“FYI, discovered today: Posthumous baptisms for the parents of Simon Wiesenthal,” Radkey wrote. “I am collecting evidence, which will be e-mailed to you, if requested, as long as there is a public stink.”
"As long as there is a public stink."
That's what Helen Radkey is after.
Helen Radkey is an agenda driven anti-Mormon. In 2003 she spoke at a 2003 Convention of American Atheists, at which she vilified the LDS Church (see here). She is a former (that is, excommunicated) Latter-day Saint. She has approached the LDS Church some years ago and offered her ongoing services to keep an eye on the Church's proxy work and alert the Church to any "Jewish-sounding" names ("Learning about Jewish names,"according to Radkey, "is a specialized skill, which took me years to develop, and it is not always possible to know by a name if the person was Jewish."). She wanted, according to this article, $30,000 for her work from 1993 to 2003 and to be paid $18 per hour thereafter for her continuing research. The church did not express interest in her offer.
In other words, Helen Radkey has been trying to make money out of this. Isn't that just a wee bit odd? If she really found vicarious baptism to be so odious, why not simply turn over her research? Why insist on trying to make a buck off the names of dead people?
And why is she conditioning her release of information about the parents of Simon Wiesenthal on whether or not it results in "a public stink" raised against the LDS Church?
There is nothing admirable about this woman.
Back to the article:
Radkey took three trips to the Vatican in unsuccessful attempts to drum up interest about the Mormon proxy baptisms of Catholic saints. Dejected, she returned to her Salt Lake apartment, where she underwent an epiphany when one of her twin sons brought home a Jewish girl from college.
“I said, ‘I’ve had enough of the Vatican,’ ” she recalled. “I’m going to help the Jews.”
Radkey says that in the course of her research into what she describes as the postmortem marriages of the Romney ancestors, which she hopes to turn into a book, the genealogy experts of the library, which is open to the public, have been only polite and helpful. The feeling hasn’t always been mutual.
In 2006 and 2009, the library disciplined her for sneaking onto computers used by Mormons who had not logged off their terminals and then spending hours using their accounts to dig through the private church records.
“I don’t hack the database,” she said. “Let’s just say I have a way of accessing it through a confidential Mormon source.”
Radkey previously criticized Ernest Michel, chairman of the World Gathering of Jewish Holocaust Survivors, for not being pugnacious enough against the LDS Church. See here:
Michel defended himself in an interview with the Forward. "I have an established relationship with the church," he said. "They are not antisemites, and they want to work with us. I'm not coming in like a bull in a china shop. I'll let Helen Radkey speak for herself."
Helen Radkey has no interest in "help[ing] the Jews," else she wouldn't have conditioned her "help" on the Simon Weisenthal Center raising "a public stink" against the LDS Church (or excoriated Mr. Michel for not being sufficiently opposed to the LDS Church).
She is attempting to foment religious prejudice by coaxing the Simon Weisenthal Center into raising "a public stink" against the LDS Church, and by emphasizing that Romney's ancestors practice of polygamy. And before this episode, she has attempted (apparently with some success) to make money off researching the names of dead Jews.
I can respect, occasionally even admire, principled opponents of the LDS Church. While I believe these people are misguided in their antagonism, I believe many of them have good intentions and are basically decent people.
I have no respect for Helen Radkey. She is a repugnant person.