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POST: Mormon Apologists and Ad Hominem

Laura Hales – You once again show your true colors. For those who say apologists don’t engage in Ad hominem – take a look
Laura Hales tonight came onto one of my post and made a personal attack that is inexcuseable
Her First Comment
“Bill Reel I’m neither critical, delusional, greedy, fame-hungry nor “apologetic.” LDS Perspectives Podcast produces interviews about LDS history, culture, and doctrine. Many of which have appeared on your podcast. Tag. You’re it. And I know you like a soapbox. Have fun. Unlike you, I don’t derive my financial livelihood from producing a niche podcast.”
I took her comment as saying that I make my financial livelihood off my podcast since she felt important to note she didn’t. Which is a demonstrably false attack and absolutely unchristlike and mean spirited. But Maybe I misunderstood her, maybe I had taken her words the wrong way. So I made a comment asking for an explanation.
Her response when asked to clarify
““I believe that you are working in St. George/Hurricane area because of someone you met through your podcast. I believe your employer has sponsored events where you have promoted your podcast. You are no longer in Ohio.”
So now she insinuates that in some way a listener did me a favor giving me employment that I didn’t deserve nor am qualified for.
Let me state clearly – I do not think Brian and Laura Hales are very nice people. I have on multiple occasions now been attacked personally by them when pointing to unhealthy behaviors in our tribe or flaws in our theology generally within Mormonism.
But this is made worse by the fact that my employer considers the Hales friends and I can only imagine the disrespect they likely feel from this episode.
I am lucky to work for the incredible employers that I do. I was lucky that we crossed paths. And yes it is due to the podcast that we got to know each other and build the relationship we have. It has been one of the most incredible miracles in my life. Truly a tender mercy. And while I am fortunate, I also know they would say the exact same thing. It has been a incredible relationship where both sides consider themselves fortunate. For Laura Hales to have said what she did is just one more instance of the Hales being one thing when working to uphold an image and another when their emotion has them showing their true selves
Not sure how one person can criticize another for having a product that brings in donations with their work and who has not, up to this moment, yet taken a salary meanwhile the person criticizing has books on Deseret Book’s store shelves and profit from their sales. Laura your a hypocrite and my experience has shown that to ask for an apology from a Hales is fruitless. Good people don’t cross such lines and when they do, they apologize. Lets see if you surprise me.
Integrity and honesty mean something – you have neither. I wish such arenas could involve discussion that centers on the issues and on the behaviors of the institution and it members and defenders generally and would never dip into personal attacks. But I also won’t stand idly by and be bullied by Mormon apologists who choose to denigrate their critics on a personal level rather than discuss the substance of the issue at hand.
Bill Reel

4 thoughts on “POST: Mormon Apologists and Ad Hominem”

  1. Love ya, Bill.

    That was quite the apologist royale rumble on Facebook.

    There are laudable LDS scholars who do honest work, who respond honestly to questions. They are the minority.

    The bottom line is this: the majority of the “big name” Mormon apologists have ZERO academic credibility and they know it. Many of those who do possess academic credentials are often practicing Mormon apologetics way outside of their fields.

    They don’t participate in the peer-review process and if they were to present LDS truth claims to disinterested professionals and scholars they would be laughed out of the room and off the stage. These people defend the indefensible. They may view themselves as “defenders,” but in reality, they are engaging in a practice that is dishonest. They are deceivers.

    There is no value in providing a “faithful perspective” if that perspective is built upon alternative definitions, half-truths, and outright lies.

    The truth is hard. And the truth is ever revealing Mormon apologetics to be a fraud. Careers have been spent chasing down a white whale only to find there is no whale; Lifetimes have been spent in vain.

    I imagine as we proceed through the years, these apologists will only become more ugly as Joseph Smith’s deception continues to unravel.

    The writing is on the wall. The dam is breaking. It’s over.

    In time, if it hasn’t already happened, this flood of truth will entirely consume their carefully constructed Potemkin villages. In fact, many of these apologists will live to see their own work denounced by the church they so zealously defend. That is a hard truth.

    If there is one thing I have learned in my life, it’s best to accept life’s hard truths rather than wishing things could have been some other way. Sadly, sometimes the kool-aid has to have poison in it before people realize they’ve been had.

    You are a good man, Bill. Keep up the good fight.

    Illegitimi non carborundum!

  2. To Laura’s credit she did delete all her “mean” facebook posts so in a way you could consider that a charitable retraction or an apologist’s apology of some sort.

  3. I am starting to wonder, does an institution that is imperiled by the exposure of facts deserve to exist? Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof, particularly when those claims presume to effect the mortal happiness and eternal fate of every human who has ever lived. Those who have assumed the role of “defender of the faith” must expect to be challenged by the facts, wherever they may come from, and if they are unable to logically explain them in the context of those “extraordinary truth claims” of the church, be prepared to stand down and admit defeat. If answers are available, by whatever means necessary, let’s have them and we will honor their victory.

  4. Most apologists drive me nuts, the self-righteous pharisees who run us in circles. We know where that goes, and what kind of fruits those are, and how we were warned about them by Whom.

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