Question: How does the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the Mormons) reconcile its opposition to same-sex marriage when it once supported plural marriage?

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Question: How does the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the Mormons) reconcile its opposition to same-sex marriage when it once supported plural marriage?

The same type of question was asked when, after supporting polygamy for years, the Church ceased its practice

6 wives vs. 1 husband?

The same type of question was asked when, after supporting polygamy for years, the Church ceased its practice. The Church no longer practices polygamy, and should not be confused with splinter groups who continue the practice. Prop 8 protesters, however, do like to raise the issue of polygamy, and make no distinction between the LDS Church and splinter groups.

It is important to realize that 19th century Mormons who practiced plural marriage did not seek federal recognition of their marriages. They would have been pleased to simply be left alone, instead of being subject to spy networks, home invasion by federal marshals, loss of the right to vote simply for being members of the Church even if they were not polygamists, jail time, and threats of military occupation by the Congress.

Homosexuals in California with access to domestic partnership laws have far more legal protection and benefits for their cohabitation relationships than 19th century Mormons ever had. Homosexuals who choose to simply cohabitate are likewise unmolested by the state, unlike LDS polygamists of the 19th century.

LDS opposition to the use of the term "marriage" for same-sex unions derives, however, from a belief that homosexual behavior is wrong, contrary to the commandments of God, and something which believers should not support. Homosexuals are free to make their own choices about behavior, but Church members cannot in good conscience encourage that behavior by lending their voice to efforts which socially sanction it.

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