Silly, but funny to see how people react when treated to a dose of their own medicine:
"Australian filmmaker John Safran is so fed up with mormons ringing his doorbell early in the morning that he flies to Salt Lake City Utah and tries to convert Mormons to atheism. Needless to say, the locals were not pleased."
Reminds me of the Christians who back prayer at public venues and then go crackers when someone of a different cult is given the opportunity to offer a prayer at said venue.
This is really not funny. It is understandable if he didn't want the missionaries coming to his home. But Safran really could have just told them that he would appreciate if they would let the Church know that he is not interested. He didn't have to make a mockery of these beliefs and interests by doing what he did. I will admit that most people he visited were not polite and didn't treat him with the respect he deserves as a person. But how do you even know that the houses he went around to were all LDS? You don't! Salt Lake City is not inhabited solely by LDS members. The old man that pushed him away may just as easily have been Baptist or Catholic. I'm not saying that Mormons are not capable of treating someone with disrespect, but I am saying that it is possible that he spoke to not only LDS people that day, but members of other faiths as well. Christians believe in the Bible. So when you tell them you think the Bible is made up, of course they are going to be disinterested, maybe even upset. There was a much more civil way to treat his discontent with the missionaries. He needn't take out his anger on the residents of Salt Lake (who, most likely, were a mixture of any number of religions and certainly not all LDS members.)
I laughed so hard, I actually fell off my chair. Help, is there a personal injury lawyer around here!
EPC06, Safran is a comedian who is making fun of everyone. Here you can see him trying to join the KKK:
The boys on The Crashers War on Everything hold nothing sacred at all.
That said, this is one of my favorite clips. EPC06 seems to think that the religions and their followers deserve the respect of everyone just because of that. They deserve no such thing.
It's funny too, work in I.T. and science crowds and you tend to find a lot more atheists. I wonder why that is, maybe because they've both been educated out the wazoo?
Turnabout is fair play. That's the real golden rule.
Demographically, Salt Lake City is mostly non-Mormon. Mormons are more dominant in the outlying towns and suburbs.
My wife's father was an Anglican minister in a small town in Canada. The local Jehovah's Witnesses thought it would be a good idea to convert his children to their faith so would come around each weekend when the children were on their own. The children could not handle this as they had been taught to be polite to adults. My father-in-law, who normally made no effort to convert people (he never broached religion with me, an atheist) dropped in on one of the JWs and had a lengthy discussion with her in which he severely shook her faith. When the JW head person complained he said 'Well, you people have been visiting my parishioners, so I thought I would just return the compliment' and that was the end of the problem.
EPC06, please tell me how what John Safran did was un-civil but when religious missionaries do the same thing it's not.
And I for one think it is funny. Man, I wish SBS and Safran would make another series of 'versus God'.
I agree with EPC06 that Safran used not-the-most-gentle way to get his point. But the truth is that not only Mormons are the ones who knock at your door, or for that matter, just about any church member of whatever church to approach to you in the most inconvenient time and place and practically pester you. When I moved to AZ, and later here in NC, I tried to be polite and not hurt anyones feelings. I didn't even push so far as Safran, yet was hoping when all sorts of Christians were soliciting, that saying I am born Orthodox Christian would make some sense to them and that they would show some respect toward it. Yes, I was hoping that they would respect it, especially considering my name and accent.
However, respectful people amongst various church members would not even push, those who push, you can only keep distance from if you deliver discipline just like you have to with a spoiled child ("I WANT THAT!!!!!! BHUUUUUUUAAAAAA") and be sort of rude toward them. They simply DO NOT HEAR YOU at all and show no respect. The most recent event I had was that person we did business with (with his wife, in fact, but he was there), was so pushing, and abused my kindness to his wife, that after me in the best faith trying to explain that I am not a church person (even shad some light of the role of religion in ex-yu falling apart), he still remain deaf and as soon as I stopped talking, with this famous glimpse in his eyes, and a finger posted toward me in persuasive way, asked me "But do you believe you are SAVED?" I had hard time not to punch him!
If they are so devoted to Jesus, how come they do not respect the same Jesus followers and Golden rules they are claiming. I think Safran had some good way to stress that out. Mormons or whoever, it is the same when it comes to soliciting.
In my opinion, believe or not and belonging to what religion is personal choice and none should push anything. Churches are fine as community whatever, but once they cross the line, it is not acceptable. It becomes just the opposite of what each is claiming to be (OK, at least Christians). In my opinion, pushing church membership and obligations about it, is sort of obligatory kindergarten or scout club, for if not thinking as minister said, they will be punished. Doesn't make sense if you are an adult. If I am confusing, let me rephrase: I love my children to the bits. Why on Earth would I care if someone comes and say "you do not love your children" or "your love toward your children is fake and they don't love you either"? If I am unable to recognize by myself love between me and my children both ways, how can anyone aside help me in that matter at all? How can someone else know better what is in my heart and to read my children's eyes better than I can in order to find if they love me or not? So, if someone is believer and trust the Bible, why would he/she be upset at all regardless what you say? If they believe with all of their heart in whatever they believe, and if they know all, as they claim, why would they be upset by "the lost lamb" who approaches them and tells something about the Bible?
"So when you tell them you think the Bible is made up, of course they are going to be disinterested, maybe even upset."
Should whoever is most easily upset get their own way? How do you feel about atheists that get upset about "in god we trust" being on the coins?
BTW Tony P: it's "The Chaser". See http://www.abc.net.au/tv/chaser/war/video/default.htm
Clever, if not original. Still -- as one who served a Mormon mission -- I admire your style. The difference is that your snarkiness in using these people as your foils contrasts with our approaching them to share what we value in the hopes of improving their lives. You use them for what you want; we hope to give them something that they will want.
I think sharing one's view on the lack of a supernatural being is an attempt to improve their lives by substituting knowledge for ignorance.
Genius. It would have been best if he had somehow targeted Mormon homes... and maybe some Witnesses...because the city residents are likely as tired of LDS activity as any of us. The moment with the bishop was good, though...
Bottom line is, if you're going to knock on someone's door, and ask about their faith, the second someone tells you they have a faith, or they have none, that should be the end of the conversation. Any effort that suggests someone is wrong, coming from a stranger, about a matter so personal, is simply rude. Who the &^$ are you to question my beliefs? Knocking on the door is one thing. But the arrogance and used-car sales teachniques (questions, keep 'em talking, memorized spiels) that is what really chafes my arse. Thanks to all the religions who don't do door-to-door!
Ha! Speaking of wolf: yesterday was one of those hot humid days here in WS and after working whole day in Habitat for Humanity I was kind of just trying to rest reading when dog went off barking like crazy - someone at the door. Two older gentlemen. They were nice and kind. And wanted me to join Baptists. I was kind and nice and unlike usual, this time I was in the mood to talk. To ask, to be more precise.
I know it is far too much to go into understanding some deeper concepts, so I tried with my heritage. I've told them I am Orthodox Christian, and they were curious if I have a temple to attend around here. Yes, there is one. How often you go there? etc, and after a while, I have asked them, very kindly, and sincerely wanted to hear the answers from them:
"If I have told you I was Orthodox Christian, why do you insist about other Christian Church? If my Church was formed on Jesus Christ foundations, why are you pushing it and how come you do not respect my own respect toward the person you are claiming to follow? Is your Jesus somehow better than mine?"
"If God loves us, as far as I get it, and I do NOT believe in hell, other than on Earth sometimes in some places, why do you doubt God's love?"
"I do not do things against 10 commandments not because I am afraid, yet that was installed in my earliest age, I don't know any other way. Why are you forcing fear of God? I am not afraid of God and I don't do ugly things, why would you push it"
About this time (those are just key points conversation was about, and frankly, I felt just fine - they were the ones completely confused and unable to respond), they were about to leave and they even thanked me for the kindness (I suspect there is much of slamming the door), but they wanted to get the final word out there for me:
I was asked if I have read the Bible, I responded I did in Serbian (well, some of it, never mind what amount), but they pushed English transcript is the MUST to read. When I have asked why, they said I need to read about St John. My response was that St John (Sveti Jovan) is my Saint Patronate in Serbia and that it is a family event and on the top of all, my last name originated from St John. They didn't feel like talking anymore :D
The bottom line: I truly feel sorry for them. They are like frightened kindergarten age kids with limited amount of cognition with this repetitive "Do you believe you are saved?" phrase ringing in their minds and lips like a conditional refrain. Sad. Just plain sad.