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When Do You Believe Latter Day Polygamy Began?


Free Agent

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Let me put it another way:

The latter revelation trumphs the earlier revelation.

The proclamation of marriage trumps D&C 132.

Get a clue.

It's your church, not mine, but you are missing the tree for the forest.

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I find it interesting to note that men all over this country are having affairs right and left. They leave their families for a "newer" or "younger" woman and resent paying child support (or don't pay at all). They expect society to pay for their children or don't care that their ex-wives live in poverty while trying to raise their children. Wouldn't it just be better if men could take another wife (if they could afford it it and the first wife would allow it), than to just leave the family? It seems to me that adultery is so common, with such dire results for children, that polygamy would be the better solution (with the caveat that the man, and not society) would have to foot the cost . Why all the angst about polygamy?

Are all of these men claiming God told them to act that way? That may be the critical difference.

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I agree. You have emphasized the wrong word. Try looking at the word "allowed." Try listening to the audio. The word "allowed" was clearly meant as a correction (substitution) for the misspoken word "started." In his answer President Hinkley made it clearly that he was answering the question of when plural marriage was "allowed" or "permitted," not when it was first practiced ("started"). From the context he clearly refers to when polygyny was announced and permitted to the membership at large, after Pratt's 1852 discourse. Even then it was restricted in the sense that one had to get permission from the proper priesthood authority before entering into a plural marriage.

This discussion seems to be reminding me about something regarding gnats and camels.

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Come on! The exact same quote could be used to explain polygamy in Nauvoo. "they permitted it on a restricted scale. " No amount of twisting on your part is going to change these facts. Polygamy was permitted on a restricted scale in Nauvoo, and it was permitted on a restricted scale in Utah, The scale was obvioulsy a lot wider in Utah, but it was never "open to the general membership" as far as anyone who wanted to could do it. There always had to be permission given by higher authority.

I'm amazed at how far members are willing to twist and turn in order to justify these statements. Wouldn't it be easier just to say that, yes he mispoke at that time?

3 of my 4 g-g-granfathers had at least 3 wives. That seems pretty general to me.

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Yes, it is. No matter how bad you wish it were a lie, simply saying that it isn't doesn't make it so. Polygamy wasn't practiced in open by the general body of the church until they moved out west! Don't blame President Hinckley because the question wasn't specific enough.

If you read the initial post, there have been several issues opened in this thread. One of them is that the church has been lying through its statements and curriculum. I'm putting forth the position that they've said all that they need to on the subject.

So this is Larry King's fault? Hinckley answered the poorly worded question with a half-truth and that clears Hinkley from the sin of omission? Does Larry King know so much about the history of the church that he would know how to word a question to ensure that Hinkley would not be able to avoid answering it with the whole truth?

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Tabitha

Interesting point you bring up about the general membership. In addition, I would love to see actual historicals on how many members there were during this period and how many practiced polygamy. Anyone know if those studies exist? I know President Hinckley said 2 - 5 % but wondering if that's on paper somewhere.

Free Agent

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So this is Larry King's fault? Hinckley answered the poorly worded question with a half-truth and that clears Hinkley from the sin of omission? Does Larry King know so much about the history of the church that he would know how to word a question to ensure that Hinkley would not be able to avoid answering it with the whole truth?

How can you use the temple as an avatar and then make such a flagrantly insulting post regarding President Hinkley? First you use Larry King's full name respectfully then refer to the prophet by last name only which is a sign of disrespect for the man and his position in this context. And then you pretty much straightforwardly accuse him of lying and being responsible to interpret what what Larry King should have asked. Even had King asked the prophet a well-worded question Pres. Hinkley had no responsibility to answer it in that venue and he certainly would not have had the time to answer with the "whole truth" which involves not only the history but the doctrine of the church.

You people need to grow up and realize there is a time and place for everything. You also need to realize that interviews like this are edited and we may not know what the prophet actually said or what he might have told Larry off the air.

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Tabitha

Interesting point you bring up about the general membership. In addition, I would love to see actual historicals on how many members there were during this period and how many practiced polygamy. Anyone know if those studies exist? I know President Hinckley said 2 - 5 % but wondering if that's on paper somewhere.

Free Agent

Here's an article from Dialogue. This one is from 1984. There is a more recent one that I remember, but I can't find it right now. If I do, I'll post a link. It gave a 20% rate for the practice of polygamy, but if you factor in the leadership factor, ie bishop, stake pres. etc, it went way up, I want to say 80%, but I'll wait until I find the article. I would be interested in where Pres. Hinckley got his figures though.

How can you use the temple as an avatar and then make such a flagrantly insulting post regarding President Hinkley? First you use Larry King's full name respectfully then refer to the prophet by last name only which is a sign of disrespect for the man and his position in this context. And then you pretty much straightforwardly accuse him of lying and being responsible to interpret what what Larry King should have asked. Even had King asked the prophet a well-worded question Pres. Hinkley had no responsibility to answer it in that venue and he certainly would not have had the time to answer with the "whole truth" which involves not only the history but the doctrine of the church.

You people need to grow up and realize there is a time and place for everything. You also need to realize that interviews like this are edited and we may not know what the prophet actually said or what he might have told Larry off the air.

I thought Larry King was live. Anybody know? I'm living outside the US, so I don't ever get to watch him.

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Just found another article, but even this one is not the one I'm looking for. This one is from 1993, and focuses on three wards in 1860.

From the conclusion:

We also find, however, that about four in ten married women in these three wards never became a plural wife.

Or in other words 60% did! I'm still wondering where Pres. Hinckley got his figures.

There's a lot more good info in the article. I wish I could cut and paste, but it's a PDF. I would suggest reading the whole thing.

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It Occurs to Me

Thank you for posting those figures. It seems to have shut down some of our more vocal folks here, but it certainly reinforces what I have been saying all along. Even more, it validates why I, as a member for 26 years, never researched certain things because I had the faith and trust that what my leaders were telling me was fact. I don't know how I can be accused of having "my head in the sand" when I chose to take at face value the words of President Hinckley. I never had any reason to not believe that interview. For me, it was just one blip on the radar, a positive interview that I was proud to remind my non-member parents to tune into because I had such faith in President Hinckley. As I said earlier, I feel validated, but I also feel sad, because, for me, my level of trust continues to fall in the organization that I put my heart and soul into for a good 2/3 of my life.

Free Agent

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Hello everyone on this rather heated discussion.

I feel those who are offended by the lack of honesty about our past, (remember the talk on "they shall not be offended") are venting those feelings of frustration on this particular interview, as though it were an opportunity to come clean and heal their wounds, a missed chance in other words.

I feel that whilst I totally concur with the centiment, it is unfair on Pres. Hinckley to expect him to want to discuss our most contraversial past in such a way. This needs to come out, but not like this. I've been in situations like that, and you have got to be so careful not to be sucked into a vortex of negativeness, the media would exploit.

Anyone can manipulate stats. The church is good at it. 2-5% of membership? Does that include children I wonder?

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I feel that whilst I totally concur with the centiment, it is unfair on Pres. Hinckley to expect him to want to discuss our most contraversial past in such a way. This needs to come out, but not like this. I've been in situations like that, and you have got to be so careful not to be sucked into a vortex of negativeness, the media would exploit.

There is a way to deflect invasive unwanted questions without resorting to untruths. If President Hinckley is not skilled at saying "there are certain things we don't understand so I'd prefer not to discuss it in this forum" then he probably should refrain from doing public interviews.

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There is a way to deflect invasive unwanted questions without resorting to untruths. If President Hinckley is not skilled at saying "there are certain things we don't understand so I'd prefer not to discuss it in this forum" then he probably should refrain from doing public interviews.

There's another alternative which has not be presented. I think it's entirely possible that President Hinckley may NOT have known that Joseph Smith had plural wives and genuinely thinks the actual practice of polygamy began first under Brigham Young. If so, his answer on TV would have honest with no intent to mislead.

I've met many fine, outstanding, otherwise knowledgeable life-long LDS who truly do not believe Joseph Smith had plural wives. Why should Pres. Hinckley be any different?

I understand that many LDS assume that their GAs are fully knowledgeable about all LDS doctrine and history, but I keep reading accounts which suggest otherwise. The Pulitzer-prize winning cartoonist, Steve Benson, has left several Internet accounts about getting historical and doctrinal questions through to GAs because his grandfather was a GA and getting answers back which suggested that the GAs with whom he spoke genuinely didn't have answers to those questions. Along these lines, I note that several accounts of the Hoffman episode present Hoffman convincing Pres. Hinckley to arrange for the $100,000 loan to purchase the "McClellan Collection" of documents because Pres. Hinckley genuinely didn't know that those documents had been in the church's possession for many years.

The GA are, after all, just mortals, and I get the impression they are chosen more for their spirituality, managerial skills, and devotion and less for their knowledge about church doctrine and history. I think it's entirely possible that Pres. Hinckley didn't know about Pres. Smith's plural wives and gave a truthful (to him) answer without spin.

Theophilus07

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I find it interesting to note that men all over this country are having affairs right and left. They leave their families for a "newer" or "younger" woman and resent paying child support (or don't pay at all).

we've all observed it.

They expect society to pay for their children or don't care that their ex-wives live in poverty while trying to raise their children.

some do not pay, dead beat dads are numerous. Others have a conscience. It's a fairly complex dynamic that you appear to lump under one umbrella.

Wouldn't it just be better if men could take another wife (if they could afford it it and the first wife would allow it), than to just leave the family?

Someone once explained marriage to me as walking through the dinner buffet with only one item offered for consumption... for the rest of your life. Even if it is prime rib it is the same day in and day out. After awhile, the prime rib, for some, morphs into "the same ole prime rib". I don't buy the theory but see its application far and wide.

Are you suggesting that when a man views his wife as "the same ole prime rib", he should just go out and add another wife to his marriage? How would that make the first wife feel? How can this possibly be a solution.

It seems to me that adultery is so common, with such dire results for children, that polygamy would be the better solution (with the caveat that the man, and not society) would have to foot the cost .

I detect a sentiment here: men can't keep it in their pants, give them an assortment of unlimited wives (within reason) so that it won't actually matter if they cannot keep it in their pants. That just feels weird.

Why all the angst about polygamy?

Why? Look, polygamy appeared in written history as an ingenious invention for men 3500 years ago by men who treated women as property to be given away, objects, servants, or at best second class citizens. Good grief. Is this how we view women today?

Humans have evolved since. Your acceptance of a heinous practice baffles me.

Since I am strongly asserting my opinion about polygamy, you might be tempted to ask me what my solution is.. if I am so smart.

My solution is to have a sense of humor in life and if you do not have this, go find it and then also employ therapy, counseling, development of excellent communication skills, a practicing of selflessness, a willingness to try new things as a couple. Marriage can stale over time, but the answer is not to go out and grab a new hottie and add it to ones harem when it does.

Noggin

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