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The political implications of this mass renunciation of individual conscience for direction from "God" are not clearly enough understood in this country.The Mormons, a tiny minority, are dedicated to imposing the Prophet's moral directives upon all Americans and they may succeed if Americans do not become aware of their methods and goals.The caliber of character forged by this "education to obey" is illustrated by an encounter we had two summers ago  in Lafayette Square after the national ERA march in Washington, D. Several of us were accosted by two Brigham Young University students, former missionaries for the Church, who tried to tear down our MORMONS FOR ERA banner.During the ensuing discussion, they solemnly vowed that if the Prophet told them to go out and shoot all Black people, they would do so without hesitation.The Salt Lake Tribune in December of 1977 quoted local therapists as stating that up to three-quarters of their Mormon patients were women and that the common denominator was low self-image and lack of fulfillment outside the home.The proportion of teenage marriages in Utah has been greater than for the nation each year since 1960, which might partially account for Utah's divorce rate being higher than the national average.
In almost every meeting of the Church (and Mormons are noted for [next several words illegible] "good" Mormon woman, acceptable to the Brethren and therefore to God; messages calculated to keep women where men like them best: "made" (created) to nurture husband and children, housebound, financially and emotionally dependent, occupationally immature, politically naïve, obedient, subordinate, submissive, somnambulant and bearing much of the heavy and uncredited labor of the Church upon their uncomplaining shoulders.
A reporter phoned the Jody Powell of the Church [Jody Powell was then-President Jimmy Carter's White House press secretary] to ask how the Brethren were taking this little prank and was told that they found it "amusing." Then the Jody Powell-person suggested that the reporter put a cartoon in the next day's paper showing our plane flying over the Angel Moroni atop the Temple (as the actual newspaper had) but instead of a trumpet, picture Moroni brandishing a machine gun. We had better be very, very careful because the men at the head of the Church are strong and the patriarchs have for millennia crushed those women who escaped from their mind-bindings.
One does not need to be a psychoanalyst to understand how "amusing" the Brethren found our "little prank." More recently, when an Associated Press reporter interviewed President [Spencer W.] Kimball on the subject of uppity Mormon women, the Prophet warned that Church members who support the Equal Rights Amendment should be "very, very careful" because the Church is led by "strong men and able men . President Kimball is further quoted as saying, "These women who are asking for authority to do everything that a man can do and change the order and go and do men's work instead of bearing children, she's just off her base"—a truly appalling revelations of ignorance about the realities of women's lives.
But perhaps the image of greatest terror crawled from the psyche of Hartman Rector, one of the General Authorities of the Church, in response to my testimony before the U. Senate Subcommittee on Constitutional Rights: In order to attempt to get the male somewhere near even, the Heavenly Father gave him the Priesthood, or directing authority for the Church and home.
Without this bequeath, the male would be so far below the female in power and influence that there would be little or no purpose for his existence.