In the Book of Mormon and Bible you see the term “iniquity of their fathers”, or “traditions of their fathers” often. And it gives a lot of examples of how Nations were brought down because of the iniquity and traditions of their fathers. Basically people are sinning because of the iniquity and traditions of their fathers.
In the 2nd Article of Faith it reads:
These two principles sound like they are in contradiction of each other. But if you look at them in greater detail, you will notice that they are two entirely different things. The first one is talking about the consequences of the sins committed by others, and the second is talking about being held accountable for the sins of others. Both are very different. We are not held liable during the judgment of the Lord of the actions of others, but their actions do affect us and can cause us hardship.
Lets say that someone robs a store and kills the clerk while doing it. Is the family of the robber or the clerk responsible for the actions of these individuals. No, but because of the sins or actions of that individual two families will feel the consequences of that persons actions. I know that that is an extreme example. Lets look at another one. Lets say that a father yells at his wife in front of the kids all the time. Are the kids responsible for the actions of their father. No, but lessons are taught and lives an affected by that action. Those lessons could take generations to be changed. Thus generations are affected by the Iniquity of their fathers.
Imagine what this world would be like if we did not have to feel the effects from the iniquity of others. If everyone was righteous and the traditions were righteous. There would not be the painful ripple effect of iniquity. Just think of what the world would be like if everyone passed on righteous traditions instead of iniquity. Just imagine what the morning commute would be like, or waiting in the line at the post office/bank. Every day tasks would become more enjoyable.