food stamps, SOCIAL SECURITY(which in 2008 will be given to ILLEGALS who never paid into it!!!), having "anchor" babies so their kids have US citizenship because they were born on US soil (outrageous) and other nonsense. Where's the compassion for the AMERICANS who have to foot the bill, who are murdered by illegals (25 a day!), and have to live in homes that depreciate in value because several families cram into one home, lowering property values and quality of life. Enough is enough. Check out: ALIPAC and NUMBERSUSA, and The Dustin Inman Society -- get involved!

  • Lauri
    Jan. 28, 2008 8:07 a.m.

    The law is the law -- if you break it, you get punished, period. Why is this illegal immigration situation any different?!? The illegals are ruining the America that once was. Where's the compassion for the American worker who's wages are depressed because of the influx of cheap labor?!? Where's the compassion for the 25 Americans MURDERED every day in the US by illegals?!? Sorry, but my "compassion" for these people who willfully and knowingly VIOLATE our laws has dried up. It's time to get tough. Build the fence, and deport all illegals. The laws in Mexico are much stricter towards illegals, yet the US is supposed to just leave the door open. The taxpayer foots the bill and the quality of life because of illegals keeps going down. Enough of this!

  • Joe
    Jan. 28, 2008 8:11 a.m.

    To: dootee2: The reason most of the illegals don't even both coming to the US legally is because they have no intentions of staying for good. They want to work here for 5-10 years, send their money back to Mexico and go back. This is exactly why they don't learn English and have a get whatever I can get for free attitude. I've talked to the illegals who were working on my reroof on my house and they all said the same thing. And I tell all contractors, no illegals on my job, but they all lie saying they don't hire illegals, but yet none of them speak English and admit to being here illegally. It's gotten to the point of being BRAZEN -- they're not hiding "i-n the shadows!" -Report all illegals to ICE: 1-866-347-2423

  • Ann
    Jan. 28, 2008 9:52 a.m.

    What I find absolutely amazing is that LDS church officials are meeting with the state legislatures about policies and laws. What happened to separation of church and state? The church is clearly trying to influence Utah politics. To that end, the church should give up its tax exempt status since they are so clearly trying to involve itself in politics (per usual). They are pandering to the illegals just like some politicians and pro-illegal groups. As usual, it's ALL about the money!

  • Immigrant
    Jan. 29, 2008 1:03 p.m.

    If Jesus were alive he would give amnesty to all the 12 million+ who live in the shadows. He believed in grace and mercy. Just look at the prodigal son. Make those who are here pay a fine, but allow them to become legal. They are helping our economy and make major contributions.

  • reuvan
    Feb. 13, 2008 10:27 p.m.

    What is going on? You don't want to see the real picture. It is better to take it on working families in this country rather than facing that you know nothing about why immigrants come to this country. Everyone, with one exception, are linking "illegal" with "Hispanics". Hispanics were not responsible for the 9/11. You can blame Hispanics for been responsible in keeping this country's economy running: buying houses, cars, operating business, and supporting family values and, yes, paying taxes. Hispanics are blamed for taking their children to school? The law says they can. Lets ask Heavenly Father, the Holly Spirit, Jesus Christ and the prophet Joseph Smith what they think about this "h..." talking that I'm reading. And by the way, those of you with a lot of "American Heritage" try to communicate with your ancestors and hear what they think about you now. You may be surprised. Love means love, not "h...". Be sure to pray for those who love this country, maybe, better than you do, and help to send a better message to the world. We are all "sinners". Don't let pride do the talking. God loves you. Don't challenge him. Hispanics are not terrorists.

  • Anonymous
    March 10, 2010 6:21 p.m.

    Ok, I only have one question. When Brigham Young first came to Salt Lake City with hundreds of members, weren't they officially in mexican territory? Did they have any kind of legal permission to migrate there or were the founding fathers of the church illegal immigrants? To my knowledge they only had permission from God. Hmm, reminds me of illegal immigrant members of the church today. BINGO!!!

  • truthseeker27
    July 13, 2010 11:57 a.m.

    In response to Anonymous, yes in 1847 SL was a mexican territory, in 1848 U.S. took it from Mexico. So the answer would seem to be yes, until 1848 they were illegal aliens. I say WOULD SEEM as I have no knowledge of immigration laws at the time in mexican territories.
    However, the Saints settling did not receive medical treatment, food and housing paid for by forced charity (aka taxes) as the ones do today. To the contrary they suffered diesease and starvation and great hardship. This I know from reading ancestors journal entries.
    Have to ever been a US citizen living in a sanctuary city? It seems you are trying to miminalize the negative impact that illegal aliens have on our country by your statement. Or maybe justify their actions. Maybe you are in the US illegally yourself or maybe you don't pay taxes so you don't care.

  • King1
    July 29, 2010 1:16 p.m.

    Bottom line...whether you are for or against getting rid of illegals in the U.S...The part of the new law that would require law enforcement officers to request immigration status if they suspect a person is in the U.S. illegally is discriminatory. Think about this really hard and don't let bias judgment get in the way. What are the criteria for suspecting that someone is in the U.S. illegally? Because they are brown or black? This, no doubt, will lead to racial profiling...which is a scary road for the U.S. to be taking. Racial profiling is going too far! Think out side the box...if you do not agree with giving amnesty to illegal’s (which…really what alternative is there with 18 million illegals in the U.S.)...don't start racial profiling to fix the immigration problem...that leads down a slippery slope which will ultimately infringe on the rights of all Americans in the long run.