Utah has never been anything but a theocracy. It began as a theocracy and has, despite joining the Union, never really changed it's ways. Once in a great great while we elect a Democrat to Congress but unless they toe the Church line they don't last long. And there are a few Mormon Democrats, or so I've heard. Here, in the only liberal bastion in the state, Salt Lake City, we now and then elect a Democratic Mayor, or even the rare Governor. But it doesn't really matter all that much since the Mormon Church owns the State. In my neighborhood we non-Mormons have a majority, but that doesn't matter much given that I live in the most liberal enclave in the city, and it's tiny. I rarely travel outside my neighborhood if I can help it.
In any business in Utah that has a TV in a corner to entertain and inform those having to wait, and so need entertaining, Fox News or the local Fox affiliate is on and woe to the pushy broad who wants it changed. The only good thing about my recent hospital stay was I had control of the remote and MSNBC had not been blocked. For years the one cable channel that's broadcast at a volume so low only teenagers can hear it and they don't give a shit, was MSNBC. It's better now, but still not as clear or loud as Fox.
Mormons are told how to vote, what to think, what to believe, who to donate to, what to wear, right down to the magic underwear. The Mormon Church is homophobic in the extreme and racist to it's very deep dark secret core. Shit, blacks weren't even allowed inside the Ward Houses (Mormon for the churches every few blocks or so) and then the light went on. Black people make up a very large tithing opportunity missed and the Grand poobah had a "revelation from God" saying "Now's the time to rake in those dollars, so go ye missionary men to Africa and bring back the converts, for now we see the error of our past marketing plan." And God must have also said something alone the lines of "But the Gays? Not so much." The rich white men who make up the leadership of the Mormon Church are called The Quorum of the Twelve. It's a multi layer marketing plan and policy making organization. And as a result of the monetary focus of the official church policy, Utah is the scam capital of the Nation. The dollar is almighty god here. And any business person moving into Utah will be smart to join the club. But remember ladies, it's an old boys club. Women have their place, but it isn't as leader of the church, the family, or business. It's a patriarchal institution. But then aren't they all?
The Mormon Church was originally organized as a commune or a little Communist State complete with communal farms and distribution points. One of Salt Lakes most successful retail outlets was ZCMI or Zion's Cooperative Mercantile Institution. The Mormon version of a Church is a Ward house which is the small neighborhood version of a Stake House and next up is the Temple in every town and country. The Mormon Church has it's own institution of higher learning called Brigham Young University, and it has a very strict dress code within it's code of conduct. Mormon kids are supposed to always look like those clean-cut Mormon boys who go on their obligatory missions just out of high school. It's what they do instead of Military Service. And the Mormon Church doesn't pay their way. Their families do. It's a win/win for the Church. Ship the boys off when they're horniest, to parts far far away where they live with other boys just like themselves, and then when they make converts, those converts will be tithers for the greater good. But while you're on that mission, boys, don't turn gay. It's an unforgivable sin here in Zion. Yes, they do call it Zion.
Every voting district in Utah is just a collection/collective of Wards and Stake Houses. Most polling places are located in Wards. There is tremendous pressure on Mormons to vote with the Church. Independent thinking is seen as rebellious and deviant. It's a threat to the common good. Every high school has a "seminary" across the street where Mormon doctrine is taught to the future worker bees. The State Seal is a Beehive.
I know way too much about the Mormon Chruch's strange customs and bizarre history. I have a girlfriend who was raised in a polygamus family right here in Salt Lake. They are everywhere and living in plain sight. The Mormon Church does not want them prosecuated and unless they do something really outrageous like kidnapping little girls and marrying them off to nasty old men they get a pass. And one last irony: Alcohol is prohibited in the Mormon Church yet Utah has the highest per capita alcohol consumption in the country. Welcome to my world.
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