…active Mormons who marched in today’s Salt Lake Pride Parade.
Over 100 Mormons plan to march in tomorrow’s Pride Parade in Salt Lake City to show support for their GLBT friends. Some commenters on the news stories question the motivation of the Mormon marchers and speculated that it is a political ploy to generate support for Mitt Romney. I am not directly involved with the SLC group, but from the information I have seen I believe their march is not political.
I am involved in a separate group that is supporting marriage equality and Mormon participation in other Pride Parades. The only question I asked before joining the group was if I needed to be an active member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I have not been active in the church for years. The response was that anyone who self-identified as Mormon for any reason – such as current for former membership in the church or cultural heritage – could join the group. I joined and have provided some financial help for participating in two of the parades in addition to sharing some thoughts and opinions.
I have never been asked about my political beliefs or party affiliation. Some of the members of the group shared some of their political opinions, but no arm twisting has occurred. I think a majority of participants favor President Obama over Mitt Romney.
There is a significant amount of anger towards the LDS Church for its involvement in California’s Proposition 8 campaign. Understandably, many gays, lesbians, bisexual, and transgendered people and their allies are suspicious of anything that is associated with the word “Mormon.” We are trying to fill a credibility gap by letting the world know there are Mormons – some active, some ex, and some inactive – who support marriage equality for all.
This is more than a civil rights issue. It goes to the heart of allowing everyone to experience the love they need and the love they can share to make their lives great and the world a better place. I hope our message is successfully understood.
(June 3 Update: The two Salt Lake newspapers reported the number of participants from 300 to 350.)