635: Mormons Respond to Tyler Glenn’s Controversial “Trash” Music Video

TGJosephSmithIn this episode five Mormons (Dr. Jana Riess, Samy GalvezDr. Kristy MoneyDerrick Clements, and Samantha Louise Shelley) discuss, explore, and interpret Tyler Glenn’s new and controversial music video entitled “Trash.”

Trash Lyrics.

 

 

Trash Video:

Comments

comments

44 comments for “635: Mormons Respond to Tyler Glenn’s Controversial “Trash” Music Video

  1. JT
    May 7, 2016 at 2:28 pm

    Perhaps the painted “mask” on Joseph Smith (see image above) is meant to be suggestive of those used in the Day of the Dead (Día de Muertos), the the Mexican holiday that “focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember friends and family members who have died, and help support their spiritual journey.” (See Wiki article)

    It connects to the lyrics.

  2. JT
    May 7, 2016 at 2:51 pm

    Perhaps the painted “mask” on Joseph Smith (see image above) is meant to be suggestive of those used in the Day of the Dead (Día de Muertos), the Mexican holiday that “focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember friends and family members who have died, and help support their spiritual journey.” (See Wiki)

    • Lgaj
      May 7, 2016 at 3:51 pm

      Tyler Glenn,

      If I interpreted your song correctly I saw and felt a lot of anger. Since the church has come out against homosexuals I haven’t been able to control my anger either. Unfortunately there is so much ignorance in our religion. All I can say is that I’m sorry, I apologize for how you and others have been treated. LGBTQ issues wasn’t the breaking point in my testimony but it was in my anger and hatred of bigotry within the LDS church. Now nearly every thinking member both active and active see the church for what it is. The church has done it to themselves. The church has been destroyed from within. Not the member, but rather the leaders. The leaders have fulfilled the prophecy, “Even the very elect shall be deceived.” It had to be that way because the membership would have followed righteous leaders. The good ship Zion us sinking and the intelligent crew are abandoning ship. It’s very sad. I love you brother Glenn, we love you bro Glenn. You will always be our brother and I hope you will be mine and be ours.

  3. Jagl
    May 7, 2016 at 3:47 pm

    Tyler Glenn,

    If I interpreted your song correctly I saw and felt a lot of anger. Since the church has come out against homosexuals I haven’t been able to control my anger either. Unfortunately there is so much ignorance in our religion. All I can say is that I’m sorry, I apologize for how you and others have been treated. LGBTQ issues wasn’t the breaking point in my testimony but it was in my anger and hatred of bigotry within the LDS church. Now nearly every thinking member both active and active see the church for what it is. The church has done it to themselves. The church has been destroyed from within. Not the member, but rather the leaders. The leaders have fulfilled the prophecy, “Even the very elect shall be deceived.” It had to be that way because the membership would have followed righteous leaders. The good ship Zion us sinking and the intelligent crew are abandoning ship. It’s very sad. I love you brother Glenn, we love you bro Glenn. You will always be our brother and I hope you will be mine and be ours.

  4. kinglamoni
    May 7, 2016 at 4:53 pm

    Samantha can you please use the terms active, or less active, or orthodox or unorthodox to describe LDS members? Using the term “faithful Mormon” is to ambiguous. A person can still be faithful to Mormonism while being unorthodox or even less active.

  5. May 7, 2016 at 5:35 pm

    My apologies if this posts multiple times. I keep getting a database error when I post.
    ———————-

    Interesting discussion about a touching and powerful video and song! Thanks to Tyler for being courageous enough to say and show what needs to be seen and heard.

    When you were talking about the part at the end of the video where the light comes on after he draws the X and wondering what that might be about, I went back and watched it. It struck me that the image of him on the ground looking up at the light is very similar to how Joseph Smith looks in the painting of the First Vision that we used to show as missionaries. It’s like Tyler’s having his own revelation.

  6. peachcity
    May 7, 2016 at 6:03 pm

    Tyler’s an incredibly brave, talented musician and his pain from being rejected and outcast from his faith screams from this video. So many people hurt, maligned, judged, pigeonholed, forced to lead inauthentic lives because of the outrageously strict standards we are all so pushed into believing. The beauty competition I witness among women every week in my family’s ward is sickening. The pressure to believe or be apostate only makes us secret liars all. Leaving the church (yeah, look not even capitalized!) means going into that dark hallway in his music video. There are people I’ve known my entire life who won’t even say hello or smile at me anymore because I left the church. I am Trash to them. Trash. What a religion.

  7. Thomas Moore
    May 7, 2016 at 8:53 pm

    This is art. Art is a personal statement involving the artist’s world, thoughts from within and how they perceive the world without. So to the LDS members…. This is not the prophet Mohammed. Remember when Sinead O’Conner ripped up a picture of the Pope on SNL? Or when an “artist’s” statue was a crucifix in a jar of urine. It’s to shock, expose raw feelings and ideas, etc… So don’t be offended. Tyler is simply stating that “the church” or LDS inc. is nothing to him; since LDS inc has said things like “There are no homosexuals in the church”. …so by inference they consider him and other LGBTQ individuals as non-existence or trash. The words are actually pure poetry. I do have a few questions for Tyler’s interpretation of some of the well known pictures, because maybe not even realizing it, a debate or discussion has been started on is Joseph Smith supposed to be a skull, a ghost, a parody of “The Joker”???

  8. Tyler
    May 8, 2016 at 2:46 am

    What an amazing song and video. As someone who has gone through the journey of finding out something you hold dear is based on lies and fraud, I understand some of Tyler’s anger. In a weird coincidence, my name is Tyler also. Maybe all Tyler’s can connect the dots and break free? I digress. Raised extremely LDS, went on mission, went to BYU, married in Temple, etc … I found out the whole thing was a fraud through a very long, painful, depressing, angry, and ultimately freeing process that took years and culminated with me and one of the 12 Apostles sitting down in a Stake Center discussing the whitewashed history of the Church… the foundation of half truths and lies. I left that meeting devastated and never went back. 30 years of my life, wasted away, unknowingly “lying for Lord”.
    I think the defaced paintings are the true ugliness of the founder and his whitewashed history that the Church sells now. That’s at least what it means to me. Happy to be resigned and gone, I hope others find their peace, including you Tyler from one Tyler to another.

    • Sheila
      May 12, 2016 at 10:09 am

      I would love to hear about your experience talking with a general authority!!

      I feel nothing but complete empathy for Tyler. I thought his emotions on the Mormon stories podcast was raw and real. You can’t help to realize how sincere he is and that he has been deeply hurt by the church. I hope he knows that so many left the church after this hateful policy because they couldn’t stand how these men are treating our brothers and sisters in the lgbtq community

      • Lgaj
        May 12, 2016 at 1:14 pm

        I’m not taking my name off the rolls of the church. I’m just going inactive. I think there are more individuals like myself.

    • Tiffany
      June 9, 2016 at 4:29 pm

      Can you speak to me about your visit with the member of the 12?? It sounds so intriguing.

  9. Tabitha
    May 8, 2016 at 2:04 pm

    Having grown up within the lds church & seeing my best friend struggling with accepting her own sexuality, I can only thank Tyler for helping people like me to understand more deeply what the experience of growing up Mormon & gay is.
    My own faith transition began around 15 years ago when my wonderful friend was excommunication at a young age. I failed to see the love & compassion from leaders that I had been taught was abundant in the lds community.
    After years of attempting to make things work, I finally confronted the issues & resigned my membership.
    Watching my own children now flourish without having to accept the
    Dogmatism that is rife in lds teachings, gives me immense joy. I wish those grappling with these issues & those who love them may find the peace & freedom I and many others have outside of the church.
    Many thanks once again to Tyler for sharing such personal emotions. I believe he will help so many people, if only my friend would’ve had access to this all those years ago.

  10. Edward Dixon
    May 8, 2016 at 7:52 pm

    One of the things that i found interesting about the use of the tokens–especially in the context of the fundamental vibe of the song: one man’s trash is another man’s treasure, is just the self appropriation of the tokens for himself, not mediated by the Temple authorities. He knows the tokens, he can administer them to himself. His spiritual life and vitality is God’s gift and cannot be taken away from him by any bureaucrat down some corridor in the Headquarters complex.

  11. Dallin
    May 8, 2016 at 11:47 pm

    As a disaffected Mormon for over a decade, I’m not sure how I feel about Tyler’s video. Is his anger justified? Undoubtedly. But his video response strikes me as a very “Mormon-esque” reaction. In Mormonism, we were taught who/what our enemies were and to fight them/it. The emphasis was always to fight AGAINST rather than to fight FOR.

    While I totally get Tyler’s “Rage against the Mormon Machine”, I couldn’t help but be reminded of something that I read by Wayne Dyer that impacted me on my journey out of Mormonism:

    “When you respond with hatred to hate directed at you, you’ve become part of the problem, which is hatred, rather than part of the solution, which is love. Love is without resentment and readily offers forgiveness. Love and forgiveness will inspire you to work at what you are for, rather than what you are against. If you’re against violence and hatred, you’ll fight it with your own brand of violence and hatred. If you’re for love and peace, you’ll bring those energies to the presence of violence, and ultimately dissolve the hatred.”

    “When Mother Teresa was asked to march against the war in Vietnam, she replied, “No, I won’t but when you have a march for peace, I’ll be there.”‘

    While I’ll stop short of criticizing Tyler’s video as simply fighting hate with hate, I’d like to encourage him to direct his immense talent and energy to “march for peace” instead.

    Tyler; I’m not suggesting that you become Mother Teresa, but perhaps a dash of Bono or even a pinch of John Lennon might not hurt your career. 🙂 Looking forward to your next work!

    • Poet
      May 9, 2016 at 12:41 pm

      Very nice. Sage advise for sure.

  12. Jagl
    May 9, 2016 at 2:31 am

    Unfortunately I think the general authorities need a wake up call on every single front. Once donations via tithing are less than the expenses to run the church and the church has to start selling off assets-that would be a wake up call. Money is the mother’s milk of politics and religion. If you notice the pictures in the last Ensign that just came out, approximately 75% of the pictures were of blacks and other minorities. You can’t build a future from the donations from that population that will use more assets than they provide. Once the church stops being able to pay for their missions and they get get educated in church history, that population will be just like the failure of the Lamanite Placement Program. The church can’t define what a Lamanite is and doesn’t even yes the term in general conferences. In 20 years the population base will be relatively poor and uneducated members. Eventually they will get on the Internet and see that the church is run by wealth white males like in the book Animal Farm. The church is one generation from extinction and the current missionary generation will extinct the church on every front. There won’t be any new Jewrusalem built cause they will not have the resources or the people to run it. How many years will they be able to operate it and have no Jesus come for a visit. This isn’t God’s church. It’s a man made religion. If the church gave the statistic of active members at conference, I’m positive it would be going down not up. I think a proper definition would be how many members attend church 75% of the time that are over the age of 12. The church can barely man the temples they have built. Most of them have reduced hours outside of Utah and eventually temples will not be the money producing units via the temple question about being a full tithe payer. Each new temple franchise will produce less and less. Admittedly there are a few good years up front and then when the excitement wears off you’ll actually see that most of the sessions won’t have prayer circles, the will have a prayer line.

    • May 13, 2016 at 4:30 am

      Keeping temples open isn’t about the church not having enough money ……their billions in assets will never go away. It’s about the unreal expectation that working class people actually have time to ‘work’ for free during a weekday, to be the unsalaried workforce that keeps these buildings running. Think about it, what they take for granted that the members will do. Meanwhile, the single working moms, and struggling dads who are just trying to keep up with bills, need to work at their places of employment — not being guilted into taking time off for religious pursuits in the middle of the week.

      Many of the ‘retired’ generation — of WWII age — are dying off. These folks think it’s grand to spend their last years puttering around in ‘the Lord’s House’. Not the younger generations. Many of the younger can barely keep up with making ends meet today.

      Years ago as a Mormon bishop in the Salt Lake area, I remember sitting around a large table in a council meeting, having just been given a quota of having to staff the Salt Lake Temple for 5 full days and nights, with about 100 persons from my ward. I was a young bishop with a 60 hour workweek, traveling 4 days a week, and with a young family. The task seemed daunting, considering my ward was made up of ‘the nearly dead’ and young college students. The members were either homebound, or going to school during the week. As I spoke up and said that this was an unrealistic request, I was made to feel embarrassed and ashamed that i wouldn’t figure it out. Other men spoke up rather condescendingly and reluctantly saying that perhaps they could pitch in and fill the ‘quota’. It was nuttiness to think that many people were being asked to give up vacations or call in ‘sick’ to keep the temple running. I resented being made to feel guilty about it. It was enough just dealing with the weekly problems of running a ward.

      Now that I am out of the church, I look back with some resentment about the tactics of guilt and shame that are used in organized religious groups. It is not enough to come to worship each week with a sincere heart and a willingness to help a neighbor. Continuous stories about sacrifice and acceptability of your offering are used to guilt people into doing things that they simply don’t want to do or don’t have time to do.

      One assignment that I remember well, was being asked to do an all night duty as a security guard at welfare square in Salt Lake. On a tuesday evening, it was expected, that you would check in at 6 PM and stay awake ALL NIGHT, til 6 AM, walking the grounds in a sketchy part of town, making sure that the Lord’s granary was safe. I remember going to work at 7 AM with bloodshot eyes, trying to function at my normal job during the next day. Just trying to be bread winner and do what was expected of you in life. At 5 AM, I had the audacity to fall asleep for an hour, on the filthy floor of the guard shack. I got yelled at, at 6 AM when a day worker ( who was receiving a normal paycheck at the place ) came to take over. Again, it was normal treatment, as a dumb, young, member of the church. No more.

      Church leaders can bully over the pulpit all they want, about the waning dedication of members in these times. No other religion asks the things that the LDS Faith has the audacity to ask of it’s members. What’s weird, is that it is almost a badge of honor among Mormons, to see how much abuse one can take, without complaining. The Faith is driving people out with increased hyper-worthiness goals, and with the way people are being made to feel like second class citizens in the Kingdom if they don’t measure up. Many are simply giving up and walking away to get some sanity in their lives and to devote needed time to family and other healthy pursuits in life. Who needs a guilt/shame system in life? It’s not what the Savior’s gospel is about.

  13. Emma
    May 9, 2016 at 9:12 am

    Totally brilliant performance music and lyrics
    It made me cry because I see Tyler is experiencing the pain of realizing how the church has rejected and lied to him
    Tyler, time will ease the pain
    But it may never go away completely
    You are not what the church or its members may say you are —but you are an amazing talented and good person
    And the world is full of beauty and many good people that will care about you

  14. Emma
    May 9, 2016 at 10:32 am

    Tyler I just wanted to say a few more words– even though I’m not gay and I’m 65 I relate to your pain The lies you have been told have every choice you made and brought so much guilt and fear— you. Could not live an authentic life —you tried to live the perfect ( mormon ) life and all of this has brought you so much pain. your baptism and your temple experience represent a total complete commitment and turning away from your authentic self
    you Believed you had to give yourself completely to the Mormon church to be accepted by God
    I too have felt completely inadequate And a failure and overwhelmed with pressure to conform– there has been so much pain in my life because of it
    You loved the church with all your heart and yet now you have been hurt by it’s rejection –and as you learn the history of the church you are hurt to know that what you devoted your life to was lies
    It really is enough to make anyone crazy
    It’s normal to be crazy for a while

    talking about Joseph Smith baptism and the temple etc. is honest for you to do –people who are offended don’t know that it is originated in lies–
    It has hurt many people not just gays– so I can understand how excruciating this must be for you — but perhaps some of the pain can be taken away to know that what you were taught that God requires is not true
    But (as you will find ) the part that never goes away is the attitude Of friends and family that believe you are wrong and bad
    They don’t know the truth and don’t want to — and they certainly are not Christlike

  15. Poet
    May 9, 2016 at 12:34 pm

    “I think of you when I see fire in the sky”:
    The Bible is full of stories of cities burning after the Lord led his people to destroy the wicked in retaliation for the harm they (the wicked) had done.
    “What was in my drink? I can’t even think, but we got history”
    What we consume growing up in the church is now being questioned….to the point of throwing it up. This is evidenced by the “can’t even think”. Purging one’s mind of all that was spoon fed. Demolishing the structure. Stripping it down to the foundation and then removing that. Digging deeper than the original footings. “but we got history”: taking a look at the blue-print provided by the original builder and realizing that the layout is not compatible with the inner living space. The original plans did not allow for variation or internal remodeling. It’s set in stone.
    “Maybe I’ll see you in hell” MAYBE is the operative word. It is expressing uncertainty about correctness on both sides. Maybe I’ll be in hell. Maybe I’ll be in heaven. Maybe you’ll be in heaven. Maybe you’ll be in hell. Or any variation of this relationship. There is no judgement, only uncertainty, leaving the judging to GOD.
    This video is obviously a REACTIONARY expression Tyler feels in relation to the church. My advise is to not stay in a reactionary state because then you are the effect of bad policy. You aren’t living to create the kind of life you want, as long as you stay in this state. I realize it is an expression of emotion and that’s fine, just don’t build your house there. Speaking of rebuilding, I hope Tyler (and anybody else who finds themselves in similar way) doesn’t rebel too far. Wild rebellion can result in so much emotional pain. Breaking free of oppression is good but there’s no getting around the heartache substance abuse, promiscuity, self-sabotage, hatred etc, can cause.
    Fortunately, rebuilding can take place and the final outcome can be beautiful. It will take a lot of time. Please don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater. Keep what is good and leave the rest behind. God is good. He is bigger than all the Mormon minds combined. Look beyond man to God–the creator of the Universe– the big Spirit. That’s where there is peace.

  16. Poet
    May 9, 2016 at 12:39 pm

    One other thing I forgot to mention:
    The picture of Joseph Smith is a phantasm. A ghost. Something that can not harm but can haunt. A figment of the imagination. To Tyler’s mind, Joseph is dead but still haunts him.

  17. Robert
    May 9, 2016 at 4:52 pm

    John Dehlin, during the interview you talked about whether the church will excommunicate Tyler, you said: “I don’t know how the church as anything to gain by excommunicating them, yet how can they not?” This pre-supposes that the LDS organization excommunicates people for religious or theological reasons. I haven’t seen much evidence of that. I think they excommunicate people who pose a threat to the organization. Like you pointed out, excommunicating him will just draw a lot of negative attention to the church since Tyler is famous. I’ll bet you a steak dinner that one year from now the LDS church will have taken no action.

  18. May 10, 2016 at 2:58 am

    You know, no one who is not a temple-attending Mormon would have any idea what he was doing with his hands. He included that precisely to tweak a certain group of people. If I had noticed the “signs” at all (which I didn’t) I would have assumed they were some sort of millennial hipster/gangster signs. People younger than me are always trying to shake hands in some hipster code that I don’t understand. I force them to shake in the normal way or just wave them off—that’s how hip I am.

    No one would have known the hand signs were sacred if you guys hadn’t told everyone. And remember, they were all stolen directly from the Free Mason ceremonies anyway. The Mormons didn’t make them up or receive them from God or anything.

  19. Carol
    May 10, 2016 at 6:05 am

    Perhaps his “death” at the end of the video represents the death of his faith in the Mormon church. His faith is dead because the church killed it with policies and practices that are hateful and exclusionary.

  20. LL
    May 10, 2016 at 6:08 am

    When I first saw this video, I, being a six generation Mormon, was pleasantly shocked. So much boldness, so much blasphemy. So much BRAVERY.

    BUT

    I walked away from this video feeling like Tyler was saying to the church, “You couldn’t love all of me and made me keep secrets…now I’m going to expose all yours.”

    I definitely see this as a love story that ended where Tyler was hit with the reality that the love given from the church was through conditional, abusive measures while he gave his love to the church freely and uninhibitedly. I could feel his pain, his broken heart, how he had felt fooled.

    I applaud what he did. That could not have been an easy thing to do. I praise his bravery for speaking out on something so painful.

  21. Tim Savage
    May 10, 2016 at 6:45 am

    One of the larger themes the video embodies, that was not discussed explicitly, is the dichotomy of profanity and sanctity. It is both shocking and comforting, offensive and pleasing, depending on your present perspective. Because Mormonism is highly ethnocentric, members struggle to understand how their own doctrines and practices can be profane to others, yet are quick to point-out, kick-out, or ignore those who value ideas that are in competition with their own.

    One man’s trash is truly another’s treasure.

  22. emma
    May 10, 2016 at 7:47 am

    John please have Tyler on to explain his song and what is happening in his life It is such a painful time for him

  23. Noelle
    May 10, 2016 at 12:13 pm

    Interesting discussion.

    I personally loved the video, and the anger expressed. I still feel so much anger, and it resurfaces every time the church does something new, or I learn of another skeleton. Or even when I continue to see the psychological torture that the beliefs can cause.

    When Tyler spits on the painting it was so powerful, and I felt like it just got real. I feel that the religion is trash, and Joseph Smith deserves to be blasphemed for the pain he caused to the lives of others while he was living and even to this day.

  24. Lgaj
    May 10, 2016 at 5:03 pm

    Wow. Best comment I’ve read on this web site. Thank you. I don’t have your restraint. Tyler Glenn I hope you read this comment. This is what good, thinking, caring Mormons think. You can take this one to the bank Tyler. When my shelf broke, I became an atheist. So as long as you are true to yourself and you don’t hurt other people, then you get an A on your report card. Thanks for writing this comment to Tyler directly and to me indirectly.

    • Lgaj
      May 10, 2016 at 6:22 pm

      My comment was meant as a reply to LL above

  25. Lisa winderlin
    May 11, 2016 at 3:13 pm

    As I listened to Tyler’s interview I kept wondering where his anger was? He was hurt and frustrated but didn’t see the anger.
    Finally he is releasing his anger and I am so happy to see him find a way to do it.
    Tyler isn’t broken. He doesn’t need to be “fixed”
    As a mom I see a perfect child.
    I’m Grateful he has a great support system.
    Thank you for all the good work!

    • May 11, 2016 at 6:52 pm

      No one has mentioned anything about the pages, of what I’m not sure of, that were scattered on the floor of the elevator. Were they copies of the church memorandum exposed last November or maybe of the Book of Mormon or some other church publication.

      • May 11, 2016 at 6:58 pm

        Book of Mormon pages.

  26. Karen R.
    May 11, 2016 at 4:58 pm

    Non-Mormon here, so this is for what it’s worth…

    It occurred to me while listening to the podcast discussion regarding the sacrilege that this was Tyler again saying that it’s the church that has committed the sacrilege, by valuing rites over human lives.

    As for marking his face at the end of the video and it going from dark to light, I saw that as that the church had marked him for some time; he’d just kept it in the dark. Now he was bringing the mark out into the light. Perhaps this is why he appears to die or at least be leveled at the end – symbolic of the effect church doctrine has on those it marks.

    Even without insider knowledge, I found the video to be a powerful one. I’m glad that gay Mormons have Tyler Glenn’s artistic gifts to help them communicate the devastation the church continues to visit upon them. It is heartbreaking to see.

    Many thanks for the excellent discussion, John and panelists.

  27. broofturker
    May 11, 2016 at 5:16 pm

    This video does all that art is suppose to do. It displays deep anger and hurt and does it so beautifully. The synth and dark choir set a perfect mood. The lyrics are as multi-leveled as Noni and Avon. The dancing, painting, lighting, spitting, and hand shaking brought it all together to make this the most touching music video I have ever experienced.

    I am thankful for Tyler’s artistic talent and his bravery. I served the same mission as he and I can’t imagine having the guts to speak out so strongly where all my Nebraska Omaha Mission friends would hear. Not to mention my family. Brave, brave soul.

    I cannot stop talking about this damned video.

    Maybe I’ll see you in hell, brother.

    Whatever.

  28. Dawn West
    May 12, 2016 at 12:14 pm

    Even though I am a country music fan, I do love Tyler’s song, and it is probably the only “alternative” song on my iPhone. In fact for the last week I have been playing the song on repeat – so much that my kids are saying…”really Mom?”. I love the beat and of course the lyrics, since I can totally related about finding out the church’s truth claims aren’t so truthful. I also love the video – great job!! I did listen to all three episodes of MS with Tyler and this episode discussing the reaction to the song. Like a few people said, when I listened to the song for the first time, it did bring back that anger that I had when I discovered I had been lied to for over 35 years! I totally get it and it is so understandable and I am happy to see that Tyler has channeled that anger in a very creative manner.

    My favorite lyrics are: “Maybe I see you in hell…OK, Whatever….One mans trash is another man’s treasure”. Several years ago, and prior to my total faith crisis, my branch president didn’t like my attitude and told me that I was “on the pathway to hell”. My reply to that was that I would have company because Joseph and Brigham would be right there with me! So when I heard that line, I immediately thought of that conversation. Now knowing the “real history” of the church, I am convinced that if there is a hell, those two clowns will be in hell along with the rest of the leaders who only followed their own agenda and not Christ’s example.

    Tyler, if you read this, I just want to say THANK YOU! Happy thought to you and I am looking forward to hearing the rest of your album. You have made this country girl a fan, for sure!!

  29. May 13, 2016 at 5:24 am

    I also wanted to comment on Tyler’s video. I’ve taken a couple of weeks to contemplate it and not act out of an immediate emotional reaction.

    As a gay man, I totally understand the pain, anguish, frustration and marginalization that someone like Tyler has gone through in his life. I totally get it. I spent 40 years in the LDS church being made to feel like an unworthy creature.

    We’re in interesting times. The best of times, and the worst of times. Who would ever have guessed that we’d be able to see the wonderful ‘win’ for social equality that happened in 2015 in the highest court of the U.S., with marriage equality and in doing away with “a second class” of citizenship? Who would guess that the LDS Faith would turn around and declare warranted treatment and bigotry of some of it’s members over something that is little understood and is a part of a person’s soul at birth? With members being asked to marginalize family members, neighbors and friends over an issue that the Church spent over 40 million dollars to try to defeat. Twenty years of silly, fruitless efforts to put a class of people down. With political involvement in social/civil issues by a religious institution, with tax-exempt status. Can you picture Christ doing this?

    Tyler’s video came across to many, myself included, as angry and hateful. Why give in to the anger that an institution has caused you? Why give over power to the other side? Why allow them to know that they have affected you so?

    Granted, with the international notoriety that Tyler has — which most of us do not — and with the powerhouse machine to make a video that ‘snarks’ at the LDS Faith; this seems like an easy, cheap shot. And to think it will be available online, forever……………..

    As a gay man, and in spite of the hateful activities of the institution of the Church and it’s leaders, the profoundly stupid, nonsensical pronouncements of the church and the (real) tears of pain and human suffering they’ve fomented on many, I refuse now to allow ‘them’ the power to affect my day to day life.

    I see real families at this time in history, who are being asked to take a side against loved ones. I see many straight, wonderful neighbors and friends who are taking a stand now against an institution and leaders, that have finally crossed the line. I see a lot of unrest over many issues in the Faith. It seems the LGBT policy was the final tipping point of many difficult issues within the Faith.

    Since the policy change of the LDS church, against it’s gay members and neighbors; many of us have gotten over the initial shock of the insensitive actions caused in November and December. We have gotten up, climbed back on the road, brushed the dirt off, and are moving on with resolve. Many of us have decided through much reflection, what is of God and what is not. Many of us are now pulling up a chair at the table and sitting with our friends, family and neighbors — in love — with certainty of what our rights to happiness in life are all about. We’re claiming what was always ours, without permission. Oddly, the LDS church as an institution is becoming a relic for many — always 40 years behind humanity in social change. Always with a deaf ear to the needs of humanity.

    I’ve often said to gay friends who let some of the drivel affect them, “be better than them. Be the neighbor you would want to have.” Love wins over hearts. Sincere, kind efforts that are honest and helpful in our world are what win hearts over. Helping others see their god given potential is part of a ministry that we are all equal in. Followers of Christ are called to be ministers of peace in the world — without permission from any institution or individual. The LDS church is a small pimple on the face of a beautiful world —- don’t let it affect you.

    I would offer to Tyler, to “use your god given gifts to create messages and music that cause reflection and change in the world, in a beautiful way, not a hateful, angry way. You are a beautiful soul who was sent here at a pivotal time to show others that you are not weird, just different; but with gifts that can bless others. Use them well.”

    Spittle, anger, drunkeness aren’t the best tools to position oneself as a messenger of unity, inclusion, optimism, passion, possibility, renewal, humility, leadership, responsibility, respect, courage, vision, love, compassion, understanding and beauty. Showing younger, emerging gay kids ( and straight ones ) a new way that is above the common path, is a cool thing to do. Think about it.

    • Dallin
      May 13, 2016 at 11:31 pm

      Brilliant. I echo every word! To have gone through your Mormon life experience and still manage to return love for hate is inspiring. Thank you Doug!

  30. May 16, 2016 at 7:05 am

    thanks Dallin.

  31. PastorPir
    May 16, 2016 at 8:46 am

    During the interview, John asked about the possible significance of the black X on Tyler’s face turning into a red X. I have a possible interpretation. The scarlet letter was mentioned. I am building on that. It is interesting that Tyler has a “TRUST” tattoo on his right arm. Actually, the word “trust” is there twice; once going down on a diagonal and once going up on a diagonal, with the words intersecting at the letter U. Thus, an X is formed. A black X. Theory: At one time, Tyler put his trust in the Mormon church (black X) and then he felt betrayed and the X turned red (like a scarlet letter). Taking it a bit further: now, with the red X on his face, Tyler is “facing” that mistrust.

  32. new vision
    May 16, 2016 at 9:33 pm

    The red X symbolizes the treasure. Joseph Smith was a treasure hunter. The treasure on a map was ALWAYS marked with a red X!!!!!

  33. RLeeG
    May 29, 2016 at 11:20 am

    John, I want to start this post by saying that I am deeply grateful and always will be for your work with Mormon Stories. I could never really capture here just how much the stories of so many here aided me through a long transistion in my life.

    These panels feel so much the opposite of what I used to love about this podcast. The gathering of these Ph.D. clubs feels a lot like the church to me. People extolling why thier credentials make them right with degrees they use to legitimize points. “Let me first analyze this from an English major and then a Ph.D. In psychology”. No. You don’t need to tout your education and you don’t need a degree to understand what’s wrong with the church or understand Tyler Glenn or his video. One of my favorite guests you ever had, Brett Metcalf was a perfect example of this.

    Stories. Experiences. Those are so much more powerful than a Ph.D. In psychology, which is hardly relevant to understanding what’s wrong with the church.

    • May 29, 2016 at 11:40 am

      Love this comment. Sincerely grateful for the feedback.

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