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Public Outrage Over Alleged Mormon Baptism of Anne Frank

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A controversial Mormon practice called "proxy baptism" is causing quite a stir on the Web and various media outlets. Anyone in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints can propose the process, which is the conversion of Jews, Christians, and Muslims to the Mormon faith after they die. Many Mormons believe the baptism ritual allows deceased people a way to the afterlife.

There has been a lot of criticism of proxy baptisms in the past, but the newest person receiving a proxy baptism is enraging some people. A new report says Anne Frank, a well-known Jewish Holocaust victim, was posthumously baptized by members of the Mormon Church at a location in Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic on February 18.

The allegation comes from researcher Helen Radkey, an excommunicated Mormon Church member turned whistleblower. Radkey asserts that the practice is nothing new and adds that public figures such as Charlie Chaplin, Marilyn Monroe, and Joan of Arc have also undergone proxy baptisms.

Last night, on the Comedy Central show "The Colbert Report," Stephen Colbert jokingly retaliated. People are in an uproar online as well and have used Twitter to express their frustration. One person tweeted that the baptism is "ridiculous" and "despicable." The Mormon Church has issued a statement saying that it does not condone the baptism of Holocaust victims, and is considering taking disciplinary action against the people who performed the proxy baptism for Frank.

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During Wednesday night's GOP debate, presidential hopeful Mitt Romney received a round of applause after commenting on his hopes for America. As he began to conclude his thought, he made a reference to the '90s sitcom "Seinfeld," saying "as George Costanza would say, when they're applauding, stop."

The only problem with that statement is that Costanza did not actually say that. It was title character, Jerry Seinfeld. The actor who played Costanza, Jason Alexander, responded to Romney on Twitter. Alexander tweeted, "Thrilled Gov. Romney enjoys my old character. I enjoyed the character he used 2 be 2. If he'd embrace that again, he'd b a great candidate." Alexander used the hashtag #Costanza4Prez and tweeted later that he would like actress Marisa Tomei to be a potential first lady.

"Seinfeld" fans began embracing #Costanza4Prez and tweeting their own humorous suggestions for who should be in the White House. One person tweeted, "finally a president who doesn't yada yada yada," and another said a President Costanza would make Festivus, a running joke on the sitcom, a national holiday. Alexander apparently was paying close attention to his timeline, because he later tweeted his thanks to fans for all of their ideas, saying he was truly flattered and had been laughing at the creations all day.

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