jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)
[personal profile] jewelfox

The other day, an evil man named Boyd Packer died.

(EDIT: Corrected some things after re-reading quotes, and changed the description of this person's legacy.)

He was one of the highest leaders of the Mormon church, called an apostle. Apostles are appointed to their positions for life, and he spent most of his tenure saying hateful things to captive audiences.

In 2010, he gave a talk in worldwide General Conference where he said God would never make someone gay. The line was edited out when his talk was published in print and online, but not soon enough to keep the rate of LGBT suicides in the state of Utah from spiking right afterwards.

When I was a young adult, I was given a pamphlet that was a printout of one of his talks, in which he condemned people for masturbating and said that it was okay to deck gay people who come on to you. Partly because of this man's words, I hated myself for more than a decade, and came very close to taking my life.

He called gays, feminists, and intellectuals the enemies of the Mormon church, and famously declared in a talk to church educators that "some things which are true are not useful." I feel like that sums up his legacy. The things he proclaimed as true are already being thrown out by the institutional Mormon church, because they are not very useful in making them look good. In fact, they make them look pretty damned awful, to anyone with a conscience and even a basic understanding of how words affect others.

I'm glad he lived long enough to see his victims turn the tables on him, and win.

If you want a more vivid look at how I felt because of this man, read this story.

Date: 2015-07-11 02:44 am (UTC)
adad64: Staring into the Abyss to see what stares back. (Default)
From: [personal profile] adad64
He was one of the only people in the church that I actively hated. The rest of the 15 all seemed to blur together in a faceless entity. Now he's gone, and the church will eventually change a few generations behind everyone else, we'll always have been at war with Eurasia, and the church will last for a little longer. Gah.

Date: 2015-07-11 03:34 am (UTC)
adad64: Staring into the Abyss to see what stares back. (Default)
From: [personal profile] adad64
Thanks, I left just a couple of years ago. I was at BYU at the time so my job as a programmer, housing, and classes flew right out the window. I've gotten back on my feet now and I'm doing okay. Which is just bizarre, because I don't think I've ever really been okay before. I missed your previous post, but if you still need any help I'll throw in my offer of support from a random internet person who went through a vaguely similar situation but didn't have it so bad.

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