poxydoo (poxydoo) wrote in exmormon,

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A question for you

A friend of mine gave me a link to an interesting article. He is not Mormon, but he was friends with a missionary a few years ago, and he and I have talked about the religion, so he knows a bit about the way things are. He sent me the link along with this message:

Hey, if your bored or have some time I was wondering if you could give me some feedback on this article. It's kind of long and I know you got two jobs and a family, so its no big deal if you don't get around to it. I was just a little nervous about what seem to me to be tactics much like that of Glen Beck. I'm certainly no fan of mormon ideologies, worldviews, or "American history" and I'm all for being critical of everybody, but this article plays mormons up as insane right wing racist anarchists bent on destroying everything from America to social programs to Jews. The author uses terms like "they never said it in those words but its what they meant" and also connects one mormon to anti-semites because this mormon refrenced a book translated by a guy who once gave an anti-semetic book to a US president. Anyways, I was just wondering what you thought about it or even if Im totally off base in thinking that its anti-mormon propaghanda. It's a weird article.


I read it and responded, but I'm also curious what you all think about this.

My response, if anyone is interested, is under the cut:

I was going to read it through and then comment, but I am seeing some things I want to comment on directly, so I'm going to take some notes here as I read, and then give my overall impressions.

+I actually read an article about the Oath Keepers. It was interesting, but frightening. I think it was in Time Magazine, it's worth finding if you are interested.

+"[Benson] believed that the Constitution would one day "hang from a thread," at which time Mormons would assume leadership of the nation and rescue it from certain and irrevocable disaster. (These ideas are not part of official Mormon Church doctrine.)"

The author is wrong. Those ideas ARE a part of official Mormon Church doctrine.

+About all the racist stuff when talking about Benson: Some of the Mormon leaders were more batshit racist than others. Benson was an extreme example. It wasn't long after he died, though, that blacks were allowed the priesthood, and thus full membership. This decision was met with outrage by many, but a lot of Mormons supported it as well.

+"Christ or Chaos": Wow, that whole section was kinda fucked up. It's important to note that, first off, the majority of Mormons actually have a more realistic understanding of history and slavery. Goes back to the whole racism thing: you have your modern racists in Mormonism today, but most of them are not, and think slavery was terrible. As far as turning America into a theocracy... well, the model presented here may actually be a bit extreme for a lot of modern Mormons, although I'm pretty sure most Mormons would agree that an ideal country would be run on Christian/Mormon principles. But what Christian doesn't think America should be Bible-based?

As you said above: "this article plays mormons up as insane right wing racist anarchists bent on destroying everything from America to social programs to Jews." Yes, it does. It's not very fair to the majority of Mormons. It's an interesting story, but not very good journalism because of just that. He took what he admitted at the beginning was a fringe group of Mormons and didn't bother to specify that this is just an extreme group, and this isn't true of all Mormons. Antagoninistic as I am to the Mormon faith, I feel it deserves to be fairly represented. Yes, the majority of Mormons are conservative and homophobic and believe the apocalypse is right around the corner (it says so in the Bible, don'cha'know), but for the most part they are good people and are no more batshit insane than most any other given Christian individual.
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