Denver Snuffer vs. Grant Palmer

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jhp33
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Re: Denver Snuffer vs. Grant Palmer

Post by jhp33 » 24 Feb 2014, 09:07

Orson wrote:
jhp33 wrote:I don't find the evidence overwhelming as it pertains to Joseph Smith implementing and practicing polygamy. I find, instead, overwhelming evidence that he condemned the practice with the utmost vehemence even until his dying day.
Simply off the top of my head I recall multiple witnesses not all friendly to Brigham Young's leadership also verified Joseph's polygamy. The earliest being Oliver Cowdery, and it seems most of those who lost faith in Joseph at Kirtland. William Law, participating in the Nauvoo Expositor and I also believe gave additional testimony to it years later. William Marks also claimed Joseph did practice polygamy, and it would have been in his interest to proclaim the "true gospel" as he believed it should be (he never agreed with polygamy) as taught by Joseph was free of the practice.

Doesn't even the Community of Christ today admit that Joseph did practice polygamy? There are so many personal witnesses of people that were in fact close to Joseph during his life time that to me the evidence is overwhelming.
It was my understanding that the accusation of polygamy against Oliver came from BY himself.

Am I wrong in remembering that the actual document containing the revelation that is Section 132 is written in BY's handwriting and that he claimed that Emma destroyed the original? Convenient story.

Keep in mind that Emma herself defended Joseph against charges of polygamy her whole life according to all the primary sources. You have to rely on some less-than credible evidence from secondary sources to even come close to establishing that Emma had knowledge of Joseph's practice of polygamy. I find it hard to believe that, even after BY had left and there was no real pressure to keep up the facade, that Emma would continue to defend Joseph's reputation if he was indeed guilty of it.

I admit I'm not as up to speed on the William Law references. Need to look into those.

Roy
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Re: Denver Snuffer vs. Grant Palmer

Post by Roy » 24 Feb 2014, 10:43

jhp33 wrote:It was my understanding that the accusation of polygamy against Oliver came from BY himself.
Oliver had used the word "affair" to describe the relationship between Fanny Alger and JS. In the disciplinary court proceedings JS presses Oliver about the word and Oliver recants. It is interesting that Joseph doesn't deny a relationship but that he strongly objects to the word affair - as he would if he were married to her. Even though Fanny remarried and never went west her family contended that she was in fact married to JS. This was in the Kirtland period.
Orson wrote:Doesn't even the Community of Christ today admit that Joseph did practice polygamy?
In some ways the CoC seems to have been far ahead of us LDS in owning up to their complicated history. I have an inspired version of the bible from them that includes an introduction as to the process of "translation" that seems to have been better described as an inspired "revision". Now that I think about it, it kinda reminds me of the new essays on LDS.org. Now we only need to put them as introductions to our scriptures... ;)
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Orson
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Re: Denver Snuffer vs. Grant Palmer

Post by Orson » 24 Feb 2014, 11:21

jhp33 have you read Mormon Enigma? It has been a long time for me but I would look into it's references on William Marks, what it claims about Emma's denials and other sources that could have effected Emma's sons efforts to clear Josephs name.

...and how are the children of polygamous unions that were born to other apostles during Joseph's lifetime explained? William Clayton saw Joseph daily, he had multiple wives and at a minimum a very pregnant plural wife during Joseph's life. Did Joseph know and not approve yet not take action against Clayton and others?
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Re: Denver Snuffer vs. Grant Palmer

Post by mormonheretic » 24 Feb 2014, 12:55

Steve Veazey, current president of The Community of Christ publicly acknowledged that Joseph Smith practiced polygamy, reversing a century of RLDS position on the subject. There's a video on the official CoC website, but I didn't find it quickly. I swear I did a post on it a while back, but my website crashed, and some of my posts aren't available. (I need to check my backup copy.)

I don't understand why anyone is discounting "secondary" sources as unreliable. If they're good enough for Richard Bushman, they're good enough for me.

I've never heard anything about D&C 132 in BY's hand. I'd like a reference on that if you have one. Otherwise, that sounds suspect to me. There are many who claim that Emma burned the original D&C 132. Why would she keep it if she was opposed to it? Bushman documents Emma being aware of some of Joseph's marriages (Eliza R. Snow, the Partridge sisters). If you'd like references, I can look them up in Rough Stone Rolling. Have you read Todd Compton, Newell Bringhurst, Bushman, Richard Van Wagoneer, George D. Smith, Brian C. Hales or Don Bradley? I think the evidence is pretty overwhelming.

Rock Waterman notwithstanding, I think his arguments aren't at all persuasive, nor does he have the credibility of any of the authors I just listed.

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Re: Denver Snuffer vs. Grant Palmer

Post by Orson » 24 Feb 2014, 13:43

I read a few pages in Mormon Enigma and a few interesting points:

- Joseph's son David wrote a letter after visiting Utah and hearing many testimonies that he believed his father had sinned.

- William Marks said in a meeting of the RLDS quorum of the 12 that Hyrum read the revelation to the Nauvoo High Council in 1843, which brings the question: If it was a BY & 12 conspiracy why would they risk the exposure, how did they get Hyrum on their side, and wasn't JS himself in that High Council meeting? The RLDS 12 decided not to pass a resolution that stated BY as author of polygamy.

- William McLellin wrote to Joseph III asking him to talk to his mother to get the truth. McLellin's position was that he heard Emma admit the polygamy happened.

None of these people above were allies with BY.

[edit:] There are also cases such as Sarah Pratt (wife of Orson) who lost faith later on in Utah, had no reason to support a conspiracy of BY, yet maintained that Joseph approached her, of which she did not accept. I suppose it says nothing for or against BY but is a testimony (credible to some, not to others) that Joseph did teach polygamy.
mormonheretic wrote:I've never heard anything about D&C 132 in BY's hand. I'd like a reference on that if you have one. Otherwise, that sounds suspect to me. There are many who claim that Emma burned the original D&C 132.
William Clayton wrote the original revelation, there would have been no reason to modify anything. He said it was copied by [forget the name but it was not BY] and because Joseph knew they had a good copy he allowed Emma to throw the original into the fire.
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Re: Denver Snuffer vs. Grant Palmer

Post by Curt Sunshine » 24 Feb 2014, 19:58

People who see in black and white color everyone in one of those two colors. In this case, that means Waterman HAS to paint Brigham as completely black (how's that for irony? :lol: ) in order to paint Joseph in glowing white.

I don't accept either coloring as even close to accurate.
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Re: Denver Snuffer vs. Grant Palmer

Post by SilentDawning » 24 Feb 2014, 21:27

Earlier, Hawk made the comment that Christ preached the gospel, and then his disciples created a church -- and that the institutional church gets ugly as it gets bigger.

I have noticed the same thing in the non-profit for which I volunteer (and volunteer a lot). It is not as widespread as in the church, but I had to put the breaks on a policy that was elevating organizational interests above the people it was supposed to serve -- interfering with its own mission.

So, this phenomenon is not specific to the church, it affects all organizations to some degree. For me, you relieve the tension by allowing exceptions -- exceptions that make sure the mission is not at the expense of the organization's desire to perpetuate itself.
Last edited by SilentDawning on 25 Feb 2014, 10:38, edited 1 time in total.
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jhp33
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Re: Denver Snuffer vs. Grant Palmer

Post by jhp33 » 25 Feb 2014, 09:23

Curtis wrote:People who see in black and white color everyone in one of those two colors. In this case, that means Waterman HAS to paint Brigham as completely black (how's that for irony? :lol: ) in order to paint Joseph in glowing white.

I don't accept either coloring as even close to accurate.
This is good, Curtis.

I'll admit that I'm playing a bit of devil's advocate here, as I've been having some personal discussion with Rock via email and I've been trying to bounce around his ideas in my head. I've done so much deconstructing of Joseph Smith as a prophet over the last few months, I decided to try my hand at looking at him differently even with all of the information that is out there.

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Re: Denver Snuffer vs. Grant Palmer

Post by Orson » 26 Feb 2014, 08:40

I understand jhp, I am fascinated at what people do with evidence that contradicts their personal views, I would love to hear Rock or someone else explain their position on these things - not to prove my ideas are right, but to observe their path of logic.
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Re: Denver Snuffer vs. Grant Palmer

Post by On Own Now » 26 Feb 2014, 10:18

jhp,

I find the following from the Community of Christ (formerly RLDS Church) to be quite interesting, both in its admission and in how it deals with the info. In some ways, it is an approach that I think many here tap into:
Community of Christ takes into account the growing body of scholarly research and publications depicting the polygamous teachings and practices of the Nauvoo period of church history (1840–1846). The context of these developments included a time of religious and cultural experimentation in the United States and the emergence of a system of secret temple ordinances in Nauvoo that accented the primacy of family connections, in this life and the next. The practice of plural marriage emerged from that context and involved a small group of key leaders entering into polygamous marriage rituals and covenants. Research findings point to Joseph Smith Jr. as a significant source for plural marriage teaching and practice at Nauvoo. However, several of his associates later wrote that he repudiated the plural marriage system and began to try to stop its practice shortly before his death in June 1844.

Good historical inquiry understands that conclusions are open to correction as new understanding and information comes from ongoing study. Community of Christ, in its ongoing quest for truth, remains open to a more complete understanding of its history. Through careful study and guidance of the Holy Spirit, the church is learning how to own and responsibly interpret all of its history. This process includes putting new information and changing understandings into proper perspective while emphasizing those parts that continue to play a vital role in guiding and shaping the church’s identity and mission today. In this way, we can genuinely affirm the prophetic vision of Joseph Smith Jr., while acknowledging how God’s Spirit works in the lives of imperfect, but highly dedicated people to shape a faith movement that continues to play a vital role in God’s unfolding purposes today.

Over time Community of Christ has moved away from an identity rooted in battling polygamy and charges that Joseph Smith Jr. was somehow involved to focus on pursuing our mission to proclaim Jesus Christ and promote communities of joy, hope, love, and peace. -- http://www.cofchrist.org/ourfaith/faq.asp
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