I use the word "we" in this letter because no matter where you live, if you're from Carbon County, you're from Carbon County.
I'm not anti-Mormon but I am pro-Carbon County. I was never teased growing up in Price for being non-Mormon, in fact I went to my share of primary, and Gold and Green Balls with a lot of my friends, but I'm afraid my daughter will not know what it's like to live in an environment where people are so accepting. Where we live now they don't really have the reputation for being so broad minded.
Living in Price I have worked along side many non-Catholics at the Notre Dame Carnival and know that a major part of it's success was due to the involvement of community as a whole. We all know that it's the people of Carbon County and it's surrounding areas that support the Greek Festival and if you don't get there early, you won't find a seat at the Methodist pancake dinner.
The fund raising events for CEU, the Children's Justice Center and the Prehistoric Museum that I've attended are supported by not one group but by a gathering of diverse people who are just doing what is best for their community and the people who live there. I don't know of another area where people are so willing to give of their time, talents and money to improve their community and the people who live there. So Carbon County does have a hard earned reputation for taking care of their community and supporting it's people.
I'm sorry to hear that deaths have occurred while people have been trying to go to the Manti LDS Temple but Carbon County has also lost many other residents to Highway 6. You could say it was the people of Carbon County and their reputation as fighters that got state funding to improve Highway 6.
Will a temple bring in economic development? I kind of doubt it considering the state of Utah is dealing with the issue that there are out-of-state businesses that are wary of moving here because of the domination of one religion. Bringing a temple into the community will only serve a select few of Carbon County and the surrounding areas. The numbers the article gave are probably membership numbers not an actual number of Mormons that are allowed in the temple. In the same article the wave pool, rodeo and the motocross were mentioned, activities that put money into the economy and can be enjoyed by a large cross-section of people. I can't even begin to mention all the events Helper and Wellington sponsor that bring people into the area and have created a positive image of Carbon County.
I can honestly say I've never met anyone who has been ashamed of being from Carbon County. I think it is a badge of honor that we wear, we are proud of who we are, our image and our reputation. We've worked hard to be leaders not followers, activists not pacifist, inclusive not divisive.
So to those who think a temple will help improve our image and reputation, look around because we find nothing wrong with the reputation and image of Carbon County and it's people.