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November 7, 2008


At this point I think we all know that if it wasn't for the multimillions of dollars in donations and the extraordinary number of Mormon minions put into the field in California and Arizona, props 8 and 102 would not have passed.

Well, we can do something about that. We can personally and directly challenge their tax exempt status.

Thanks to the efforts of a Feast Of Fools chat room friend who goes by the net name of TrickyToro, we have a way to do just that. I am including his entire chat post below because it includes a step by step outline of how we can each file a report of false exemption with the IRS.

To report the LDS Church to the IRS, simply take 5 minutes to print these articles out and any others you can find:


There is also an excellent NY Times Opinion piece that, point-blank, states that the Mormon church led the drive to pass prop 8. It's at: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/06/opinion/06thu1.html?ref=opinion. If you do copy this article, I suggest highlighting the 5th paragraph before you include it with your IRS submission.

Then print and fill out http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f3949a.pdf

List the taxpayer as:

Thomas S. Monson, et al
50 East North Temple
Salt Lake City, Utah 84150

List his occupation as President and the business as the ridiculously full name of the church (same address).

The full name is: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Check the boxes for False Exemption and Public/Political Corruption.

Then in the Comments section demand that the LDS Church be fined and their tax-exempt status revoked for repeated and blatant violations of the IRS's separate of church and state rules, and for conspiring to interfere with a state's political process.

Check Yes under "Are books/records available?" and write in "campaign finance records."

You don't have to provide any of your own personal info. Mail the form and the printed articles to:

Internal Revenue Service
Fresno, CA 93888

I suggest keeping copies of the articles and the filled-out IRS form that you submit. It would greatly enhance the impact of this action if we send copies to our own senators and congressmen. And just in case the current IRS director chooses to ignore our submissions, we can always resubmit after the Obama administration (and a new IRS director) take office in January.

I also want to give a big shout out and thank you to TrickyToro for taking the time away from his schoolwork to put this info together.

I strongly urge everyone to do this. And encourage your friends to take part in this effort as well. If you have a blog or any online venue that would allow you to post this info, please feel free to use this posting in its entirety. You can also refer them back to my blog at http://desertspeak.blogspot.com/.

November 6, 2008


Yesterday, a joint press release announced that The American Civil Liberties Union, Lambda Legal and the National Center for Lesbian Rights filed a writ petition urging the California Supreme Court to invalidate Proposition 8 if it passes.

Although it appears that Prop 8 will pass, there are still millions of provisional and absentee ballots being counted. As of 7:00 this morning the difference between passing and defeating this measure is only 504,479 votes so there is still a slim chance that it could be defeated.

According to the joint press release;

The petition charges that Proposition 8 is invalid because the initiative process was improperly used in an attempt to undo the constitution’s core commitment to equality for everyone by eliminating a fundamental right from just one group – lesbian and gay Californians. Proposition 8 also improperly attempts to prevent the courts from exercising their essential constitutional role of protecting the equal protection rights of minorities. According to the California Constitution, such radical changes to the organizing principles of state government cannot be made by simple majority vote through the initiative process, but instead must, at a minimum, go through the state legislature first.

The California Constitution itself sets out two ways to alter the document that sets the most basic rules about how state government works. Through the initiative process, voters can make relatively small changes to the constitution. But any measure that would change the underlying principles of the constitution must first be approved by the legislature before being submitted to the voters. That didn’t happen with Proposition 8, and that’s why it’s invalid.

Also, according to The Advocate, a second challenge was filed with California’s supreme court Wednesday morning.

This suite was filed by Robin Tyler and Diane Olson who were the first couple named in the lawsuit that overturned California's ban on gay marriage and the first same-sex couple legally married in Los Angeles County in June.

Robin Tyler said, “This is a civil rights issue. It is not about a lifestyle, it is about our lives.”

I totally agree with Robin. This has everything to do with civil rights and should not be considered solely as a marriage issue. Hopefully the California Supreme Court will, once again, agree with that premise.

November 5, 2008


Yesterday was one of the most momentous and historic events in the history of our country. When the anticipated but still stunning announcement flashed, blipped and raced through the media on televisions and radios and across the global internet, cheers went up around the world. Barack Obama would be the first black president of the United States of America!

After I got home from poll duty, which was an amazing experience in itself, I glued myself to the tv screen watching every result as it was beamed into my psyche. From the first tiny, 8 inch circular black and white screen to today's mammoth sets, I have watched history unfold live, right before my very eyes. Both Kennedy assassinations, the Viet Nam war, the murder of Martin Luther King Jr., 911, Katrina - they all riveted my attention and struck awe in everyone I knew. Last night, however, was probably the most emotionally perplexing and dichotomous event I've ever witnessed.

On one hand I was elated that Barack had such a huge win and that the democrats took almost total control of the congress and senate. But on the other hand, watching all three anti-gay marriage propositions succeed in Arizona, California and Florida was a definite downer.

Today, in the light of day, I find that my hope and resolve has actually gotten stronger.

True, the right-wing bigots succeeded in scaring the uninformed (and mostly uneducated) voters to act according to the totally bogus fears implanted into their unquestioning minds by an astounding multimillion dollar advertising campaign. BUT, how it was done and who it was done by has opened doors for substantial legal challenges. And each challenge will be accompanied by the subsequent media coverages and commentaries about the highly dubious tactics used by supposedly tax-exempt institutions.

I also believe that most of the socially aware and politically savvy people in this country will come to realize that even though those measures won, their underlying principals aren't much different from the racial and ethnic prejudices held by majorities in our past. Proving that majority rule isn't always the best mechanism for achieving just and equatable solutions. After all, if it had been left solely up to those majorities, blacks would still be enslaved, the Irish would still be the bottom rung in New York and psychics would still be burned at the stake.

With the now drastically changed political landscape across the country, I really believe that it is only a matter of time before we see those blatantly prejudicial measures and even attitudes overturned.

The most admirable and formidable thing about the GLBT movement in this country is that we will never stop fighting. Ever!

November 3, 2008


A few days ago, I received a comment from one of my blog readers. His screen name is "Reuven" and he was responding to my posting about the mafia-like tactics of the Yes On 8 campaign.

Reuven's comment simply said, "True Christians know one thing: Jesus Says No On 8." The banner on the left is from the website he provided this link for. Of course, I had to check this out and when I did I found a brief but heartfelt account of how he came to his own, personal decision to oppose California's Proposition 8. It's worth taking a minute or two to read. Just click on the "Jesus Says No On 8" link above.

Also at that site were two persuasive video's I include below. The first is a segment from a sermon delivered by Rector Ed Bacon of the All Saints Church in Pasadena.

In an earlier sermon, Rector Bacon announced the church's decision to open marriage ceremonies to all people regardless of their sexual orientation. If you would like to watch this video, go to: California Marriage Equality

The second video below is a short (1:21) compilation of comments from 10 California Clergy about why they oppose Proposition 8.

Of course the arguments made by all of the clergy above would hold just as true for Proposition 102 here in Arizona and Proposition 2 in Florida.

SIDENOTE... Just so you know, I volunteered to be a poll worker for tomorrow's election. We have the site set-up this evening and then I have to be back there at 5:30 in the morning. If the voting predictions of an 80-85% turnout are accurate (and judging from the extraordinarily heavy early voting turnout, they are), I probably won't get home til 9, 10 or even 11 tomorrow night. So, of course, I won't have a regular posting tomorrow.