On today’s Savage Lovecast (hosted by Dan Savage), Jeopardy champion and active LDS Church member Ken Jennings publicly denounced the recent LDS Church policy changes regarding same-gender relationships and children.  He also explained why he remains LDS in spite of disagreements he has with church doctrine, policy, and leadership.  This is the excerpt.


  1. Ken Baguley November 24, 2015 at 6:11 pm - Reply

    How can one be so smart and still not have understanding? I had a friend who had 160 IQ…He said, Ken, people with my level of IQ are on the verge of insanity…We don’t think like other people…

    • Dallin November 25, 2015 at 12:40 am - Reply

      It doesn’t take a genius to understand that it’s wrong to punish kids for the actions of the parents (Gay or straight). Talk about insanity…

    • John Crane November 25, 2015 at 3:03 am - Reply

      I don’t know what you mean when you say he doesn’t “have understanding”. Why he remains in the Mormon Church after all this? Why he believes the Mormon church is wrong about gay marriage?

      My husband has an IQ of 162. He is a gay ex-Mormon. He wishes he could rip the Mormon part right out of his life. I can’t tell you how he has suffered as a result of them. But, at the same time, without both of us growing up Mormons, we never would have met.

      If there is any “insanity” to having a high IQ, it is because we see the problems of the world (the conflicts, the irony, the hypocrisy, the irrationality) better then most. The world is insane, and you have to be a little insane to make sense of it, or you just shut it off altogether.

    • Mike November 25, 2015 at 7:29 am - Reply

      I agree. Even though research shows that children of gay parents are just as well off as children of straight parents; even though gay people who live the church’s standards have similar quality of life as people with long term illness; even though the suicide rate of trans youth who live with parents who don’t believe that trans is a thing is much higher (>50%) than youth who live with parents who accept their trans nature (~5%?); even with that evidence, the prophet is speaking for god who knows best. /s

  2. Scott Sanders November 24, 2015 at 7:45 pm - Reply

    Right on, Ken!

  3. Jake Mckee November 24, 2015 at 8:22 pm - Reply

    The ugliness of mormonism and other religions is that people like Ken can get trapped into it. If they ever come to their senses, they have to spend the rest of their lives lying about what they believe or risk a loss of their money, children, spouses, parents, siblings etc.

  4. Marsha November 24, 2015 at 8:45 pm - Reply

    The interview was cut off, but I don’t really understand why it would “scare him MORE” to see everyone who disagrees with the LDS church, on gay issues, get up and leave. I am beginning to think that is exactly what needs to happen. Staying only gives the church some validity and a sense of relevance that they really don’t deserve. That goes for any church that teaches bigotry and fear of LGBT people. Those institutions need to start being marginalized, IMO, and not carrying on as if everything they are doing is just fine.

  5. CaCoast November 24, 2015 at 10:15 pm - Reply

    Good on you, Ken. You have lots of admirers, and you did the right thing by shining your light of truth on this dark thing that the Church did.

  6. John Crane November 25, 2015 at 3:15 am - Reply

    Don’t know what you are specifically referring to by “insanity” but super intelligent people see more clearly the irony, the irrationality, and the hypocrisy of the world better than most.

  7. Michael Olson November 25, 2015 at 6:53 am - Reply

    You’d have to have an IQ under 40 to think those policies are comprehensible at all.

  8. Curtis November 25, 2015 at 9:12 am - Reply

    I think it is bizarre that any person who claims to believe in the Church would make excuses for these regressive policies and try to separate them against the parts they think are valuable. The only reason the Church has any legitimacy is if you believe the claim that there is active revelation for Church policy. If that is true you either have to accept that all these cruelties are what God wants and support them ALL with full conviction or you have to accept that the whole premise of the Church is complete BS. I honestly can only respect orthodoxy. Everyone else just gives the Church power and legitimacy by continuing to attend, continuing to allow their names to be part of the precious numbers, continuing to donate tithing and continue to work their pernicious destructive influences.

  9. JohnDoh November 25, 2015 at 10:42 am - Reply

    Despite misconceptions to the contrary, church doctrine is not crowd-sourced from idiots like Ken Jennings. Pretty sure the general authorities, twelve, and first presidency feel they answer to a higher power. There’s also this fact: This is the same policy they’ve had when dealing with polygamists families.

    Almost NO ONE will be affected by this change in church policy. But people who are already disenchanted with their own faith, have to bitch about something to justify their anti-mormon feelings they harbor whether they acknowledge this or not. You got a problem with the doctrine, take it up with the bishop and stake president. Don’t act like your stupid opinion matters to anyone but idiots like yourself.

    • Xposit November 28, 2015 at 6:39 am - Reply

      “Pretty sure the general authorities, twelve, and first presidency feel they answer to a higher power.” Now that right there is hilarious! Calling the imaginations of old white men a “higher power” cracks me up. That’s only slightly more delusional than calling Jennings an “idiot”. Funny how the truth just doesn’t sit well with folks like John Doh.

    • guest December 18, 2015 at 4:05 pm - Reply

      Actually, it ISN’T the same policy they use for children of polygamist fathers. Those children can be baptized at age 8 if they disavow their parents’ practices (Which is also not appropriate, btw, because how can you ask a child to make that kind of moral decision? But that’s an entirely different subject). The children of polygamist households aren’t forced to sit out while their friends and peers in the church attend temple baptism trips and receive callings/the priesthood the way children of same-sex married parents will be.

  10. Matt November 25, 2015 at 10:48 am - Reply

    Who knew Ken was a fantastic failure at being mormon? As if his opinion matters at all. It doesn’t. Never has. Crowd-sourcing doctrine does not work in the church. The GA’s answer to a higher power.

    • Dallin November 26, 2015 at 10:12 pm - Reply

      Clearly you think your “crowd-sourcing doctrine” comment is so clever that you had to post it twice (under different names). The problem is–It isn’t doctrine; It’s a policy. Smart church members like Ken understand the difference. Church policies have changed in the past because of member input (or crowd-sourcing as you like to call it). Some temple policies were changed because many members were uncomfortable with certain aspects of the experience (death oaths, intimate touching, etc). Garment patterns have also changed over the years primarily due to member input. Church policies don’t change by direct revelation from “a higher power”. They change because because member support for the policy or practice deteriorates. Support for this policy was never strong and is deteriorating quickly and WILL change too. Sorry JohnDoh/Matt, but you’re going to find yourself in the minority on this issue much quicker than you think.

    • John Scott November 27, 2015 at 1:11 am - Reply

      Hello Matt
      The Brethren are fallible and the final test is in fact “crowd sourced”, at least according to Pres J. Reuben Clark of the First Presidency.

      As a member of the First Presidency, President J Reuben Clark reminded us that pronouncements made by the Brethren and the President of the Church have been wrong. He made this point in a talk to the Seminary and Institute personnel at BYU 7th July 1954. I selectively quote:

      “There have been rare occasions when even the President of the Church in his teaching and preaching has not been “moved upon by the Holy Ghost. …

      —that even the President of the Church, himself, may not always be “moved upon by the Holy Ghost,” when he addresses the people. This has happened about matters of doctrine (usually of highly speculative character) where subsequent Presidents of the Church and the people themselves have felt that in declaring the doctrine, the announcer was not “moved upon by the Holy Ghost”.

      … But the matter of disagreements over doctrine and the announcement by high authority of incorrect doctrines is not new.

      … The Church will know by the testimony of the Holy Ghost in the body of the members, whether the Brethren in voicing their views are “moved upon by the Holy Ghost”; and in due time that knowledge will be made manifest.”

      The Church’s homosexual exclusion policy is wrong. I think it being an ideologically motivated pronouncement without a credible scientific, moral or ethical justification. Like other mistakes (e.g. excluding blacks from holding the priesthood) the Church may correct this one too. However, it will likely be sometime after the members of the Church and the wider community have painstakingly educated the Brethren.

    • Xposit November 28, 2015 at 6:31 am - Reply

      Sorry Matt but the imagination of the GAs, as you refer to them, is NOT a higher power. Why all the sour grapes? Is the truth starting to bum you out?

  11. Jay November 25, 2015 at 4:59 pm - Reply

    I don’t think the church leaders have the backbone to discipline Jennings. We’ll see. I think the church leaders will waffle on their so-called high standards and pretend Jennings never called the church on the carpet.

    • Dallin November 27, 2015 at 12:00 am - Reply

      It’s not a matter of backbone. Based on this interview alone, they have no grounds to discipline Brother Jennings.

      • Jay November 27, 2015 at 2:21 pm - Reply

        “No grounds” is the new “no backbone.” : )

  12. Mace November 26, 2015 at 4:19 pm - Reply

    I think the church wants the new generation to hate the gays.
    What better way of doing it by letting them know the reason you can’t follow your friends at the church and get the same privileges is because of your gay parent?
    Kids don’t understand the manipulation at hand, they will just see that their gay parent is ruining their lives.
    This is the point, to stamp gayness out of the next generation who will be so ashamed by their parents there will be no way they will admit to being gay if they are.

  13. Vinz Clortho November 30, 2015 at 3:32 pm - Reply

    OK, so the argument is that brethren are accountable before God. Should they be accountable to the membership as well? Absolutely. And many members, as counseled by said brethren, are standing up for what they believe. In this case, repudiating the ironic declarations defending ‘traditional values/marriage’. Because, to us they are no more than repulsive regurgitations which exhibit the ‘foolish traditions of our fathers’.

  14. Eric November 30, 2015 at 11:54 pm - Reply

    Whether you agree or disagree with those comments who say that the General Authorities don’t crowdsource their policies and answer to a higher power, it is accurate to say that the General Authorities don’t crowdsource their policies. As far as they’re concerned, this comes from God, and therefore, anyone who disagrees with it is wrong.

    Now I’m sure many people who frequent this blog will look at what I just wrote and say that it’s laughable to think that this policy comes from God. But no matter how much people here are convinced that this policy is not from God, those that implemented it will be equally convinced, if not more, that it _is_ from God, and therefore won’t back down from it.

    Personally, I believe the axiom “You can choose your choices, but you can’t choose your consequences” applies to God every bit as much as it applies to human beings, so if there is harm that comes from this, God will have to answer for those consequences of ordering this policy (or if he didn’t, he’ll have to answer for the consequences of allowing human failings to direct the policies of his church). I look at every doctrine, every policy, every action of the church at face value, not just sitting back and saying, “Well, it’s God’s church, so therefore this must be a good thing!”

    • Bryan Stone-Daly December 1, 2015 at 2:55 pm - Reply

      FIrst off, it is not God’s church. it is reported that Joseph was told that all religions are an abomination to God. Why would God have Joseph have him create another one? He did not, Brigham Young created it because that is what he wanted. By the way, did any general authority ever get a personal visit from God about this? No.

      This is another example of the blind leading the blind. Believe what you want, but the truth is out there if you search for it. And it does not come from any church. Sorry Mormons; you are not the true church that you think you are.

  15. SJ March 19, 2018 at 12:46 pm - Reply

    I’ve heard from many church leaders who work in the Church offices that based on information given to the brethren by local Church leaders, there was often much strife between wife and gay husband about kids being baptized, THE GAY SPOUSE WAS MOST OFTEN ANTI-LDS, and the brethren were concerned that if kids lived primarily with an anti lds gay parent it would be very difficult for them to go to Church and very likely that they would live in an environment contrary to Church teachings. If both parents agree that the kids will live primarily with the non gay parent, then the children are much more likely to be able to go to Church and keep their covenants. If the kids live primarily with the anti-lds gay parent, then not getting baptized until they are adults removes the responsibility the kids have to go to church and keep covenants.

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