No Excuse Can Compensate for the Loss of Liberty

Ezra Taft Benson

Called Unto Liberty, 20th Century Sermons, Ezra Taft Benson

There is no excuse that can compensate for the loss of liberty. …

Now at our last annual conference in April, President McKay issued a statement on communism. It was printed on the editorial page of the June improvement Era and has recently been reprinted by the Deseret Book Company in an attractive folder entitled “Communism: A Statement of the position of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.” Every student and every family in America should have a copy. The cost is five cents each in lots of 100, or three for 25 cents.

Let me quote a few excerpts from that inspired statement and ye who have been misled into believing that you can somehow righteously avoid standing up for freedom – heed his counsel:

“In order that there may be no misunderstanding by bishops, stake presidents, and others regarding members of the Church participating in nonchurch meetings to study and become informed on the Constitution of the United States, Communism, etc., I wish,” said President McKay, “to make the following statements that I have been sending out of my office for some time and that have come under question by some stake authorities, bishoprics, and others.

Church members are at perfect liberty to act according to their own conscience in matters of safeguarding our way of life. They are, of course, encouraged to honor the highest standards of the gospel and to work to preserve their own freedoms. They are free to participate in nonchurch meetings that are held to warn people of the threat of Communism or any other theory or principle that will deprive us of our free agency or individual liberties vouchsafed by the Constitution of the United States.

The position of this church on the subject of Communism has never changed. We consider it the greatest satanical threat to peace, prosperity, and the spread of God’s work among men that exists on the face of the earth.

In this connection,” President McKay continues, “we are constantly being asked to give our opinion concerning various patriotic groups or individuals who are fighting Communism and speaking up for freedom. Our immediate concern, however, is not what parties, groups, or persons, but with principles. We therefore commend and encourage every person and every group who is sincerely seeking to study constitutional principles and awaken a sleeping and apathetic people to the alarming conditions that are rapidly advancing about us. We wish all of our citizens throughout the land were participating in some type of organized self-education in order that they could better appreciate what is happening and know what they can do about it.

Supporting the FBI, the police, the congressional committees investigating Communism, and various organizations that are attempting to awaken the people through educational means is a policy we warmly endorse for all our people….” (President David O. McKay, The Improvement Era, June 1966, p. 477; Conference Report, April 1966, p. 109,)

I bear witness that this Church position given by our inspired leader – our Prophet-leader – is sound, timely and clear. The need for such counsel has never been greater.

Brethren and sisters, I have talked straight to you today. I know I will be abused by some for what I have said, but I want my skirts to be clean.


­Source: Ezra Taft Benson, Our Immediate Responsibility. BYU Devotional, October 25, 1966.


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Called Unto Liberty is a project of Steve Farrell and The Moral Liberal.


The Moral Liberal recommends Ezra Taft Benson’s: The Constitution: A Heavenly Banner