June 22, 2017

Thanks, Donnie!

Over the last several years, I have had many conversations with people who did not vote for, did not like, etc. Barack Obama.  Living in Utah, it was the norm - especially after Obama won over Mitt Romney in 2012.  Romney is not from Utah, but since he's Mormon and has great hair, we claim him as our own.  And, to be fair, he currently has a house in Utah which makes having those elite, posh $1,000/plate dinners in Park City that much more convenient.

But, I'm getting off track here.  {See, I told you we Utah Mormons are obsessed with Mitt Romney.  Seriously, look at that hair?}

I have asked my less-than-thrilled-with-Obama friends if they could think of one positive thing he had accomplished.  Like, literally, anything.

Much like the NRA with regards to Philando Castile, the response was always silence.

And, that really bothered me.  Still does.

Surely, one good thing happened over the last eight years, right?  Osama bin Laden, anyone?

After Donald Trump was elected president {#2,864,974), I decided I was not going to be one of those people.  Because refusing to find the good in something you didn't choose is gauche.

My goal is to post once a month about one positive aspect of the Trump administration.  This is not going to be easy, but I find the exercise to be somewhat necessary for my overall well-being and sanity.  Plus, I expect it will foster a lot of creativity.

So, here we go.

Donald Trump's presidency has reminded me of the importance of being involved in local government.  I have learned exactly who represents my area, what their stance is on certain issues and how I can get in touch with them.  I also belong to a women's caucus for my county which provides opportunities for me to learn what is going on in my community in terms of volunteering, rallies, meetings, etc.  And, I've met many wonderful people along the way.

And, for that, I say "Thanks, Donnie!"

June 16, 2017

solicitors WELCOME

Years ago, a 20-something man came to my door asking if I would like to purchase a magazine subscription.  When I politely declined his offer, I assumed our conversation would be over.  I was wrong.  We continued to talk and he asked if I was Mormon.  I told him I was.  He then told me that Mormons never buy subscriptions {clearly, he'd never heard of the Ensign, New Era, Friend or Liahona} and attempted to make me feel like I was not fulfilling my Christian duty by purchasing 12 months worth of Sports Illustrated.  Once he left my house, I spent the rest of the day being mad and frustrated that this person had so unfairly judged me.

I decided a NO SOLICITING sign would be a worthwhile purchase.  I contemplated where I'd put the sign so that it was noticeable, but not tacky.  After a few days, I gave up on the idea and resolved to just not answer the door the next time a solicitor came knocking.

Fast forward to today and I officially made the decision to never display a NO SOLICITING sign on my house. 

As mentioned above, I am Mormon.  Officially, I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  For the sake of simplicity, I'll refer to myself as LDS and my religion as "the church."

As of December 31, 2016, there were over 70,000 LDS missionaries serving worldwide.  Missionary service is strongly recommended for all able young men beginning at the age of 18 (after completing high school or its equivalent).  Young men (referred to as Elders) serve for up to two years.  They have no official say in where they serve, they pay their own way, and, besides weekly e-mails, they do not contact their families except for on Christmas and Mother's Day.  Young women are welcomed to serve missions beginning at age 19 for up to 18 months.

We Mormons love our missionaries.  We take pride in the fact that we send our young people all across the world to preach about the gospel of Jesus Christ.  We love the missionary program so much that when the Broadway play The Book of Mormon hit the scene {you know, the play that mocks missionaries, an entire religion with over 15 million members, and then some} the church simply made this one official statement:

"The production may attempt to entertain audiences for an evening, but the Book of Mormon as a volume of scripture will change people's lives forever by bringing them closer to Christ."

When the production made it's way to Los Angeles, the church bought space in the playbill with ads like "the book is always better" and "you've seen the play, now read the book."  Considering the importance of the Book of Mormon and the missionary efforts to those of the LDS faith, these responses were pretty brilliant.

See, so not even an offensive, perverted, vulgar, yet acclaimed, Tony Award winning production brought to you by the same industry that demands inclusion from Mike Pence can sway us from sending out and loving our missionaries. {To be clear, #I'mWithHer}

But, here's the ironic part of it all.  Missionaries are solicitors.  One of the ways they meet, connect and eventually teach people is by going door-to-door.  Missionaries, of course, can and do meet people under different circumstances, but the fact remains that most of them knock on doors in hopes of finding someone who will listen to them.

My parents both served missions in Germany.  My husband served a mission in Canada.  All three of them went door-to-door practically everyday.  How, then, can I openly deny solicitors at my own house?

Believe me, I've thought of a plethora of reasons how to justify displaying a sign:  it's illegal, it's dangerous, it's inconvenient, people make cute signs now (seriously, google "Cute No Soliciting Signs") so I don't have to worry about my house looking tacky, etc.

But, then I think about my parents, my husband and the thousands of missionaries currently serving for a religion that I belong to.  When I think about them, an outward, physical declaration denying solicitors on my house just seems......unnecessary.  Wrong even.

I know I'm probably in the minority when it comes to this.

But, at the end of the day, I feel best inside when I say, "Solicitors, Welcome."
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