I'll be using the subject of the post found here as my jumping off point.
My question is this... if I don't beleive that Joseph Smith is/was a prophet... if I don't beleive that the Book of Mormon is what the church says it is... if I don't beleive that God exists, Jesus is the Christ/Saviour... then should I be allowed to continue my membership regardless of whether I openly discuss my views with others?
Most TBM's would say that one should be allowed to stay in the church becuase of the possibility of getting them to change their ways. The church would like to beleive that even though I don't beleive in the basic tenants of the faith, there is still a chance that I might change my ways.
Its hard to beleive that I could change my beliefs again and take the church back. In order to do so there would have to be a lot of changes in the church and I highly doubt that will ever happen.
If I am required to profess certain things in order to be baptized, wouldn't it make sense that I should continue to profess those same things after baptism in order to continue my membership?
That is the case as seen in the recent disiplinary councils that have been made public recently, namely the story of Mr. Lamborn. The Stake President, President James Molina, explains that if Mr. Lamborn keeps his views to himself, he can stay in the church, but if he discusses his views with others, he may have his membership revoked. What does that say about a church that makes you conform to certain beliefs in order to be baptized, but once your in you can beleive whatever you want as long as you keep quiet?
To me, it's a huge problem that the church does not allow open debate regarding its doctrines and tactics. If the church was in the business of truth, it would be open about its history. It would be straightforward about polygamy, the First Vision, the Book of Mormon etc. etc. etc. But, the church would rather squash debate about these topics and keep a heavy hand on making sure that the core of the church keeps the same line.
If I'm not open to speak my mind, when I feel that I have researched and read and understood to the best of my understanding, and the church tells me that I cannot or else I will be excommunicated, then I think my only course of action is to voluntarily give up my membership to the church. Now, the only question is... when?