Being lapsed Catholics as we are here at Liberal Grouch HQ (a hiring requirement), we understand the meaning of church dogma. It's like being in a club. If you don't follow the club rules, they can throw you out of the club. It's simple.
With that in mind, are we wrong to ask how many more of the rules of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints Mitt Romney is going to be allowed to violate before someone, a bishop maybe, tells him he's out of line?
Earlier today we wrote about Mitt's serial lies. Let's go to the rule book, the Mormon's own "Doctrine and Covenants," one of the holy books that rises to the level of scripture in the church. We shall concern ourselves with Section 76.
According to D&C, Sec. 76, Verse 103, it would seem as if Gov. Romney is buying himself a one-way ticket to the low-rent version of Mormon heaven. See, you have the Celestial Kingdom, where only the good Mormons go, the ones with "temple recommends" who have fulfilled their endowments, faithfully given 10 percent of their everything (not just money) to the church, who have had their marriages sealed in the temple and so forth. Then you have the Terrestrial Kingdom, which is still fairly decent and will be populated by good people who didn't follow all the covenants and doctrines and ordinances or did not have a temple recommend. Then there's that old Telestial Kingdom where the creepy people go. Among them, according to Verse 103:
103 These are they who are liars, and sorcerers, and adulterers, and whoremongers, and whosoever loves and makes a lie.
Ooops! Will Mitt's words be measured against that which is true and be found wanting?
We know Mitt eschews caffeine and alcohol and all that. But what does the Mormon scripture say about gambling?
We quote no less an expert than Charles D. Tate, Jr., a noted LDS author and editor, from the Encyclopedia of Mormonism.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints condemns gambling, games of chance, and lotteries as moral evils and admonishes its members not to participate in them in any form. Gambling is based on the morally wrong philosophy of getting something for nothing, of taking money without giving fair value in exchange.
We all remember Romney's offer of a $10,000 bet with Texas Gov. Rick Perry in the early GOP debates. Sinful, sinful, sinful. Mormons must not gamble, must not associate with gambling, must not profit from the proceeds of gambling.
So, what in the name of the holy Angel Moroni is Mitt Romney doing hanging out with casino owner/GOP Financier Sheldon Adelson?
Thomas D. Edsall, professor of journalism at Columbia University, wrote a dandy op-ed in the New York Times on Aug. 6 basically pondering the same question.
The Adelsons are the largest donors to the Romney PAC. They have providing just over 12 percent of the $82.2 million Restore Our Future has raised so far. Romney’s personal wealth is an estimated $250 million, but the former governor is determined not to self-finance his quest for the presidency.
Nice chunk of change there. Is that the cost of a man's soul? Edsall continues:
It would be interesting to know what Romney has to say about Adelson’s gambling business and his difficulties with the S.E.C., the Justice Department and the D.C.C.C., but Romney’s campaign did not respond to repeated requests for comment.
The toughest charges leveled against Romney as a politician have been distinctly personal: that he lacks authenticity; that he is “a phony”; that “there are two Mitt Romneys”; that he is duplicitous; that he is a hypocrite and a flip-flopper, even on the most serious issues.
So, we have proven lies, proven association and profiting from the money raised by gambling, both of which could get a fella's "temple recommend" rescinded. Lose your "temple recommend," and you can't go to the temple anymore. If you can't go to the temple, then your sealed marriage is annulled, and you can't go to the Celestial Kingdom when you die, become a god of your own universe, where you and your eternally sealed wife can pump out the spirit babies that will populate that universe.
We fear that one more violation, if properly brought to the attention of the church hierarchy -- especially the Quorum of the Twelve and the President of the Church, who is the heir to the founder of Mormonism, Joseph Smith, Jr., himself... Mitt may find himself in grave spiritual danger.
According to a 1990 article by Elder M. Russell Ballard of the Quorum of the Twelve:The First Presidency has instructed that disciplinary councils must be held in cases of murder, incest, or apostasy. A disciplinary council must also be held when a prominent Church leader commits a serious transgression, when the transgressor is a predator who may be a threat to other persons, when the person shows a pattern of repeated serious transgressions, when a serious transgression is widely known, and when the transgressor is guilty of serious deceptive practices and false representations or other terms of fraud or dishonesty in business transactions. (Emphasis added.)
We're not sure if this means someone from the Quorum of the Twelve yanks Mitt's Mormon Undergarments right out from under his suit, intact. But it would make for an interesting sight.
Still, if this is a serious religion that is serious about its rules, where true believers truly believe... we can't help but wonder what they're waiting for.
Does Mitt have to actually kill someone? Would he do that to become president? Is there anything he would not do to become president?
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of DigitalJournal.com