Published: Wednesday, Feb. 29 2012 2:00 p.m. MST
Nice article, Nathan. Well done."God has always been
discriminatory."Bott was right about that. I've been a member
all my life and I can't have the priesthood. I'm a girl.
@Alpha Smith "I've been a member all my life and I can't have the
priesthood. I'm a girl."You have the Priesthood. For some reason
women don't "hold" the Priesthood. Yet, they are still set apart by the
laying on of hands to work under the direction of the Priesthood. Women still
have the responsibility to teach and preach and lead prayers in congregations.
They receive all the blessings and responsibilities to work in the Temple.What happened to the blacks is far different. Black women still don't
"hold" the Priesthood, but receive the highest ordinances of the Church
and Temple. But, many black women did not have this privilege before 1978
either. I am so thankful we all do now.
It would be interesting to see the entire transcript of what Bott said or listen
to the whole unaltered tape. IF Bott was quoted in context and correctly then
he deserves to get his fanny kicked. If he was quoted out of context and had
made it clear to the students that these were some of the old theories as to why
the ban and quoted them as part of the class (like quoting McConkie), then the
Washington Post deserves to get their fanny kicked.Gotcha journalism
at its best.
" IF Bott was quoted in context and correctly then he deserves to get his
fanny kicked. If he was quoted out of context and had made it clear to the
students that these were some of the old theories as to why the ban and quoted
them as part of the class (like quoting McConkie), then the Washington Post
deserves to get their fanny kicked."I couldn't agree more
Flashback. My girlfriend, a current black mormon, recently talked to another
member about the priesthood ban just this weekend ironically, on Sunday. The
girl had shared with my girlfriend the same story ... that white's weren't ready
for it yet and it really was a blessing in disguise.It's this kind
of irrational thought and surrendering of the conscious that irritates me the
most. You can accept that as an answer? How many other bishops have shared
that story over the years?
Bott's comments were at the very least insensitive and politically tone deaf,
but his biggest error was to present his views as representing authoritative
church doctrine. Having said that, I hope the church will continue to allow
sufficient academic freedom to explore difficult issues in church history and
doctrine in a responsible way. Also, Oman's closing swipe at Romney, while
clever and more politically correct, betrays a subtle reverse racism in its own
I reckon Utah Sen. Chris Buttars is a BYU fan?
Bruce R and Jeffrey Holland both understate what is patently obvious.The policy of not giving black men the priesthood, nor allowing black women
entrance into the temple wasn't misunderstood or inadequate. The policy was
racist, pure and simple and the scriptures for the LDS church including the Book
of Mormon (see 2 Nephi 5) and the Book of Moses and Abraham each espouse racist
doctrine.I wish LDS members would study their church's history as
much as they study the Book of Mormon and attend the temple.
I have my beliefs and no one can change them but me. I believe in fairness,
freedom, and justice. I believe the LDS Church is God's true church teaching the
most peaceful plan of happiness, the most love to our families, and the most
wonderful doctrines capable of existing. With something I hold so dear, it is a
concern when others attack those beliefs. But even more troubling isn't the
hatred people have with the church- it's that they do so in hypocrisy.The world condemns a past of polygamy and non-violent policies involving race,
but about free agency and not about punishing innocent people- while that same
world practices promiscuity, child abandonment, family abandonment, wife
"swapping", lynching, and every other despicable, evil, secret
combinations of murder and the worst evils- while their future generations
attempt to hold us accountable of something somehow worse than their own
actions- while we were promoting peaceful doctrines instead. One may disagree
about their morality, but FOR those times- for those people- those doctrines
promoted peace ACCORDING to the people they were for.It might not be
the most 'right' thing to deny one child desert- but if it prevents both your
children from getting themselves in a dangerous situation, taking away the
desert could be the best choice available- not because you as a parent aren't
perfect, but because your children aren't.The truth is up to an all
knowing, all seeing God to know. Every member of the human race sees only the
most minute fraction of that picture- yet it's easy to be quick to judge each
other. There is a reason Jesus Christ commanded us not to judge each other. We
aren't perfect and we don't have a perfect picture of everything. That's just
how it is.
I'm sure it counts as folklore too, but somebody once told me that they thought
that the church wasn't yet worthy to have African American members until it had
been sufficiently purged of racism. Looking at it backwards, it kind of makes
I think the problem is that people can look back and say "Jim Crow laws were
racist" so what they feel the LDS church is supposed to do is to condemn the
previous leaders and say that the priesthood ban was wrong. That would, however,
disagree with the claims like the first half of "the church is true, the
people are not" and "the prophet will never lead us astray".
I don't know Flashback and would not indicate his comments are based on any
motive except the best. However, his comments are, behaviorally, a form of
'commenter gotcha'. Anyone can find the article, and find commentaries by those
who heard him. Yes, he was given the benefit of the doubt. Bott's words are
correctly reported. I would caution all that we can lean the other
way too far by engaging in 'persecution complex' defense. The Church and its
leaders are mature, grown, responsible, and good as an institution and as
individuals. Where the LDS like Brother Bott or the leaders make mistakes,
correcting the record is absolutely essential.The LDS history, like
the history of all American and their institutions, is problematic. Why?
Because our history as a nation and as a people and as variety of cultures has
been problematic. To single out LDS leaders of the past as somehow being
outside of the cultural and social milieu of America seems problematic. They
were Americans living in an era with all the particular issues of the day. Why
would LDS leaders be different than other Americans living in the same era?Brother Bott needs to be counseled, probably already has been, by his
file leadership. The rest of us can learn from it and move on.
Never had Botts as a teacher but somehow I learned the justification for the
priesthood ban was related to the "mark of Cain" and/or blacks not being
"valiant" in the pre-existence etc. I'm sure a majority of U.S. Mormons
continue to believe it. Thankfully, over the years I've done my own
research on the topic and discovered the facts. It is long past time
for the church to correct the mythology and report accurate church history. At
the time the ban ended, I didn't know what McConkie had written about the
priesthood ban so his statement meant nothing to me. And, being young, I didn't
take the time to track down what he said so I could know what to unlearn. The
facts need to be laid out, the history needs to clear, the record set straight.
If the sentiments and substance of Oman's beliefs could be promulgated in
Utah... and take root firmly in our rapidly diversifying culture... We might
finally have men (and women) to match our mountains.
The fact is that the LDS church did not allow persons of African descent to hold
the priesthood prior to 1978. If brother Bott was bringing up old reasons for
the ban that brother Holland and others regard as folklore, then please tell us
what was the official church justification for denying these individual the
priesthood prior to 1978. There must have some reason for the church to have had
Dear Barndog48: As has been stated many times...the brethren do NOT know the
reason. President Hinckley made that clear. Adam offered sacrifice
and after MANY DAYS he was approached by an angel and asked why he was offering
sacrifice. He stated, "I know not save the Lord hath commanded it."
There are MANY things that we don't know the reason for except that they are
commandments. We do not know the reason for the priesthood ban, but we are
required to follow the Lord's commandments. It is important that we accept
these commandments and sometimes we just don't know the reason. That is what
faith is for. I have learned in my life that there are many things I don't
understand, but I have learned to trust Christ and follow him in all things.
re:Cats"There are MANY things that we don't know the reason for except
that they are commandments."At this point we don't even know,
(the church hasn't said), when, how and who was commanded to deny the priesthood
to blacks in the first place. Don't you find that puzzling? How many commandments do we not know how they originated? We know how
polygamy originated, we know where the Ten Commandments came from, we know what
Jesus taught, we know where the principle of tithing came from etc. Which
prophet received the commandment to not extend the priesthood to blacks, when
during Jospeh Smith's time it wasn't that way? Is the commandment in the
I have taken multiple classes from Brother Bott. He uses many scriptures,
quotes, and church resources to make his case. Everyone gladly accepts that God
favored the Jews in biblical times, but when God withholds something from a race
we cant accept that there is a reason. Im ashamed of the fact Blacks were
denieed the priesthood because I have never seen a reason why they would be
considerred inferior.I dont understand this and many other things but I dont
think Brother Bott should be treated as rogue professor when he bases his
argument on teachings from the bible, lds scripture, and latter day prophet
I talked with one of the first black Church members to receive the priesthood.
We both felt in our hearts that the reason they couldn't hold the priesthood for
a time is that the members of the church couldn't handle it. They were still a
young sapling, and the racism in the U.S. was pretty strong. It would have, we
felt, destroyed the young Church. When the time came that the church was strong
enough, the ban was able to be lifted. Just an opinion, but it seems more
generous than some of the other ones out and about.
dear cats you wrote:Dear Barndog48: As has been stated many
times...the brethren do NOT know the reason. President Hinckley made that clear.
Adam offered sacrifice and after MANY DAYS he was approached by an
angel and asked why he was offering sacrifice. He stated, "I know not save
the Lord hath commanded it." There are MANY things that we don't know the
reason for except that they are commandments. We do not know the reason for the
priesthood ban, but we are required to follow the Lord's commandments. It is
important that we accept these commandments and sometimes we just don't know the
reason. That is what faith is for. I have learned in my life that there are many
things I don't understand, but I have learned to trust Christ and follow him in
all things.my questionwhen exactly did the brethern receive
this commandment and where exactly is it recorded?
When I was serving as the ward executive secretary when I lived in Alaska, we
were discussing this concept in our ward Priesthood Executive Council meeting.
Two of the members of that group were African-American, the High Priests Group
leader a a member of the Stake High Counsel. We were discussing concerns that
the ward mission leader had about a mixed race family working with the
missionaries. One counselor in the Bishopric began to gave a short doctrinal
thesis, much like Professor Bott. But the conversation was ended by the High
Priests Group leader who said, "this does not bother me. If it did, I would
not be sitting today with you today."Sometimes we are over
apologetic where we do not need to be. If people do not want to be friendly
with Latter-day Saints, they will find any excuse that they can grab hold of.
If it were not for race and the priesthood, it would be something else.
Sometimes we go way over the top to apologize for something that we had no
control over. That is what Bott did.
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