The Mormon Church’s Helpful New Sidewalk Rules for Adults Who Want to Make Out


When Matt Aune and Derek Jones were detained, and cited for trespassing, in July for kissing(!) on a pathway owned by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, a whole helluva lot of controversy was started over whether the men were targeted because they were gay, which, duh, LDS doesn’t appreciate. So how to keep future homo scofflaws off church property? Erect a sign!

Along Salt Lake City’s Main Street Plaza, visitors will begin seeing signs like the above, reminding visitors they are on church property. And everyone from City Prosecutor Sim Gill (who opted not to charge Aune and Jones) to the American Civil Liberties Union of Utah is pleased with the move, since it’ll provide clarity to passersby.

But the church still allows pedestrians on the pathway, and does not explicitly state what the rules are when on church property. But yeah, probably none of this.

Get Queerty Daily

Subscribe to Queerty for a daily dose of #crime #derekjones #kissing stories and more


  • strumpetwindsock

    “Refuse access to any person for any reason”, eh?

    I suppose that makes it clear they’re not going to respect the agreement they made when they took over the land in the first place.

    And that pretty sign sure brightens up the plaza, though they may not have made it big enough. It only takes up half the sidewalk.

  • The Milkman

    Those bigots can take their sad little sidewalk and shove it.

  • Jason


  • Peter

    Does the church really ‘own’ the pathway? Is the plaza a separate parcel? Is there a distinction to be made?

  • Lloyd Baltazar

    Unfortunately, the sidewalk really is owned by the Mormon Church—-as it is private property. As far as I’m concerned, they can keep their sidewalk. I’d rather walk in one that will not discriminate against me.

  • schlukitz


    I suppose that makes it clear they’re not going to respect the agreement they made when they took over the land in the first place.

    Agreement? What agreement?

    They don’t need no stinkin’ piece of paper! ;o)

  • Rob

    Time for a kiss-in?

  • justin


    Organized religion SURE IS great!

  • tinkerbell

    I disliked kooky mormonism before Prop 8. I absolutely despise it, now.

    I have traveled to 41 states, and my life will be complete if I never go to Utah. I wouldn’t go there if someone paid me. Those people are creepy bigots.

  • Mark

    The city and community need to take back this sidewalk from the bullies hiding behind their Mormon walls who threaten others from a place of fear, ignorance and bigotry. What an outrage!

  • Cam

    Too bad in the land swap deal with the city the church had to agree to NOT prohibit ANYBODY access.

    That is a public easement, the chuch right now thinks that the city of Salt Lake won’t push back at them, but they agreed when they were traded that land that the accessway had to be treated as a public easement not subject to rules stricter than the city laws.

    So tough shit LDS church, the first time you try to enforce your rules I hope somebody sues you for a mint.

  • Curt

    Hey Rodney. Refreshing to see someone so committed to his opinion! Sorry you feel (obviously warrantably) attacked. Not fun.

    That said… you do realize is a gay site, right? What did you expect defending so passionately a group that helped (even if only by 1.3%) pass prop h8? You don’t think that if I went to any random LDS site (or to the Plaza for that matter, lol) and tried defended gays (even though we aren’t, as a group, committed to outlawing religious ceremonies and gatherings) be discriminated against, harassed and/or verbally attacked? I’ve never tried it, but I’m not really all that interested in stirring up the Mormons.

    Per No. 5 I’m glad you don’t “think all homosexuals are child molesters” since you’ve obviously from early on been subject to a poor sampling. I too try not to overgeneralize. As a teen I was molested by a straight woman and I don’t count all str8s as pedophiles. So thank you for that.

    BTW, I think the majority of us (at least I do personally) prefer ‘gay’ to ‘homosexual’, or GLBT if you’re feeling generous enough to be inclusive. Homosexual is decidedly cold and clinical. Just as I’m sure you’d probably prefer Mormon to theologist or mythologist.

    As for those of you laughing at grammar/spelling/punctuation errors… grow up. I mean, yeah, the “sleep white well” was kinda cute, but honestly… this is a friggin blog not a textbook.

    @Aune & Jones: What were you thinking? We all know you boys at least had some idea how LDS feels about gay people. Sure the Plaza is gorgeous (if a bit gaudy) but how about think before you act. Not saying what the church did was right, but easement or no, it is still private property. Have some respect.

    @ No. 47: Spot on. How does allowing gay people to marry in any way devalue straight marriage? Half of all marriages don’t end in gayness! Want to protect marriage? Outlaw divorce! Here’s a thought: if you don’t like gay marriage don’t get gay married!

  • B

    “So how to keep future homo scofflaws off church property? Erect a sign!” QUEERTY just doesn’t get it. Utah’s law on that (76-6-206 — Criminal trespass) can be found at and that law states:

    4) It is a defense to prosecution under this section that:
    (a) the property was open to the public when the actor entered or remained; and
    (b) the actor’s conduct did not substantially interfere with the owner’s use of the property.

    What the sign really states is that the property is not open to the public in general and can be closed at any time. If it merely said “welcome”, that would imply that the property was open to the public, which would preclude criminal prosecution.

    If you want to embarrass them, have a straight couple and gay couple kiss and see if they target only one. Video tape it too, so you have real evidence and maybe throw in some hidden microphones in case any security people use homophobic slurs.

  • AxelDC

    It’s the same sign that Mormons have hung on their chapels and homes for time immemorial:

    Gays: GET OUT!

  • Paul F

    Oooh,oooh, I get to have the last word! Re-worded signage: Hey you queers, if you don’t like my driving, get off the sidewalk! Beep beep don’t get run over, whoops too late. Can’t ya just FEEL the love? Feels like the tire tracks running up & down my back. No problem, next time your f’in church tries to run over us we’ll put out some tire spikes.

Comments are closed.