*** Published 27 Oct 2010 ***
*** Thoughts on 27 Oct 2010: I do have friends who have had really tough situations related to the Honor Code which I don't envy and to whom I don't specifically preach because I don't know what it's like to be in their shoes. Her beliefs changed, he didn't have another clear option for schooling, she had a family to support, he found the man of his dreams and couldn't bring himself to pass up dating him quietly, etc, so they broke some of the Honor Code rules and thought of it like breaking the speed limit: you know it's against policy, but you're not convinced there's anything inherently wrong with the actions, so you do it secretly until you have your diploma in-hand. I understand that's really difficult. At some point, I still think you have to acknowledge, particularly when you're completely flipping off the Honor Code rather than just "fudging", that you're breaking a promise and should either get through your last year as compliant as possible or finish your education elsewhere. In a way, I'm kinda hung up on the notion that a promise is a promise, hence this more blunt tirade I wrote a couple of years ago. ***
My potentially offensive, insensitive two cents: I don't care how damaged you feel, and I don't care how wrong you believe the code is--if you signed on to it, if you gave your word that you were going to uphold and live by it (which every BYU student has done), you do it. Period. Strap on a pair, insert a spine, and strive to live what you said or go live the way you want or believe elsewhere.
Nobody's perfect. We all have our weak moments. We do things we promised not to. We don't do things we promised to. The difference between a great man and a foolish one is the great man will acknowledge his folly and resolve to do better next time. The foolish man will defend his folly and live by it rather than admit when he is damaging his own integrity.
There are many on BYU's campus, gay, bi, and straight, who have demonstrated a lack of integrity by the very fact that they knowingly committed to something they never intended to uphold, or they have decided what feels nicest right now is more important than keeping their word.
I've done similar things myself at times, so I speak as one who has been a fool. At the time, I justified my actions. Looking back, I know that even in the moment, I knew I was losing character by doing what I was doing. I was losing my spine. So pulpit-pounding I may be, but I would like to see more men, fewer boys.
I mean, with all the fooling around among BYU students, you'd expect to find more balls.