Kirby on Kate

by: Mormon Heretic

June 23, 2014

I stayed up really late trying to find out what would happen to Kate Kelly, and now we’re told that a decision will come Monday or Tuesday.  Hmmm, I need a humor break.  So here are some of Robert Kirby’s words from the Salt Lake Tribune.

Robert Kirby, who refers to himself as an “OxyMormon,” writes humorous columns for the Salt Lake Tribune

The outcome of Sunday’s “court o’ love” is a foregone conclusion for many people. Some I’ve talked to seem to think Kate will have her membership torn from her as a way of putting her in her place.

Others insist that she should have seen it coming and mended her heretical ways before being torn from the bosom of the savior for her own good.

Whatever happens will be interesting for Mormons, but you know what would be most interesting of all? If Kate came out of the hearing with a promotion instead — not to the lowly Aaronic priesthood reserved for boys but to the full-bore Melchizedek Priesthood currently invested in older men, including geezers such as me.

What if instead of being cast out, Kate was called to serve where no woman has served before — as a bishop of an LDS ward?

That would certainly shake things up. We’ve been patriarchal for so long that most of us wouldn’t know what to do if our congregational leadership balance suddenly shifted to the female side.

I’d know what to do. If the bishop in the Rosecrest First Ward suddenly didn’t have a Y chromosome, I’d do whatever she told me, that’s what. I’m far more used to taking orders from women.

My mother is a woman. So is my wife. My editor is the second toughest woman in the entire world. I only have daughters and most of my grandchildren are female.

Being bossed around by men is easier to cope with for the simple fact that I understand the way other men think. Also, I’m allergic to male authority.

For example, with a male bishop there’s always that mutually understood fundamental gospel premise that if he oversteps his authority, I just might punch him in the face.

I haven’t done that yet. The highest up the priesthood chain of command I’ve ever slugged was a first counselor in another ward’s elders’ quorum presidency. But it was basketball and he swung first.

It’s less socially acceptable — whether in church or out — to go around punching women, including crazy mean bossy ones. There’s a certain amount of deference afforded women even when they’re exercising unrighteous dominion.

If my LDS bishop was a woman, I’d end up doing more volunteer welfare assignments, skipping church less and probably even working in the Primary. And if she wasn’t happy with the job I did, I could end up attending church in the custodial closet.

On the bright side, with a female bishop I might be — entirely against my will — forced to improve my odds of not going to hell. Or at least not the deepest part where Hitler and Mr. Rogers are.

Personally I’m all for women getting ordained. Why not? As a rule they’re kinder, gentler and more loving than men. Maybe room should be made for them.

They would have to get their own levels of priesthood authority, though. Toward that end I’ll support anything but the Menopausidik Priesthood.

 

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54 Responses to Kirby on Kate

  1. Jeff Spector on June 23, 2014 at 11:32 AM

    So where’s the humor?

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  2. Rigel Hawthorne on June 23, 2014 at 12:28 PM

    I had a certain image of KK in one way, but watching a recent interview and hearing her speak shifted my image of her. Her disciplinary council is an absolute ambush? Given her probationary status and disinclination to take down her website citing personal inauthenticity, is it an honest declaration to use the word ambush? I could see the use of “ultimatum” or “threat”, but ambush?

    Her victimization that if she is guilty of apostasy for asking questions, then every person who also asks questions is also guilty of apostasy–can a listener seriously be expected to accept that as an authentic statement of facts? Isn’t setting up a written protocol to recruit non-participating individuals with persuasive oppositionist thinking a stretch beyond asking questions?

    I am glad that I am not her Bishopric, as I would certainly find it personally challenging to love such a member of my congregation. I do not see anything a Bishop could do to merit her respect and cooperation other than to lay aside his charge and capitulate. Nevertheless, I pray for her Bishop as he prays for guidance in her behalf. May the Lord’s will be made known to him.

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  3. Jeff Spector on June 23, 2014 at 12:51 PM

    I am finding Kate Kelly to be our latest version of Margaret Toscano as Denver Snuffer is a Paul Toscano. It’s the “I’m right, you’re wrong, nothing you say can or will dissuade me from my line of thinking and anything that happens to me as a result is your fault.”

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  4. dba.brotherp on June 23, 2014 at 2:40 PM

    “I am finding Kate Kelly to be our latest version of Margaret Toscano as Denver Snuffer is a Paul Toscano.”

    See Jeff, you do have sense of humor!

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  5. Mormon Heretic on June 23, 2014 at 2:51 PM
  6. Mormon Heretic on June 23, 2014 at 4:06 PM

    Kate’s comment from Ordain Women website:

    “The decision to force me outside my congregation and community is exceptionally painful. Today is a tragic day for my family and me as we process the many ways this will impact us, both in this life and in the eternities. I love the gospel and the courage of its people. Don’t leave. Stay, and make things better.”

    The New York Times has picked the story up already: http://mobile.nytimes.com/2014/06/24/us/Kate-Kelly-Mormon-Church-Excommunicates-Ordain-Women-Founder.html

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  7. Mormon Heretic on June 23, 2014 at 4:16 PM

    Kaimi at Times and Seasons notes that Kelly was not guilty of apostasy after all, but for “conduct contrary to the laws and order of the Church.” He notes that her church leaders issued a new charge, and did not allow Kelly to represent herself, contrary to church policy. See http://timesandseasons.org/index.php/2014/06/a-house-of-order-serious-problems-of-notice-in-kate-kelly-excommunication/

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  8. Ken on June 23, 2014 at 4:32 PM

    The church made the right decision here.

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  9. ji on June 23, 2014 at 4:41 PM

    MH, there was no new charge. A person facing a council for adultery could get a notice saying he or she was excommunicated for conduct contrary to the laws and order or the church, or something along those lines. There is nothing sinister in that.

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  10. Jeff Spector on June 23, 2014 at 4:52 PM

    Standard language from the letters I’ve seen.

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  11. Mormon Heretic on June 23, 2014 at 5:17 PM

    Well Ken, ji and Jeff, I encourage you to take your arguments to Kaimi. I’m not a lawyer, but he is, an I’m sure you can straighten him out.

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  12. Ken on June 23, 2014 at 7:18 PM

    Mormon Heretic,

    The last thing we need to do, or should do, is bring an attorney into the equation. That would make a bad situation worse. Quite frankly, Kate looking at this from an attorney’s prospective (in my opinion) is what got her in trouble.

    This is not a democracy, it is a church and when we put our arm to the square to support the church leaders we respect that line of authority. Constantly calling them out is not supporting them, it is apostasy.

    If Kate has genuine faith, excommunication is not a bad thing. Quite the opposite, it is a time to hit a reset button and start with a clean slate. The ball is now in her court.

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  13. hawkgrrrl on June 23, 2014 at 7:42 PM

    Ken: Kate consistently said she supported their prophetic role. She simply asked that they pray about female ordination. That’s not calling them out. They did not respond to her, even once, and ignored five meeting requests. Evidently what’s wrong is being a woman and thinking for even one second that you will be taken seriously.

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  14. Ken on June 23, 2014 at 9:34 PM

    “Kate consistently said she supported their prophetic role”

    Saying and doing are quite different.

    “She simply asked that they pray about female ordination”

    We both know she demanded more than that.

    “That’s not calling them out.”

    But showing up to the general priesthood meeting and demanding entrance is; especially when you were asked not to by the church.

    “They did not respond to her, even once, and ignored five meeting requests”

    Sounds demanding to me — asking, and having them deny your request once would be supporting and respectful; publically asking five times, when they have already (respectfully) said no is calling them out.

    Let’s put this in perspective. You are a boss at Amex. Let’s suppose one of your employees requested a meeting to discuss a policy you were asked to put in place by your boss. Furthermore, you were asked not to discuss it with them, or anyone for that matter. They request an appointment with you and you respectfully, through your assistant, tell them no. They hold five press conferences demanding you meet with them. My guess is that you and your boss wouldn’t see this as respectful. In fact I’m quite certain in would be seen as insubordination. As the boss you would have every right to terminate them. In fact, if you didn’t fire them you would start to lose the respect of other employees.

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  15. Mormon Heretic on June 23, 2014 at 10:20 PM

    Ken, I’m not a fan of lawyers either, but this disciplinary council seems like a kangaroo court, and isn’t what I would call due process by any stretch of the imagination. You and I obviously disagree on the interpretation of events.

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  16. Erin Whitney on June 23, 2014 at 10:30 PM

    “Toward that end I’ll support anything but the Menopausidik Priesthood.” BWAH-HA-HA-HA!

    Kirby doesn’t have to understand why this is sexist, I just wish he would get that this isn’t even *clever.*

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  17. Jim M. on June 23, 2014 at 10:43 PM

    Let’s put this in perspective. You are a female employee of a large international corporation that doesn’t allow woman to hold managerial or leadership positions. Their corporate policy is that only men can be on their board of directors, be vice presidents, regional managers, etc. This same company had previously discriminated against people of color before finally changing their policies.

    They seemed to be one of the last companies in America to have still such gender-based rules about leadership. When asked about their discriminatory policy and if it could ever change, the CEO says “Yes. But there’s no agitation for that. We don’t find it. Our women are happy.” He claims of the female employees that are dissatisfied with their policies “you’ll find a little handful one or two here and there”.

    So several woman want to change things in the company. They have no power to make any changes. When letters are sent to the corporate leadership they are returned unopened to the regional managers or site supervisors. But the local managers and supervisors, despite being men, have no authority to change the policy. So some female employees decide to go public in their protests of the policy in order show that there is some “agitation for that”. Rather than meeting with these woman to discuss the policies, the leader of the group is fired from her job by a committee of men.

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  18. hawkgrrrl on June 23, 2014 at 11:19 PM

    Ken: “Let’s put this in perspective. You are a boss at Amex. Let’s suppose one of your employees requested a meeting to discuss a policy you were asked to put in place by your boss. Furthermore, you were asked not to discuss it with them, or anyone for that matter.” Amex would never put a policy in place that was binding to employees and then prohibit leaders from discussing it with those employees.

    “They request an appointment with you and you respectfully, through your assistant, tell them no.” Amex has an open door policy, like most large corporations. They need their employees and to create a fair and open work environment as much as their employees need them.

    “In fact, if you didn’t fire them you would start to lose the respect of other employees.” It’s a ludicrous example. Amex employees know they will not be treated in this way, so they are conditioned to expect being treated with respect. They wouldn’t lose respect for a leader who refused to fire someone unjustly. On the contrary.

    As Jim M pointed out, Amex doesn’t discriminate on the basis of one’s sex or sexual orientation. If the places you’ve worked are as you’ve described, I would leave. But that’s a job. Not your eternal salvation. The stakes here are higher, especially for a believer like Kate or me.

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  19. | The Lds Saint of St Augustie on June 24, 2014 at 5:46 AM
  20. Jeff Spector on June 24, 2014 at 7:08 AM

    “Let’s put this in perspective. You are a boss at Amex.”

    This is why attempts at analogies usually fail because they are not analogous.

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  21. Ken on June 24, 2014 at 9:54 AM

    Jeff,

    I agree. I attempted to make a point about insubordination and it ended up comparing the church to a corporation. I should have left the analogy out of my comments.

    I go back to my previous comment that when we put our arm to the square in support of our leaders, we need to sustain them.

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  22. JG on June 24, 2014 at 11:24 PM

    Kate Kelly should have asked John Dehlin for help on how to avoid excommunication as Dehlin has done for a few years.

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  23. Mormon Heretic on June 25, 2014 at 10:52 AM

    JG, excellent comment. I think part of the reason John has avoided excommunication is the fact that he already has personal contacts with Elder Oaks and Elder Holland, as well as some Seventies. To my knowledge Kate does not have similar contacts. So it could very well be that what works for John (personal association with “the brethren”), won’t work for Kate because she lacks those personal contacts.

    Regarding insubordination as grounds for apostasy, well, I can completely understand that Paul Toscano was completely insubordinate and that’s why he was exed. I’m not saying I agree, but Paul’s insubordination was much more “in your face” than anything Kate Kelly has done. I gather that Kate’s bishop was more than happy to leave her alone until Elders Clayton and Ballard put unrighteous dominion on Kate’s bishop. As such the request for Kelly to take down her website is really Clayton/Ballard’s move, not the bishop who is simply the messenger. I think Clayton/Ballard’s unrighteous dominion was grounds for Kelly to be insubordinate to their request. The bishop is just a pawn in the scheme of things. I feel bad for him, and I’m sure he wishes he had no part in this unfortunate affair. If Ballard or Clayton wants her to take it down, why didn’t they make the request themselves, instead of hiding behind her bishop. That’s the sinister part here–they made her bishop look bad, when they are really the bad guys. Perhaps if they had made the request, the outcomes might have been different.

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  24. Hedgehog on June 25, 2014 at 12:34 PM

    MH, “Paul’s insubordination was much more “in your face” than anything Kate Kelly has done”
    Gosh yes. He seems to gone out of his way to deliberately poke the bear (for want of a better metaphor), if his writing is anything to go by.

    I’d add to your comment that it is very easy to be seen as insubordinate if you’re a woman speaking to a man as though he is an equal in LDS culture. It seems to be expected that you’ll be happy to do the bidding of a priesthood holder without question far too often.

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  25. Jeff Spector on June 25, 2014 at 1:13 PM

    MH,

    Quite an overreach in your assumptions. Perhaps, John’s local authorities have never thought his activities were over the line before. May have nothing to do with John’s associations.

    You are solely going by Kate’s version of things to reach for an assumption that her Bishop was “forced” into holding a DC. The letter to her demonstrates there is another side to the story which indicates it was not a “surprise,” having been initiated at least 6 months ago.

    GAs do training all the time and you have no proof that anything other than training was provided by Elders Ballard and Clayton. I know this must be a sinister plot for some, but at least stick to the evidence you have.

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  26. hawkgrrrl on June 25, 2014 at 1:43 PM

    Jeff et al: “The letter to her demonstrates there is another side to the story which indicates it was not a “surprise,” having been initiated at least 6 months ago.” I would bet dollars to donuts that the bishop was passive aggressive in his conversations with her. Mormons can be so “nice” to mask their true feelings, that it’s nearly impossible to know what they are saying to you, yet they think they were incredibly direct. I’ve seen it a million times.

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  27. Mormon Heretic on June 25, 2014 at 3:23 PM

    Hedgehog, we definitely agree. Paul Toscano is a jerk and a bully. I know he was trying to save his wife, and he did for several years, but I don’t blame his stake leadership for his excommunication.

    Jeff, yes, I do trust Kate’s version of events. She has said that these meetings indicated in the letter never existed, and I have no reason to doubt her. I think her bishop made it sound like these meetings had more substance than they really did. Kelly said her bishop only communicated by email, never phone or in person. She has no record of email or phone records that he said anything the bishop represented in his final email.

    The letter countered Kelly’s contention that her bishop and stake president had not responded to her repeated overtures to have a conversation about her Ordain Women activities. It mentions a meeting of the three of them in December, which Kelly had acknowledged and blogged about, concluding that she and her lay leaders had agreed to disagree.

    Her bishop’s letter Monday, however, said he and the stake president “urged you to dissociate yourself from Ordain Women and to cease your campaign to promote the ordination of women.”

    The letter also said Wheatley reminded Kelly of that same counsel again in March and April.

    Kelly said such conversations never happened. “It’s just not true. Point out the emails. I have all my phone records. There aren’t any [communications].”

    D. Michael Quinn, a historian who was excommunicated in 1993, said his case was similar in one way: He was accused of apostasy related to his writings and interviews, but was ousted for conduct unbecoming a member.

    He suspected at the time that his disciplinary council settled on such language because it was easier to get a unanimous decision on “bad manners” than on apostasy.

    See http://www.mercurynews.com/nation-world/ci_26023264/excommunicated-mormon-kate-kelly-ive-done-nothing-wrong

    Clayton and Ballards fingerprints are all over these excommunications, and now we know that “training” is code for coordinating excommunication. See http://www.nearingkolob.com/elder-l-whitney-clayton-involved-church-discipline/

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  28. Jeff Spector on June 25, 2014 at 4:22 PM

    MH,

    “and now we know that “training” is code for coordinating excommunication. ”

    Now, that’s pretty funny. Having been in that training in the past and also gotten reports of other training, I’ve never heard the word excommunication or disciplinary councils mentioned once. Just for the record, I’ve been in trainings with President Monson, President Hinckley, Elder Perry, Elder Uchtdorf (at the time), Elder Bednar (AA70 at the time) and a host of others. They talk is usually about how leaders can become better ministers to their flocks and better disciples of Christ themselves.

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  29. Mormon Heretic on June 25, 2014 at 9:55 PM

    Jeff, here are some excerpts from Denver Snuffer regarding The Facts of his excommunication:

    President Hunt and I had another meeting April 29th. During the meeting the phone rang in the office, and I was asked to step into the hallway for a moment. When invited back in, I was told that “one of the Seven Presidents had called” and he instructed that President Hunt was “to do nothing” while he and Elder Christofferson of the Twelve studied what I had written. The interview was over and I was free to go.

    The seventy who called was Elder L. Whitney Clayton.

    I heard nothing further for months. Then I was asked to a meet in November 2012. On November 4th the entire stake presidency met with me and informed me that “Apostles and a President of the Seventy” were pressuring them to act. They felt “a good spirit” from me but the book I’d written (Passing the Heavenly Gift) was “faith destroying.” It needed to be rewritten to conform to the church’s claims or be withdrawn from publication. These were men of discretion, and I do not believe any of them were the sources of rumors. None of them were in the stake presidency when the rumors began.

    ….

    On December 9, 2012 I met with President Hunt again and he said he had “defended me with one of the Brethren” since our last meeting. He asked if I had stopped blogging because of our last meeting, and I said I had. We discussed a missionary from our stake who had returned home early from his mission and he asked if I would work with him. I said I would. I stopped at the young man’s house on my way home from the stake office and invited him to come to my house. I began that Sunday to meet with him weekly to address his issues. I thought the conflict was over and the church was going to leave me alone.

    In February 2013 President Hunt informed me he continued to “be pressured by Apostles” to hold a disciplinary court. He wanted to talk. We met and he had copied and highlighted pages from the Church Handbook of Instructions about when a church court was “mandatory.” We talked about the language. It identified “repeated criticism of the church authorities” [that is a quote from my journal and may not be accurate as to the handbook's actual language].

    In May 2013, several bishops and stake presidents offered to call my stake president to defend me. I called President Hunt and asked if that was something he wanted me to initiate. He said he did. After two bishops had called and both reported back to me that the conversations with President Hunt did not go well, I became alarmed. I worried that President Hunt might be gathering information about them, as callers, rather than listening to something which may help my cause. I called the rest of those who had offered to defend me and told them not to call because it was not doing any good.

    On May 25, 2013 President Hunt called, he had received further “training” and now believed he must hold a church disciplinary council.

    June 2nd President Hunt gave all the members of the high council, along with several high priests in the stake, copies of Passing the Heavenly Gift to get their response to whether this was “faith destroying.”

    It is true that church discipline must be taken at the stake level. However, in my case, NOTHING would have been done without the constant pressure from the hierarchy. Repeatedly the stake president and stake presidency were satisfied. Then the hierarchy would “train” them and the relentless pressure resulted in the outcome the hierarchy demanded.

    So when I say the recent press release is a “lie,” it is not to belittle anyone or to merely name-call. If the hierarchy wants to be involved then they should take credit for their behavior. They shouldn’t lie about it.

    Both bishops who called to defend me were subsequently interviewed and one of them has been released. Elder Whitney Clayton was responsible for the interview of the bishop who was released. I believe he was also involved with pressuring the stake president in the other case, as well. I am glad I did not have others call President Hunt.

    There are two members of the seventy who, following my excommunication, have discussed in private the topic of my excommunication with others. One of these men serves on the Strengthening the Members Committee. The content of those discussions has been passed along to me by friends. It is clear the hierarchy was directly involved and the moving force behind my excommunication. It is also clear that only a stake president can deliver the verdict. The fact that President Hunt was a critical, even necessary participant does not change the fact that the hierarchy had a moving role and overall responsibility for securing my excommunication.

    I am not angry with President Hunt and have no animus toward him, the other members of the stake presidency, or the high council. One of the high council is my home teacher and my friend. He is welcome in my home. The facts of my case are plain, and in stating them I am not disparaging anyone.

    So yes, in these 2 situations in particular, “training” is code for excommunicating, and Whitney, Christofferson, and Ballard are hiding behind Kelly’s bishop and Snuffer’s stake president. Neither Kelly’s bishop or Snuffer’s stake president would have excommunicated without pressure from above. I’d be happy to quote Lynn Whitesides, Rock Waterman, and John Dehlin as well if you would like. (I trust you can read their accounts, but choose not to believe them either.) I will also point you to my previous post on the Strengthening Church Members Committee. These stories are eerily similar, and I don’t think this is a coincidence at all. Go ahead and pu-pu Snuffer and Kelly. You’re flat out wrong. I am really trying to be respectful Jeff, but I am really losing respect for your opinions when you defend the indefensible so hard. The scriptures say that truth shall be testified by two or three witnesses. I have compiled way more than that.

    You can call Snuffer, Kelly, Whitesides, Toscanos, Waterman, etc liars all you want, but I trust their accounts of what happened. Where there is smoke, there is fire. Your argument must assume that they are liars–but you have no evidence to the contrary. It’s just too strange that they are all liars together, and their experiences are too similar.

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  30. Ken on June 25, 2014 at 10:36 PM

    Mormon Heretic,

    I don’t understand your thoughts here. Regardless of what term is used, the fact remains the Apostles have the final say on these matters. They have the right; rather the sacred obligation to direct Stake Presidents on these issues, especially high profile cases like Kate Kelly.

    I watched the video of Kate Kelly linked by Howard on Hawkgirl’s most recent post. I had to shut off the video at the 4:28 mark completely repulsed by her comparing the church leaders to sex abusers. If that isn’t speaking evil of the Lords annionted, I don’t know what is? I don’t see how anyone can see this was the wrong decision.

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  31. alice on June 25, 2014 at 10:53 PM

    #30

    1) If the Brethren have this sacred obligation to to direct local leaders why are they making statements that these are local matters they have no part of?

    2) Kate Kelly most specifically did NOT compare anyone to sexual abusers. She talked about abusers in the context of intimidation as in physical or emotional abuse. The fact is that the kinds of deflection, dissembling and discounting that the church is doing is very much the stock in trade of abusers.

    3) Kelly hasn’t said it but I will: these passive-aggressive and belittling behaviors are unseemly for moral leaders at best and cowardly and deeply shameful at worst. I don’t pretend to know where their hearts lie on that spectrum but I do know that it stinks from my perspective. Stinks!

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  32. Mormon Heretic on June 25, 2014 at 10:57 PM

    Ken, Point #1: “Regardless of what term is used, the fact remains the Apostles have the final say on these matters. They have the right….” In a recent interview, Rock Waterman documented that the D&C shows that apostles are never supposed to get involved in local matters. That’s why the Church is so strenuously asserting that this is a “local” matter. If it is shown that it is not local, then the apostles are violating the D&C. I’ll write up a transcript if you like, or you can check it out in the D&C yourself.

    Point #2: have you ever seen an abuser slap a woman and say “You made me do that”?

    That’s essentially what the church has said. Kelly made them excommunicate her. You may not like the analogy, but it fits–the church is blaming the victim, just like the abuser blames the woman. It is ecclesiastical abuse, and Lavina Fielding Anderson was exed for documenting it.

    You may not understand the parallels here, but perhaps you could go to a battered woman’s shelter. Maybe then you will understand how awful it is for the abuser to blame the abused. Is that something you’re willing to do?

    Ken, I suspect that you would see this situation clearly if it occurred in the Catholic Church. Do you defend the Catholic Church for excommunicating Galileo?

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  33. Mormon Heretic on June 25, 2014 at 11:34 PM

    Ken, Kelly referenced domestic abuse much more than simply sexual abuse that you had such a strong reaction (though she did mention that in the context of overall abuse.) She said, starting at 3:20:

    Kelly, “The language that is used to talk about the process that happened to me is classic abuse. You know my mom is a prosecutor and she works with special victims and has for over 20 years, and she works with victims of domestic violence, victims of sexual assault, and a lot of what happens in that dialogue is that the perpetrator of the abuse describes the abuse as something that the victim made them do. Why did you make me hit you? Why did you make me do this? Or, I’m doing this because I love you. I’m doing this out of love. So in our society, the most violent situations against women are often shrouded in a cloud of disingenuous love.

    [my editorial comment: Court of love is convened out of love, right?]

    Reporter, “And that’s how you see this action against you?”

    Kelly, “Absolutely consistent with abusive, manipulative, patriarchal situations.

    So you’re off the mark here. (If the sexual abuse offends you, her point is more about violence against women anyway–think physical abuse.) She’s saying this excommunication is violent, much like BiV did in her post about the Mormon Pointy Stick: Excommunication as a Model of Violent Dominion Theology.

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  34. Hedgehog on June 26, 2014 at 1:06 AM

    hawkgrrrl :” I would bet dollars to donuts that the bishop was passive aggressive in his conversations with her. Mormons can be so “nice” to mask their true feelings, that it’s nearly impossible to know what they are saying to you, yet they think they were incredibly direct. I’ve seen it a million times.”
    Yup.

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  35. Jeff Spector on June 26, 2014 at 8:46 AM

    “Jeff, here are some excerpts from Denver Snuffer regarding The Facts of his excommunication:”

    So, let me understand this. This is a guy who has every vested interest in being a victim of the Church, much like Kate and so his version is the solid 100% truth, as well as the “hearsay” evidence you post about what the leadership may or may not have done?

    I have my doubts. Kate, for one, knows how to manipulate and use incendiary language to the press to maximize her victimhood against the Church.

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  36. Mormon Heretic on June 26, 2014 at 8:54 AM

    Jeff, I will keep repeating my main point until you understand it.

    So yes, in these 2 situations in particular, “training” is code for excommunicating, and Whitney, Christofferson, and Ballard are hiding behind Kelly’s bishop and Snuffer’s stake president. Neither Kelly’s bishop or Snuffer’s stake president would have excommunicated without pressure from above. I’d be happy to quote Lynn Whitesides, Rock Waterman, and John Dehlin as well if you would like. (I trust you can read their accounts, but choose not to believe them either.) I will also point you to my previous post on the Strengthening Church Members Committee. These stories are eerily similar, and I don’t think this is a coincidence at all. Go ahead and pu-pu Snuffer and Kelly. You’re flat out wrong. I am really trying to be respectful Jeff, but I am really losing respect for your opinions when you defend the indefensible so hard. The scriptures say that truth shall be testified by two or three witnesses. I have compiled way more than that.

    You can call Snuffer, Kelly, Whitesides, Toscanos, Waterman, etc liars all you want, but I trust their accounts of what happened. Where there is smoke, there is fire. Your argument must assume that they are liars–but you have no evidence to the contrary. It’s just too strange that they are all liars together, and their experiences are too similar.

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  37. Jeff Spector on June 26, 2014 at 11:24 AM

    MH,

    “You can call Snuffer, Kelly, Whitesides, Toscanos, Waterman, etc liars all you want, but I trust their accounts of what happened.”

    Let me make my point to see if you can understand. I am really trying to be patient here. I didn’t call anyone a liar and you know it. Everyone has a version of the their story and a spin to it.

    You already know how confrontational Paul Toscano can be and if you go back and watch Margaret’s portrayal of her DC in “the Mormons,” you’ll find it to be overly melodramatic to the point of absurdity. I think Maxine Hanks is probably a much more reliable source of being there and back than those who are out of the Church and still bitter about it.

    You’ve chosen to give the benefit of all doubt to those people who have gone public with their stories to the press and the world. All I said was I have my doubts about their stories in the manner they are telling them.

    Also, I’ve had experience with GA training sessions, which it appears that you have not. So again, you are choosing to believe something of which you seem to have no direct experience, apparently.

    Now, do I think some of the GAs might have some involvement in issues affecting their areas of responsibility. Sure, I can accept that. They get asked questions by Stake President’s and AA70s all the time,.But, I also, again because of my direct experiences, do not think they undermine local leader’s authority to act in their own stewardship.

    And finally, whether you respect my opinions or not, is of no real consequence to me because you are trying so hard to defend a version of a story without taking into account both sides.

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  38. Ken on June 26, 2014 at 9:53 PM

    Thanks Jeff. Well said.

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  39. MH on June 26, 2014 at 10:10 PM

    Jeff, “do I think some of the GAs might have some involvement in issues affecting their areas of responsibility. Sure, I can accept that.” Finally we are getting somewhere!

    “I also, again because of my direct experiences, do not think they undermine local leader’s authority to act in their own stewardship.” I NEVER said that GA’s undermine a local leader’s authority, nor do I believe that in any way. Rather, GA’s embolden local leaders to excommunicate members for apostasy in which these bishops or SPs, if left to their own judgment would simply leave the members alone. Rock, Denver, Margaret, Lynette, and many others have said it countless times: their bishops or SPs have received pressure. Mike Quinn’s SP was released and a new one called specifically to excommunicate him. There’s just too many witnesses to try to claim this is not true.

    I have no doubt that with sexual sins, “court of love” might be an appropriate term. But I don’t think “court of love” is appropriate in cases of insubordination or apostasy, and it certainly wasn’t the case for Maxine Hanks (I can quote her to back it up), or any of the other September Six, or Denver Snuffer or Kate Kelly. By the way Jeff, how many excommunications have you been in where the defendant was accused of apostasy? If you have been in any cases, did the subject view it as a court of love?

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  40. MH on June 26, 2014 at 10:13 PM

    “Margaret’s portrayal of her DC in “the Mormons,” you’ll find it to be overly melodramatic to the point of absurdity.”

    Jeff, do you have experience being excommunicated? Who are you to judge someone else’s reaction as too melodramatic? I find your characterization extremely crass. Obviously you don’t have any idea how to mourn with those that mourn, or comfort those that stand in need of comfort. You’d rather stone the afflicted with awful comments like that.

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  41. Ken on June 27, 2014 at 6:26 AM

    MH,

    Your comments come across disrespectful towards the Apostles — great men who have devoted thier lives to serving God as special witnesses of Christ. Secondly, your comments suggest excommunication is a bad thing — it is not — not for the church, or those that have been excommunicated and use it as a tool to become clean again.

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  42. Mormon Heretic on June 27, 2014 at 7:04 AM

    Ken, Your comments come across and disrespectful to Kate Kelly — a great woman who has devoted her life to serving God as a special Mormon Christian. Secondly, yes my comments suggest excommunication is a bad thing — it is — especially for Kelly because it is a psychologically violent and emotionally damaging and was used with unrighteous dominion in her case specifically.

    I do agree that there are times when it is a tool to become clean, but that is not at all why it was used in Kelly’s case, and was the wrong tool to use in Kelly’s case. I also think the apostles don’t always act under inspiration of God, and this is a specific case in which they gratified their pride, vain ambition, and exercised control, dominion, and compulsion over the souls of the children of men, in a degree of unrighteousness. The Spirit of the Lord is grieved, and when it is grieved, amen to the priesthood or authority of those men.

    When Joseph was asked to receive a revelation, he didn’t excommunicate Harris, Cowdery, Emma, the Whitmers, or anyone else. He prayed, and often got a revelation. If the apostles are “prophets, seers, and revelators”, they shouldn’t go around excommunicating people for asking God for more guidance. That’s not at all what Joseph did. This is ecclesiastical abuse, not revelation of God.

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  43. Jeff Spector on June 27, 2014 at 7:26 AM

    MH,

    “By the way Jeff, how many excommunications have you been in where the defendant was accused of apostasy? ”

    Actually, none, thank goodness. but I have been involved in more DCs than you have and as such, I know how they go. You, apparently, do not. Which is a good thing, because they are no fun for anyone involved. And yes, you do mourn for those who find themselves on the wrong end of a DC. But you also rejoice for those who find their way back. Those DCs are a much better experience.

    So, you think it is easier if the person is accused of a sexual sin rather than a doctrinal one? It’s not.

    “Who are you to judge someone else’s reaction as too melodramatic?”

    Again, from my own personal experience of how these things are handled, that was my opinion of her explanation from the show (Did you watch it?). In any case, a DC is dramatic (but you don’t know about that, do you?) in any situation, so part of it is understandable. but the ominousness of her portrayal is a bit over the top, IMO.

    “That’s not at all what Joseph did.”

    C’mon, you know your history better than that. Joseph excommunicated half the church leadership at one time or another. And you also know better, especially from the letter sent to Kate, that asking questions doesn’t get anyone excommunicated.

    I’m done with this. You’re just as close-minded as you accuse me and everyone else who disagrees with you.

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  44. Mormon Heretic on June 27, 2014 at 7:44 AM

    Jeff, I do think that apostasy and sexual sins are 2 completely different animals, so I don’t think your experience in DC’s makes you at all an expert in apostasy cases. I don’t think sexual sins are “easier”, I just think they are different, and the emotions of the accused are much different. (Geometry and Algebra are different. One is not easier than the other.)

    Joseph did excommunicate people for insubordination (which he often called apostasy)–and I think that was a mistake on his part just as I do in Kate Kelly’s case, and that is exactly what I said in my previous post that excommunication is counter-productive. But Joseph never excommunicated anyone for asking him to seek revelation, and that’s a fact. He was extremely willing to seek revelation. In Oliver’s case, it seems that Joseph was surprised that Oliver didn’t have the gift to translate, and that is why we have D&C 9, “study it out in your mind.”

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  45. Jeff Spector on June 27, 2014 at 8:02 AM

    “Joseph did excommunicate people for insubordination (which he often called apostasy)–and I think that was a mistake on his part just as I do in Kate Kelly’s case,”

    That’s a good one — Second guessing the Prophet of this dispensation…… that takes cajones.

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  46. Mormon Heretic on June 27, 2014 at 9:42 AM

    Come on Jeff, you think Joseph was perfect in all his actions?

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  47. Jeff Spector on June 27, 2014 at 10:03 AM

    No, I don’t

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  48. [email protected] on June 27, 2014 at 11:45 AM

    I could tell by that broads eyeglasses she was gonna get the axe. Legal brief as defense? Give me a break…. that stuff doesn’t fly with a religious organization… and really, good call,i’d say… She’s got her 15 minutes and martyr status and the show goes on.

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  49. Ken on June 27, 2014 at 4:15 PM

    MH,

    “Joseph did excommunicate people for insubordination (which he often called apostasy)–and I think that was a mistake on his part as I do in Kate Kelly’s case,”

    I suppose you would take issue with the Gods in the pre-existence who permenialy banished 1/3 of the hosts (billions I would guess). A trillion years from now they will still be banished. Was it for any of the sins of flesh? No, it was for apostasy. Rebellion. Seeking a plan contrary to God’s. Permanently banned. Are the God’s abusers too?

    Agree with Jeff, you are as close minded as you accuse others to be

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  50. MH on June 27, 2014 at 4:18 PM

    Jeff, You’re just as guilty of “Second guessing the Prophet of this dispensation…… that takes cajones.”

    Clear back in comment 43, you said “I’m done with this.” Let’s be done, because I am tired of this non-substantive conversation with you and Ken.

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  51. hawkgrrrl on June 27, 2014 at 4:31 PM

    cajones are drawers (like dresser drawers, not underwear). cojones are balls.

    Sunnofa: Broad? Really? What are you, Frank Sinatra?

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  52. Jeff Spector on June 28, 2014 at 6:33 AM

    Hawk: yeah, that too!.

    MH,

    You’re perhaps tired of not being agreed with.

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  53. MH on June 28, 2014 at 1:02 PM

    Jeff, to quote New Iconoclast on the other thread. Your passion is admirable, your ignorance not so much.

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  54. Jeff Spector on June 28, 2014 at 7:29 PM

    MH,

    Your brilliance is beyond compare.

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