We were in Salt Lake City a couple of weeks ago and spent a lot of time with some of the leadership of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, getting to know the religion and its wonderful people. The people were fantastically nice and welcoming to us.
As in all religions, there is some debate surrounding the LDS, however. We heard there was going to be a protest against the LDS involvement in the California state proposition to to restrict the definition of marriage to a union between a man and a woman. Frankie, Craig, Madeeha and I went downtown to Temple Square to see what was going on and saw a protest much more intense than what we had imagined. There were thousands of people in the street protesting, holding signs, and marching. The crowd, made up of both gay and straight protesters, were peaceful and polite, and it made me, for the second time in a week, realize how proud I am to be an American. One of the things we’ve heard over and over from the people across the country, when we ask them about America is the pride that people have in the 1st Amendment. The right to free speech and to congregate and protest peacefully is part of the American Identity, people from every ethnicity, religion, age and gender say proudly.