David Rodeback's Blog

Local Politics and Culture, National Politics,
Life Among the Mormons, and Other Stuff

Among the Mormons Archive
October 3, 2014

My Two New Web Sites Just Launched
I've been scheming this for years and working off and on since February . . .

September 21, 2014

Why One Mormon Doesn't Go to Anti-Gay Marriage Rallies
They're asking why a lot of us don't go, but I can only answer for myself.

August 2, 2014

Then a Cruel Joke, Now a Serious Policy Proposal
An idea I first encountered as a juvenile husband's cruel joke on his young wife is now seriously proposed as policy, to solve a problem which might be much smaller than we've all been thinking: the high divorce rate.

June 26, 2014

Old News Is Hilarious News
I read today that Brother Wayne Dodge was sentenced to 30 days in jail. I rewrote a song about him once . . .

April 1, 2014

New Hymns from the Sutherland Institute
How gentle God's commands!
How kind his precepts are!
Now we will do what God forgot:
We'll make them all state law!

February 11, 2014

People Get Arrested, the Opposition Reasons Poorly, and There's Something Governor Herbert Could Do to Help
I assert my religious freedom as constituting the right to worship as I please, while respecting others' legitimate rights; the right to preach whatever gospel I embrace; and immunity from being forced to worship in the manner of the state's or majority's choosing. Despite my personal religious views on sexual morality, this freedom is completely compatible with the presence of gays in my workplace and my apartment building.

February 5, 2014

I Am Unfit for the Utah Legislature
Not that this is news. I just wouldn't fit in. Lately, this becomes clearer every day.

January 31, 2014

Rights and Rites and Right and the Right: Part Five
Whatever happens in the tempetuous saga of marriage and the law, we must fortify a defensible position which allows us to protect religious freedom. We must counter the work of bullies and opportunists. And we must forsake a popular definition of religious freedom which doesn't even make sense.

January 28, 2014

Rights and Rites and Right and the Right: Part Four
Some folks apparently think that the only questions pertaining to society's laws about marriage are, What is the will of God?, and its corollary, How can we best use our political power at this moment to enforce the will of God by law? I don't object to the first question, but its corollary is the stuff of tyrants. Other questions must be asked.

January 24, 2014

Rights and Rights and Right and the Right: Part Three
If the shoe doesn't fit, don't wear it. If it does, let's take a little walk out back, after I tell you about my possible man-crush.

January 23, 2014

Rights and Rites and Right and the Right: Part Two
If my willingness to embrace gay people as friends, colleagues, neighbors, relatives, and fellow believers incurs the wrath of the God you worship, I am unmoved. The God I worship understands that the worth of every human soul -- yours, mine, everyone's -- is far greater than the sum of its actual or human-perceived sins.

January 22, 2014

Rights and Rites and Right and the Right: Part One
I am attempting to reason my way through, first, some basic American principles and, second, their possible applications to some thorny modern questions. Eventually -- not today -- I'll get to the question of same-sex marriage itself.

December 26, 2013

Random Thoughts on the Passing Scene
From random acts of kindness to ducks and Swallow, from global cooling to gay marriage.

August 25, 2013

I (Re)write the Songs
Do you believe in "better late than never"? Today I'll assume you do. Though a few weeks have passed, one recent caper among the Utah Mormons still retains its full power to make me laugh. (Yes, I know: It's also rather sad.)

August 8, 2013

On Legislating Morality (Yours, Mine, and Ours), Part Two
Our American civic morality, its content and sources, and a difficult contemporary test case. The second post in a two-part series.

August 3, 2013

On Legislating Morality (Yours, Mine, and Ours), Part One
What is morality? Whose, if anyone's, ought we legislate? Does speaking of multiple moralities make me a moral relativist? A little-known morsel of relevant history from the Mayflower period. (The first post in a two-part series.)

December 13, 2011

Tonight in American Fork
After a long hearing in which more than 20 people spoke, the American Fork City Council tabled its proposed Housing and Employment Non-Discrimination Ordinances. Here's the mostly-untold story of how and why, plus my statement from the hearing.

December 1, 2011

A Practical Test of American Fork's Commitment to Freedom
In December the American Fork Council has an interesting and important opportunity to weigh competing principles and vote on the depth of our city's commitment to essential American freedoms.

September 11, 2011

September 11 Reflections
Our barbarian enemies think our being different means we deserve to die. We civilized folk have much more subtle and much less violent ways of abusing people for being different.

July 27, 2011

Nine Ways to Lose My Vote
Last time I described what I generally look for in candidates for local office, focusing on qualities more than issues. I also promised my readers a list of things candidates can do or say to encourage me to vote for someone else. That's today's topic.

October 6, 2010

What the Words Mean, Part I: Setting the Stage
A lot of what's being said these days in school board races and in the Alpine School District generally turns on the definitions of words with many definitions.

September 7, 2010

Civilized People Do Not Burn Other People's Holy Books
A pastor in Florida plans to mark September 11 by burning copies of the Koran. You may have noticed that Americans have the right to do some un-American things, even if they're wrong.

August 10, 2009

Three Utahans: The Nominee, the Religious Bigot, and the Racist
Thoughts on three Utahans who made the news last week in unrelated stories.

July 11, 2009

Excellent Readings
Climate change, Obamacare, Sarah Palin, Robert McNamara, a jobless recovery, American Fork, and more.

July 3, 2009

An assortment of curious tales from the national scene, a couple of local notes, and a weird Mormon moment.

June 8, 2009

Peggy Noonan Day (and Some Housekeeping)
Here are links to a few excellent, recent Peggy Noonan columns, and to some other things I've read lately, some as recently as today.

May 21, 2009

Craig Frank's Folly
Zeal without wisdom is a dangerous thing, even when all it does is open its mouth.

May 13, 2009

The Mormons Baptized Whom?
Barack Obama's mother, that's whom. Posthumously. Here's an explanation of why we do that sort of thing generally (though it should not have been done in this specific case).

April 26, 2009

More from the Convention: I Sided with Satan -- Again!
At least some of my fellow Utah County Republicans seem to think so. [Updated several times with more links, a made-up quotation about Satan Scanners (!), and a link to other blogs and some KSL audio. See the comments.]

April 11, 2009

Bureaucracies Don't Laugh. People Do.
. . . A good laugh is a terrible thing to waste.

April 11, 2008

Last Week an Angry Liberal, This Week a Right-wing Nut Job
This didn't turn out exactly as I planned. My original strategy proved to be too much like carpet-bombing some of my neighbors and relatives, so I shelved it. Something more surgical is indicated.

March 24, 2008

Famous Since July, Oblivious Until Today
I would think myself truly ungrateful if I didn't stand, I mean sit, here today and blog about an experience I had just this afternoon. As I was trying to find something for a friend, I found something about myself . . .

December 31, 2007

Christmas Music and Christmas Politics
The two don't really go together, but they coexist in my last blog post of the year, along with a bunch of Mormons, a former Southern Baptist minister, and some (other) really nice people.

November 6, 2007

Respect vs. Political Expediency
On respecting some places too much to take our politics there.

September 17, 2007

Anniversary Notes
Here are a few relatively quick thoughts on today's auspicious anniversary.

September 1, 2007

Local Miscellany
I brag a little, then I turn to broadband, Gandolfo's, 9600 North, college football, a very old skeleton, SOBs in American Fork, and a very intelligent discussion of Mormonism on the national stage.

April 7, 2007

Is Laughter a Form of Worship?
First, a bit about Mitt -- something to read, actually. Then something funny to read about Mormons generally. Also, I muse on Mormons who can't laugh at themselves.

April 4, 2007

Dorothy, This Ain't Panguitch Any More (Revised)
J C Penney wants to come to the Meadows in American Fork, along with some mixed-used development. This happy news prompts some more general thoughts about attitudes on the Wasatch Front.

February 21, 2007

Holly Mullen: Excellent Blogger, Almost in Town
My long-time favorite American Fork blogger, DaltonGirl, does not share many of my political views. Neither does a new favorite, Salt Lake City's Holly Mullen. What does this mean? (I don't actually answer this question in this post.)

February 13, 2007

Infinite Shades of Grey
Some of our horror at the bad things which happen in "good" places, such as Salt Lake City, is rooted in our preference for black-and-white categories, instead of infinite shades of gray. That preference is actually dangerous.

November 3, 2006

The Republican Rally and My Dark Inner Thoughts
How my political career ended yesterday before it even wanted to be begin, and my dark thoughts on the occasion of a Republican political rally.

October 14, 2006

Random Thoughts
Okay, so the North Koreans have nukes, the Iranians soon will have, we're having an epidemic of school shootings, and the words "Speaker Pelosi" have a shot at being used together quite a bit next year. That shouldn't mean we stop laughing, should it? Here are some mostly apolitical morsels to assist you.

October 5, 2006

Questions on My Mind
Here I muse on several questions of recent occurrence and dubious note, from the cosmic to the American Forkic. Watch for cameos by Oprah, Satan, and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.

July 21, 2006

Urban Musings
I spent the afternoon and evening in Salt Lake City and had a few thoughts along the way.

July 14, 2006

Israel and Its Enemies: The View from My Own 'Religion of Peace'
How many attacks must Israel absorb before fighting back? Here's my scriptural view.

June 19, 2006

Miscellaneous Notes, Mostly Local
A local blogger, gravel roads, possibly offensive movies, and a letter that got a guy fired.

June 7, 2006

Marriage Protection Amendment Dies on the Senate Floor
The Marriage Protection Amendment died today in a cloture vote. It will be back.

June 7, 2006

The Marriage Protection Amendment, Part IV
I support the Marriage Protection Amendment for two reasons. One is structural and procedural, and the other has to do with religious freedom itself.

June 6, 2006

The Marriage Protection Amendment, Part III
Here I discuss a recent letter from the First Presidency of the LDS Church, which doesn't say exactly what a lot of folks think it says, and list a host of reasons thinking people might cite for opposing both gay marriage and the Marriage Protection Amendment.

June 5, 2006

The Marriage Protection Amendment, Part II
This article examines a host of arguments for and against the amendment by discussing these questions: Is amending the Constitution something to avoid altogether? Is gay marriage good or bad for society? Is it wrong to legislate morality? Is gay marriage or homosexuality in general morally wrong? Is it a slippery slope?

June 2, 2006

The Marriage Protection Amendment, Part I
The first of at least three articles on the proposed Marriage Protection Amendment looks at the text of the proposed amendment, its apparent intent, and what may happen on Capitol Hill after the Senate debate.

May 30, 2006

How Many David Rodebacks Are Too Many?
Meet David Rodeback the Older, David Rodeback the Deadbeat, and David Rodeback the Halfwit Moral Cripple. None of them is me, I think.

April 14, 2006

Exceeding the Bounds of Authority
The Sutherland Institute wants the Utah Legislature to assert authority that no government rightfully has. The Mayor of Kanab and a senior local church leader in American Fork seem oblivious to the bounds of their authority.

February 13, 2006

Quick Thoughts on Religious Freedom
Three quick thoughts on religious freedom.

January 24, 2006

How Can Part of the Constitution Be Unconstitutional?
Some propose the repeal of the 17th Amendment to the United States Constitution, which provides for the direct election of US Senators by the people of their states. At least a few of them call the amendment "unconstitutional." This doesn't seem to make sense . . . but we'll follow it where it leads.

October 10, 2005

Newsweek on Joseph Smith and the Mormons

October 6, 2005

Rocky Anderson Has His Own Brand of Intolerance
Let's hear it for Mayor Rocky, whose campaign to become a major national political (cartoon) figure is going just fine, thank you, if his goal is to become the next Al Sharpton. . . .

September 10, 2005

Scrambled Eggs and Boiled Spinach (or Why Primary Elections Matter)

September 9, 2005

Post-Katrina Notes, Some Local

August 31, 2005

LaVaughn, LaVerl, Hurricane Katrina, and the International Community

August 18, 2005

Yes, I Would Vote for a Druid

July 29, 2005

4-H Talent Show at the Utah County Fair, A Year Later

July 9, 2005

Revising Doctrinal Classics, or Proofread, Proofread, Proofread

June 16, 2005

Goodbye, Joan, You Were My Favorite

May 19, 2005

That Billboard on Main Street, American Fork

April 8, 2005

Glam Rock Meets Home Teaching

April 5, 2005

Gambling vs. Investment

April 2, 2005

A Christian Hero, a Modern Giant Has Left Us

March 22, 2005

The Weird Arts in American Fork, Revisited

February 25, 2005

Zeal Without Knowledge

February 16, 2005

Petty Tyranny Loses by a Narrow Margin

November 17, 2004

Mormons, Abortion Policy, Harry Reid

September 21, 2004

A New Psychic in American Fork

September 6, 2004

If Modern Islam is a Peaceful Religion, Where's the Outrage?

August 19, 2004

It's Too Good to Be True If . . .

August 3, 2004

Mormon Satire: The Sugar Beet, RIP

August 2, 2004

The Dark Side of Universal Suffrage

July 30, 2004

The Arts in Utah Valley: A Microcosm