Friday, July 13, 2012

Follow the Prophet

In an email she sent out to the family this week, my sister mentioned a charming story about her two-year-old son.  She said that he liked the primary song "Follow the Prophet" and that he'd been wandering around the house most of the day singing it.  Apparently he got the melody down pretty well but his pronunciation left a little to be desired.  She said that his vowels were mostly right but that he seemed to use whatever consonants he felt like, making the whole song sound like complete, adorable gibberish.  I didn't find the story particularly adorable.

This is something that I mentioned a few months ago.  I don't think it's at all healthy for a two-year-old kid to be taught these songs in nursery.

My nephew can't even pronounce the words or understand what they mean, but he's doing his best to sing them.  If this were a song from a Disney movie, it wouldn't really matter, because the words wouldn't mean much anyway and they wouldn't be drilled into him.  But he'll probably sing this song in primary many times in the course of a year--for the next ten years.  Eventually he'll come to a point when he can pronounce the words properly.  And he'll come to an understanding of what those words mean.  But by then he'll have recited them through so many repetitions that he'll trust them implicitly.  Seven years after that, when he's sitting in a General Conference meeting and the Prophet says that every young man should serve a mission, he'll do it.  Not because he wants to or thinks he should but because he's been conditioned to follow the prophet.  

My sister is a pretty smart lady.  Her husband is bordering on genius.  Chances are this kid may grow up to be pretty intelligent--but his ability to think and reason will be horribly stunted by the brainwashing of his parents' chosen religion.  That's exactly what happened to me, and it's not right.

My sister thinks that her son attempting to sing "Follow the Prophet" is cute.  I think it's disgusting.  Something so important as a belief system that may determine one's eternal fate should be chosen by the individual, not foisted upon him from his infancy.

It may be a very uncomfortable experience watching this poor kid grow up.


  1. I know! My niece was humming "I Love To See The Temple" during Thanksgiving last year and all I could think of was the huge shock that awaited her when that happened...

    1. I didn't get my endowment, so I didn't ever reach that level of weirdness. But to be honest, even the stuff in the baptistry is pretty effing weird. Luckily "I Love To See The Temple" was never one of my favorite primary songs so I guess I hadn't really built up much of an expectation for the temple.

    2. Ugh, my cousin had her newborn son photographed in nothing but a diaper, tie and name badge that said Elder -------. He was days old, but destined for the mission field. I found it so gross.

    3. Wow, that's...awful. Especially since I'm sure the church members who saw that photo probably thought it was cute.

      Won't someone think of the children...