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What do you consider to be "Anti-mormon"?


LDSToronto

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Over the past while, more frequently of late, I've observed that anyone who presents any view that is contrary to what the LDS church claims as true or official is labeled as either "anti-mormon" or "attacking the church". Some of these views, I will admit, tend towards hateful criticism of the church. Yet, I'm surprised that other, more thoughtful and probing views of the church, or alternative views of the church, are also labeled the same way.

I'm interested in hearing your definition of "anti-mormon" and "attacking the church". Is there a difference between the two terms? Can one present contrary views of the church without being labeled "anti-mormon"? If so, what is the difference, and who has successfully presented critical views of the church without being viewed as "anti-mormon"?

Thanks,

H.

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An anti-mormon view would be cynical and would argue that Joseph Smith was a fraud, a scoundrel etc. Its okay to think what ever you want but since mormons believe Smith was not a fraud that that he was a prophet then opposite would be anti-mormon. Attacking the church would be any comment suggesting that the leaders are lying or that the Book of Mormon is not what Smith said it was.

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An anti-mormon view would be cynical and would argue that Joseph Smith was a fraud, a scoundrel etc. Its okay to think what ever you want but since mormons believe Smith was not a fraud that that he was a prophet then opposite would be anti-mormon. Attacking the church would be any comment suggesting that the leaders are lying or that the Book of Mormon is not what Smith said it was.

Suppose, Zelder, that one could provide evidence that could lead a rational investigator to conclude Joseph was fraudulent in some of his claims, or that the Book of Mormon didn't originate as officially told, or that some leaders of the church have been less than truthful.

Would the purveyor of such views still be labeled "anti-mormon", provided those views were void of cynicism?

Let's keep this at a meta-level - I'm not interested in discussing the veracity of any specific claim that the church or it's supporters or it's critics make.

H.

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An anti-mormon view would be cynical and would argue that Joseph Smith was a fraud, a scoundrel etc. Its okay to think what ever you want but since mormons believe Smith was not a fraud that that he was a prophet then opposite would be anti-mormon.

If one does not believe Mohamed was a prophet, is that person and anti-Muslim?

Why call them "anti," which has a pejorative connotation, when skeptic or nonbeliever would do?

Anything or anyone using falsehoods, dishonesty, double standards or other neferious means to discredit the Church in anyway.

Honest critics, of which few exist, are not included,

I note that posters here are often very quick to accuse someone they disagree with of being dishonest. There have been many posters that come here angry with the LDS Church, and some that have made mistatements, or overstated the evidence, or statements that they thought were true, but were wrong. But I really don't recall anyone here being caught making a deliberately false statement simply to discredit the LDS Church.

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I don't like the term anti-mormon very much. Its usage makes us seem like we are too much playing the victim card. I like the term "critics of the church" much better. I like to look at them as people who simply have their opinions about the church and are taking advantage of their freedom to express those opinions. But since the term anti-mormon doesn't seem to be going away anytime soon, I would consider an anti-mormon someone who spends an excessive amount of time criticizing the church. Or in other words, makes a career out of it. Shawn McCraney would be good example of one of those types of people.

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Anything or anyone using falsehoods, dishonesty, double standards or other neferious means to discredit the Church in anyway.

Honest critics, of which few exist, are not included,

What do you mean by the term "honest critic"? What does an "honest critic" present that distinguishes them from an anti-mormon or attacker of the church?

H.

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Over the past while, more frequently of late, I've observed that anyone who presents any view that is contrary to what the LDS church claims as true or official is labeled as either "anti-mormon" or "attacking the church". Some of these views, I will admit, tend towards hateful criticism of the church. Yet, I'm surprised that other, more thoughtful and probing views of the church, or alternative views of the church, are also labeled the same way.

I'm interested in hearing your definition of "anti-mormon" and "attacking the church". Is there a difference between the two terms? Can one present contrary views of the church without being labeled "anti-mormon"? If so, what is the difference, and who has successfully presented critical views of the church without being viewed as "anti-mormon"?

Thanks,

H.

IMO, attacking the Church and Anti-Mormon are one in the same. What makes someone Anti-Mormon is there attitude, in they have legitimate questions and seek to find out what we believe then they are not anti Mormon.

When someone seeks to just make negative statements (especially if those statements are notthe full truth or twisted to make the Church look like some evil organization) doesn't care about any explinations or the truth about our beliefs and doctrine, they are Anti-Mormon.

They don't have questions they just have hate toward there fellow Christian. I understand an accept that not everyone will accept the Prophet Joseph Smith. Those that have legitimate concerns about our doctrine or faith, are more than welcome to ask questions.

Members are also more than welcome to asks questions. When my wife coverted she had lts of questions and some reservations about the Church's doctrine on Homosexual acts and same sex marriage. She still doesn't agree with the Church's efforts to preserve marriage between a man and women. I have heard members speak from the pulpit saying they personally think the Church should change there policy regarding active homosexuals and same sex marriage.

What they don't do is reject the Leadership, you can disagree with the Church Leadership and still be a faithful Mormon. If you can accept that they are the called prophets of God and that they have the burden of leading the church, you are fine.

Our Church doesn't punish those who disagree with our leadership. They will punish those who will publically critisize the Leadership or belittles the Church. We are not expected to agree with everything the Church says as far as social policies, we are expected to not go and stir up animosity towards the Church in the media.

Some see this as a bad thing, I have no problem with it. In the military it's the same thing, you can disagree with your leaders even with the President. You never talk badly of the military or the president to the media or public. A respectful, "No Comment" goes a long way when it cones to interacting with the media.

Whatever members say can and will be taken out of context by media. They will also represent one members comment as the opinion of the entire membership. This is not good and causes lots of problems.

Sorry for rambling on so much! Hope my answers helped!

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I don't like the term anti-mormon very much. Its usage makes us seem like we are too much playing the victim card. I like the term "critics of the church" much better. I like to look at them as people who simply have their opinions about the church and are taking advantage of their freedom to express those opinions. But since the term anti-mormon doesn't seem to be going away anytime soon, I would consider an anti-mormon someone who spends an excessive amount of time criticizing the church. Or in other words, makes a career out of it. Shawn McCraney would be good example of one of those types of people.

And what about an academic who decides to focus research on the LDS church and it's truth claims, and draws conclusions that are contrary to the claims made by the church? If that person devotes a good portion of their career on such research, is that person then considered an "anti-mormon"?

H.

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Members are also more than welcome to asks questions. When my wife coverted she had lts of questions and some reservations about the Church's doctrine on Homosexual acts and same sex marriage. She still doesn't agree with the Church's efforts to preserve marriage between a man and women. I have heard members speak from the pulpit saying they personally think the Church should change there policy regarding active homosexuals and same sex marriage.

What they don't do is reject the Leadership, you can disagree with the Church Leadership and still be a faithful Mormon. If you can accept that they are the called prophets of God and that they have the burden of leading the church, you are fine.

Thanks for your response. I don't want this to turn into a SSM debate, but I've been accused of having anti-mormon views because I've taken the same stance as your wife. You seem to be declaring that the line between "critic" and "anti-mormon" lies in public expression of one's contrary views? May I ask, what is the difference between declaring something from the pulpit and declaring something publicly?

H.

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If one does not believe Mohamed was a prophet, is that person and anti-Muslim?

Why call them "anti," which has a pejorative connotation, when skeptic or nonbeliever would do?

If one is cynical toward Islam then yes, i suppose that could be considered anti-muslim. The opposing views must be coupled with bad feelings toward the opposing group.

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I'm interested in hearing your definition of "anti-mormon" and "attacking the church".

Regardless of motive, an "anti-Mormon" is someone who intentionally seeks to detract from, undermine or change the aims of the Church, the faith and practices of its adherents, or the interest of non-members through criticism and evidence often tainted by discrimination, persecution, hostility, bigotry, prejudice, opinion, pride, offended personal sensibilities, acting out, etc.

"Attacking the church" is a subset of anti-Mormonism, and to me carries a connotation of using the more extreme or militant anti-Mormon tactics.

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I think an anti-Mormon is somebody who uses an anonymous name and posts on an anti-Mormon board the following statement;

I've rejected the book's usefulness and authenticity as an ancient documentary and view it as a complex parable, and I find that most modern practices and rules in mormonism don't link back to the teachings found in the book. I view the Book of Mormon's origin as the synthesis of insights that Joseph Smith and possibly his father and brother had.

I think that one can be a supporter of the Church and keep these views to one's self and not be an anti-Mormon, but when one resorts to an anonymous broadside such as the statement above on an anti-Mormon website, one should just resign. To keep these things private and not voice them in one's ward or stake, on the one hand, and voice them anonymously and publicly, on the other hand, just makes it worse.

I suspect the poster of the above quoted material doesn't voice this type of stuff in his home ward. But I think a person ought to be consistent in one's life; otherwise it seems like hypocrisy.

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I think an anti-Mormon is somebody who uses an anonymous name and posts on an anti-Mormon board the following statement;

You forgot to attribute that quote to me:

I've rejected the book's usefulness and authenticity as an ancient documentary and view it as a complex parable, and I find that most modern practices and rules in mormonism don't link back to the teachings found in the book. I view the Book of Mormon's origin as the synthesis of insights that Joseph Smith and possibly his father and brother had.

Bytes are pretty much free around here, rcrocket, so I'm uncertain why you took out the rest of the quote. Let me post it here so that we can all see it:

I've always viewed the Book of Mormon as an enlightened and expansive commentary on the atonement and nature of God, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost. I still view the book this way, and when treated as such, I find it is of value. I've rejected the book's usefulness and authenticity as an ancient documentary and view it as a complex parable, and I find that most modern practices and rules in mormonism don't link back to the teachings found in the book. I view the Book of Mormon's origin as the synthesis of insights that Joseph Smith and possibly his father and brother had

I think that one can be a supporter of the Church and keep these views to one's self and not be an anti-Mormon, but when one resorts to an anonymous broadside such as the statement above on an anti-Mormon website, one should just resign. To keep these things private and not voice them in one's ward or stake, on the one hand, and voice them anonymously and publicly, on the other hand, just makes it worse.

So, are you suggesting, then, that one who has doubts about any truth claim of the church, and then expresses those doubts publicly, is an anti-mormon, while one who does not express their doubts, but keeps them to themselves, is somehow more noble?

I suspect the poster of the above quoted material doesn't voice this type of stuff in his home ward. But I think a person ought to be consistent in one's life; otherwise it seems like hypocrisy.

Have you been to my home ward/stake? Been to a quorum meeting with me? Heard me speak? Probably not, but I wouldn't know since you use an anonymous name to post. I think you'd be surprised that most anything I say is in harmony with what I believe. I have no problem stating my doubts to small audiences and to those with whom I want to share. I'm not going to preach it from the pulpit - these are my doubts, and I have no intention of destroying faith or raising doubts in anyone else.

Somehow, I doubt it's accurate to label me "anti-mormon" given the care I have taken to make sure my views don't influence others who are happy with their current level of faithfulness.

H.

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Have you been to my home ward/stake? Been to a quorum meeting with me? Heard me speak? Probably not, but I wouldn't know since ou use an anonymous name to post.

No I don't. Just click on my blog reference below. rcrocket is short for Robert Crockett.

I think you'd be surprised that most anything I say is in harmony with what I believe. I have no problem stating my doubts to small audiences and to those with whom I want to share. I'm not going to preach it from the pulpit - these are my doubts, and I have no intention of destroying faith or raising doubts in anyone else.

Somehow, I doubt it's accurate to label me "anti-mormon" given the care I have taken to make sure my views don't influence others who are happy with their current level of faithfulness.

I'd venture to say that your posts appear to be anti-Mormon, straight up, on the most fundamental matters. But there plenty of anonymous posters just like you, so don't feel too badly about my observations. I'm sure I'm in a minority.

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I'm interested in hearing your definition of "anti-mormon" and "attacking the church".

In my opinion, to be "anti-mormon" (or anti-Evangelical, Baptist, Methodist, etc) is anyone who refuses to find worth in or worship/work with someone simply due to the church they attend.

I do not see someone as being "anti" simply because they do not believe everything each respective denomination believes. For that matter, it is difficult finding 100% agreement on everything by everyone in the respective denominations!

But then people do attack what they do not understand especially when people seem to define ourselves by our differences instead of seeking unity in our united beliefs.

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I see nothing intrinsically wrong with the term anti-Mormon, though I've often seen it abused (in somewhat the same way I've seen other intrinsically useful terms like racist and fanatic and socialist and actor [think Steven Seagal] misused).

All it denotes, in my mind, is opposition to Mormonism or Mormons.

"Opposition" is not the same thing as "disagreement," though it's rather difficult to define a precise point on the spectrum where one shades into the other. But that lack of precision is universal in human language. When, exactly, does a person become "big"? Or "smart" or "popular" or "strong" or "tall" or "lazy" or "fast"? When, precisely, does stubble become a beard? How many hairs does it take to constitute a beard? If one is plucked, does that reduce a beard to a non-beard? How about two hairs? Three?

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Anything or anyone using falsehoods, dishonesty, double standards or other neferious means to discredit the Church in anyway.

Honest critics, of which few exist, are not included,

If, in my support of the Church, I used falsehoods (i.e. telling the history in a way that it didn't actually happen), dishonesty (including the omission of important details in relating the story), and double standards (including judging people and events differently based on their religion), what would that make me?

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Having been raised in the church I am very familiar with the amount of cynicism that exists there with regard to other non-Mormon religions. It is significant.

That being said I will freely admit that I have been cynical at times but it has usually been in the process of responding in kind. Is that an excuse? Nope, and I'll try to do better.

I don't consider myself "anti-Mormon" by any means, although I'm sure some here will disagree.

I am however "anti-falsehood" and pro full disclosure.

The LDS church has a great deal going for it, no one can honestly argue that.

They believe in God

They are Christian

They believe in personal responsibility

They place great emphasis on family, right thinking, clean living, keeping the commandments, education.

Fidelity in Marriage

Being charitable

Etc.

I would NEVER tell someone not to join the LDS faith. I would just say "do and in depth investigation and go in with your eyes wide open".

An honest doctor making a diagnosis should never be accused of attacking the patient.

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My working definition of "anti-mormon": An individual or group who is actively opposed to the teachings or practices of the LDS Church, its leaders or members.

I agree with this, with emphasis on the word "actively". However I think anytime anyone puts down another's beliefs they are "Anti." I can disagree someone's interpretation of the facts but I shouldn't mock others for what they believe. And the issue is interpretation. No one, contrary to what some critics like to believe, can come up with any "facts" that aren't subject to interpretation, context and paradigm with which one is making judgments.

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And what about an academic who decides to focus research on the LDS church and it's truth claims, and draws conclusions that are contrary to the claims made by the church? If that person devotes a good portion of their career on such research, is that person then considered an "anti-mormon"?

H.

I know your playing Devil's advocate here but comparing Shawn McCraney to a scholar is just plain wrong and insulting to any scholar. A scholar is one who looks for fact and truth, they do not spin lies and spew hate like Shawn McCraney does, Shawn McCraney isn't even Anti-Mormon he is Anti-everyone who doesn't believe exactly like Shawn McCraney does.

He is not even in the same galaxy as a scholar, a scholar is suppose to look at the data and derive there theories from data. Shawn McCraney is a hypocrite that will do anything to bash Catholics, Mormons, Protestants, Baptists, or any other non Evangelical out there. He is a false teacher who spreads hate.

A Scholar is not an Anti-Mormon, whether they accept the restored Gospel or not if they are a true scholar they would look at all the evidence which means they would never make the outlandish and false accusations that Anti-Mormons make. In fact we have the highest rate of active scholars amongst all faiths, where other faiths tend to lose members who further there education, the LDS Church tends to retain and gain members who further there education!

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I know your playing Devil's advocate here but comparing Shawn McCraney to a scholar is just plain wrong and insulting to any scholar. A scholar is one who looks for fact and truth, they do not spin lies and spew hate like Shawn McCraney does, Shawn McCraney isn't even Anti-Mormon he is Anti-everyone who doesn't believe exactly like Shawn McCraney does.

I'd like to make a two statements and then an observation. First, prior to your mention of Shawn McCraney, I'd never heard the name before. In fact, until I read this very message, I hadn't even googled the words "Shawn McCraney". Thus, I had, and still have, no idea who Shawn McCraney is, or what he represents, though I surmise that he is not fond of the church. Second, I was not comparing Shawn McCraney to a scholar, and I was not playing devil's advocate. My question was sincere.

Now for my observation. There is often a modicum of judgment that occurs when critics/doubters/so-called-anti's and apologists/TBMs/defenders-of-the-faith get together. For example, you judged my intention and my message above. In a previous message, rcrocket called me an anti-mormon based on my doubts. I'm not sure what this says, but it says something...

A Scholar is not an Anti-Mormon, whether they accept the restored Gospel or not if they are a true scholar they would look at all the evidence which means they would never make the outlandish and false accusations that Anti-Mormons make. In fact we have the highest rate of active scholars amongst all faiths, where other faiths tend to lose members who further there education, the LDS Church tends to retain and gain members who further there education!

Can you provide a reference for this claim, please?

H.

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My working definition of "anti-mormon": An individual or group who is actively opposed to the teachings or practices of the LDS Church, its leaders or members.

-Smac

Would you consider your definition exclusive to Mormonism?

For instance, there have been many individuals and groups who have been actively opposed to the laws, policies, manuvers of the US government or even in protest of the civil status quo. Would such groups or individuals be considered anti-American?

Just probing here.

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I know your playing Devil's advocate here but comparing Shawn McCraney to a scholar is just plain wrong and insulting to any scholar. A scholar is one who looks for fact and truth, they do not spin lies and spew hate like Shawn McCraney does, Shawn McCraney isn't even Anti-Mormon he is Anti-everyone who doesn't believe exactly like Shawn McCraney does.

He is not even in the same galaxy as a scholar, a scholar is suppose to look at the data and derive there theories from data. Shawn McCraney is a hypocrite that will do anything to bash Catholics, Mormons, Protestants, Baptists, or any other non Evangelical out there. He is a false teacher who spreads hate.

Might you be an Anti-McCraney?

See Deborah's post above.

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