LDS Church Issues Statement Against Qur’an Burning

A few weeks ago, in the heat of August, I wondered about what appeared to be a lagging LDS response to simmering anti-Muslim sentiment in America.

Certainly we can do better, I wrote. And we ought to, given similarities in the historical contours of anti-Mormon and anti-Muslim prejudice.

Now, the LDS Church has responded to calls (reported by Sarah) for religious leaders to speak out against Islamophobia and the planned September 11 Qur’an burning by a fringe pastor in Gainesville, Florida, issuing the following statement yesterday:

“A key tenet of our faith is to accord everyone the freedom to worship as they choose. It is regrettable that anyone would regard the burning of any scriptural text as a legitimate form of protest or disagreement.”

Which, if I may translate from the culturally understated, modest, and pragmatic institutional language of the LDS Church into common American vernacular might mean something like, “People. Everywhere. Please chill out. Stop giving the Gainesville pastor so much attention. His church only has 50 members. 50 members! Of course Muslims are okay by us. After all, we too have an alternate scriptural text. Which has been burned in protest before. So, please, everyone, be nice, and get back to doing your genealogy!”