Meg Stout gives a plausible explanation of when dissent warrants expulsion from the Church, and when it doesn’t. It’s true that the women’s organization “Give Us The Priesthood Or We’re Telling The NY Times” (that was the name, right?) was “tone-deaf when it comes to Mormon culture but in tune with world media.” They certainly seemed to come from a much more alien value system than some of the subtler snakes in the grass, who dress and talk like Mormons, so much that they seem almost like the real thing. But I think it’s even simpler than even that.

 1 Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unjust, and not before the saints?

2 Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters?

3 Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more things that pertain to this life?

4 If then ye have judgments of things pertaining to this life, set them to judge who are least esteemed in the church.

5 I speak to your shame. Is it so, that there is not a wise man among you? no, not one that shall be able to judge between his brethren?

6 But brother goeth to law with brother, and that before the unbelievers.

1 Corinthians 6:1-6

Paul is talking specifically about going to law against a church member, but there’s a more universal principle at work. Paul says that if the believers are to judge the unbelievers in spiritual matters, then why should they let the unbelievers judge them in temporal matters? I’d say the reverse is even more true. If the unbelievers are unworthy to judge in even the smallest matters, how can we possibly invite them to play umpire in spiritual matters?

And yet that’s exactly what this organization, “Nice Priesthood Meeting You Got There, It’d Be A Shame if Anyone Were to Picket it” (Is THAT the name? I can never seem to remember), sought to do. They called down the power of the DC-NY media axis to show those old white guys in Utah who’s boss. The irony is that, because theirs is a minority opinion within the Church, they see themselves as the plucky underdogs fighting The Power, failing to recognize, or at least admit, that the real power resides in the government/media/education complex that Joel Kotkin calls “The Clerisy.” They are the ones with the big guns, both literal and figurative. And no one is more merciless than a Goliath who thinks he’s a David.

I Can Tolerate Anything Except The Outgroup.” But who is their ingroup? They claim to stand in judgment of the Church as Mormons, but they proclaim their judgment from a 1970s-era Rameumptom that they bought second hand from people who actively despise Christianity.

Another famous MC put it a lot more succinctly:

“Don’t ever take sides, with anyone, against the Family again. Ever.”

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