Mormons and the Law

There are a bunch of lawyers and law students in my ward in Chicago. Most of them are young married men. Several of us teach Sunday School and other classes. I don’t know if other people find us irritating in our inability to gloss over details or not delve into historical context or our overuse of legal analogies, but I think it’s great. Example:

Today we are talking about unity and the teacher, who is also a lawyer, announced, “Now it’s time to get controversial.” Good start. I hate it when people make infuriating statements without acknowledging that other people might feel differently. We proceeded to read the following bible verse: “Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands.” I can’t remember exactly what the teacher said about the verse, but the first hand in the air belonged to another young male lawyer. He gave a little spiel about the Supreme Court and precedent, and then said succinctly, “Gordon B. Hinckley (a recent president of the Mormon church) overruled that precedent when he said women and men should be equal partners.” You might disagree with whether this is an accurate view of modern Mormon teaching about gender and marriage, but you’ve got to appreciate the form of the comment and the sentiment behind it. Several older men went on to imply that there’s no way the bible could be sexist and protect the benign patriarchy, and it hardly fazed me. Although I got a call from the Relief Society president later in the day to ask how I was doing after she noticed me slip out early immediately following the submission controversy. I told her I was fine, and that I left early because my mother-in-law is in town, which is true. And I will be fine, as long as I’m not the only one speaking up. Keep it coming, lawyers.

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2 Responses to Mormons and the Law

  1. melanie says:

    We had that lesson recently also. I liked that most people expressed a general discomfort with it, although we concluded nothing. I really read that entire passage as a message for men only in how they showed treat their wives and families.

  2. Ru says:

    Love the Supreme Court analogy. Go team.

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