Thursday, December 31, 2009

All right, kiddos. If you're here, it's because you're following the (what's the antonym for saga?) tale of the Big Love disconnect I experienced on Saturday. I didn't want to take up the issue with the woman at the moment because it would have made more enemies than friends in that instance, but I emailed the author yesterday and this is what I said (oh, and I borrowed a good line from . . . I think it was InkMom):

Hi, *****.


I enjoyed meeting you at the Cerritos library mystery event on Saturday. I hope you had time to explore the library a little. It's really cool even though it gives me a chronic case of library envy.

I wanted to clarify a little bit of conversation we had before lunch began. When you asked what I write, I said, "Mormon chick lit." You said something about how it's good that there's a television show supporting the genre and you mentioned Big Love.

I didn't feel like it was appropriate to address it at the time as you had other people who wanted to chat with you, but I wanted to take a quick minute to correct something. Big Love isn't about Mormons. It's about people who call themselves Mormons but no true Mormon would recognize themselves in that program.

I guess I'd offer this analogy to explain: Let's say that I decided to wear a yarmulke and call myself Jewish. Then imagine I ran around indulging every perverse impulse I had but sanctioned it under the cloak of Judaism even though it had nothing to do with their religion.

The faithful Jews would be hurt and frustrated by my actions, and that's pretty much how Mormons feel about Big Love. Despite the label FLDS, there's actually no such thing as Mormon fundamentalism. You don't get to slap a label on your lifestyle when you appropriate it from a people and religion who in no way share or condone your beliefs. (And when I say "you," I don't mean YOU.)

The fundamentals of Mormonism are that God lives, his Son atoned for our sins, and all of us benefit from that gift. We also believe that God still talks to a living prophet, Thomas S. Monson, and through continuing revelation and careful study of the scriptures, including the revealed scripture of the Book of Mormon that strengthens what we already know from the Bible, every person can learn about God's plan for our happiness and how simple it is to live it.

Thanks for taking the time to read this and I wish you the best of success with your writing career.

Sincerely,

Melanie Jacobson

14 comments:

Kristina P. said...

Love it. I can't wait to hear her response.

Amber Lynae said...

I'm glad that you have taken the time to respond to her misinterpretation of the church. It is nice to know there are people who can respectfully respond to the misunderstandings of others.

L.T. Elliot said...

I'm really glad you wrote her and said this because it's important that people know there is a difference. And if we don't tell them, who will? Way to go, Melanie.

Andrew & Sarah Clawson said...

Great job Melanie! Can't wait to see if she replies! Give yourself a pat on your back!

Steph @ Diapers and Divinity said...

You rock.

Happy Mom said...

You are gonna lett us know what she says aren't you?

We're interested!

Annette Lyon said...

SO well put. I hope she reads and answers it.

InkMom said...

Awesome. But I don't need credit, especially for words I didn't say! When I read the original post, I was nursing and (as I have been known to do a lot recently) though I formulated a comment in my head to post once I had all ten fingers available, I promptly forgot to go back and do it. So maybe you read my mind, and borrowed a good line from there!

The e-mail was thoughtful and nonconfrontational -- exactly how I WOULDN'T have been had I been in your situation. Hope she reads it. Hope she responds. Can't wait to see what happens next.

Becca said...

Yes, yes, yes. Good work, Mel. Just right.

DeNae said...

Perfect. You are a star in my book. Hope you're having fun chasing little Grant around the pier!

That Girl said...

*applause*

I wish you millions of readers.

Karen said...

Such a great letter.

I cringe every time anyone professes their love for that show and you've perfectly expressed why.

TheOneTrueSue said...

Awesome.

Melinda said...

Love it! Perfectly said, perfect! I hope you let us know if she responds as well!