ACCOUNTABIL'ITY, noun

1. The state of being liable to answer for one's conduct; liability to give account, and to receive reward or punishment for actions. (Webster's 1828 Dictionary)

We live in a world that denies accountability at every turn. If you're Black, they say Whites are the cause of your problems and only putting Whites down will solve things. If you're poor, the rich are the cause of your problems and only putting down the rich will solve things. If you're gay (or any other brand of sexual perversion), the religious are the cause of your problems and only putting down the religious will solve your problem.

It is ridiculous all the way around, but powerful groups become even more powerful by convincing people that other people are the problem. It worked for the Nazis decades ago, and it is hard at work in America, today. "Give me your freedoms, and I'll eliminate those people because they are the cause of all your problems!"

This author recently received a music recommendation on Spotify. The music was nice, but an album title raised an eyebrow: "I Blame Society." The artist, it turns out, is homosexual, with every song but one being specifically about homosexuality. What does he blame society for? One song discussed the fact that, with loving parents and a boyfriend, he should be happy, but he wasn't. It must be society's fault.

California, the very state this artist hails from, recently passed a legal resolution banning any form of therapy or advice that tells homosexuals that their choices are wrong, specifically blaming the religious for "disproportionately high rates of suicide, attempted suicide, depression, rejection and isolation amongst LGBTQ and questioning individuals."

This is an interesting theory that does not bear out, considering that these behaviors do not lessen in societies that are highly perversion-confirming, such as San Francisco.

In particular, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has been a target for these same accusations. Do those accusations bear out? A recent article in the Idaho Statesman says no:

Michael Staley, who works for Utah’s medical examiner and ranks among the most respected researchers on this topic, said in an interview with Q Salt Lake, a Utah LGBT magazine, his initial findings do not support the narrative that Utah youth suicides are rising as a result of the Church’s traditional teachings on sexuality or LGBT issues. “There’s no data to show that, period,” Staley said. “The people who are driving that narrative are going to be disappointed.”

As should all Christians, we direct everyone to the scriptures, which teach that "wickedness never was happiness" (Alma 41:10). If you live in violation of both nature and God, there are consequences.

While it is increasingly unpopular, we remind all Christians, and especially Latter-day Saints, that "it becometh every man who hath been warned to warn his neighbor" (D&C 88:81), so that none of our brothers and sisters will go "out of this world into an eternal world, unprepared to meet their God" (Alma 48:23).

In all, we must remember this:

Every man may act… according to the moral agency which I have given unto him, that every man may be accountable for his own sins in the day of judgment. (D&C 101:78)

Don't allow anyone to get control over your life by promising you an easy way out. It might sound appealing to blame others for our problems, but in the end we will each be held accountable to God for our own decisions, no matter what we experienced in life. We do not get to choose what happens to us in this life, but we choose how we react to what happens.

Let's help keep Idaho free by accepting accountability for our own actions and not blaming others!