prominent gay and lesbian newspaper,
QSaltLake, has named Latter-day Saints
church president Thomas Monson as its person of the year.
Monson led the
charge to pass Proposition 8, the California ballot
initiative that banned same-sex marriage in the Golden
State. Monson signed a letter, which was read at
Mormon church services across California, that urged
all LDS believers to do everything
they could to pass Prop. 8 by donating their time and
money. In response, church members gave tens of
thousands of dollars to the cause and traveled to
California knocking on doors, conducting phone banks,
developing websites, and filming commercials.
The decision to
put the controversial Monson on the cover of
QSaltLake's December 18 issue has some
scratching their heads. QSaltLake editor and
publisher Michael Aaron explained his decision: "Our
criteria for 'Person of the Year' was 'what person
made the greatest impact, good or bad, to Utah's gay,
lesbian, bisexual and transgender community.' That
person is President Monson," Aaron said in a press release.
"The fact is, Monson has sparked a fire under our
community. More people are becoming active and aware
in the movement to secure equal rights. Monson has
greatly benefited Utah's gay community."
Rallies and other
grassroots activism across the nation have sprung up in
Prop. 8's wake, Aaron points out. "Utah may never have seen
such activism for gay and lesbian rights in its
history," Aaron said. "The community is united and
invigorated." (Neal Broverman, Advocate.com)