Photograph by George Frey/Getty Images.
And now for something completely different: More than 300 Mormons marched in the Utah Gay Pride Parade on Sunday.
Indicating that some Mormons may want to change the LDS church's reputation for intolerance towards LGBT people and issues, a group called Mormons Building Bridges led the parade this weekend, prompting emotional responses from organizers and spectators. The parade's grand marshal, according to the Salt Lake Tribune, summed up the scene in a tweet, writing: "In tears. Over 300 straight, active Mormons showed up to march with me at the Utah Pride parade in support of LGBT people."
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has a somewhat complex relationship to homosexuality, as evidenced by this 2008 Slate "Explainer" on the subject. Essentially, Mormons can be gay, but must remain celibate, according to church doctrine. But in 2008, the church got involved with California's Proposition 8, supporting efforts to ban gay marriage in the state, entering the fray of conservative social activism on social issues.
Apparently, this is just the first of a series of gay pride marches across the country that Mormons are planning on attending. The effort comes in an election year in which both LGBT issues and Mormonism have taken center stage.