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BYU Official: Mormon Students in 'It Gets Better' Video Won't Be Punished Unless They Act on Their Gay Feelings

Last Friday I posted an "It Gets Better" video made by Mormon students at Brigham Young University. The video has since gone viral and has more than 300,000 views, and has the attention of BYU officials, who say the gay students won't be punished unless they act on their gay feelings:

ByuThe students featured in a video about being gay at Brigham Young University are not in obvious violation of the honor code, according to Carri Jenkins, an assistant to the president of BYU. Jenkins went on to say that for the video alone, the students would not be punished. The honor code, Jenkins said, is “based on conduct, not on feeling, and if same-gender attraction is only stated, that is not an honor code issue.”

All BYU students sign on to the honor code upon enrollment. The code outlaws premarital sex and breaking the code “may result in actions up to and including separation from the university.”

“Homosexual behavior is inappropriate and violates the honor code. Homosexual behavior includes not only sexual relations between members of the same sex, but all forms of physical intimacy that give expression to homosexual feelings,” reads the honor code.

I've reposted the video, AFTER THE JUMP...

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  1. Wow, an 'honour code' at a university !
    Now I've heard it all.
    It really is more pathetic than funny.

    Posted by: JackFknTwist | Apr 10, 2012 9:26:55 AM

  2. What is pathetic about it is that some of these kids will commit suicide. They need help, and not help from any BYU hospital. I suspect that the whole thing is a pr stunt by the LDS church. I am disappointed that the It Gets Better project can't see how this video contravenes their whole message. The only way things will get better for these kids is for them to flee the oppressive atmosphere of BYU.

    Posted by: Jay | Apr 10, 2012 9:30:26 AM

  3. But but but but I thought BYU was supposed to be more inclusive now? I guess someone forgot to tell BYU

    Posted by: Adam Sass | Apr 10, 2012 9:31:58 AM

  4. I certainly abandoned my religion because it made me feel this bad.........
    IMO, any religion that does this to kids or others must be totally false and just a power user.
    In short, it gets better without religion.

    Posted by: JackFknTwist | Apr 10, 2012 9:37:27 AM

  5. There is only one thing more oxymoronic than a Gay kid attending BYU, and that is a gay kid attending BYU maing a PSA on "It Gets Better," which is why I did not bother to watch the video. Did not have to.

    They must sign a discriminatory pledge to NOT be who they are . . . how is that Better?

    Young people, take note, not to listen, or take the advice of any gay man or woman who would tell you it gets better while actively self-destructing, channeling thousands of dollars of tuition into an organization, institution, or church that uses that money to make theirs, your, all our lives a misery upon the Earth . . . they hire thugs to beat young gay men up who kiss in front of the cathedral in Saly Lake City, for god's sake . . . so why would you listen to gay kids who expend their money, their energy, and worse, their youth, essentially doing everything to ensure that things do not get better?

    Posted by: Ricco | Apr 10, 2012 9:47:49 AM

  6. @Jay - They not only need to flee from BYU, they need to flee from Mormonism.

    Posted by: Mike in the Tundra | Apr 10, 2012 9:59:52 AM

  7. I was waiting for the other shoe to drop, and now it has. It's the usual BS message we get from religion - you can be one, but don't actually try living out your feelings.

    I have gone from being very religious to being very contemptuous about religion in the last year. Wonder why?

    Posted by: Jack M | Apr 10, 2012 10:07:08 AM

  8. The response from BYU just underlines the problems with this "It Gets Better" video. The kids in the video most likely abide by the Code of Conduct, which bans pre-martial sex. Since gays cannot legally be marriage in Utah nor is it recognized by the LDS church, these young kids are expected to be celibate for their entire lives - no sex, no kissing, no loving partner, nada. By adhering to this policy, these kids still hate themselves and consider themselves less than their straight peers. I applaud their efforts but feel it will really only get better for them once they leave the church. Until they do their lives will be a mess of contradictions.

    Posted by: KP | Apr 10, 2012 10:08:25 AM

  9. That video was really depressing to watch, I hope that all of the people in it survive their college years and then leave the church.

    Posted by: Henry Holland | Apr 10, 2012 10:10:58 AM

  10. I can't judge these young people for staying faithful to Mormonism. Breaking away from a religion is difficult at the best of the times, and all the more when that religion is bound up so closely with your family, friends and culture the way Mormonism is. You can't just separate yourself from that overnight.

    Posted by: David L Rattigan | Apr 10, 2012 10:25:31 AM

  11. This isn't an It Gets Better video--it's a cry for help. Especially when the first student says he can't say it gets better, but people tell him that it does. These students are testimony to the fact that BYU is completely wrong. You can't separate sexual "feelings" and sexuality. It's sad. These young people shouldn't have to "struggle" with these "issues." I wonder how much this USGA can do, and hope it at least will give kids like these the courage and wisdom to learn to stand up for themselves. It can't get better until you do. 

    Posted by: lodenmuse | Apr 10, 2012 10:27:02 AM

  12. I don't feel badly for these kids at all, they are CHOOSING to be there.

    Posted by: James | Apr 10, 2012 10:32:11 AM

  13. Oh, the haters and f*ckwits are out in force! How dare you bash religion! How dare you call out the damage done in the name of Our Lord! This s just the sort of thing that gives gays a bad name and forces religious people to be against us.

    Posted by: TJ | Apr 10, 2012 10:32:11 AM

  14. What about all those pretty blue eyed blonde girls that get knocked up there? What happens to them and their pretty blue eyed blonde boyfriends? Who'd want to go to a university with that kind of open arms - based on a religion visualized by a scam artist, with science fiction overtones which has been consistently debunked as garbage? Not Me...

    Posted by: pdxblueyes | Apr 10, 2012 10:32:20 AM

  15. I watched the video, it really gave me hope. I was a student at byu when the honor code was first instated, I think it was 1989 or 90, it really changed the environment to be more oppressive. At the time, my sexuality was so oppressed, I didn't even know that I was gay! Yes, pathetic. The point I want to make is the making of this video is a good thing, but it's a baby step for what needs to be done.

    Ultimately the young people in this video look hopeful, but WILL experience either a life of repression and sadness, or will have to leave the church to find peace. Not really a fair choice. I wish it were better, but really it's not.

    The lds church is VERY concerned about it's appearance and brand. From what I see they really don't take things like this past much more than the surface. They will let this "It gets better (?)" video sit on the surface. But hatred bigotry and ignorance will continue to lurk in the shadows.... very disappointing.

    Posted by: Louis | Apr 10, 2012 10:34:36 AM

  16. It gets better after you dump your stupid religion.

    Posted by: Mawm | Apr 10, 2012 11:02:01 AM

  17. @TJ - how dare we bash religion? It's not the idea of religion itself, it's when people use religion as a weapon of hate rather than a means of spreading a message of love, peace and acceptance. And nowadays, it seems the haters have taken over. That's why we bash religion.

    Posted by: Jack M | Apr 10, 2012 11:14:51 AM

  18. Tough place to go to school, but when you're young and you don't have the money you can't always choose. I hope they're able to face the Mormon world on their own terms once they are out of college and have jobs.

    Posted by: Yeek | Apr 10, 2012 11:21:56 AM

  19. @David Rattigan:

    Thanks for making this important point. People like to say "why are you still in the religion if it despises who you are?" I doubt any person who says that has ever really been raised in a true fundamentalist household. Leaving means the possibility of losing your family, friends, the only way of life you have ever known, and every support structure you have ever had in your life. Anyone who trivializes the difficulty of doing such a thing is mentally infirm.

    I wasn't raised in an extremely fundamentalist household, but I was raised with very religious parents. Even though it was nothing like these kids have been raised with, it has STILL been a process spanning many years to fully leave. In fact, years later, I'm still not completely through the experience.

    Anyone who passes judgment on these kids for not just waking up one morning and leaving their entire life behind is not REALLY thinking of their best interests.

    Posted by: Jack | Apr 10, 2012 11:33:43 AM

  20. @ TJ :

    Why shouldn't we bash religion ? It is the source of all irrational 'faith based' $hit we have to deal with. That's why. It has also caused our civilization to be stifled in its development because of its non-reason based theist centred pseudo philosophy called theology.

    Oh, and did I mention the Crusades, the Inquisition, Salem, the expulsion of the Moors, the forced conversion of Jews, the extermination of the Cathers, the Albigensians, .........
    That's why we should bash religion.

    Posted by: JackFknTwist | Apr 10, 2012 11:39:10 AM

  21. this is stupid. THE MORMON church still hate us...people think that because of this video everything is done. DUMB folks like you.

    Posted by: Bosie | Apr 10, 2012 11:40:15 AM

  22. These kids needs to develop their critical thinking. If there is a higher being out there I can promise you that it is 100% nothing like any religion on earth describes it. And it certainly wont care what gender you love or have sex with. All the stories that have been made up are too local and too connected to our experience on this planet. On a universal scale NOTHING you do will ever matter. Nothing. Ever. Our sun is tiny. You can blow up our entire solar system and on a universal scale it would not even register at all. So now go and kiss a cute guy and stop worrying.

    Posted by: Alex | Apr 10, 2012 11:42:18 AM

  23. For years people called it a cult, and I thought that was just sour grapes. But the lds does practice mind control. Even worse, they ignore the demands of the prophets and gospels for justice for the oppressed. And they don't do jack for the poor. Conclusion, after thirty years of observation: the lds is not christianity, but is rather another version of the fertility cult posing as religion. It makes my skin crawl.

    Posted by: Wilberforce | Apr 10, 2012 11:44:38 AM

  24. I agree with @DavidRattigan and @Jack. To you both, thank you for your comments. I've not watched the video (can't do that at work), but I think I have a good sense of the content. It sounds very much like something from the fundamentalist and evangelical Christian churches: "Love the sinner, hate the sin." Said another way, "We love you in spite of your leanings, just don't act on them." Well, as a survivor of that world, I believe differently now. Anyway, it's hard to work this all out for yourself, it's hard to just turn and walk away. Be gentle with people who are dealing with this. Please.

    Posted by: Hawthorne | Apr 10, 2012 11:50:22 AM

  25. @ ALEX :

    Yeah, if there is a higher being out there I hope it is having a good laugh !

    Posted by: JackFknTwist | Apr 10, 2012 11:50:25 AM

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