i’m a little peeved.

9 03 2011

I went to practice at BYU last night with a couple of the kids I teach. Every Tuesday from 8:30-10:00 the BYU Breakdance Club meets.

I have participated in the club in one way or another since 2002 (minus the 2 years I spent on my mission). The club has been the focus of some negative attention from BYUSA the group that oversees all of the club activity on campus.

During my first year back from my mission (2005) the club hosted an incredible event. It was a breakdance battle held in the BYU Wilkinson Center. There was a terrific turnout – lots of spectators as well as the best bboys in the state.

That was the last event we were allowed to throw.

Fast forward several years when I helped Chris Sullivan run the club and I planned out another event. I took the plan to Adrian, the man who oversees BYUSA on the faculty side. I told him we wanted to invite nationally recognized crews to the event and that we were confident we could produce an event that would be both entertaining, fun and financially beneficial.
One of his first questions was, “what will these guys look like?
I told him that there would be guys with tattoos, beards, long hair and possibly piercings.

I didn’t get to say much more about the event.
He said the only way we could throw the event was if we could guarantee that everyone who showed up would look like a BYU student.
He said, “what would the alumni think if they saw people who looked like that on this campus?

By then my patience had pretty much gone and I asked him about the athletic program or about devotional speakers that are invited.

At the time we had athletes with tattoos and we obviously have athletes from across the country who are not forced to remove piercings, cover tattoos, cut hair or shave beards. In fact I remember during that semester, we actually had a devotional speaker who had a beard.

Adrian said that athletics generates there own revenue so we shouldn’t worry about them.

One of the main tenants of our church is to: “proclaim the gospel”.
“And also gave commandments to others, that they should proclaim these things unto the world…” (D&C 1:18)

In fact I love it so much I spent 5 years getting my undergraduate degree. Haha
I have written 3 posts recently about how great BYU was for the integrity they have shown with the Brandon Davies situation.
The school has done so much good and is filled with great individuals. doing the best they can.

I think that is why I am a little peeved.
I don’t understand why Adrian was so negative.
Last night the club president, Shunta, announced that only BYU students/alumni could come. BYUSA sent Shunta a letter stating that they were receiving complaints about the dress/grooming of people attending the club.
Everything I felt in my meeting with Adrian came back when I heard that.

Breakdancing can be used as a missionary tool. I know that the interaction between LDS and non-LDS at the club meetings has been positive. Everyone has benefitted form the things they have learned from each other. It’s sad that they want to take away the opportunity for some of the local bboys to come to the campus and feel the great spirit there.

Whew. Ok, I’ve vented. I feel better.
The new rules don’t really affect me anyways, I’m alumni. Haha
I’ve already had the chance to learn from the guys who can’t come anymore…
Too bad others won’t get that chance.

? Thoughts on the new rule?




6 responses

10 03 2011
Ramona Gordy

A very interesting post. I am new the LDS church. I come from a Protestant/Southern Baptist background. What you are describing is not unique to BYU. Most colleges and universities that are based on a religious affiliations tend to have a set of standards that not only apply to the student body,and faculty, but to some degree it extends to anyone who would be invited to that entity to share an idea, belief or lifestyle.That being said, we are told to share the gospel with the world. How do we do that, of course through word of mouth, activities that invite interaction with out fear. Maybe its FEAR.
Fear of trusting in Heavenly Father, fear of praying for guidance on a situation and waiting for the answer.
Maybe its fear of stepping outside of a comfort zone.I would rather enjoy break dancing in the format you spoke of, because afterwards, there would be great opportunities for missionary work in a casual and comfortable environment. We have to live in this world, it is our world. There is no fear in love.
Thanks for this post

10 03 2011

Great comment – there is no fear in love! Thanks for sharing!!

10 03 2011

I have been part of the “world” since I was born (given that I’m not from Utah)…and the best thing I got from that was how to serve and how to share the gospel. As a fellow “dancer” I am here to support you! You keep dancing and show the world we can have standards, we can be MORMONS and we can DANCE!!! BY the way let me know when you or your club perform..would love to come watch!! 😉

10 03 2011

Thanks for the support!
We have competitions about once a month, usually in Salt Lake City!
The best place to look up is The BBoy Federation (you can find it on Facebook) they post all of the events around here 🙂

11 03 2011
Karen Peterson

It’s hard for me to give an opinion without knowing both sides of the argument and without having the opportunity to ask a few follow up questions, but this situation seems somewhat reminiscent of the parents that don’t let their LDS children play with non-LDS friends because they *might* be a bad influence.

12 03 2011

Hahaha! It does sound pretty similar…. agreed.

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