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Dear Gramps,

I have read many of your answers to questions and I am impressed at the time you must take in maintaining this web site. My question is this: Isn’t the idea of God cursing people with dark skin inherently racist? How can we teach our children that all skin colors are ok and equal, when obviously one is considered to be less desirable by God?

Jason, from Utah

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Dear Jason,

Perhaps you should get in touch with God and bring him up to date on the political correctness of today.

Let’s see if we can shed a little light on your dilemma. When you talk of a dark skin are you suggesting that African Americans were cursed with a dark skin? Actually, they were blessed with a dark skin. We understand from the Bible that those with black skins are descendants of Cain. When the Lord told Cain of his punishment he responded,

Behold, thou hast driven me out this day from the face of the earth; and from thy face shall I be hid; and I shall be a fugitive and a vagabond in the earth; and it shall come to pass, [that] every one that findeth me shall slay me (Genesis 4:14).

So, in order to protect Cain from the ravages of others, he placed a heavy penalty on those that would do him harm-

And the LORD said unto him, Therefore whosoever slayeth Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold. And the LORD set a mark upon Cain, lest any finding him should kill him (Genesis 4:15).

Now it was a different matter with the wicked Lamanites. The Lord did curse them with a black skin.

Wherefore, the word of the Lord was fulfilled which he spake unto me, saying that: Inasmuch as they will not hearken unto thy words they shall be cut off from the presence of the Lord. And behold, they were cut off from his presence. And he had caused the cursing to come upon them, yea, even a sore cursing, because of their iniquity. For behold, they had hardened their hearts against him, that they had become like unto a flint; wherefore, as they were white, and exceedingly fair and delightsome, that they might not be enticing unto my people the Lord God did cause a skin of blackness to come upon them. And thus saith the Lord God: I will cause, save they shall repent of their iniquities. And cursed shall be the seed of him that mixeth with their seed; for they shall be cursed even with the same cursing. And the Lord spake it, and it was done (2 Nephi 5:20-23).

And the purpose of that curse was so that they shall be loathsome unto thy people. So the Lord understood that the Lamanites would be looked down on by the Nephites because of the color of their skin.

But it is not that they were loathsome to the Lord. He did not look with prejudice on any one group because of the color of their skin or because of any other difference between one group and another.

For none of these iniquities come of the Lord; for he doeth that which is good among the children of men; and he doeth nothing save it be plain unto the children of men; and he inviteth them all to come unto him and partake of his goodness; and he denieth none that come unto him, black and white, bond and free, male and female; and he remembereth the heathen; and all are alike unto God, both Jew and Gentile (2 Nephi 26:33).

So we should teach our children from the scriptures the reasons for some of the ethnic differences that may be of concern to us, and teach them from the scriptures to follow the example and the will of the Father to look alike at all his children and not to judge another by the color of his skin or by the language that he speaks or by the way he dresses, but to recognize all people as our brothers and sisters, as the children of our Father in Heaven. And perhaps we can protect them to a degree against some of the excesses of the “political correctness” of our day.

Gramps

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