Thursday, June 30, 2011

The Fruit of Joseph Smith: The Legacy of Mormon Polygamy



The above clip is from the documentary Inside Story of Polygamy on the BBC (click on the link to watch the whole show). This documentary shows the true legacy of Joseph Smith. One of the reasons I chose to leave Mormonism was because of how much suffering and oppression Joseph Smith created with is adulterous lifestyle and the sexual mythology he created to justify that selfish lifestyle. Because of Smith, even those who aren't "physically" abusing children with their authoritarian “priesthood status” in these polygamous groups, have been duped through indoctrination, subjective emotion and Groupthink, to believe they are being obedient to God by living this way.

I also recommend this video I found on youtube: Lifting the Veil of Polygamy.

The FLDS (Fundamentalist Latter day Saints) depicted in the videos above is the fruit of Joseph Smith and his doctrine of polygamy. Whenever I visit a Mormon home or social activity and see a picture of Joseph Smith on a wall for members to revere, I think of his legacy of polygamy and the suffering and harm it continues to cause in the world.

Those who continue to revere Joseph Smith and even sing a hymn praising the man – even though they are aware of his adulterous activities and manipulation and seduction of young girls – truly baffle me. Sandra Tanner, who has provided extensive historical research on the life of Joseph Smith, was baffled as well during a friendly meeting with a liberal Mormon historian who made excuses for Smith’s sexual activities. She says in a speech given in 2009, available on youtube, that her response to him was:

How can you avoid the conclusion that Joseph Smith was a sexual predator? … for instance in the newsletter [Sacred Marriage or Secret Affair?] I tell about the case of Lucy Walker. Now here is a young girl where she is in a family of ten children, the family converts to Mormonism, they end up moving to Nauvoo. But the mother gets malaria in Nauvoo and dies and then one of the children dies. … and Joseph Smith’s solution to this family’s situation is to send the father on a two year mission to the east coast, divide up the children into different homes, and take the teenagers into his home. So now he [Smith] has this sixteen year old girl living in the home with her brother that’s a year or so older than her. He [Smith] starts privately going to the sister to try to convince her to become his plural wife. She’s praying about the whole thing, she doesn’t no what to make out of it.

Then it turns out that Joseph’s wife Emma and the brother go on a shopping trip to St. Luis and while they’re gone Joseph gets the girl to marry him. And she just that day, the day before, turned seventeen when she marries him in polygamy behind Emma’s back. She later wrote in her own story of her life what a devastating thing, and how hard this was for her to do. She says here I was without mother or father to consult, no one around to go to too talk to, and yet being presented with this great issue. Of course she prays and finally feels God spoke to her and told her to do this and she goes into plural marriage. …

This shows a deliberate effort of isolating this girl from her family, from everyone around her, from any support system, in a time of grief and loneliness; to put that kind of pressure on her is signs of a spiritual predator. I don’t see how we can excuse this kind of behavior and say ‘well he was sincere.’ You wouldn’t give that kind of leeway to someone who approached your sixteen year old daughter. …

Why does Joseph [Smith] get a pass on these things? I don’t understand how they [Mormon apologists and liberal Mormons] keep saying ‘it’s OK.’ And if you read the [stories] of the different wives [of Smith] they all are horrible; going to teenage girls and saying God sent an angel with a drawn sword that was going to kill Joseph Smith if he didn’t go into polygamy; if she didn’t marry him God was going to kill him. … The weight of responsibility this would put on a teenage girl, ‘I’m gonna be responsible for the prophets death!’ Then he would also put the responsibility on these young girls: that if you consent to this it will insure your parent’s eternal salvation. … How can a girl say, ‘no, I’m not gonna help my parents have eternal life,’ and so she finally submits to this. … to me [this] clearly is the pattern of a sexual predator. …

… the lies of Joseph Smith do affect people, they aren’t just innocent things that don’t touch other people; because of Joseph Smith’s polygamy we have all the polygamists today. Mormons will say to me, ‘but look at the fruits of Mormonism,’ yea the fruits of Mormonism is sixty thousand people living in polygamy today, that’s the fruit of Joseph Smith. Those people wouldn’t be in those situations had it not been for him [Smith] privately going to teenage girls and coercing them into plural marriage. [End Quote]

Source: Why Mormons Leave, by Sandra Tanner.

As the video below shows, most Mormons have no idea about Joseph Smith’s true character and secret dealings with other men’s wives and teenage girls:

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