In yesterday’s discussion on Meg’s first post I started to write a comment that (as sometimes happens) became a tangent that then became a whole post.
I’m not even sure what comment originally prompted this. But I was thinking about Joseph Smith’s younger wives, particularly Helen Mar Kimball. Meg and I also got talking and she pointed to Nancy Winchester as being about the same age when they ‘married’ Joseph Smith.
The evidence is currently against either having consummated their marriages to Joseph. Continue reading
Let me tell you about how I came to believe Joseph Smith was faithful to his beloved wife, Emma.
The subject of Joseph’s plural wives is not a topic casually broached in faithful circles, even among those who are aware of Joseph’s other wives. Correlated lesson materials tend to minimize discussion of important historical points relating to plural marriage in order to avoid offending those who do not have a firm grounding in the gospel.
Unfortunately, this has led to polarized versions of early Church history. One is the sanitized hagiography familiar to modern Mormons, featuring a Joseph who was monogamously devoted to his beloved Emma. The other is the bawdy and smug tale accepted by non-Mormons and some Mormons, where Joseph deceived Emma and his followers to justify slaking his sexual appetites on dozens of women.
Nightfall at Nauvoo
I was fourteen when I first came face to face with unpleasant possibilities regarding the life of Joseph Smith. My mother had just finished reading Nightfall at Nauvoo, then a newly-released novel written by her uncle, Samuel W. Taylor.
She put the thick paperback down and cocked her head. “I think Sam presents an overall positive view of Joseph Smith,” she said.
Presuming Sam’s book was therefore “safe,” I began reading. I was a child who was shocked to hear detractors had called Joseph Smith “Joe.” I was completely unequipped to deal with the salacious accusations made by John Bennett and Thomas Sharp, repeated in Sam’s book. My teenaged testimony was crushed. Though God seemed to opine that I should remain an active Mormon, I white-knuckled for two decades harboring serious doubts about Joseph and the Church.
Okay, here we continue the discussion for the conservative side of things. The traditional concept of conservatism was to conserve the original intent of the Constitution. However, since the rise of neo-conservatism, we have seen major changes in this area – especially in two main things: Corporatism and the War-state.. Continue reading
Finding a New Blogger… The Hard Way
I came across Meg Stout while reading her Amazon review of Brian C. Hale’s three volume series, Joseph Smith’s Polygamy. Her reviews were thorough and humorous. I made contact with her and we began to talk about her own studies of Joseph Smith’s polygamy and her personal views. She surprised me when she mentioned that her studies had suggested to her the possibility that Joseph Smith rarely consummated his plural marriages — with even a chance that maybe he consummated none of them.
Now of course this view easily falls into the “too good to be true” category, so I politely asked her a few more questions out of curiosity but also to gently challenge her.
She promptly proceeded to bury me. Continue reading
Last week, a crazed socialist student named Karl Pierson took a shotgun to his high school in Centennial, Colorado, to kill. The student (whom other students called a “Communist”), may have been looking for his debate team coach.
Pierson was armed with a shotgun (legal), a bandolier of ammunition and three molotov cocktails. On his way to find his coach, he shot another student apparently at random. He fired a shot down a hallway and set off one of his molotov cocktails. Then, something different happened:
The rampage might have resulted in many more casualties had it not been for the quick response of a deputy sheriff who was working as a school resource officer at the school, Robinson said.
Once he learned of the threat, he ran — accompanied by an unarmed school security officer and two administrators — from the cafeteria to the library, Robinson said. “It’s a fairly long hallway, but the deputy sheriff got there very quickly.”
The deputy was yelling for people to get down and identified himself as a county deputy sheriff, Robinson said. “We know for a fact that the shooter knew that the deputy was in the immediate area and, while the deputy was containing the shooter, the shooter took his own life.”
He praised the deputy’s response as “a critical element to the shooter’s decision” to kill himself, and lauded his response to hearing gunshots. “He went to the thunder,” he said. “He heard the noise of gunshot and, when many would run away from it, he ran toward it to make other people safe.”
Thanks to the armed deputy sheriff, the shooting was over in 80 seconds. How many lives were saved? We will never know, but the gunman’s behavior indicates he was willing to kill many people.