The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

Politics

January 5, 2013

Crapo's DUI plea could tarnish clean image

(Continued)

For the first 100 years after the revelation, there was a great debate in the Mormon world about whether the revelation was a hard ban or simply an endorsement of moderation and clean living. (Smith himself writes of sipping wine in his journals.) During this time, bishops were known to take kegs of beer out hunting, high church leaders chomped on cigars and faithful members sipped morning coffee, Bushman said. That ended in the 1930s, when the hard-liners won the debate and abstinence became requisite for church membership. (The suitability of imbibing caffeine in non-hot drinks, however, long remained a sticking point.)

The historical uncertainty about the ban doesn't do Crapo much good. "It does not absolve Crapo of his transgressions because nowadays Mormons would be shocked," Bushman said.

A spokesman for the Mormon church declined to comment on the Crapo incident.

In a nod to Mormon supporters, Crapo said Friday morning: "I will carry through on the appropriate measures for repentance." That means Crapo will meet with his local bishop and work to attain forgiveness. The church can refer members to Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, but increasingly its own social services wing treats substance abuse with a more scriptural approach. For a time Crapo will probably be asked to refrain from taking the sacrament at church, and his Temple Recommend, a physical card that faithful Mormons must present to gain admission to the sacred temples, will probably be temporarily revoked. It is unlikely that Crapo will have to appear before a church court, which is reserved for more serious transgressions such as adultery.

The attention on Crapo's arrest, in itself, validates the church's success "at trademarking clean living as part of what it means to be Mormon," said Patrick Mason, a professor of Mormon studies at Claremont Graduate University in California. "It speaks to the fact that people in America don't know much about Mormons, but they do know a couple of things, and one is that Mormons don't drink."

Text Only
Politics
  • With 1 week to go, Sanford subject of attacks

    CHARLESTON, S.C. — Former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford can’t seem to escape attacks on the extramarital affair that derailed his political career, which he hopes to revive in a special congressional election that is now a week away.

    May 1, 2013

  • Bombing shifts Mass. Senate race before primaries

    BOSTON — Even before the explosions, polling suggested that Massachusetts voters weren’t excited about the looming special election to replace former U.S. Sen. John Kerry.

    April 28, 2013

  • In a first, black voter turnout rate passes whites

    WASHINGTON — America’s blacks voted at a higher rate than other minority groups in 2012 and by most measures surpassed the white turnout for the first time, reflecting a deeply polarized presidential election in which blacks strongly supported Barack Obama while many whites stayed home.

    April 28, 2013

  • Senate Democrats put off vote on Labor nominee

    WASHINGTON — Senate Democrats have delayed a confirmation vote on Labor Secretary-nominee Thomas Perez after Republicans threatened to use a separate hearing to criticize his handling of a whistleblower case.

    April 24, 2013

  • Sen. Baucus' decision to retire sets stage for majorlegislative changes

     Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., one of the most influential congressional figures of his era, announced his intention Tuesday to retire, a move that could produce sweeping changes in the political and legislative landscape over the next two years.

    April 24, 2013

  • Senate friendship born of tragedy beat partisanship

    These days, most dispatches from Washington focus on petty partisanship, posturing, impasses and a political culture that rewards confrontation.

    April 22, 2013

  • Rubio rising

    If Marco Rubio helps pass comprehensive immigration reform, he will have accomplished more as a senator than Barack Obama did.

    April 22, 2013

  • Gun Bill's Failure May Help Immigration Legislation

    WASHINGTON — Here's an odd political reality: The collapse of the gun bill in the Senate last week may well make the passage of immigration reform legislation slightly easier.

    April 21, 2013

  • Senate Planning Vote on Internet Sales Tax

    WASHINGTON — The days of tax-free online shopping could finally be numbered.

    April 21, 2013

  • Advocates of Immigration Reform Fight Back Against Push for Delay

    WASHINGTON — The Senate's leading supporters of overhauling the nation's immigration system sought Sunday to blunt a conservative effort to slow the pace of debate over their bill, saying the Boston Marathon bombings are a reason to move quickly to make changes.

    April 21, 2013

Featured Ads
Politics Video