This is an archived copy of a post written by Conflict Of Justice (conflictofjustice.com). Used with permission: Conflict Of Justice may not agree with any alterations made.
”Going after members who publish or share their questions, concerns, and doubts: September Six: ‘The September Six were six members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who were excommunicated or disfellowshipped by the Church in September 1993, allegedly for publishing scholarly work on Mormonism or critiquing Church doctrine or leadership.’”(CES Letter)
Skepticism Is Not Apostasy – The ‘September Six’ were not scholars and they were not excommunicated for asking questions or expressing doubt. Mormons sometimes express doubt and that’s fine. Wikipedia here mischaracterizes who they were and what they did. The church made clear in a a press release that they were disciplined due to apostasy, which they defined as: “repeatedly act in clear, open and deliberate public opposition to the Church or its leaders; or persist in teaching as Church doctrine information that is not Church doctrine after being corrected by their bishops or higher authority; or continue to follow the teachings of apostate cults (such as those that advocate plural marriage) after being corrected by their bishops or higher authority.”
Apostates are excommunicated when they persist in teaching false doctrine that leads people away from the church. This does not include asking questions or expressing concerns.
Disbelief Is Different From Apostasy – Why would someone who does not believe in the church want to be part of it? Why would someone want to be Mormon if they don’t believe in Mormonism? If the LDS church is guilty of all these evils that CES Letter accuses it of, why not seek for a better church instead?
The unfortunate reality is Anti-Mormons infiltrate the church to convince other Mormons to lose their faith as well. Most disbelievers drop the church and move on with their lives, but some take it upon themselves on a quest to make others leave the church as well. There is a huge line between disbelievers who ask questions and express doubt, and those who can’t stand seeing others change their beliefs to suit their new opinions.
Several of the September Six apostates returned back to the church, improved their lives, and are back in full fellowship. Would this have happened if the church hadn’t taken a stand against apostasy? I doubt it. Excommunication is a tool, kind of like a “time out” to help bitter disbelievers to eventually return to the faith. Like a temporary ban on someone who flips out in an internet forum and needs a day to chill out.
“A few months before the September Six, Boyd K. Packer made the following comment regarding the three “enemies” of the Church: ‘The dangers I speak of come from the gay-lesbian movement, the feminist movement (both of which are relatively new), and the ever-present challenge from the so-called scholars or intellectuals.’”(CES Letter)
See Boyd K. Packer’s full talk here
Elder Ballard’s quote is 100% true. There are general categories of issues that Anti-Mormons tend to who in between. It is like a carousel that spins round and round. The same issues keep coming up, and they attach updated faces to the issues, whatever is the latest outrage item in the news media.
But besides this, there is an ever-presence of fake intellectual arguments. When people are offended by this observation, I notice it tends to be because they themselves fit squarely in one of these categories. They read a few websites and now think they are history experts. They look down on all the other Mormons for not being as knowledgeable and enlightened as they are, as they sit in their office chairs and spread hate online. By observing their behavior, it is clear that they infiltrate to destroy the faith of others, not to have a positive intellectual discussion about the church.
How To Handle Apostates
“Strengthening the Church Members Committee (SCMC): The spying and monitoring arm of the Church. It is secretive and most members have been unaware of its existence since its creation in 1985 after President Ezra Taft Benson took over. Elder Jeffrey R. Holland admitted it still exists (2:29) in March 2012. The historical evidence and the September Six points to SCMC’s primary mission being to hunt and expose intellectuals and/or disaffected members who are influencing other members to think and question, despite Holland’s claim that it’s a committee primarily to fight against polygamy.”(CES Letter)
What historical evidence would that be? What evidence is there that this committee does anything other than its stated purpose? CES Letter condemns polygamy yet complains about a committee that created to put a stop to polygamy?
Why shouldn’t the church expose infiltrators who tear down the faith of others? We need white blood cells to find the apostates who sow discord. I thought “truth has no fear of the light,” isn’t that what CES Letter just said? Why would apostates be afraid to boldly speak the truth, instead of hiding in private Facebook groups as they do? Why would apostates fear this conspiracy-theory committee group if “truth has no fear of the light”? If they have truth and their cause is virtuous, why do they hide their true beliefs?
If Anti-Mormons were the heroic crusaders that they portray themselves as being there would be no need for “spying and monitoring.” Honestly, it is tempting to wish that we really did have a spy group to rat out the apostates who are brainwashing Mormon youth in Sunday School classes behind closed doors and in their private Facebook groups. But we know that such strong-arm authoritarian tactics are not God’s way. People have their free agency. Exposure is God’s way. Expose them for their true beliefs, and then watch them scramble.
CES Letter Logical Fallacies
|Falsehoods||CES Letter misquotes Boyd K. Packer. They say he was talking about “enemies.” But there is no mention of “enemies” in Boyd K. Packer’s talk. The ‘September Six’ were not excommunicated for critique or asking questions, but for apostasy, which includes persistently preaching false doctrine. CES Letter alleges that the Strengthening the Church Members Committee is “spying and monitoring” on people. This is a fake conspiracy theory.|
|Guilt By Association||Boyd K. Packer’s quote had nothing to do with the ‘September Six.’ Local leadership performs disciplinary counsels, not Salt Lake City leadership. There is no reason to blame LDS General Authorities for the discipline actions of the ‘September Six.’|
|Non Sequitur||Discipline for apostasy is not “going after” people for asking questions. Why would any organization want infiltrators to go around seeking to destroy the organizations principles?|
|False Dilemma||This Strengthening the Church Members Committee doesn’t either go after polygamists or apostates. They go after all apostates, which includes polygamists.|
The classic Marxist infiltration tactic is to appeal to “free speech” when it comes to agitating against their enemies, but then to be intolerant of free speech for anyone they disagree with. What would happen if I bore my testimony in the ExMormon Reddit forum? Even if they tolerate it once, what would happen if I bore my testimony consistently day after day? You think they would allow that? Anti-Mormons do not permit pro-Mormon infiltrators in their ranks, and that’s fine, why should they? If you don’t agree with a group, leave them alone, move on with your life, and find some other group that you do like. Unfortunately, Anti-Mormons cannot leave us alone.