What I'm not sure of is whether most Americans realise just how risible the rest of the world finds Mormons and how hilariously funny their beliefs are considered
In my humble opinion, the rest of the world is in no position of finding anything
risible, especially when part of the rest of the world believes - just like many Americans - in horoscopes, magic rocks and aliens flying over their backyard at night and/or that costly and inefficient spaghetti-monster light-bulbs actually help change natural dynamics of atmospheric strata and gases. Other parts of the world still worship lightnings, spirits of great buffalos - or deities whose prophets are big on cutting throats and polygamy, or slavery, racism and reincarnation depending on where you look. Back to the "developed" parts, many people sincerely believe - just like still too many Americans - that we come from apes that came from artist's concepts of prehistoric sea mammals that came from amoebas that came from unknown planets on some asteroid, or perhaps archaic spaceships, millions of centuries ago (or so). But religion is "irrational". Well, the TV said it, it must be true. How is all of the above less risible and irrational than believing that an angel appeared to an American in Manchester NY?
But all of the above might be a moot question: especially
in those terminally smuggish parts with condescending attitudes towards the nation that basically fed and protected their own for decades, the rest of the world simply has no idea whatsoever of what Mormons believe. That is certainly true of Europe, where with the exception of some specialized scholars I have never met anyone having the faintest idea of what LDS think or believe, often confusing them with the Amish communities (but if you really want to see a genuine deer-in-the-headlights face try and utter the word "Mennonite"). And wait till they ask you how many wives Romney has.
An even more sobering thought troubles me though: in places like Rome, Vienna, Madrid, Louvaine, Munich, Paris, Dublin, it is increasingly hard to find people who know or don't laugh at what the Catholic Church in which they were baptized actually teaches. Do they find the faith in the resurrection of the body and Transubstantiation, or sacramental confession, the defense of celibacy, the condemnation of fornication, adultery, contraception and divorce less risible than Mormon eschatology? I really
doubt it. Most important: who cares what others think if you are an American voter? They have enough polls tormenting them as it is without having to factor in alleged opinions of foreigners. Have foreigners given a look to their politicians lately? If you're an American voter, the rest of the world should better hope and pray you'll vote in ways that'll help save the world economy and keep enough nuclear carriers and subs efficient and deployed for another century! Because right now it doesn't seem a likely future scenario.
OK, full disclosure: I know quite a few Mormons, I have met and worked with some of them who were/are in leading positions in Utah and I think you will hardly find better allies in the battle for non-negotiable principles that matter to Catholics and all men of good will. Ask the California heroes of the referendum on prop 8. Yes, I do think that what they believe is way out there. However, I think that there are only two real problems with Romney's Mormonism election-wise:
1) the media are going to use it, especially
those miserable hacks who play the race and discrimination of "minorities" and "diversity" cards 24/7 all year round. They'll use all the professional skills and instrumentalities that weren't used to shed light on the beliefs and proclaims of Rev. Wright's sect of marxist hatemongers. Or on his peculiar flock who can sit in those pews for 20 years without noticing anything strange and then run for office as the most normal of things.
2) the question is not that he is a Mormon, but whether he is Mormon just enough
to stand firm and not to flip-flop without end on non-negotiable principles of natural law and civilization. What's the danger if
he gets elected, that he'll create a Mormon militia and issue executive orders to impose Mormon views of the afterlife? I'd rather worry about whether he and the congressmen he'd would have to work with (again, IF
elected) would be likely to do anything to abolish the tens of federal agencies and departments that need to be slashed mercilessly, to gut and sink Obamacare, to rein in judges and justices, protect life and marriage, cut taxes, drill for oil, strenghten defense and do all there is to do to start turning the ship around and sail to constitutional ports. Whatever his flaws though, a Romney cabinet would be unlikely to shred the Constitution and plain decency as systematically as the current administration. Does anybody honestly believes that he'll lead a vast Mormon conspiracy to take over the country? His Mormonism is a problem only because he's a Republican, although a GOP establishment one and not a conservative. Had he been a full-fledged liberal - which he used to be - and a democrat, his faith would have been ignored or even praised no matter if Mormon, Voodoo or Muslim Brotherhood-style Islam. Of all the many problems with a Romney administration, if people will take a minute and think about it rationally, they will see that religion is a non-issue with this particular candidate. That is, aside from electoral strategies since he'll have to convince voters. And that's what campaigns should be about no? But this is sliding into politics and I don't want to. I'll conclude by saying that should Romney become the GOP presidential candidate (he's got only 12 delegates so far with over 1000 to go), and should he lose to the incumbent president, Mormonism will not be the decisive factor, if a factor at all, of itself
. Yes, it will be used against him. But he will actually win or lose on principles, liberty, economy and the Constitution and on how he will convince enough people that he's the guy they should passionately rally around. We'll see.
Do I have to explain what I think of Mormonism as a religion? I hope not. But I don't see why a good Mormon can't be a good President. I don't know if Romney is a good Mormon. For sure I don't know if he'd be a good president. For all we know he could turn out to be a good president even if he's a bad
Mormon. As to the opinion of foreigners, that should be the least of a voter's worries, if a worry at all.
FabrizioParty like it's 1773
No one can be at the same time a good Catholic and a true socialist (Pius XI)