Is taking offence over religion waning in intensity?

The magazine OC Weekly has come under fire from Mormons for a cartoon on the cover of its election-day issue that shows Mitt Romney as the Angel Moroni, a sacred figure in their religion.

The magazine editors take a bracingly defiant attitude to calls for them to apologize for their cover because it offends Mormon sensibilities.

We’re not going to apologize, because while Moroni might be a sacred part of the LDS, Jesus is even sacred-er–and we’ve depicted him as everything from a pothead to a businessman to hanging out with aliens to worse, and far more gratuitously than the spot-on satire that is Romney as Moroni, with the beautiful pun of “Moron!” thrown in (by the way, don’t think I’m humblebragging here: this is all the genius of Coker). What’s good for the Nazarene is good for some angel, no?

Incidentally, is it just me of have others also noticed that protests over offenses to religious sensibilities seem to be getting more pro-forma and transient than they used to? Even the notoriously touchy Muslims seems to be getting resigned to the fact that their efforts to get the rest of the world to conform to their views of what is appropriate are futile. Even the furor over the recent film Innocence of Muslims, which was pretty much designed to offend Muslims to the greatest degree possible, died down pretty quickly. The full movie in still apparently available on YouTube.

This may be a hopeful sign that religious people are realizing that you cannot make others venerate what you venerate.


  1. raven says

    The religious have no problem demonizing and insulting others.

    For 2,000 years, the xians massacred, pogromed, insulted, and killed the Jews. And each other in various wars.

    That has sort of died down as they shifted their focus to Moslems. But not completely. Some Protestants hate Catholics and vice versa. The fundies hate everyone. Everyone hates them back. The Mormons and JW’s get in a few blows

    And atheist haters are dime a hundred. They will discriminate against atheists if they think they can get away with it. Atheist billboards are routinely vandalized when they can even get them up. It’s virtually impossible to be elected even dog catcher as an out atheist.

    The Boy Scouts prohibit atheists, on the basis that you can’t be a good person and a good citizen unless you believe in the supernatural.

    I have no problem making fun of the xians. After all they hate me and my people and say so often.

  2. Rodney Nelson says

    I have a great deal of difficult finding any sympathy for the primary financial backers of Proposition 8 and other anti-GLBT actions.

  3. raven says

    I have a great deal of difficult finding any sympathy for the primary financial backers of Proposition 8 and other anti-GLBT actions.

    I’ve had a lot of exposure to Mormons. There are a lot on the west coast and I’ve known dozens. Plus spent a lot of time in Utah where I have relatives for about forever.

    They are hard to like or even relate to.

    The men are brought up to believe they are god’s chosen people with their very own Covenant in the One True Religion. They are all priests with magic superpowers that like all magic superpowers are hard for outsiders to even see.

    That results in a sense of superiority over mere normal humans much less Pagans like me. Out of all those dozens of Mormons, I could only relate to two of them. Those two were both…converts.

  4. says

    It should be noted that the Book of Mormon does have Morons in it. Two of them, in fact: a king of the Jaredites mentioned in the Book of Ether (yeah, like the old surgical anesthetic), chapter 11, and the Land of Moron (!!) mentioned in Ether, chapters 7 and 14.

    Maybe the LDS objects to comparing Romney to King Moron (crimeny, the jokes just write themselves) because Moron “did that which was wicked before the Lord” and lost his kingdom as a result.

  5. mb says

    Stereotypes are never a good thing. Mormons are no different.

    Mormons have as wide a range of bigotry and stupidity as any other religion.

    In California we have quite a few liberal Mormons – Steve Young famously came out against Prop 8.

    Is it that much different than Catholics voting for contraception? As in fuck the bishops, that’s crazy talk.

    Of course, my wife the teacher also had a co-worker threatened by Mormons with pulling their kids from her class if she didn’t identify with the pro-8 scumbaggery.

    But still, to say “Mormons are…” is kind of silly – completely different than saying the church is shitty for what it does.

  6. raven says

    Not buying it. I’ve never seen what you are claiming and I’ve seen a huge number of Mormons for 5 decades. I went to school with them starting in grade school and continuing through the university. Utah is 60% LDS.

    Mormonism is an authoritarian mind control abusive cult. It’s a top down religion where the church intrudes into their lives heavily and they are told what to think and when.

    They are so uniform especially in Utah that one of their nicknames are “the clones”.

    They voted 80% for Romney. If the church had actually told them to vote for Romney it would probably have been more like 95%.

    To be sure, I’m referring to TBM’s, True Believing Mormons. Half of them at least are apathetics, inactives, or just gone.

    You can’t compare them to mainline Protestants or modern Catholics who do vary all over the map. They are a lot more uniform and this is by the design of their church and culture.

    Stereotypes are never a good thing. Mormons are no different.

    Denying reality isn’t such a good thing either.

  7. raven says

    To continue, the LDS church enforces conformity in thought, dress, and behavior using every form of social coercion known.

    They have occasional purges at BYU to weed out independent thinkers. The church rule stated as such is, “The thinking has all been done (by the rulers), all you have to do is listen to us”. This is a paraphrase one of their rulers actually said.

    If you have ideas different from the rulers, you will be threatened with excommunication or excommunicated. They don’t like uppity women who advocate for gender equality and have excommunicated some of them.

    They threatened to excommunicate a Mormon blogger for not being on board with Romney. I’m told he has since left the church.

    To be excommunicated from the Mormon church is said to be terrifying to them. You lose your chance to be a god with your own planet and fleet of goddess wives. You also are very likely to lose all your friends and family as well. A hallmark for an abusive cult is how hard it is to get out of it. That is what they are.

    It’s not just another religious denomination. It’s a cult.

  8. sailor1031 says

    Maybe all those muslims finally watched the youTube video and saw that there’s very little in it that isn’t already in the koran and the hadith. Or were they all along just protesting the crappy production values? Now that I could understand….

    As for an angel named moroni? you should expect to be laughed at if you believe such rubbish.

  9. steve314 says

    Even the notoriously touchy Muslims seems to be getting resigned to the fact that their efforts to get the rest of the world to conform to…

    Hmm. Only a few riots, only a few people killed.

    I suppose this might be calming down compared with the Danish cartoons, but it is still way way out there on the bell curve of reasonable reactions.

  10. left0ver1under says

    It would be nice, but the mormons are only “resigned” to the fact that they can’t use physical or legal force to get their way. Anti-abortion terrorists from “operation rescue” who used violence were held legally accountable, that’s why they’ve cut down on their terrorist attacks, not because they wouldn’t kill more people if they could.

    Religions are only ever peaceful when they are in the minority, when they don’t have legal immunity or impunity from the consequences of their actions. Absolute power corrupts absolutely, and that’s all the more true when religions are involved. When religions wield absolute power, they falsely claims “divine right” and do far worse than any political ideologue could.

  11. Mano Singham says

    On an absolute scale, yes even this violence was excessive. But when you consider that this film was deliberately made to be offensive on so many levels to observant Muslims, I was surprised that it did not evoke an even more long-lasting violent response.

  12. thewhollynone says

    Where Catholics are in the majority, they are the same as you describe the Mormons in Utah. All religions will be tyranical cults if they can.

  13. mb says

    Not sure what your point is since you specifically state you’re talking about the batshit crazy (TBM in your words).

    Since all Mormons are not TBM, what’s the point of stereotyping Mormons and not simply referring to the church or specific batshit crazy individuals when talking about them?

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