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  NATALIE R. COLLINS
Total Articles: 11
A day in the life of writer Natalie R. Collins, who lives behind the Zion Curtain in Utah. Natalie R. Collins is the author of the book, Wives And Sisters (St. Martin's Press). A writer of fiction and nonfiction, Collins shares her views on self-publishing and the business of book marketing. This is a collection of Natalie's blogged items and books.
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Simon Southerton's Court Of Love
Thursday, Jul 21, 2005, at 07:35 AM
Original Author(s): Natalie R. Collins
Topic: NATALIE R. COLLINS   -Link To MC Article-
A Court of Love sounds kinda trippy, doesn't it? The truth is, there is nothing lovely about the kind of court Simon Southerton is facing. Simon is the author of Losing a Lost Tribe: Native Americans, DNA, and the Mormon Church. Bet you guessed by the title that the Mormons don't really "love" Simon at all. Kinda like me. Even worse, Simon's book is nonfiction, and pretty much debunks the whole "Native Americans are Lamanites" theory that runs the Book of Mormon. Simon wrote the book to try to force Church officials to abandon their racist teachings and beliefs. In a nutshell, he is saying the whole "curse" thing is pretty much a figment of Joseph Smith's imagination. It wasn't even that original. Come on, remember the whole curse of Cain in the Bible? You remember the one. It allowed white people to treat black people like cattle--or worse. The Lamanite curse isn't much different. Both basically say the darker skin equates to an evil lifestyle. Mormons take it even one step further, however, by teaching thatwe each CHOSE our lives in the pre-existence. If you don't like how things turned out, you only have yourself to blame.

Click Here For Original Link Or Thread.
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Jeff Lindsay Says "Anti-Mormons" Ruin Credibility By Being Honest
Tuesday, Jul 26, 2005, at 07:35 AM
Original Author(s): Natalie R. Collins
Topic: NATALIE R. COLLINS   -Link To MC Article-
I'm perplexed. Jeff Lindsay, of the Mormanity blog, apparently thinks that everyone should live their lives according to the unofficial teachings of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In other words, if it ain't pretty, HIDE IT or lie about it.

The reason he speaks of this, is because he is attacking, without naming, Simon Southerton, who has received a media blitz lately because he has been called into a Church "Court of Love," to address his membership in the Church. Apparently, this membership is in danger because when Simon was separated from his wife, he had a relationship with another woman. And he now has the GALL to be honest about it. Simon, whatever are you thinking? Of course, the truth is Simon's membership status is in jeopardy because he wrote a book that is not pro-Book of Mormon. But given the recent fiascos like the Grant Palmer affair, leaders want to make it look like they are "loving" Simon out of the Church 'cuz he was bumping nasties with someone other than his wife.

Click Here For Original Link Or Thread.
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The Lost Mormons - Comments On Salt Lake Tribune Article By Natalie R. Collins
Tuesday, Oct 18, 2005, at 07:29 AM
Original Author(s): Natalie R. Collins
Topic: NATALIE R. COLLINS   -Link To MC Article-
There was an interesting story in today's Salt Lake Tribune. The Trib has recently been running a lot of stories about Mormons, and interestingly enough, their declining numbers in Utah, but this story was particularly interesting because the Church was faced to own up to the fact they are just not WILLING to let anyone go, ever. Or at least until you turn 110.

Basically, the story talks about the church "member locators" who attempt to track down the 180,000 (I suspect this number is fudged, but we won't go there tonight) Mormons for whom they do not have addresses or phone numbers. Never mind the fact that it's pretty obvious these Mormons do not wish to be contacted, because Mormon churches just aren't that hard to find. If they wanted to come back to church, they would be there. It ain't rocket science. But the Mormon Church is not going to let them be. In fact, they keep looking and WILL keep looking for these Mormons until they reach the age of 110, hell freezes over and Utah elects a Democratic representative. (That part about the age of 110 is true. Go read the article.)

I, personally, would like to locate these Mormons and find out how they managed to convince family members NOT to turn them in. My mother sends my records everywhere I go. My church records were and are more faithful than any boyfriend I ever had in my younger years. Those (boyfriends) came and went, but by God, the Mormons always knew where to find me. The CIA has nothing on the Church and my mother.

It leaves me wondering if there is some sort of Witness Protection Program for former Mormons. Are these former Mormons being spirited away from family and friends so they can live out the rest of their lives in relative peace, away from visiting teachers, member locaters and green jello with carrots in it? Is there an Underground Railroad for former Mormons, who are whisked away to states not located in the Mormon corridor, only to find themselves in strange lands where people don't understand funeral potatoes, the wardhouse, and girls so ugly they are called "sweet spirits?"

I wonder these things, late at night, when I should be sleeping.

http://www.nataliercollins.com/weblog/
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Stop The Madness
Thursday, Nov 24, 2005, at 08:27 AM
Original Author(s): Natalie R. Collins
Topic: NATALIE R. COLLINS   -Link To MC Article-
In a fairly stunning victory for child abuse victims, a Washington state jury has ordered The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to pay at least $2.5 million to two sisters who said their bishop did not protect them from a sexually abusive stepfather.

Immediately, the Church issued a statement, posted on their official web site. This evocatively written release makes me want to puke. They are spinning again, and it's making EVERY INTELLIGENT PERSON DIZZY. And if it's NOT making you dizzy, you are NOT paying attention. Or you are stupid.

In this release, they spin the church's "dedication" to prevention of child abuse, which I can assure you, is ABSOLUTELY non-existent. The entire set up of Mormon hierarchy has been to protect the Church, from day one. If it makes the CHURCH look bad, you better cover it up. Mormon Meadow Massacre? Cover it up. President Gordon B. Hinckley buying up documents from Mark Hoffman, that later prove to be forgeries? Cover it up. If it doesn't spin the Church positively COVER IT UP.

All of this covering up is bad for ventilation and breathing. Things are dying. I've seen it, and had it validated in recent reports of church activity numbers. Haven't the LDS church authorities learned this yet? Are they not paying attention? Don't you just want to shake them and say, "listen up?"

So Gordo has said, "Boy, child abuse is really, really bad," in a few conferences or articles in Church magazines (paraphrased, of course). Does that stop it? Hell no. And even finding those few references is NOT going to save face here.

Oh, and if you are going to try and say I am using an agenda? Taking his words out of context? Well, here they are, just as they are used in the official LDS Church news release.
But child abuse was not always the subject of national media reports. This evil lurked in the shadows, mostly unseen, almost always unmentionable. Yet even before the issue first came to the forefront in the United States, Gordon B. Hinckley, President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, publicly denounced child abuse as a terrible evil. In the early 1980s, he captured our thoughts and feelings when he said in a worldwide conference broadcast: "I am glad that there is a growing public awareness of this insidious evil. The exploitation of children . . . for the satisfaction of sadistic desires is sin of the darkest hue."
See those ...? Those are called ellipses, and when ex- or non-Mormons use them, we are accused of taking things out of context. Of course, for the Church purposes, it's perfectly all right. God is on their side.

This is the saddest excuse for excusing knowledge of evil behavior I have ever heard. "We said it was bad. Isn't that enough?"

Or even worse, "Well, gee, we just didn't know about it. The bishop was lay clergy."

No shit. You didn't know because you didn't WANT to know. Don't tout your exemplary record to me. Tell the truth. The bishop was lay clergy? Have you considered that maybe lay clergy are not properly trained?

From the release:
Bishops receive no salary or financial reward of any kind. Neither are they isolated members of the clergy. There is no special clerical order within the Church for them to belong to. Latter-day Saint bishops live in the community and work at their regular jobs just like everyone else. Because they administer the demands of their bishop's office mostly on weekends and during evenings, they can do so only by calling on other congregational members in large numbers to help them.

The bishop might be a schoolteacher, a doctor, or a businessman. To help him, a librarian may be asked to teach a Sunday school class of six-year-olds. A female pharmacist might be in charge of the children's organization for those ages three to 11. These callings are temporary and change frequently, but everyone who serves at the invitation of the bishop is expected to live up to the tenets of their religion, at the core of which is respect for the family and, naturally, children.
In other words, bishops are overworked, untrained, unpaid, and expected to solve problems of an intense, often devastating, and personal nature on a daily basis? Or should I say, even-ly basis, because they are working at regular jobs, at regular businesses, and trying to support their families, while trying to deal with the terrible ills of an entire congregation of human beings who fuck up on a regular basis? Usually in the evening, when they should be with their families?

MORMON CHURCH WAKE UP. The days of unpaid clergy, called by God, are gone. This is a full time job, and you need trained people.

It's not enough to say "It's bad." Duh. This is not rocket science. We know it's bad, and we know YOU said it was bad. But you never did more. You never set up hotlines (until the last few years), or you never said, "you must report this," and worst of all, you never said, "STOP TRYING TO SOLVE THIS YOURSELF. YOU ARE NOT PROPERLY TRAINED."

My friend, who is a retired Utah detective. has told me horrible stories of dealing with Mormons in abuse cases in small town Utah. These bishops THOUGHT they were doing the right thing. It was what they were taught. They fucked up, but no one EVER TOLD THEM THEY WERE FUCKING UP, because they were protecting the church, or even worse, they thought that GOD was telling them how to counsel these people.

There's a problem here folks, and until you address it, it will NOT go away. And if you don't address it, I hope that you have many, many more judgments of millions of dollars recorded against you.

Just be honest. Past policy is wrong. Some people are inherently bad. The Mormon Church does not save them from that, and so you NEED TO SAVE THE REAL VICTIMS. The children.

A girl can dream.

http://www.nataliercollins.com/weblog/
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First Stick-Up-The-Ass Awards Of The Year Go To Larry Miller And Gayle Ruzicka
Wednesday, Jan 11, 2006, at 07:13 AM
Original Author(s): Natalie R. Collins
Topic: NATALIE R. COLLINS   -Link To MC Article-
Utah Millionaire Larry Miller, who is the owner of the Utah Jazz, a bunch of car dealerships, and tons of other stuff, including some movie theatres, has found himself in the center of controversy. Miller is many things to Utah, but first and foremost, he is a prominent Mormon.

Apparently, after a Utah Radio Station called to interview him about the movie Brokeback Mountain, which was scheduled to run in his theatres, Miller discovered the theme of the movie. Up until that point, he was sort of in the closet, er, uh, I mean in the dark, about the movie’s theme. In a short summation, two gay cowboys carry on a 20-year relationship. Miller’s theatre regularly runs slasher flicks, all manner of R-rated movies, and has no policy against blood and guts movies, or sexually explicit movies, but there WILL BE NO GAY COWBOYS IN HIS THEATRE. How does one explain this strange reaction? How does one JUSTIFY running movies where teenagers are gutted and impaled while having premarital sex, but a tender love story between TWO MEN, a story that is garnering kudos, Golden Globe nominations up the proverbial ying yang and more, is NOT GONNA HAPPEN.

It must be the gay cowboys. Because, well doggies, gay cowboys? Whatever is this world coming to? We’ll have none of that gay cowboy shit in Utah. I mean, WHO comes up with this stuff? Everyone knows that cowboys are NEVER gay. Why, the sheer manliness of their profession leads one to surmise that cowboys could NEVER be gay. Rugged and gay generally don’t go hand in hand. Gays are redecorating the world and doing the hair of the stars and–at least in the case of females–winning golf tournaments. At least in stereotype-land. And apparently, that is where MILLER LIVES, along with a good deal of the rest of Utah. Because he thought Brokeback Mountain was about cowboys. Just cowboys. And as we have just discussed, cowboys are NOT gay. Ever. Ever ever.

Well, when Mormon Miller descovered that the fabulous film about cowboys just HAPPENS to be about GAY cowboys, well, that was too much to take. So he pulled the film from his theatres. Without viewing it, of course. Why watch the film and see what it is ACTUALLY about before condemning it? Another thing we are big on in Utah. Condemning things we have not yet seen or read. Happened to me ALL the time with WIVES AND SISTERS. The majority of angry Mormons condemning had NEVER READ IT.

As a result of Miller’s actions, the movie is getting even MORE press, and Utah and Miller are getting even more DAMAGING press.

And much of the United States is embracing the movie. Good for them. And shame on Utah, Larry Miller, and especially Gayle Ruzicka, president of the Eagle Forum, whose only real accomplishment in life, as far as I can see, is populating half this earth with children and walking around with a big stick up her ass.

The majority of homophobia comes from fear. We fear what we don’t understand.

And frankly, pulling Brokeback Mountain from his theatres dumps Larry Miller RIGHT in the middle of the group of the BIGGEST HYPOCRITES IN THE WORLD. Consider what he runs, on a daily basis, at his theatre. The fact he pulled a GAY THEMED movie from the theatre SHOUTS of his bigotry.

Randy Harward, at New West Network, summed it up REALLY well.

“What is worse? Man-on-Man, or Man-On-Granny?” He he.

Ruzicka, meanwhile, told the Deseret News:
“I think it sets an example for all the people in Utah and, like I said before, he’s my new hero,” said Gayle Ruzicka, president of the Utah Eagle Forum. “It’s such a terrible show, and it is such a horrible message. I just think (pulling the show) tells the young people especially that maybe there is something wrong with this show.”
God forbid if Gayle Ruzicka EVER calls me her hero. (I know, I know, it will NEVER happen.) But still, that would be the darkest day of my life. Gee, Gayle, what are the odds you haven’t even SEEN the film? But please, call it horrible. You, after all, in your infinite wisdom-ness, and your Godly calling as the moral THERMOMETER for Utah, KNOW what the rest of us heathens don’t. At this point, I might note that thermometers get stuck up rather unsightly places also, sort of like that STICK that has to be irritating you. No wonder you find people to pick on.

And you apparently have NO clue what young people think, because you just guaranteed that they are going to flock to it EN MASSE just by your statement.

While I enjoy making fun of you and Miller and the rest of the silly idiots, really, you are doing the film a big favor. The press alone will guarantee it’s success. So, perhaps, Gayle, I can send you a copy of WIVES AND SISTERS. It’s guaranteed to get that stick a-wiggling and get you all irritated. Just send me your address….

http://www.nataliercollins.com/weblog/
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Adventures In Signing An "Anti" Mormon Book In Mormon Country
Monday, Mar 27, 2006, at 08:33 AM
Original Author(s): Natalie R. Collins
Topic: NATALIE R. COLLINS   -Link To MC Article-
Today I signed books at the Layton Barnes and Noble in Layton, Utah. It’s always interesting to sign what some regard as an “anti” Mormon book in the middle of Mormon country, although Layton is pretty diverse, mostly because of Hill Air Force Base.

I thought it would be interesting to recount what the signing was like.

1. Signing starts, and they have ordered about 10 hardback books, as well as 30 paperbacks. Surprisingly, first three books I sell are hardbacks. I really didn’t think that with the paperback sitting there, people would shell out money for a hardback, but one was for a gift, one for a nice lady who collects signed books, and one for a collection of local authors at Weber State University. That nice man also bought a paperback copy for his wife.

2. Middle-aged slightly nerdy but nice man comes to table, leans down and whispers conspiratorially, “How do you like your publisher?” My publisher is great, I assure him. I have a great editor. Next twenty minutes pass by while he explains how he has written a science fiction book and everyone who reads it loves it and asks for more. He also asks many questions about publishing and getting published. He wants to know why he can’t self publish. He finally leaves WITHOUT buying book, and with letting me know he just doesn’t understand why that pesky switching tenses is so wrong. He just writes “what feels right.”

3. Candy I have set out to attract people to my table attracts very cute four-year-old boy. He spends about 10 minutes explaining why he needs three pieces, for him and his brother, because they always share, and will be splitting the third piece in half. He is so cute, I give him two more just because he amuses me.

4. Mentally handicapped boy spots candy and comes over, scooping up handful. Mother admonishes him to return it. I tell her he is welcome to take some candy. Big mistake. For next two hours, he wanders the store unsupervised and keeps coming over to scoop out big handfuls of candy. I try telling him that it will make him sick, but he is not listening. No idea where mother is. Finally, I resort to hiding basket every time he comes close. I have no problem sharing my candy, but I am afraid that he will get sick on chocolate and I will get sued or something.

5. Nice slightly gothic twenty-something girl comes up, asks about book, wonders if it will offend her Mormon mother (answer: possibly) and gets signed copy, then moves away.

6. Twenty minutes later, nice slightly gothic twenty-something girl stands at rack next to my signing table and talks loudly to her friend about her own writing, and how “Jane thinks it is awesome, and so-compelling,” and how she keeps having people tell her she should get it published. Apparently, however, Jane was drunk while she read it, so perhaps her opinion is not valid. Friend assures her Jane’s opinion is always valid, drunk or not.

7. Strange woman wearing headphones and carrying CD player comes in, picks up book, reads back summary, glares and me, slaps it back down on the table with a “hmmph” and walks away.

8. Friend Suzanne and husband Matt come in, and buy four copies, having me sign them for different friends and relatives. Suzanne then walks around store with copies face out, so people will see book and want their own copy. Good Suzanne.

9. Several other people buy signed books, offer congratulations, and leave quickly. Two more hardbacks are sold.

10. Nice former Mormon comes and introduces himself, and we have a nice chat. He buys a book, and promises to email his response to it.

11. Nice lady comes up and tells me she bought book in hardback last year, and applauds me for my courage.

12. In the aisle, next to the table where I am signing, is a Dan Brown table. A FREAKING table. For next three hours, I fight back compulsions to physically pounce on people perusing Brown books and drag them over to MY table (which will be dismantled shortly after I leave, as opposed to Brown’s ENTIRE FREAKING TABLE, which will not) and make them buy MY books.

13. Did I mention Dan Brown has an entire FREAKING table? Since no one is at my table, I wonder over there and bookseller starts talking to me. I mention I am not a real fan of Angels and Demons, and girl with man perusing DAN BROWN’S FREAKING table joins conversation. She soon comes over to check out my book, gets excited and buys copy. WOO HOO.

14. Twenty-something, slightly gothic girl returns to same spot, again talking loudly about her latest story, and how her boyfriend keeps telling her she is as good as any book in Barnes and Noble. Not exactly sure what girl wants me to do, aside from begging to read her work, I choose to smile nicely and sign books for about four more people, including very nice former Mormon couple.

15. Very, very strange girl comes up to table. Shows me some sort of book with just pictures (not sure what it was) and tells me she is not capable of reading words, only pictures. And she is good artist, too. Her mother tells her she should write, but no, she wants to draw pictures, like the ones in the book. Sorry she can’t buy my book because it has words, not pictures. She doesn’t much like words.

16. Nice man comes up and chats with me. Tells me he is California Mormon, not Utah Mormon, making sure I know the difference, and then tells me how men writers just GRAB ya, and women writers don’t. But maybe his wife would like my book. Turns out, after reading the description, she doesn’t want it either. She wants to read books about “happy Mormon families.” I am a washout there.

17. Things slow down, and I sign remaining books, and slap autographed copy stickers on them. Manager thanks me, and I leave him with some of my cards. All told, there are ten paperback copies left and only two hardback copies. Manager says they are going to set up display at information desk with remaining signed copies.

18. Friend Cindy comes in, with daughter, in between soccer game breaks. She buys four copies, and has me sign them. I love friends.

19. On way home, I stop at Albertson’s Grocery Store for toilet paper (oh the glamorous life) and spot my book there! I ask manager if I can sign it. He gives me strange look, and asks me how he is supposed to know it is really me. Hello? Are their hordes of people wandering into stores and signing books randomly? Is this is a real crime problem? I open up book and show him my pictures. “Yep, that’s you.” I sign books.

20. I can HARDLY wait for the next signing.
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The Pope, The Holocaust Victims - All Mormon
Tuesday, May 30, 2006, at 09:20 AM
Original Author(s): Natalie R. Collins
Topic: NATALIE R. COLLINS   -Link To MC Article-
Everybody wants to be Mormon. Really. You may not UNDERSTAND that you want this, of course, but Mormons do. They KNOW it, deep in their heart of hearts, where the burning bosom shit happens. So they’ve made it easy. They just BAPTIZE everyone, and then you don’t have to even get out of bed to join God’s Church.

(I should note that this really pisses me off, because I had to get dressed up, and actually GET dunked, and actually sit through church and get CONFIRMED, while the rest of you are getting off easy. Why the hell don’t they tell you this? If you have the choice to do it AFTER you die, why DO IT NOW? Please, go sow your wild oats, and then when you are dead, life opens up for you. It’s a stupid theology they don’t really share with the faithful, although if you THINK hard enough, you can figure it out. Of course, once you do that, there’s really nothing to strive for or aim to achieve.)

Ahem. I digress. Of course, the fact that some of you don’t WISH to be baptized Mormon is irrelevant. At least to the Mormons.

As the Mormon Prophet Gordon B. Hinckley says, the baptismal rite is only an offer of membership that can be rejected in the afterlife by individuals. “So, there’s no injury done to anybody,” Hinckley told the AP in an interview last November.

Really? No injury? By whose standards, President Hinckley? So, the fact that Mormons have baptized Hitler by proxy shouldn’t be offensive at all to Jews, who find other Holocaust victims also being baptized? The fact that the man who engineered THEIR MURDER is being treated like a viable candidate for God’s highest kingdom, right alongside them, isn’t a problem?

And the fact that they, themselves, are not Christian, should also be ignored? After all, they can “just say no.”

This is arrogance, plain and simple.

Believing so strongly that you have THE ONLY ONE TRUE thing that you are willing to baptize anyone and everyone and risk their wrath, because, well, you KNOW you are right.

Baptizing even people like, say, the Jews, who do not believe that Jesus Christ is the son of God?

And yet Mormons cry foul about their treatment in the media, again and again. Really, what they want is just to do WHAT THEY WANT because they are right, and we are all wrong. How else can you spell it?

Of course, Mormons do not see this, because their belief system is set up to tell them their religion IS the ONLY TRUE THING. In the afterlife, why on earth would someone SAY NO? In the AFTERLIFE, it’s going to be patently obvious that Mormons were RIGHT all along? So where is the harm?

Well, for one thing, in 1995 Mormons signed an agreement with Jewish leaders to prevent Jewish names from being added to the geneological index, which is where the names for baptism by proxy (baptism of the dead) are culled from.

But that hasn’t stopped. And apparently, ANY believing Mormon can access the database and add names. Which is how the POPE ended up Mormon.

Here is the actual Church record that shows he is in the database. It’s been confirmed by a church insider, who chooses not to be named, that actual ordination (baptism) work has been done.

Me, I’m lobbying for the Pope to be appointed as my Home Teacher. And I bet he’d LOVE those funeral potatoes…..
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Does The LDS Church Monitor Ex-Mormons? Of Course
Friday, Jul 21, 2006, at 09:30 AM
Original Author(s): Natalie R. Collins
Topic: NATALIE R. COLLINS   -Link To MC Article-
After I sold my first book, WIVES AND SISTERS, to St. Martin's Press, I posted about it on the exMormon mailing list. A few weeks later my editor called me. She said, "Natalie, the Mormon Church has requested advanced copies of your book. How do they even know about it? Isn't this a little strange?"

Business as usual in Mormon-land, was my response.

There was NO mention of it yet ANYWHERE. There was no catalog. There was no advertising. They were not pushing it. I was an unknown author, and I had not done any interviews about it. In short, I had just SOLD it. No one knew about it but people who knew me, the editor who bought it, my agent, and the people on the list who knew about the book and the sale because I posted it there.

Believe me, they MONITOR these lists and also dissidents.
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The Mormon Death Grip
Friday, Oct 13, 2006, at 07:27 AM
Original Author(s): Natalie R. Collins
Topic: NATALIE R. COLLINS   -Link To MC Article-
So, I'm in the grocery store. In my little home town, where I went to high school, and graduated, and left.... and eventually ended back up in. Long story. But I live here again, after years in Salt Lake.

And I run into my old bishop--and neighbor--and his wife. She recognizes me, although she calls me by my older sister's name. We chat, while he pushes their groceries out, and basically ignores both of us.

Turns out we are parked RIGHT NEXT TO EACH OTHER. Goody. I find out they have just returned from their THIRD mission. I make a smart ass comment about how they are trying to keep up with MY parents, jokingly, of course, and she doesn't realize it is a smart ass comment. She laughs.

Then I turn and put my groceries in my car, and suddenly HE COMES TO LIFE. Apparently, she has shared with him my identity. "Sister NATALIE," he says, gripping my hand so firmly I'm afraid he's trying to abscond with it!

So, here's the thing. I am NOT his sister, and he very well knows it, and what is up with the death grip handshake ANYWAY?

Sigh. Why can I not just be myself? Why do I have to be associated with MORMONISM forever?

I just smiled, because truly these people do not mean me ill, but I drove away yelling "SISTER NATALIE? What the... SISTER NATALIE?"

And what happened to MY ability to pull away and say, "I am not your sister. I am not Mormon anymore."

Except I am. Because they will not let me go.
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First "Stick Up The Wazoo" Award Of The Year Goes To Kaysville Councilman Gil Miller And Ryan Price
Monday, Jan 8, 2007, at 07:00 AM
Original Author(s): Natalie R. Collins
Topic: NATALIE R. COLLINS   -Link To MC Article-
Our first 2007 Stick up the Wazoo Award goes jointly to Kaysville (Utah) City Councilman Gil Miller and Ryan Price of SLC. You will note the kinder, gentler language I am using. Becoming aware of the young readership I sometimes attract, I am attempting to avoid swearage. It's my New Year's resolution. I'm sure it will last until at least the Utah State Legislature meets.

At any rate, Mormon Miller decided to mandate that no Kaysville-city sponsored events will be held on Mondays, because most Mormons want it that way. Of course, he didn't say Mormons. He said:

"Most of his family-oriented constituents want Monday evenings free. And, he says, city-sponsored sports get in the way."

How cute. Everyone KNOWS that Mormons hold Mondays sacred as "Family Home Evening," mandated by the Church. His wording fools no one. But he's been very careful, of course, to avoid offending anyone, or say MAKING EVERYONE WHO LIVES IN KAYSVILLE LIVE BY RULES SET DOWN BY THE MORMON RELIGION. By God, no, he didn't do that.

He says his decision, which was backed up by fellow council members, has nothing to do with the Mormon Church's practice - he's a member - of asking members to reserve Monday nights for Family Home Evening.

"Over the past 20 months numerous people have approached me about Monday practices," Miller said, estimating that Kaysville is about 90 percent LDS. According to LDS church records, 68 percent of Davis County's population belongs to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

"I believe I understand what the folks in Kaysville are after," Miller said, carefully avoiding any direct link between his beliefs and the city's new policy.

Not only does Miller have problems with MATH, but he also has every intention of making EVERY Kaysville resident, Mormon or not, abide by HIS BELIEF SYSTEM. This will, according to other Kaysville politicos, be a detriment to the Kaysville City budget and all the young people involved in city sports, which, despite what Miller thinks, have NOTHING TO DO WITH RELIGION. We aren't asking you to run the sports on Sundays, you doehead. But Mondays? That's your religion, and your choice, but you DON'T get to make an entire city live by YOUR RELIGIOUS BELIEF. You've been living in Utah too long, and apparently do not have ANY idea what the division of Church and State means. If you don't want your kids to play sports on Mondays, that's your call, but you DON'T get to mandate what MY KIDS do.

And to say it's NOT because of the Mormon belief of Family Home Evening. Carefully word your way to the Celestial Kingdom, nobody is that STUPID. It's about YOU thinking ONLY MORMONS live here. How arrogant and un-Christlike is that? Fortunately for you, you have supporters. And thus, you get to SHARE your award with a Public Forum writer in The Salt Lake Tribune.

Dear Ryan Price said, in his Tribune letter:

People are not the church Public Forum Letter Article Last Updated: 01/04/2007 07:58:11 PM MST

In his letter, "Church and state," published in the Dec. 29 Public Forum, James Oshust takes to task the LDS Church for Kaysville's decision to not have certain facilities open on Mondays, as well as having their New Year's celebration on the 30th.

He tells the LDS Church that only once that organization is willing to pay the costs of these facilities can it then impart their "specific morality."

Mr. Oshust is quite obviously bitter about the LDS Church. What he fails to understand, or is simply unwilling to understand, is that the LDS Church, as an organization, has nothing to do with these kinds of decisions. Were there LDS members who made the decision? Yes. But Mormons in Kaysville making public policy decisions are not the LDS Church. People, please try to get those distinctions straight.

Ryan Price Salt Lake City

Ryan, are you REALLY that stupid? The only reason MORMONS in Kaysville are trying to MAKE that particular public policy is because THE MORMON CHURCH teaches it as POLICY. They didn't pull it out of their wazoo, unlike this stupid letter you wrote to The Salt Lake Tribune!

If the letter writer he is referring to is bitter, it's no WONDER! If Gil Miller was NOT Mormon, and did not believe in Family Home Evening on Mondays, he would not be trying to tell every other resident of Kaysville that THEY cannot play sports on Mondays because HIS CHURCH doesn't want them to.

I was raised Mormon. I know VERY WELL how much pressure is put on people to impart THEIR religion on others. YOU make the distinction, Ryan. When the LDS Church writes a letter, telling Miller that he should not try to enforce public policy based on his religious belief, then I will agree with you that PEOPLE are not the Church. Until then, you and I BOTH know that Gil Miller is only doing what his Church wants him to do. Probably sanctioned by his local leaders, and possibly even Church headquarters.

Until we hear otherwise, this is just a fact. If you've lived in Utah more than ten minutes, you know this.

Enjoy your stick.
topic image
On Gayle Ruzicka Losing A Child
Wednesday, Mar 14, 2007, at 06:50 AM
Original Author(s): Natalie R. Collins
Topic: NATALIE R. COLLINS   -Link To MC Article-
First of all, I have publicly, on my blog, called Gayle Ruzicka exactly what I think she is. She is a right-wing, arrogant, head-up-the-wazoo bigot and homophobe.

Her actions, for the most part, are appalling, even in the light of Latter-day-Saintism. My mom is a Saint, and she would never dream of trying to force her will on the rest of the world like Ruzicka does on a regular basis.

There is NO Saint when it comes to Ruzicka, and I stand by my assertion she should be wholly ashamed of her actions, which don't even RESEMBLE the actions of the namesake of her Church, The Church of JESUS CHRIST of Latter-day Saints. Jesus was known to hang out with prostitutes and lepers, and all manner of life's forgotten souls. He cared. Ruzicka does not.

However, losing a child is not an easy thing. My compassion goes out to her, but only as far as she extends compassion to others. Others like the multitude of parents who have lost children to suicide, children who killed themselves because they were gay. Children who thought they were A BLIGHT in God's eyes. Or children who didn't believe the ridiculous story that is Mormonism, but were never accepted by the family.

Can you be compassionate Gayle? Because I want you to be. I want you to reach out and say, "Hey, I understand. I'm sorry your child died. I know how that feels. I want to accept each child for what they are."

I doubt that will happen. I do not know the circumstances of Joshua Ruzicka's death, and frankly, it is not my business. But Gayle has made public degradation HER business. And so she must expect this. She needs to stand up and say, "I was wrong."

How do you feel compassion for one who is so lacking in compassion? Or perhaps, so one-minded in her beliefs that she cannot even fathom a world that offers other possibilities? She is fighting a silly fight. Waging a ridiculous war. What is happening in YOUR home Gayle? Tell us that?

I wish that the God, the loving God, the one I always read about in books and stories, at least in regard to Jesus, was real. Apparently, according to Mormons, he is not.

I do not respect Gayle Ruzicka. I do not now, and will not EVER respect her past actions. I consider her a blight on humanity. But I mourn for her loss. I would like to see, as a result, a bit of humanity from her.

I am not optimistic this will happen.
 
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