Thursday, April 12, 2012
BYU's "It Gets Better" Ad
Last weekend Brigham Young University's student group Understanding Same Gender Attraction (USGA) released their "It Gets Better" video. I knew that it was in the works a long time ago because I have a couple of friends who are in it. One friend, Nathan, is openly gay and still determined to live a life within the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He embodies the oxymoron "gay Mormon" and strives to follow Church teachings as best as he can, even if it means living a celibate, single life. My other friend involved in the project, Madison, is straight and soon to be a sister missionary. She's a strong ally to the LGBTQ community, despite her religious beliefs.
As the video states, there are roughly 1800 homosexual students at BYU, which makes up for about 1/16 of the school's population. Still a relatively small percentage, but at least Church members are coming to grips with the fact that gay people walk among them. The Church isn't going to change its stance on homosexuality any time soon, but I feel that the LDS Church is making efforts to be more tolerant and understanding, which was evident in their recent general conference held in Salt Lake City.
Two quotes from President Dieter F. Uchtdorf have spread like wildfire all over social media. Over the pulpit he made this statement: "When it comes to hating, gossiping, ignoring, ridiculing, holding grudges, or wanting to cause harm -- please apply the following: stop it." And, quoting a bumper sticker he once saw, he added, "Don't judge me because I sin differently than you." And while homosexuality is still seen as a "sin," at least members are being encouraged to remember that they themselves are not perfect either. We all must stop judging, stop hating, and stop wanting to cause harm.
In the words of Jesus Christ, "A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another" (John 13:34).
Here's Nathan's personal interview:
Here's Madison's personal interview: