Issues when visiting another stake


NightSG
 Share

Recommended Posts

As a convert, I don't have as much background in how some things work as others, so I'm hoping someone here can point me in the right direction.

 

Since my own stake has had precisely one single adult dance in the two years I have been a member, I frequently travel 2-5 hours each way to dances and activities in other stakes.

 

CHI2 13.6.6 is pretty clear that all Church dances should maintain an environment inviting to the Spirit.  However, at several of these dances, very inappropriate songs (sexually oriented and/or flat out demeaning to women) have dominated the evening.  Comments to the DJ and organizers were met with an attitude that the Handbook is for youth dances, and adult dances have to "keep with the times."

 

Needless to say, if I wanted to just go to a dance that's not at all inviting to the Spirit, and more concerned with the standards of modern society than those of the Gospel, I'd save a ton of gas money and just go to the local bar.  For that matter, the local Baptists have regular singles dances that hold to "our" standards better than these stakes.

 

Now, taking it up with my Stake leadership seems a bit roundabout, since the ones in question are over an hour beyond our boundaries, but I have no way of knowing who to contact in the other stakes.  Is this a situation where it would have to "go up the ladder" through my stake leadership and back down to the ones in question, or is there some other appropriate way to deal with it?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks.  Sort of just wanted that confirmation before emailing my stake presidency over it.  Just sent off an email to the first counselor, and will see what happens.  It's frustrating to waste an entire Saturday and $30-40 worth of gas going to what should be a spiritually uplifting activity held in accordance with LDS standards only to have them crank up overtly sexual or demeaning songs.

 

I'm the last person that wants it to turn into three hours of two-stepping to the Oak Ridge Boys' arrangement of How Great Thou Art, (though that actually might not be a bad choice once in a while) but it's not that hard to come up with a few hours of appropriate music while still keeping it lively and modern.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I understand what you’re saying NightSG, I sometimes cringe with the music selection during Church dances. I think there is a careful line between all songs that are ‘religious’, or ‘baby’ type songs, and songs that degrade women. I went to one dance where they played the ‘Hokey Pokey’, and other childish type songs, several people left early because of that. I think it would take a long time to listen songs for veiled references to drugs, degrading women/men, or other things that could be offensive to totally take them out. Needless to say I would have a headache if I were a DJ trying to find songs that are church appropriate.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As a convert, I don't have as much background in how some things work as others, so I'm hoping someone here can point me in the right direction.

 

Since my own stake has had precisely one single adult dance in the two years I have been a member, I frequently travel 2-5 hours each way to dances and activities in other stakes.

 

CHI2 13.6.6 is pretty clear that all Church dances should maintain an environment inviting to the Spirit.  However, at several of these dances, very inappropriate songs (sexually oriented and/or flat out demeaning to women) have dominated the evening.  Comments to the DJ and organizers were met with an attitude that the Handbook is for youth dances, and adult dances have to "keep with the times."

 

Needless to say, if I wanted to just go to a dance that's not at all inviting to the Spirit, and more concerned with the standards of modern society than those of the Gospel, I'd save a ton of gas money and just go to the local bar.  For that matter, the local Baptists have regular singles dances that hold to "our" standards better than these stakes.

 

Now, taking it up with my Stake leadership seems a bit roundabout, since the ones in question are over an hour beyond our boundaries, but I have no way of knowing who to contact in the other stakes.  Is this a situation where it would have to "go up the ladder" through my stake leadership and back down to the ones in question, or is there some other appropriate way to deal with it?

 

I would also escalate the issue and raise a serious stink about it. The answer you were given was total baloney. There are plenty of good songs out there that are great to dance to without having inappropriate messages, etc.

 

I'd find out who the stake president in that stake is and write them an email directly. This isn't the military. Chain of command is fine, and all, but just tell the man in charge, in this case. My guess is that will do the trick just fine.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I would also escalate the issue and raise a serious stink about it. The answer you were given was total baloney. There are plenty of good songs out there that are great to dance to without having inappropriate messages, etc.

 

I'd find out who the stake president in that stake is and write them an email directly. This isn't the military. Chain of command is fine, and all, but just tell the man in charge, in this case. My guess is that will do the trick just fine.

 

The problem with contacting other leadership is that, since there aren't stake websites anymore, it's hard to find contact info for them.  The dances in question have also been hosted by at least three different stakes.

 

I understand what you’re saying NightSG, I sometimes cringe with the music selection during Church dances. I think there is a careful line between all songs that are ‘religious’, or ‘baby’ type songs, and songs that degrade women. I went to one dance where they played the ‘Hokey Pokey’, and other childish type songs, several people left early because of that. I think it would take a long time to listen songs for veiled references to drugs, degrading women/men, or other things that could be offensive to totally take them out. Needless to say I would have a headache if I were a DJ trying to find songs that are church appropriate.

 

These are MSA and SA dances, so I can see some romantic stuff going beyond what you might find at a YSA dance, but when Blurred Lines is one of the tamer songs, there's a problem.

 

Just off the top of my head, I could probably come up with three hours of Michael Buble, Harry Connick Junior and Brian Setzer Orchestra without having any sexual innuendoes or language issues.  Plenty of country, (I'm in Texas, so there are some at every dance that would like it.) classic rock and current stuff too.  It feels like they're throwing a lot of that stuff in there specifically to thumb their noses at Church guidance.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'd speak up, and contact the appropriate people, as already mentioned.

 

I'm glad I don't have to deal with these, though, as I recall having gone with a few friends to one or two back in the day. Not sure about now, but when I had gone it was a meat market, you couldn't just have a good time without being hit on real bad. I can't say that I felt the spirit at all when I went.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If is a stake function, you address the issue with the stake or stakes.  In my opinion you are doing the right thing.  When it comes to appropriate vs. inappropriate the answer has always been clear.  I empathize because even if the answer is clear, it does not by any means makes it easy to do.

 

Inappropriate anything must be addressed, especially if it is in a house of worship.  It gives false impressions on what is okay and not okay.  

 

It is usually not popular to be the one who stands for what's right, but the uncomfortable feelings that come from objecting to sin are far less painful than the feelings that inevitably come from condoning sin. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 10 months later...

Well, it doesn't seem to be having much effect.  Last dance I went to, "Walk This Way" was one of the first songs played.

 

Yet the same women defending the DJs on that are the ones complaining about not being able to find a man who honors the  Priesthood.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, it doesn't seem to be having much effect.  Last dance I went to, "Walk This Way" was one of the first songs played.

 

Yet the same women defending the DJs on that are the ones complaining about not being able to find a man who honors the  Priesthood.

I agree not an appropriate song.....Maybe they just aren't paying attention to the lyrics?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That one was specifically mentioned in a complaint to the SA rep of a ward hosting one of the activities, and it's hard not to notice the lyrics.

 

I don't know if contacting my SP resulted in anything actually getting to the stake leadership in question, so I guess my next step will be an email to them once I find an address.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

Well, last dance we had "radio edits" of a couple of pretty inappropriate songs.  (As in, they bleeped the worst of the profanity.)  Guess it's not going to improve, so I'm pretty much to the point of no longer recommending any of the SA activities to the singles in my ward.  I did, however, find a couple of non-LDS dance clubs that host social dances in their styles (East Coast Swing and country) at dance studios over the weekends.  It was somewhat disturbing that their general environment was not only more in line with Gospel standards than the LDS dances, but they were more welcoming in general.

 

I'm hoping to take a few of the other SAs who are fed up with the music and behavior of the singles dances to the East Coast Swing club's dance in a couple of weeks.  If we end up with a bigger crowd than the original dance club, we might even rent another nearby studio and start our own club with a more varied selection.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

is twerking allowed? I mean, how far out of bounds is out of bounds?  :huh:

 

your bishop has the contact info on your Ward's SA rep(s) and Stake high councilor over SA activities. Make yourself known.

 

From CHI2:

13.6.6 Dances and MusicIn all dances, the dress, grooming, lighting, dancing styles, lyrics, and music should contributeto an atmosphere where the Spirit of the Lord can be present (see For the Strength of Youth).Those who oversee dances should carefully follow the policies outlined below.Leaders use the Performance Contract form when hiring a band, orchestra, or disc jockey.This contract helps ensure that conduct and music are appropriate for Church dances. Thosewho provide music should not use inappropriate lyrics and should not dress or talk immodestly.Leaders hold auditions and make firm, clear agreements in writing that commit the personswho provide music to follow Church standards when performing for Church activities.The beat of the music, whether instrumental or vocal, should not overshadow the melody.The volume should be low enough to allow two people who are standing side by side to hear eachother as they carry on a normal conversation.Lights should be bright enough for people to see across the room. Strobe lighting and psychedeliclighting that pulsate with the beat are not acceptable. Lights on the floor, in the cornersof the room, or spotlighting wall and ceiling decorations are appropriate. 

The other problem here is that my ward is irrelevant; I'm the SA rep, and I can gather all our active SA's in a phone booth and still have room for a third.  Our stake is far enough out of the way that we did well to get 40-50 people for a singles conference.  Our dances get maybe ten.  The stake(s) in question* are about two hours away for us, but pretty much our only real hope of meeting people.

 

*This is actually kind of an odd situation; one stake provides the building, but it and three other stakes actually put on the dances in rotation.  Each one uses the excuse that the other three use the same DJs and the same music, so it must be OK for them.

Edited by NightSG
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The other problem here is that my ward is irrelevant; I'm the SA rep, and I can gather all our active SA's in a phone booth and still have room for a third.  Our stake is far enough out of the way that we did well to get 40-50 people for a singles conference.  Our dances get maybe ten.  The stake(s) in question* are about two hours away for us, but pretty much our only real hope of meeting people.

*This is actually kind of an odd situation; one stake provides the building, but it and three other stakes actually put on the dances in rotation.  Each one uses the excuse that the other three use the same DJs and the same music, so it must be OK for them.

 

not asking you to name the town but where on the dark side of the moon are you?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sounds like people are just bad at finding freaky wub rave music with a positive message.  It does exist, ya know...

 

Like this little ditty, about why showing up to the party drunk or high impacts how people see you, and is ultimately a waste of time.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

NightSG

The DJ at those dances should learn how to use music software to edit out the bad parts.

When I was growing up in the 80s/90s My brother and I would DJ the church and high school dances. We had "DJ only" radio edits of songs that pretty much made it safe, now days when I listen to the radio the A** word is not censored sometimes, the B*** word slips in there, the S*** word morphs in to a sound that still sounds like its original sound.

In this day and age It would take extra effort from the DJ to keep our church dances fun with the current music yet LDS friendly. I hope that stake is hiring a LDS DJ who is familiar with our standards. There is absolutely no reason that a single adult LDS church dance cant be as fun as a high school dance or the dances at the LDS influenced colleges like BYU, Utah valley etc.. and still be clean.


4 years ago at my daughters 9th Bday party at the chapel, I used my computer to make a 40 minute mix-tape of Nicki Minaj, Black eyed peas, Lady Gaga etc...Nicki Minaj's super bass was pretty explicit so I cut out half the versus kept the beat and chorus and repeated it twice. I received a comment from one of the mothers with teenage sons about how she loved the music I made because it was "cool" but still church friendly, her issue was that her boys are going inactive because they are finding it hard to relate to people at church who all seem stiff.

The funny thing about being young 20 years ago and listening to hip-hop/top 20 music is that we didnt even pay attention to the words, it was the beat and the chorus that caught our attention. As I understand it the females are the same and they probably dont even know the lyrics but if the melody is fun and they can dance to it then they love it. Now that im a parent, when I hear songs from the 90's and pay close attention to the words I am so embarrassed and cant believe I use to like those songs.
 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The DJ at those dances should learn how to use music software to edit out the bad parts.

 

There's plenty of music that doesn't have the bad parts to start with.  Bleeping or blanking them and calling it OK makes about as much sense as saying it will be OK to watch porn at a fireside as long as we put enough little black bars on the actors to cover the naughty bits; everybody knows what the censorship is hiding, and the subconscious will "fill in the blanks," which, ultimately, is no better.

 

Besides, some of the songs they're using would be nothing but an instrumental intro and a guitar solo by the time you cut the problematic parts; others, like Walk This Way, Blurred Lines and Copperhead Road are entirely about a message inappropriate to any Church activity.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

One of the reasons I love KPOP - it's got really awesome dance tunes and most of the songs you won't have to worry about the lyrics.

Most Americans in a Stake Dance would probably not understand the lyrics but EVEN THEN, I would still go and find the lyrics translation so I can choose what to exclude from the playlist.

For example:

I would play this -

www.youtube.com/watch?v=hKbNV-4b_g8

But would think hard before playing this -

www.youtube.com/watch?v=XQmpVHUi-0A

I mean, it's really just a fun comical articulation of the seemingly short circuit that happens in men's brains when they see a beautiful woman and is much tamer than Walk this Way, but still...

Anyway, KPop songs are very conservative themed compared to American dance songs and they're super fun to dance to. If you get your own studio you might check them out!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

is twerking allowed? I mean, how far out of bounds is out of bounds?  :huh:

 

I'm going to revisit this for a moment.

 

Now this is a question I've struggled with to some extent on the lyrics; there are a lot of songs I like that have one relatively brief, tame reference, and as such have no "radio version" (re-recorded, changing or leaving the line out, so there's no obvious blank spot for the listener to fill in the blanks) that could be used to completely eliminate the issue.

 

To pick a couple of examples off the flash drive that's sitting here, obviously I wouldn't play "Baby's Got Her Blue Jeans On" at a Church activity, and there's no way that could be fixed because the entire concept of the song is about admiring a feature we shouldn't be focusing on as singles.  (Noticing it is one thing: serenading it is entirely another.)  It's an extremely tame example compared to a lot of things that do get played, so where should the line be?  Do we ditch every song that even mentions alcohol other than in a clearly negative light?  That eliminates a huge amount of country, a lot of Latin, rock, pop, and even a fair amount of good ballroom music.  ("If you can use some exotic booze there's a bar in far Bombay")  How many mentions of something can be accepted, and how tame must they be?  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share