OMG, BYU Is Named for Racist Leader | Opinion | Salt Lake City | Salt Lake City Weekly

OMG, BYU Is Named for Racist Leader 

Smart Bomb: The completely unnecessary news analysis

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What if someone said it's time to change the name of Brigham Young University. Eee-gads, duck and cover—and hide your temple recommend. Tasi Young, a one-time Mormon missionary, is calling on the bigwigs in the Tower of Power to dump the name of their flagship university. In The Salt Lake Tribune, Tasi Young writes: "Brigham Young single-handedly created and ingrained teachings of racial violence, segregation and white moral authority that enabled a social norm that not only oppressed black lives but taught his followers that white supremacy was a mandate from God."

Holy smokes! Tasi Young went on an LDS mission and attended BYU. In high school LDS seminary, he was taught that his parents' interracial marriage was a disappointment to God and that his black friends' skin was a curse for their pre-mortal actions. "I felt [Brigham] Young's teachings when I stood shirtless, hands in the air, under a police spotlight, on the side of a Utah highway, being unlawfully searched as my children looked on from our minivan." Historically, blacks were banned from church ceremonies and could not hold the priesthood until June 8, 1978, when LDS prophet Spencer W. Kimball through "divine revelation" (and a little nudging from the Civil Rights movement) lifted the prohibitions. But don't hold your breath waiting for another revelation—Brigham Young casts a long shadow across Deseret. And what would they do with all those BYU T-shirts, bumper stickers and other swag?

COVID, Shmovid
So now that the pandemic is over, what are people going to do with all that toilet paper? They could put it on Craigslist or KSL classifieds—after all, a garage full of toilet paper is a fire hazard. One thing that continues to stump our social scientists here at Smart Bomb is why people always horde toilet paper, no matter the emergency. Oh my God, there's a potential for flash-flooding—quick, take the pickup to the supermarket and load up on TP. Here at Smart Bomb, we have avoided the toilet paper shortage altogether by installing bidets in our toilets. After you have used a bidet, you will understand that toilet paper is quite primitive. It's only about a half-step in technology above what Neanderthals came up with 75,000 years ago using leaves. But we digress. Americans are sick and tired of COVID-19, and so they aren't using masks anymore—and just forget social distancing. All this while in many states, including Utah, cases continue to rise. But, screw it, life has to go back to normal sometime and if that means old people have to die, well, that's just the way it is. They don't do much for the economy anyway, and they probably weren't going to vote for Trump this time around, either. So, sorry, but we're not sorry.

Poll—Romney Sucks, Donald's Divine
Shocker! Polling of Utah Republicans reveals Mitt Romney is Beelzebub and Saint Donald is a gift from the Celestial Kingdom. According to a recent Salt Lake Tribune poll, 45 percent of Utah GOPers polled "strongly approve" (read: salivate) of Trump and another 23 percent "somewhat approve" (read: dig the dude). Our analysis here at Smart Bomb reveals that they believe Trump stands for Utah values: womanizing, lying and cheating—and did we say, lying? The analysis by our political team shows they highly regard Trump's leadership as seen in the coronavirus pandemic and the aftermath of the George Floyd killing by police. In both cases, the president has excelled in misrepresenting facts, blaming others and boasting about anything and everything. By stark contrast, the polling results were not so good for Utah's junior senator. Only 19 percent "strongly approved" of Romney and an additional 24 percent "somewhat approved." But more telling is that, according to the poll, 33 percent of Utah Republicans polled "strongly disapprove" (read: despise) Romney, while another 16 percent "somewhat disapprove" (read: he sucks). Smart Bomb's analysis reveals that Utah Republicans have disdain for Romney because the SOB keeps telling the truth. And in Republican politics, that just isn't cool.

Postscript: Well buckaroos and buckarooettes, that does it for another edition of Smart Bomb, where we keep track of the nation's COVID-19 deaths, so you don't have to: 116,000. We are now well into the summer of our discontent—strange times where black men are killed regularly by police, and white people actually care. It seems that empathy, the best of human traits, is on the rise. But like most things that matter, it is boiling up from the bottom, rather than trickling down from the top. In the 1960s and '70s, people used to say that real politics take place in the street. Maybe they were right. The protests that began with the cruel execution of George Floyd have awakened the slumbering American people. While they were sleeping, the U.S. became No. 1 in the world for imprisoning people with 2.3 million. About 40 percent of them are black, although African Americans make up only 14 percent of the population. Our default mode is more cops and more jails. This is, in the end, a puritan and punitive society. While we were sleeping, black people made little advancement. And though they live in a different universe, white workers, likewise, gained no ground. Even college grads are sucking it. They leave school with tremendous debt, continue to live with parents and see a bleak future. We're just guessing here, but it seems like keeping a democracy requires more than voting for politicians every two years. After all, those lawmakers know that money are people, too.

OK, Wilson, on that happy note, can you and the band offer up a little something to bolster whatever it is we're looking for:

Don't you know
They're talkin' bout a revolution
It sounds like a whisper
Don't you know
They're talkin' bout a revolution
It sounds like a whisper

While they're standing in the welfare lines
Crying at the doorsteps of those armies of salvation
Wasting time in the unemployment lines
Sitting around waiting for a promotion

Don't you know
They're talkin' bout a revolution
It sounds like a whisper

Poor people gonna rise up
And get their share
Poor people gonna rise up
And take what's theirs ...

("Talkin 'Bout A Revolution"—Tracy Chapman)

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