LDS reporter who worked on Newsweek's 'Mormon Moment' story defends controversial cover

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  • Little Kahuna Rexburg, ID
    June 14, 2011 9:06 a.m.

    Hey! I'm a faithful Mormon! I thought the Newsweek cover was funny! Mitt Romney is a nice guy! EVERYBODY take a deep breath! Life is short! Be nice! Have a great day!

  • faircomment LORRAINE, NY
    June 14, 2011 4:15 a.m.

    I liked the cover. Mitt looked great and it can only be positive for his campaigning.

  • Spikey Layton, UT
    June 12, 2011 1:09 p.m.

    It's another spot on a dalmation. It'll fade into the woodwork soon enough, so who cares?

    Airamerica: Hahaha! You're funny!

  • airamerica HUTCHINSON, KS
    June 11, 2011 4:33 p.m.

    I truly never saw any of our missionaries wearing what look to be white socks.

  • seer kaysville, ut
    June 10, 2011 3:15 p.m.

    I would like to compare and contrast the political cartoons of John Kennedy and Mitt Romney (as they both ran for office). Were any visuals used of the church in those cartoons?

    If we as a religious group sit on our "pens" while our church is called out, it will not be long before the rhetoric becomes more foul. This is the nature of bigotry and hate. Look at the Jewish people and the cartoons drawn of them over time. You will see that great leaps of liberty were taken by "people and pundits" alike to create a less than desirable character.

    Those of the LDS faith will face a similar choice. Stand by and watch the drips of anti-mormon characterizations increase into torrents, or to speak up with a united voice. I think we need to learn from history. We do not need to lay on the ground and allow ourselves to be tarred and feathered so that we can feel closer to our forefathers. As a citizen of the U.S., you have that right. Smiling at the pictures to avoid conflict as they become worse does no one any favors.

  • SLC gal Salt Lake City, UT
    June 10, 2011 10:38 a.m.

    "The Mormons who are deeply offended" should move to Provo....

    A truth has to face violent opposition before it is universally accepted. I would rather have newsweek covers then a mob trying to torch my cabin. Thank goodness we live in a time where that's illegal.

  • shirl Reno, NV
    June 10, 2011 7:57 a.m.

    Mr. Coppins does a good job on this (Mormon Moment)article. His previous work frequently contained the strong scent of self-aggrandizement; still present but not as strong in this assignment. He is young and smart and will likely wise-up someday and be a good journalist (note: this is a compliment).

    As to the "Mormon Moment" and the "Book of Mormon" musical: tempests in teapots that will fall out of the publics collective "Attention Deficit Disordered Mind" before the next issue of NEWSWEEK is even conceived. Both are simplistic works that will end up on the scrapheap of light-mindedness that passes for news and entertainment these days.

    In the meantime we long for honest intellectual reporting that nourishes,uplifts and enlightens as it informs instead of the drivel that seeks only to sell print. The paying public deserves better.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    June 9, 2011 4:45 p.m.

    Newsweek is tabloid garbage so who cares.

  • CSP5 Ogden, UT
    June 9, 2011 1:42 p.m.

    First of all, I do agree that I think some are being a bit too sensitive as far as being "offended" by a cover of a magazine or a musical. Sticks and stones, after all.

    That being said, if a character on Saturday Night Live appeared in Blackface to represent the President, most of us would be in an uproar about an obvious display of racism and disrespect. I think this is a very similar situation, although obviously not identical. It's not about the oversensitivity of a religion. It's about a lack of respect. That cover was disrespectful to a person and a religion because it was inspired by something that intended to demonstrate a lack of respect for a particular group and culture. Our society too often blurs the lines of humor and respect and perhaps those lines should be better defined.

  • Lilljemalm Gilbert, AZ
    June 9, 2011 1:40 p.m.

    The article was very well done and the cover portrays how many 20 year old missionaries act - they jump - they are happy serving as missionaries. The vast majority of people don't associate the cover photo with the play as the vast majority isn't into theatre all that much, especially a play that hasn't left Broadway yet.
    I've heard it said that only fools take offense when none is intended and only bigger fools take offense when it is intended. No offense was intended here.

  • bricha lehi, ut
    June 9, 2011 12:50 p.m.


    I would have to disagree. I don't think it is ideal to have what could potentially be a persons only contact with the church, be that musical. But on the other hand I think it really has the potential for people to look it up on their own to see if we are as strange as we appear.

    But I would agree that it would have been nice for the article to include the topics you suggested, but you can only fit so much in an article right?

  • bricha lehi, ut
    June 9, 2011 12:41 p.m.

    I agree with a lot of the comments here, why are we making such a big deal of it. Its a picture and a headline that will turn heads and sell magazines. And it doesn't put the church in a half bad light. I mean in my book we can't ask for better.

  • Brother Chuck Schroeder A Tropical Paradise USA, FL
    June 9, 2011 11:48 a.m.

    Short time back here, a good friend that I believe in, Charlie Daniels, told me this. My sins were responsible for those nails being driven through His hands and feet, those 39 lashes that opened up His back, that crown of thorns that was thrust into His head, the spear that pierced into His side. He did it for me, He did it for you, He did it for Adolph Hitler and Joseph Stalin, for Billy Graham and Ted Bundy, for George Soros and the homeless person who lives under a bridge. Not everybody will believe and accept His free offer of eternal life, some will scoff, some will refuse to take it seriously and some will think they have lived such an evil life that not even the blood of Jesus can save them. Jesus said that He did not come to abolish the Law or the Prophets, but to fulfill it. And when He died and was resurrected a New Covenant was established. A covenant not of rigid law, but a righteousness of conscience and faith and forgiveness written on men's hearts. I refuse the need a savior like Mitt Romney. Jesus Christ will do fine.

  • SamBaUSA Sandy, UT
    June 9, 2011 11:35 a.m.

    I agree about this just being the beginning. Be careful what you wish for. Are we ready for President Romney to be parodied in his garments on Saturday Night Live? Or for a temple prayer circle to be spoofed on the same program? It WILL happen if he is elected. Thick skins required for the road ahead.

  • Red Salt Lake City, UT
    June 9, 2011 9:20 a.m.

    I'm ready for a Mormon President.

    Especially one who understands numbers and can help guide America out of this financial crisis.

    Saving is always more boring than spending!

    Not drinking and smoking and cheating on your wife might be "boring" to all the losers in America, but it is exactly what we need to get us out of this mess.

    Discipline= boring when you are an idiot I guess.

    It's crazy that we want to turn this into a popularity contest of who is going to entertain the Fat Americans watching TV the best.

    Let's all be a little more DISCIPLINED and get this country back on track!

    Thank you! Go Utes!

  • Otis Spurlock Ogden, UT
    June 9, 2011 9:15 a.m.

    McKay Coppins was the best writer at the D-News. It was a real shame that he jumped ship to NewsWeek. Most of his articles were critised for being too liberal when he was at the D-News by many posters.

    I'm don't know whether we are ready for a Mormon President, but I definitely know that the Church is not ready for a liberal journalist based on the critisism McKay received and continues to receive from LDS.

    Keep up the good work, Brother Coppins.

  • Quayle Dallas, TX
    June 9, 2011 7:21 a.m.

    Let's compare and contrast:

    Joseph got dragged from his home, was tarred and feathered, and had a bottle smashed against his teeth from which he developed a life-long whistle when he spoke from a broken tooth.

    The next day he got up and humbly (and I speculate, happily) preached so some of the very men that had done it.

    In our day we get a cover story and some attention in a failing news magazine struggling desperately for readership.

    And some of us fly to pieces and whine that it's all so very unfair and we're hurt by it.

    We need to return to the rough and tough character of our ancestors and quick being so easily injured by outsiders.

    As our ancestors said over and over, the only thing that truly injure us is our own failure to live our religion and our own lack of unity.

  • eastcoastcoug Danbury, CT
    June 9, 2011 7:15 a.m.

    Mormon Dem,

    I don't buy the idea that you can give our religion a back-handed compliment by using vulgarity and putting us all down as naive dolts. Sounds like you are twisting for an end-justifies-the-means angle and happy with ANY publicity, especially one that portrays us as less-than-stiff. I don't think you have to go to either extreme to do the job.

    What is missing for me in the Newsweek piece (and it is reflected in the BOM musical citation) is HOW Mormons are successful - what in our faith and beliefs really works. You don't have to do a sanctimonious church-approved article, but this stuff (pardon me McKay Coppins) is a pure retread on all the stereotypes we have heard for years and barely scratches the surface. Tell us something we didn't know. It promises more and under delivers by a mile. There is no mention about how the church promotes education (or the perpetual education fund in 3rd World) or the volunteer work in developing areas eg. Africa. It is mostly politics and pop culture.

  • no fit in SG St.George, Utah
    June 9, 2011 7:01 a.m.

    Better put the sensitivity up on the shelf, take a breath, count to ten, calm down.
    "60 Minutes" and every other media outlet will be doing more and more programs, news articles, comedy skits, etc. about LDS History, the Mormon Religion, and the "Peculiar" Culture.
    Better yet, have you purchased your blinders and ear plugs yet? That might curtail the angst for those who may be lacking a sense of humor, and those whose feelings are of a delicate nature.
    Strap yourselves in tight, It is going to be a wild and bumpy ride!

  • Dektol Powell, OH
    June 9, 2011 6:53 a.m.

    Is this really all so many mormons have to worry about?

  • JoeBlow Miami Area, Fl
    June 9, 2011 6:25 a.m.

    I just read the whole article.

    To those who did not like the article,

    What did you find to be unfair or untrue?

  • CynicJim Taylorsville, UT
    June 9, 2011 5:17 a.m.

    It would be a real homage to honesty to see such a production depicting the Qu'ran and rib tickling humor ridiculing the stridency of Islam. The fear and trembling of such an production would hence shake the columns of political correctness and hypocracy.
    Taste and decency is one thing, rib poking is another. If the church took the same militant and threatening stance as has worldwide Islam the boldness of Pulitzer wannabees would disappear in the currency of self preservation.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    June 9, 2011 4:27 a.m.

    I thought the article was quite pro-Mormon and pro-Romney. You could tell the writer was LDS.

    My question is this: IF Mormons are upset that there are some who won't vote for Romney because he is Mormon, should they also not vote for Romney just because he IS LDS? If there is a religious test, does it not cut both ways? Why else would the vast majority of LDS people support a pretty moderate (some might say liberal) politician from Massachusetts, who is rich and never has been middle class and doesn't really understand their struggles? It is his religion, plain and simple.

  • DC Alexandria, VA
    June 9, 2011 4:20 a.m.

    As a Mormon, I wasn't offended by the cover. Watching Romney's campaign, it looks like he could use a little pep in this persona anyway, so if anything, this may give some voters a more relaxed view of Romney.

  • MormonDem Provo, UT
    June 9, 2011 12:00 a.m.

    It really is tiresome to hear members complaining about any media coverage of the Church that isn't either fawning or correlated or both. Grow up, folks. You'll never be as persecuted as your pioneer ancestors, so quit fantasizing about it.

    Also, while there is much to be offended about in the Book of Mormon musical, it is hardly "anti-Mormon." In fact, the Mormons end up being the heroes at the end, and Mormonism--even though the show's creators think it's factually not true--ends up being the only thing that can save the villagers. It's got more profanity than most Mormons are comfortable with, and deals lightly with tenets we hold sacred, but it is not anti-Mormon. In fact, I just saw an interview with one of the guys who plays a missionary in it. He said that to prepare for the role, he read the entire Book of Mormon and found it absolutely fascinating.

  • coleman51 Orem, UT
    June 8, 2011 11:33 p.m.

    Seriously, I doubt that some cover on a magazine should be a litmus test over whether Mormons are ready for a Mormon president. The whole article is way over the top and shows a really distorted view of Mormons and how latter-day saints feel. I don't think Mr. Coppins is a good representative of how we feel as a people and the cover is a mockery of who we are. In a distorted way, it reinforces old stereotypes that most people don't even know exists anymore.

  • CaliforniaCougar Lake Elsinore, CA
    June 8, 2011 10:49 p.m.

    Someone besides Jimmer made the cover?

    Seriously, all this attention just gets people asking questions. It's all good for the Church.

  • greenman108 Petaluma, CA
    June 8, 2011 10:14 p.m.

    after the cover story, the next thing I read from Romney is that he is going to withdraw from the public eye until September. I found that interesting. Apparently he is skipping the N.H. debate on June 13th. It certainly means he is skipping the Iowa straw poll in August.

    here is the quote I saw: "He said he will conduct a few key interviews, but mainly keep a low profile.

    "Until Labor Day hits I'm going be pretty quiet," Romney said." I am amazed he would skip the debate in N.H. He must like his position. I notice that guys who are ahead in the polls limit their appearance in debates, right up until election day, making it hard for opponents to make up ground. No debate = no gaffes and nothing to oppose. Aikido.

  • Johnny Triumph American Fork, UT
    June 8, 2011 9:48 p.m.

    Anything like that cover just lends much less credibility to both the author and the publication. I'd expect such action from City Weekly but not from a periodical that's trying to get back into relevance.

  • windsor City, Ut
    June 8, 2011 8:51 p.m.

    quoting article--"Those Mormons who are deeply offended by Newsweek's cover image/story probably aren't ready themselves for a Mormon president."

    Au contraire.

    I am completely ready for a Mormon president.

    What I have against this cover is (quoting article again:)"Newsweek mocked Mitt Romney's Mormonism as they promoted the vulgar 'South Park' musical 'The Book of Mormon."

  • Serenity Manti, UT
    June 8, 2011 7:38 p.m.

    I think it's funny. I laughed when I saw it and I am sure Mitt Romney is glad for the publicity. Maybe the Book of Mormon Musical will do something good after all.

  • Pa. Reader Harrisburg, PA
    June 8, 2011 7:06 p.m.

    Really folks, get over yourselves. This persecution complex so many of our LDS members walk around with is tiresome. All this whining about the "liberal media" is as silly as it is unjustified.
    This was a balanced, well written article that was a fair and accurate portrayal of the "Mormon moment" we are witnessing. (It is not Newsweek's job to be a PR arm of the Church.)
    Too many of our members want to align themselves with the true enemies of our Faith, the agnostic and atheist voices on the left, and the evangelical nuts on the right. Both extreme groups openly admit their animosity toward The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
    Remember the wisdom of presidential candidate Pat Paulson (of Smother's Brothers fame): "I'm kind of middle of the bird. Too much right wing, too much left wing, and you tend to fly around in circles."

  • So. Cal Reader Escondido, CA
    June 8, 2011 6:47 p.m.

    Re: KJB1-- I could care less about the Newsweek cover. My concern is the content of the article itself. For Coppins to talk about all of his oversight and pleasure in saying this article brings the church out of obscurity, I don't think so. For such an indepth article in a national publication, particularly with an "active" member of the church participating, I would have expected the article to be more balanced. Don't think the intent of such an article was to come away from it laughing.

  • KJB1 Eugene, OR
    June 8, 2011 6:07 p.m.

    I wonder if the people complaining about the Newsweek cover have even seen a political cartoon. Leaders and elected officials have been made to look ridiculous ever since the beginnings of America. In fact, I'd even say that it's a key part in helping keep them down to Earth.

    If you guys really want to see Mormons to become more visible, this is part of the game. Enjoy the attention and laugh along.

  • So. Cal Reader Escondido, CA
    June 8, 2011 5:50 p.m.

    I would hope that McKay Coppins is not "puffing" out his chest with pride over his "efforts" on this article. There were so many other, less offensive depictions that could have been used, which as an "active" member of the church, he should have known all too well. Pretting disappointed with "Bro." Coppins! "DeepintheHeart", I couldn't agree with you more. Well said!

  • Cats Somewhere in Time, UT
    June 8, 2011 5:43 p.m.

    I thought the cover was really funny. I'll bet anything that Mitt Romney got a good laugh out of it, too. Methinks that a few people need to lighten up a little bit.

  • DeepintheHeart Lewisville, TX
    June 8, 2011 4:13 p.m.

    "A Mormon-themed" cultural event? Don't you mean a South Park attack on the church and its members? No one in his right mind would get a positive (or even neutral) view of Mormons based on that musical's portrayal. That alone is evidence of the bias of Newsweek, both against the LDS Church and Mitt Romney.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    June 8, 2011 3:32 p.m.

    "Those Mormons who are deeply offended by Newsweek's cover image/story probably aren't ready themselves for a Mormon president," he said. "This ain't nothing compared to some of the vitriol the LDS Church will face if Romney/Huntsman actually IS elected."


    Amen, and Amen!

  • LDS Revelations Sandy, UT
    June 8, 2011 3:30 p.m.

    "Those Mormons who are deeply offended by Newsweek's cover image/story probably aren't ready themselves for a Mormon president," he said. "This ain't nothing compared to some of the vitriol the LDS Church will face if Romney/Huntsman actually IS elected."


    The LDS Church catches a lot of grief some it deserved, some of it not but this comes with coming of age as it were. If LDS are going to get upset about something as harmless and frankly, funny as that cover then they don't really want all of the press they're desperately seeking.

    This is really about getting your press and getting it how you want it too but no one gets that really. Do they? It's a big world with lots of differing views.

    The cover is funny because Romney is such a stick in the mud. People need to lighten up and laugh a little...even if people don't see their faith as they do or as they would like them to. Hate to imagine how LDS would of reacted if President Monson's head had been photoshopped.