Chamberlin wrote that she became a member of the choir five years ago, in part, to honor her late father, who was a military veteran. She said he hated tyranny and was “extremely distraught” about the Holocaust. She said as a patriotic person, she is troubled by the country’s problems “which seek to destroy our love for liberty and respect for humanity internationally.”
“Tyranny is now on our doorstep,” Chamberlin wrote. “It has been sneaking its way into our lives through stealth. Now it will burst into our homes through storm.”
She called her decision a moral one.
“I only know I could never ‘throw roses to Hitler.’ And I certainly could never sing for him,” Chamberlin wrote.
The Salt Lake Tribune reported that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints declined to comment on Chamberlin's status with the church's famed choir. LDS officials also declined to discuss any other choir members who might have complained or refused to participate in the presidential inauguration.
"Participation in the choir, including the performance at the inauguration, is voluntary," church spokesman Eric Hawkins told the Tribune in a statement Thursday.
Hawkins said that the number of participating members is limited by the inauguration committee. When the church announced its participation last week, LDS leaders said only about 215 of the 360 choir members are expected to perform.
Those who did not want to participate could opt out of the lottery used to determine who will attend the event, the Tribune reported.
Randall Thacker, a lifelong Mormon, launched a petition shortly after last week’s announcement asking the choir not to participate. As of Thursday, it had more than 19,000 signatures.
The choir has previously participated in the presidential inaugurations of Lyndon Johnson, Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush and his son, George W. Bush.