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Bill Hamblin

My Assessment Of The Situation At The Maxwell Institute

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No assumption at all. A firing via e-mail is a spineless act that speaks volumes about the character of the person sending e-mail. It's as simple as that.

Maybe, maybe not. I'm not going to speculate and pass judgment on a person's character without knowing the motivations behind their actions.

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The internet is where conspiracy theories are supposed to be erected. Nobody takes them seriously anyway.

I guess if that's your gig, then have at 'er

On the other hand to discharge one from employment, especially at this level, should be done in person.

Typically yes. But as yet we simply are not privy to the full context.

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Your twisted view of Ms Jack's so called smear campaign is typical of your over the top hyperbole and flat out false. Any reasonable person could simply review the posts the Will made and conclude that his behavior certainly was not that of one wanting to aspire to defending the Church in a premier publication. In fact many of the things he said in his posts towards women on the board everyone here seems to hate would be embarrassing for most holder of the LDS priesthood to say. The fact that you defend this behavior and call it a smear speaks loudly the the die on any hill apologetics you embrace.

I respectfully request the moderators to not permit these off-topic posts on this thread. I don't want to see another round of the "Schryver is a Vulgar Misogynist" talking points happening on this thread. My response, as ever, is as follows:

The ad hominem attack thread launched against me last year at MDB was a cleverly crafted propaganda enterprise, replete with forgeries, out-of-context citations, gross exaggerations, and outright lies.

Ms. Jeffries and her cohorts claim they were motivated by a desire to protect women involved in Mormon studies, and that I employed misogynistic tactics in my online debates with women involved in Mormon studies. This is untrue. To my recollection, I have never engaged in substantive online debates with any women at any time, let alone women involved in Mormon studies. My only online conversations with the women on that message board consisted of what were quite often situations where I was up against a dozen or more ex-mormons in aggressive back and forth exchanges dominated by sarcasm, veiled jabs, dark humor, parody, double entendre, and all sorts of ad hominem repartee. It's a great resource if your intention is to cherry-pick quotes to make one of the participants look bad, because context is everything in a situation like that. Even so, I was never guilty of anything that would rise above a PG-13 rating, and that only rarely.

I categorically deny the allegations made against me, and publicly condemn those who crafted them as the deceitful propagandists they are.

- William Schryver

Edited by William Schryver

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I guess you think it was courageous to fire Dan by email .

When it is done by email, it feels like a stab to the gut. And when it is done by church members, it feels as if the knife was twisted when inside the gut. It was showing hate to a fellow brother in the gospel. Shame.

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I don't have time to read the whole thread, so if someone already asked this, then I apologize for the repeat, but as subscribers to MI, can we make a statement by asking to be refunded for the remaining year? Just thinking that if enough people did that, it could cause them to pause and think more about this new vision.

It could be done but I don't think that once a gift is given they are obligated to refunds. In this area it might be better to see what shakes out and then one might decide to cancel your subscription.

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Maybe, maybe not. I'm not going to speculate and pass judgment on a person's character without knowing the motivations behind their actions.

How should a brother treat a brother? If the firing is done by email, the brother doing it has become apart of the world and not a very good part of that world. There is no excuse for treating a brother this way.

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I gotta say- given all the sockpuppets that are springing up, this is one hum-dinger of a "not-a-board-war".

If only I'd known, I'd have secured the popcorn franchise early!

No kidding. Look at the bottom of the page. It's been a LONG time since so many have been here at once.

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Except for the fact that Dan got the news by email when he was out of the country. I think that most people receiving such an email would consider it to be insulting. And how to continue on the board after that insulting treatment?

Maybe I have gotten it all wrong. But i do believe that it was done by email.

You're probably right, and I certainly don't pass any sort of judgment against Dan for his response. Dr. Peterson has shared with this board that he has been going through a very difficult time due to the loss of a loved one. My heart aches for him, and I detest the way his critics have used this event to attack him and his work.

He hasn't said much, but I don't think anyone would begrudge him if he felt insulted. I doubt he will express too much publicly though. Despite his reputation amongst critics, he seems to be a very compassionate person who will rise above these matters.

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I respectfully request the moderators to not permit these off-topic posts on this thread. I don't want to see another round of the "Schryver is a Vulgar Misogynist" talking points happening on this thread. My response, as ever, is as follows:

And this is a good point Will. The critics will show no mercy toward the church or apologists. They will rehash this and rehash that. And FARMs will be attempting to reason with them. Poor FARMs will come under a lot of criticism when it begins to publish its 'scholarly' articles that will not satisfy the critics.

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But as I said. I expect certain comments and reactions from some and not from others.

So if your children were fighting, you would only scold the one who didn't usually fight because you didn't expect such behaviour from him while letting the other child off the hook because he was always getting into fights anyway.

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No assumption at all. A firing via e-mail is a spineless act that speaks volumes about the character of the person sending e-mail. It's as simple as that.

Do you have an explanation from Bradford himself, why he used the format he did?

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I remember what it was like before FARMS started up, before the Review of Books on the Book of Mormon appeared. For the young and and/or forgetful, Sam Taylor gave a talk at Sunstone that I heard in the early 80s, and later saw published in Dialogue.

http://www.dialoguej..._V22N01_116.pdf

After the rise of FARMS and the regular appearances of the Review, we got Carl Mosser and Paul Owen, "Mormon scholarship, apologetics, and evangelical neglect: Losing the battle and not knowing it?," Trinity Journal (Fall 1998). The Tanners are obsolete. Now it's the internet.

But you can see how the pendulum has swung. First, LDS scholars ignore the Tanners and other critical polemical works, thinking them to be the irrelevant rantings of angry evangelicals. Farms is established to "prevent uncontested slam dunks," and it does provides some very good work over the years.

But then FARMS/MI, too (mainly through the Review), starts to indulge LDS polemics and ad hominem attacks, not just against counter-cult evangelicals of the Tanners' ilk, but also against legitimate scholars who are publishing in peer-reviewed forums and even prestigious academic presses. Seeking originally to counter the Tanners, certain MI personalities became the polemical Mormon version of not just the Tanners, but Ed Frigging Decker.

Now, maybe, the pendulum is swinging somewhere back toward the middle. Perhaps the Maxwell Institute is not going to ignore critical voices, but neither is it apparently going to be a forum for LDS polemics, personal attacks, and over-the-top defenses of Mormonism.

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You're probably right, and I certainly don't pass any sort of judgment against Dan for his response. Dr. Peterson has shared with this board that he has been going through a very difficult time due to the loss of a loved one. My heart aches for him, and I detest the way his critics have used this event to attack him and his work.

Notice what I have blackened. And yet, the church brother sends him an email notifying him of his firing. It shows that Dan has strong faith that he continues on. Many would have just said the heck with it and left the fold.

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Journals change editors. It happens all the time.

As is quite apparent in this particular change of editorship, it entails much more than would normally attach to such an event.

See my post above: Future Prospects for NAMIRS

Why are you trying to pretend otherwise?

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I don't have time to read the whole thread, so if someone already asked this, then I apologize for the repeat, but as subscribers to MI, can we make a statement by asking to be refunded for the remaining year? Just thinking that if enough people did that, it could cause them to pause and think more about this new vision.

Hey, let's all do this for the scouting program as well!!!!

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Try this scenario. Someone detests Dan. Someone leaks e-mails, etc trying to thwart Dan's direction. Gerald Bradford gets appointed. Someone cozies up to Bradford and convinces him that Dan is dangerous. Bradford, who has been appointed one step beyond his capabilities, known as the peter principle, succumbs to the flattery and we get the mess we now have.

Not so far fetched as I have seen it happen in business several times. In business it is almost always a costly mistake and it is sometimes fatal to the business.

I see this as a likely scenario, the poor guy might not have a clue about what he was about to get into. But the point is, he should have known

I mean seriously- if he didn't see it coming that alone is an indication he shouldn't have the job.

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How should a brother treat a brother? If the firing is done by email, the brother doing it has become apart of the world and not a very good part of that world. There is no excuse for treating a brother this way.

I suppose there may have been a better way to handle the matter, I don't know the details, nor all of the various players involved nor the time frame for their expectations, but I suspect Jerry Bradford would not claim perfection, nor should he or anyone else be held to that standard.

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I guess if that's your gig, then have at 'er

Typically yes. But as yet we simply are not privy to the full context.

It is poor form under any context to discharge someone at this level of management in such a manner. The proper method is to call them into your office and confront them face to face. I gues that this coupled with the leaks is what bothers me most. If it had been handled properly an in office meeting would have been held and Dr. Peterson would have been informed of managements decision and offer they were making. He then could have decided whether to accept or reject their offer of continued participation in that capacity. Then after all was settled a quiet announcement to the effect that Dr. Peterson was being replaced. If he had accepted the offer to remain in an advisory capacity that could have been mentioned.

However, the choice was to do it all very publicly. To discharge him by e-mail then to leak the whole thing in what looks like an attempt to force him to remain as a fund raiser is at the very least is grossly unprofessional. That amount of unprofessional ism, to me reflects unfavorably on Dr.Bradford's management ability.

If it had been handled well we would not be having this conversation. We probably would have been discussing the fate of Book of Mormon apologetics. .

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But then FARMS/MI, too (mainly through the Review), starts to indulge LDS polemics and ad hominem attacks, not just against counter-cult evangelicals of the Tanners' ilk, but also against legitimate scholars who are publishing in peer-reviewed forums and even prestigious academic presses.

This is a myth concocted and perpetuated by clever apostates who recognized in this approach a way to manipulate public opinion as to what the Review is like. There is virtually nothing in the way of "ad hominem attacks" in the Review. There never has been.

Again, it is a myth whose underlying purpose was to accomplish what happened a little more than a week ago.

Edited by William Schryver

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But you can see how the pendulum has swung. First, LDS scholars ignore the Tanners and other critical polemical works, thinking them to be the irrelevant rantings of angry evangelicals. Farms is established to "prevent uncontested slam dunks," and it does provides some very good work over the years.

But then FARMS/MI, too (mainly through the Review), starts to indulge LDS polemics and ad hominem attacks, not just against counter-cult evangelicals of the Tanners' ilk, but also against legitimate scholars who are publishing in peer-reviewed forums and even prestigious academic presses. Seeking originally to counter the Tanners, certain MI personalities became the polemical Mormon version of not just the Tanners, but Ed Frigging Decker.

Now, maybe, the pendulum is swinging somewhere back toward the middle. Perhaps the Maxwell Institute is not going to ignore critical voices, but neither is it apparently going to be a forum for LDS polemics, personal attacks, and over-the-top defenses of Mormonism.

That is not how I see it at all. The Review did not come into being just to respond to the Tanners. (I've read all 23 volumes of the Review, so I know what I'm talking about.) Publication via any press is an invitation to further review from all comers, not a badge of immunity.

Nothing in the Review has ever come close to Ed Decker. (Mr. "Spires on LDS churches are to impale Jesus when he comes." You think that is a fair comparison to any writing in the Review" let alone of the Review in general?) Nor have I seen it as a forum for personal attacks. Nor for over-the-top defenses. This blanket characterization, unsupported by any specifics does not correspond to what I have read in the Review. Scholarship with personality, yes. That means I see the Review as allowing for personality. I don't always have to agree, but I always know I'm dealing with a person. Not neutered handpuppets.

Remember that I've been published in the Review several times. I'm not just a customer, but a contributor.

FWIW

Kevin Christensen

Pittsburgh, PA

Edited by Kevin Christensen

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Dude

You are not serious.

Like,Totally.

This is not an assumption. At worst it is just an opinion. At best it is a fact/ I think it is really quite cowardly to fire some one by email.

So you would admit to be operating on an informed level, somewhere between opinion, and fact?

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I really do not understand what the big deal is. It is not like apologetics will stop. FAIR is very capable of fulfilling this role. So few people actually read anything produced by MI as it is. I suspect that there are only perhaps 2 dozen members of the church that post here on a regular basis, making the number of concerned citizens so tiny that this whole issues does not even equate to a tempest in a teapot. There are three sides to every story: his, hers and the truth. We will never know two of the sides.

If the so-called loss of MI is of concern, this seems to imply that FAIR is not equal to the task, so perhaps FAIR needs to re-evaluate their role.

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I suppose there may have been a better way to handle the matter, I don't know the details, nor all of the various players involved nor the time frame for their expectations, but I suspect Jerry Bradford would not claim perfection, nor should he or anyone else be held to that standard.

I think any time you are going to cashier somebody, it is better to do it face-to-face than by e-mail.

Can we all agree on this?

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That is not how I see it at all. The Review did not come into being just to respond to the Tanners. (I've read all 23 volumes of the Review, so I know what I'm talking about.) Publication via any press is an invitation to further review from all comers, not a badge of immunity.

Nothing in the Review has ever come close to Ed Decker. (Mr. "Spires on LDS churches are to impale Jesus when he comes." You think that is a fair comparison to any writing in the Review" let alone of the Review in general?) Nor have I seen it as a forum for personal attacks. Nor for over-the-top defenses. This blanket characterization, unsupported by any specifics does not correspond to what I have read in the Review. Scholarship with personality, yes. That means I see the Review as allowing for personality. I don't always have to agree, but I always know I'm dealing with a person. Not neutered handpuppets.

Remember that I've been published in the Review several times. I'm not just a customer, but a contributor.

FWIW

Kevin Christensen

Pittsburgh, PA

As soon as I get my rep points for the day, I'm coming back here.

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Now, maybe, the pendulum is swinging somewhere back toward the middle. Perhaps the Maxwell Institute is not going to ignore critical voices, but neither is it apparently going to be a forum for LDS polemics, personal attacks, and over-the-top defenses of Mormonism.

People involved in academia know the consequences of publishing a book or an academic article. It can be critiqued harshly. For example, orthodox marxists often critique neo marxists. Critcal educators critique 'establishment' educators. And academics can be very defensive and harsh toward one another. It comes with the turf.

And the critic pendulum? Is it heading toward the middle? I don't think so. It is hard hitting, taking President Monson to task with personal attacks, mocking Joseph Smith and bashing are own apologists such as Dan or Will. And with over the top interpretations of church history. What would you suggest we should do to defend the lds church?

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