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Mormon feminists celebrate after LDS church stops forcing girls to recite rape-shaming verse

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There has been an ongoing problem within the Mormon church when it comes to the issue of rape and what the church considers chastity.

According to The Salt Lake City Tribune, the first verse Mormon girls are forced to study under the value of “virtue” is one that sounds a little like rape shaming.

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The Personal Progress workbook quotes Moroni 9:9, which reads, “For behold, many of the daughters of the Lamanites have they taken prisoners; and after depriving them of that which was most dear and precious above all things, which is chastity and virtue…”

Writer Kristine Haglund waged a war against the LDS church to have the passage removed because “the chastity in which the Lord delights (Jacob 2) is not merely virginity, and cannot be taken away by another person, especially not by violence or abuse,” she wrote in 2013.

Today, the verse is finally gone. The move matches the LDS Church’s policy on sexual assault — as stated in the pamphlet, “For the Strength of Youth” — which declares that “victims of sexual abuse are not guilty of sin and do not need to repent,” spokesperson Eric Hawkins said.

Earlier this year, Brigham Young University made headlines when their honor code became a public relations disaster because female students complained the school was punishing rape victims. The Mormon-run university requires all students to sign the code of conduct, which demands “moral virtues encompassed in the gospel of Jesus Christ,” specifically valuing chastity, honesty and virtue.

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But when one student reported that she was raped on campus, she says the honor code was used to punish her for not remaining chaste.

“You are being suspended from Brigham Young University because of your violation of the Honor Code including continued illegal drug use and consensual sex, effective immediately,” the letter read, according to The New York Times.

Rape is obviously not consensual sex, but female students said that to BYU it didn’t matter. One Utah County attorney had to battle with the college while he was trying a sexual assault case. The school wanted to put the same woman on trial for an honor code violation using the statement she gave to police after her attack. He asked the school to pause the investigation but the school refused.

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An advisory council was formed to look at the problem after one student complained to the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights. The complaint brought on the federal investigation into BYU’s application of Title IX. BYU is expected to decide any day on how they’ll proceed, according to The Tribune.

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

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Texas governor busted sending racist call-to-arms a day before El Paso attack: ‘take matters into our own hands’

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On Thursday, Gov. Greg Abbott (R-TX) tweeted out a message of unity and promised to work to reduce violence in his state, in the wake of the shooting in El Paso that left 22 dead and dozens more injured:

Today we had hearings responding to the tragic shooting in El Paso.

We focused on community healing, combating domestic terrorism, reducing hateful ideologies, & keeping guns out of hands of deranged killers while respecting 2nd Amendment rights.

We’ll keep TX safe.#txlege pic.twitter.com/ymct4aiSgK

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Facebook bans far-right website from pro-Trump advertising after they try to skirt transparency rules

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On Thursday, NBC News reported that Facebook has banned the Epoch Times from placing political advertisements, after the right-wing website tried to conceal its multimillion-dollar dark money streams and get around the social network's political advertising transparency rules in its propaganda supporting President Donald Trump.

The Epoch Times had tried to skirt rules by running ads under puppet names like "Honest Paper" and "Pure American Journalism," confusing users about who was really behind the ads.

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GOP leaders are pressuring Kansas Republican to resign from Congress immediately: report

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On Thursday, the Topeka Capital-Journal reported that Republicans in Kansas and Washington are pressuring Rep. Steve Watkins (R-KS) to step down after just eight months in office.

It is currently unclear why they are calling for his resignation.

Watkins has thus far given no indications he will leave office. His spokesman Jim Joice stated that he has no plans to resign, and disputed the idea that Republican officials are pressuring him to do so, but acknowledged there have been conversations around the topic.

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