Today Senator Chris Buttars was in the news. Referring to homosexuality, he is reported to have said, among other things:
I believe the whole thing is immoral. What is the morals of a gay person? You can’t answer that, because anything goes. So now you’re moving toward a society that has no morals. [Homosexuality is] a perversion. They don’t want equality. They want superiority.
Predictably many were shocked and expressed their contempt. For example, there was this from homosexual rights activist Jacob Whipple:
It’s extremely offensive and inappropriate, especially for an elected official. It should not be tolerated.
And from Senator Scott McCoy, the only (thankfully) openly homosexual member of the Senate:
An apology is not going to do it at this point. I’m not sure I’d find an apology sincere anyway.
Now that these folks are suitably shocked and offended, let’s rustle up a few more quotes, just for comparison. Consider that President Ezra Taft Benson also said that homosexuality is a perversion in 1986:
He will not commit adultery “nor do anything like unto it” (D&C 59:6).This means fornication, homosexual behavior, self-abuse, child molestation, or any other sexual perversion. (“Godly Characteristics of the Master,” Ensign, Nov 1986, 45)
While not using the word perversion Apostle Richard G. Scott refers to homosexuality as evil:
Sexual immorality creates a barrier to the influence of the Holy Spirit with all its uplifting, enlightening, and empowering capabilities. It causes powerful physical and emotional stimulation. In time that creates an unquenchable appetite that drives the offender to ever more serious sin. It engenders selfishness and can produce aggressive acts such as brutality, abortion, sexual abuse, and violent crime. Such stimulation can lead to acts of homosexuality, and they are evil and absolutely wrong. (Richard G. Scott, “Making the Right Choices,” Ensign, Nov 1994, 37)
Apostle Joseph B. Wirthlin explains what it all means:
That means we are to avoid abnormal sexual behavior, including fornication, homosexual behavior, child molestation, or any other perversion of God’s plan of happiness. (Joseph B. Wirthlin, “Deep Roots,” Ensign, Nov 1994, 75)
West Jordan Senator Buttars also said,
I believe they [homosexuals] will destroy the foundation of the American society. In my mind, it’s the beginning of the end. … Sodom and Gomorrah was localized. This is worldwide.
President Spencer W. Kimball talked about civilizations destroyed by homosexuality:
This heinous homosexual sin is of the ages. Many cities and civilizations have gone out of existence because of it. It was present in Israel’s wandering days, tolerated by the Greeks, and found in the baths of corrupt Rome. (Spencer W. Kimball, “President Kimball Speaks Out on Morality,” Ensign, Nov 1980, 94)
Well, Senator Chris Buttars, it seems you are in good company. It is too bad that your more timid, rickety colleagues in the Senate are not on the same page as you. Perhaps they are just being politically correct and believe inside what you and the prophets speak openly.
20 Feb 2009 Senator Butttars will not resign as a result of his statements about homosexuality to a documentary filmmaker, but he will lose two key chairmanships and membership on the Senate Judiciary Committee. Too bad, because that’s where homosexual rights bills would be heard. When told that the homosexual community wanted an apology for his comments, he said, “Well, they ain’t gonna get one.”
In reply to my email of support, Senator Buttars graciously responded:
Thank you so much for your email of support. In recent years, registering opposition to the homosexual agenda has become almost impossible. Political correctness has replaced open and energetic debate. I have no intention of resigning. During this time it is more and more critical for people to be outspoken. People need to let other Senators and the media know that they too are outraged by what is happening. I appreciate you taking the time to send me an email of support.
Good for you Senator, I was hoping that you would not resign.
23 Feb 2009 It is a dangerous precedent for the Utah Senate to be attempting to censor one of their own for no other reason than to be politically correct. Support for Senator Buttars’ right to speak out came from an unlikely source on Friday, in an American Civil Liberties Union press release:
While we disagree vehemently with Senator Buttars’ views, we strongly support the
Constitution’s free speech protections. Free speech rights are indivisible. Restricting
the speech of one group or individual jeopardizes everyone’s rights because the same
laws or regulations used to silence unpopular and controversial speech can be used to
silence valid discourse.