I have just taken Trimble’s article and flipped it to so that one could see how it would sound if said in the exact reverse. I hope this illustrates how offensive and hurtful this kind of divisive rhetoric is (oh yeah, and I added sources for my points, something Mr. Trimble should have listened more to his teachers about):
What I wish I had said to my seminary teacher:
It seems like you and so many of your colleagues don’t like Science and don’t like America. I don’t know if it’s just because you’re trying to be a rebel or if you’ve just studied your scriptures so much that you can’t stand the fact that there might be an intelligent being out there that knows more than you. It won’t mean anything to you, but in your own Bible, Paul tells Timothy that there would be some people just like you that would be “ever learning, and never able to come to a knowledge of the truth.” Hey! That sounds like you!
So here’s the deal. We live in a country that was founded by the philosophy that religion should be separate from the state. There is no way around that. Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson and others were atheists, deists, and the rest were a mix of faiths. The Treaty of Tripole even states that this is not a Christian nation, and John Adams, one of the very religious, even wrote that. You can try and push forward God’s role in the establishment of this nation all you want, but if you study hard enough…there is no way to force miraculous divine interventions into the history of human endeavor and understanding that took place in the early days of its history. Separation of church and state is woven into the laws, the architecture, and the hearts of the American people. No one, ever… can take that away from this great nation. Or can you?
It’s funny, ironic…no…it’s sad, horribly sad that you are living so well…and so free on the backs of those patriots, some of whom are not your faith or even christian, that gave their lives in the name of God and country. Now…all you do is sit in your class and fight against the very things that enabled you to be who you are today. You’re devoting your life to molding and shaping the minds of the rising generation and simultaneously attempting to suppress and extinguish the only thing that is keeping this nation together.
If you want to believe in God…that’s fine. That same constitution gave you your agency to not worship Him/Her/It/whatever the dictates of your own conscience are. If fact…that’s what freedom is all about. Not forcing anyone to do anything that they don’t want to do. But now look at what we have. A bunch of loud “educated” influential voices like yourself trying to turn a Free nation into a God-driven nation, like the Taliban.
You’re not trying to support religion. You’re trying to make mormonism the state religion.
You say that atheism is nothing more than brainwashing…but I say it’s you that is doing the brainwashing. The worst part of it all is that you have a captive audience because many parents force their kids to go to seminary in order to stay respected in their own homes. It’s sad that so many of these kids around me see the “Brother” in front of your name and think you know what you’re “all-knowing”…even god-like. You evangelize “your beliefs” to curious, ignorant, and unsuspecting students each and every quarter and then they grow up to be just like you until we have a nation of correlated members who don’t even know the basics of their own faith, let alone their own country’s history.
Some of them might even be dumb enough to begin to blog.
[update: I realized he kept going. So I kept going. But my main point is above. The rest is just painful to go through. My apologies to those who continue]
Do you remember the stuff you taught about polygamy that “every mormon believes” . Well… this month, we found out that the LDS church is backing away from the idea that Joseph only had a few wives and they were mostly platonic. It was published in the New York Times.
It’s kind of like that with everything you teach isn’t it? You teach something as if there is no doubt that it happened and then make fun of anyone that doesn’t believe it. Then in a couple years you quietly back away from the theory and move on to the newest correlated manual. Just like with Brigham’s Racist doctrines that were in the endowment. Or where the Nephites and Lamanites lived.
Right now as we speak…there are thousands of seminary teachers pushing their own crazy religion on the up and coming generation but any talk of brainwashing or challenging questions was laughable…right? Almost any time someone would raise their hand to question any of you or your colleagues “conclusions”, you’d fly into a sarcastic rant. Why is it that you can have your “religion” and talk about it openly but I can’t consider the possibility of Joseph just being another con-artist?
That was fifteen years ago (I must be older than Trimble). I can’t imagine what it’s like today.
I honestly wonder if you and your fellow institutional leaders even consider the origin of your religion. Every religion…including yours, had its rise from a history littered with horrible acts and unspeakable betrayal. Whether the Mountain Meadows massacre, or Joseph pushing that flaming sword story to get with the neighbor’s wife, you hid the details from your students just to make a point.
If you want to teach the youth of our nation about religion, then you need to teach them about God first. True religion doesn’t make god into a rapist. It doesn’t require cultish techniques of testimony bearing before the child is even aware of what they are saying or squirreling away the details and blaming the person asking questions for not finding the answers. No religion needs a “Vault” to keep history.
I know you believe in the devil, but if there was a devil…I can’t think of a more important place for him to destroy other than the home. But maybe this is where he starts. Right there in seminary and church telling parents that kids are devil lead if they don’t follow the con-artist’s beliefs. That saves him a bunch of work! This place…this “Seminary”. A place where young inquiring minds were supposed to be able to ask challenging questions and learn about their faith in detail as a seminal or first effort.
The devil you believe in, if he were real, would be all around your leaders who sell religion for money, and cash in on the lucrative book market and membership (Buying movie tickets for a movie their tithing dollars paid to make). He would proudly display how the General Authorities can make even the most converted mormon give up free will to obey; which was his plan anyway. He would rejoice over the idea that state laws would be written around a religion to force people to obey. That was his plan originally, right?
I know you think you’re just teaching people how to think more. How to be spiritual. But you’re teaching us to think less and accept theories that you know full well will change within the next two years anyway. You’re teaching us to go against all of the inherent built-in logic that tells us that the a grown man doesn’t marry teenagers for plutonic relationships. You’re not teaching us to keep an open mind but to be closed to anything that falls outside of the accepted correlated manual of the day.
The last thing I want to ask you is this: Why do you even care if others don’t believe in God? Does it hurt you? Does it hurt society? Is it bad to treat others good without an invisible man in the sky? Why persecute someone for having a belief that makes them happy or that helps them treat others better? What’s it to you? Why send missionaries or write blog articles to attack another’s beliefs?
But seriously. This paragraph of Trimbles is so stupid that I can’t even mock it. Yes, Greg, it’s stupid to think that the religion of a bunch of shepards from 2000 B.C. also matches what a farm boy in New York dug up in his back yard and then push that on to the idea that the “big bang” theory is imperfect. The imperfections in that theory are a long way from “a carpenter in Jerusalem is the son of deity”. Can you just admit that there are say, 10,000 other explanations and that if science steps back from the big bang, Mormon Christianity isn’t the only other choice? Whatever.
Now that I’ve gotten that off my mind…I hope we can be friends! I really did enjoy some of the object lessons we did as a class! They pointed my mind to how ridiculous the religion is.
P.S. You should change the subject of your blog. It reflects poorly on other mormons