Utah and Mormons were targets for bigotry last week courtesy of a radio talk show host in Miami. Utah Jazz forward Carlos Boozer earned props for defending Utah and Mormons when Sid Rosenberg, made comments about the state and its predominant religion that were definitely degrading.
In an era when a high value is placed on political correctness it is difficult to understand how incidents involving Mormons generate so little controversy. Had Rosenberg made similar comments about Jews, Muslims, gays or some other ethnic group, it is likely that the furor would have been significantly greater. But for some reason, disparaging remarks about Mormons seem to be more socially acceptable than about other groups.
Rosenberg said that Utah is a horrible place to live and that Mormons are crazy. Unless Rosenberg has lived in Utah, he really has no basis for comparison. I’ve actually lived in several other states and a couple of other countries. Aside from the occasional May snowfall Utah really is not that bad. As for Mormons being crazy, I bet on a sanity scale they actually rate as less crazy than radio talk show hosts.
I’d like to know how Rosenberg reached his conclusions. Did he become disheartened during a Salt Lake City layover when he couldn’t find a slot machine in the airport? Did he once get some bad green Jell-O as a guest as a Mormon social?
I suspect Rosenberg’s comments were made from ignorance rather than maliciousness. That doesn’t excuse him. And if this were his first offense, he could more easily be forgiven. But Rosenberg has been in trouble before. The web site www.radio-info.com said, “He got in trouble while working on the Don Imus Show for saying ‘faggots play tennis,’ and found himself in hot water for comments made about Venus and Serena Williams, and the U.S. Women’s Soccer team.”
The unfortunate truth is that he can continue to make such statements without real repercussions as long as people are willing to listen to his bigoted commentary and not raise a significant protest. I look forward to the day when Mormon bashing receives the same public disapproval as other types of racism and bigotry.