Tuesday, March 26, 2013


BEHIND THE MORMON SPIN.  The longer I have been out of Mormonism, the more I have realized just how much "spin" is involved in this religion.  Of course, we almost expect there to be "spin" in politics - we've come to expect it.  But "spin" in religion?  A person would think that religion would be above that kind of manipulative behavior.  As Javier Bardem once said, "I do respect people's faith, but I don't respect their manipulation of that faith to create fear and control."  Well put.

I recently read an article entitled "Ethical Communications: Spinning the Truth" by Mark S. Putnam, in which he said, "Somewhere between the truth and a lie, there's 'spin.' We hear about politicians spinning bad news in their favor. We see journalists and pundits spin news stories to reflect a certain point of view. It's easy. You too can spin if you look at data, filter it through your biases, and preach it like gospel. The rationale is that it isn't really lying, just putting a bias on what is already true. So what's wrong with it?  Before you choose to spin yourself into trouble, understand that in the context of ethical communication, you should be clear, truthful, and honest in what comes out of your mouth. Spinning is like any other kind of dishonesty, it's wrong. It makes good old fashioned lying sound clever and trendy. It can be said that stupid people lie and smart people spin."

I like that last line - "It can be said that stupid people lie and smart people spin."  But what's even more mystifying for me is that although literally everything about Mormonism is ridiculous (its doctrines, its teachings, and most definitely its history), there are many otherwise intelligent people who are completely caught up in Mormonism and so devoted to its tenets that they steadfastly stand up for its doctrine, teaching and history.  These people are not stupid, and yet they are trapped inside the web of lies that Mormonism propagates.  They truly believe that Joseph Smith was a Seer and Prophet of God who restored the "everlasting gospel in these latter days."  To me, the only explanation for that is that Mormonism has seeped into their psyches and clouded their judgment.  They allow the Mormon Church to dictate how they think and what they accept as true.  They are so entrenched in Mormonism that they are caught in a never-ending spiral of denial.  But that's all part of the spin - the Mormon Church expects its members to simply go along and not question, and if they do question, they are told that when the Prophet speaks, the debate is over.  That type of philosophy works to keep people quiet, and to make sure they don't speak out about their concerns.

In September 2010, I wrote a poem entitled "Spin, Spin, Spin the Truth," (based on "Row, Row, Row Your Boat") which is posted in the Poetry section of this blog.  The first two verses are:
Spin, spin, spin the truth,
Every way you can.
Verily, verily, verily, verily,
Like it all began.

Hide, hide, hide it all,
They can’t know the truth.
History, history, history, history,
Cover up the proof.
The poem goes on for several more verses, and ends with the following verse:
Please, please, please no more,
This is crazy stuff.
Overload, overload, overload, overload,
I have had enough.
Truly, I have had enough.  Enough lies... enough deception... enough denial... enough spinning.  To me, truth is the bottom line.  Is that too much to ask?


I will be forever grateful that in the Summer of 2001, I went on that Mormon Church History Tour because that is when I started my independent research.  At first, I simply wanted to know more about church history so I would know what occurred at the key places when we visited those locations.  But then, as I discovered more and more, I began to see that I had been duped all those years into believing that Joseph Smith was a Prophet of God and that the Mormon Church was the Word of God.  I often think about the possibility that if I had not gone, I would most likely still be completely caught up in the web of lies that Mormonism weaves.  Thankfully, I saw the lies and was able to extricate myself from its clutches.

And so, here is my 90th LDS Hymn Parody...

Sung to the tune of I Know My Father Lives - #302
Unveiling all the lies,
The truth revealed.
So long denial sheltered me,
Reality concealed,
Reality concealed.
Within the Mormon Church,
A plan devised.
Deception at its very core,
Dishonesty disguised,
Dishonesty disguised.
So much is evident
With open eyes.
Just look beyond the rhetoric,
And you will see the lies,
And you will see the lies.
Through research I have found
The lies within.
The truth is there for all to find,
Behind the Mormon Spin,

Behind the Mormon Spin.
© Diane Tingen, 3/25/2013

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