Discussions of Mormons and Mormon life, Book of Mormon issues and evidences, and other Latter-day Saint (LDS) topics.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Hilarious Anti-Mormon Attack from the Conservative Voice: The Danger of Letting Google Do Your Thinking

An entertaining example of anti-Mormons using the crimes of FLDS people in Texas to smear The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints comes from Gary Swank at TheConservativeVoice.com. Gary Swank is a regular writer for The Conservative Voice, a significant conservative Website with 100 contributing authors. He also writes for several other blogs. In his May 4, 2008 post on the FLDS crisis, he lumps FLDS apostasy with Latter-day Saint religion, and makes some fascinating errors in the process.

He begins by explaining why the FLDS force young girls to have babies:
The belief is that disembodied spirits float in the air. They are yearning for body housing. Therefore, every pregnancy provides a disembodied spirit with a dwelling, hence polygamy and pregnancies maximum, even exploiting too-young females.
Well, I suppose the FLDS group shares the LDS and early Christian belief of a premortal existence (see also Barry Bickmore's Restoring the Ancient Church, Chapter 3 and search for "The Pre-Existence in Early Christianity"). I'm not sure about the floating in the air part - maybe that's from some FLDS doctrine. But the term "disembodied" refers to a person who has been born and then died, leaving the soul without the body prior to the resurrection. We are only born once, so there are not disembodied spirits waiting to be born unless you're into reincarnation. We aren't and I don't think the FLDS are. "Unembodied" would be more accurate, though we just speak of spirit children of our Heavenly Father.

So yes, we think there are people who have yet to be born, and we think that having children is a wonderful thing. But we, the Latter-day Saints, do not force young girls into marriage. We actually strongly discourage dating until age 16, and strongly encourage our women to gain education. I believe the average age of marriage for LDS women is 23. Mormons tend to have large families, but it's a personal choice. Contraception is allowed. So is addictive blogging late at night.

Gary then begins the too-typical anti-Mormon smear, revealing some interesting tidbits about his anti-Mormon research:
The Texas group, Yearning for Zion Ranch, Eldorado, tallies 53 girls aged 14 to 17 who have had offspring or are pregnant.

It must be understood that the so-called legitimate group known as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah believes the very same doctrine concerning disembodied spirits.

That Salt Lake City group continues to inform media that they have nothing in common with the cult. However, the facts are that their founder is the same: Joseph Smith. His theology is the same in all groups. It's just that the Salt Lake City group abides by the US law against polygamy.

Both the Salt Lake City group and the cultic communes are secret orders. The unbiblical secrets are carefully guarded.

Only those who leave the Mormons of any tangent can tell the facts they now disavow. In that way, non-Mormons come to know really what goes on.

Read "The Mormon Cult: The Truth about Mormons and Christianity" at mormoncult.org.
Wow, if we have the same beliefs and practices as the FLDS group, it kind of makes one wonder why they are treated as apostates and why their leaders many decades ago were excommunicated from the Church. Might as well blame Lutherans for the problems with some Catholic priests.

Gary Swank, the erudite Christian scholar and defender of the faith, tells us that only ex-Mormons can tell us the facts about the Church because we're a cultic secret order doing the same horrible stuff and having the same horrible doctrines as FLDS people. And to prove his point, to prove that "so-called legitimate" Mormons are a cult, he sends his readers to a truly dangerous Website: MormonCult.org.

Well, this man has certainly done his homework. In addition to his careful work on the doctrines, practices, and history of the Mormons, he has done extensive work on cults in general. This extensive work included Googling "Mormon cult" and finding that Google's #1 rated site for info on the Mormon cult is no other than the highly respected tool of truth and knowledge, MormonCult.org. No. 1 at Google? Must be good stuff. And it says it proves why Mormons are a cult. Bingo! And so he has sent hundreds of readers to this respected site where, if they take time to read and learn about the nature of the Mormon cult, they might be rescued from error and find salvation for their souls. That's my hope, anyway.

I suppose he'll change his entry right away, so enjoy it while it's up. I do have a PDF printout of the current version as a souvenir.

Update: Pastor Gary Swank's delightful article, complete with the link to MormonCult.org, is also available at The PostChronicle, a news source that makes the following boast:
Our news staff is compelled to provide up-to-the minute news that is accurate and unbiased, and present clear-cut facts and data you can trust. Our editors are determined to ensure accurate, compelling content, and thorough, careful reporting on a wide variety of issues and events.
Ah, the joys of unbiased, accurate, fact-filled reporting, anti-Mormon style. But I will credit them for providing the link to MormonCult.org, which, for all its flaws, is surprisingly fact-based.

46 comments:

Ardis Parshall said...

You must be dancing a joyful jig this morning, Jeff! You caught another one, a high profile one this time! Congratulations -- I don't know when I've ever been prouder of a member of the Bloggernacle.

Of course, you know you're eventually going to have to explain, or at least give a hint, for readers who don't recognize the punchline and who are too gentle to explore.

But wow! he stepped right into it, didn't he? Great job!

April said...

Thanks for the post! Since I am a convert, sometimes it's really difficult to read "scholarly" (or seemingly at least) material that bashes our church. I often need to hear the rebuttals from another scholarly individual to clear things up. Thanks! More posts like this would be nice!

Clean Cut said...

"Might as well blame Lutherans for the problems with some Catholic priests."

That hits the nail right on the head.

Anonymous said...

To further add to the hilarity of the story, Swank complained on his blog about how others got after him for being so openly anti-Mormon. He goes on to state that beyond a bachelor's degree he has had an additional 3 years of theological training. I think he needs a refund.

Tom said...

Perfect. Absolutely perfect. My childhood bishop converted because of idiotic anti-mormon literature ... but this is absolutely perfect. I hope many, many people head right on over to mormoncult.org and learn the "truth" about us! ... and then hopefully take the next step into joy.

Hiram said...

Very funny. Thanks for sharing.

Bryce Haymond said...

That is absolutely hilarious that he linked to a pro-Mormon website! Goes to show that many of these anti's just don't read the words in front of them.

Kevin said...

Haha! Serves him right for doing absolutely no research.

Just as a side question here, what would be a good example of legitimate criticism of Mormonism that isn't considered "anti-" or dismissed even if it is "scholarly?" Is there a such thing?

I know there is real bigotry and idiocy out there (like the article Jeff pointed out in this post), but it sounds like people will call any criticism of LDS "anti."

I see comments like this:


"Since I am a convert, sometimes it's really difficult to read "scholarly" (or seemingly at least) material that bashes our church."

"My childhood bishop converted because of idiotic anti-mormon literature"

Anonymous said...

Oh my, hilarously funny. I wonder how long it will take him to figure out exactly what he referenced. This guy is a columnist? Doesn't check his references very well, does he? LOL, I am rolling on the floor!

Tom said...

Kevin: It was the classic "mormons have horns" variety he encountered while a student at a large Midwest college. I think that qualifies as truly "idiotic" ... or don't you agree? It made him explore more than he normally would because the criticism he read seemed so utterly ridiculous.

My point was simply that sometimes criticism of the church ... "anti" or simply antagonistic ... fosters unintended results.

Is that clearer? Or do you feel the need to blast me again?

Kevin said...

Tom, I didn't mean to blast you or come off as being harsh. I'm truly sorry - I didn't mean any offense.

I only referred to your comments and another's since they were in this thread and they probably weren't the best examples of what I meant - very sorry to imply that I was going after you directly. The criticism you describe is truly idiotic.

I'm just trying to distinguish between anti/idiotic criticism and legitimate criticism of Mormonism.

For example, is there a form of scholarly criticism out there that Mormons take seriously or is all of it dismissed?

Disclosure: I'm not a Mormon or any other kind of Christian, but I am very interested in LDS and find this blog to be a good resource. No ulterior motives here.

Tom said...

Kevin: Gotcha ... thanks for the clarification. Double misundertanding I think:)

To answer your question, I do think (this is my own personal opinion, we mormons are all different) there is legitimate criticism of the church. While I believe and have a testimony of the divine foundation and calling of the church ... it is still administered by imperfect humans. Unfortunately we all come to issues with our bias and misunderstanding. So certainly mistakes are and have been made. But I think most criticism comes from ignorance of our true beliefs. Only getting information from disaffected members of the church is almost certainly the worst way to come to a correct opinion.

Anonymous said...

The FDLS believe John Taylor appeared in a vision shortly after the church rejected polygamy, and told them to keep the practice of polygamy alive. How can we condemn them for believing the vision, not knowing if the vision was true or false, when our church was found on a vision as well. What yardstick do we use to measure and seperate their faith from ours?

Ryan said...

I'm just trying to distinguish between anti/idiotic criticism and legitimate criticism of Mormonism.

I can only speak for myself, but I think "anti" when I see tactics like:
- Posing "scholarly" criticisms that LDS scholars have refuted soundly in the past (often decades ago).
- Presenting twisted or downright false concepts as LDS doctrine and then attacking those.
- Dumping a barrage of "concerns" and/or constantly changing the subject in order to avoid and discourage responses to any particular issue.
- Using rude/crude/irreverent/disgusting language and imagery to drive people away from the topic altogether.
- Patronizing or condescending attitudes about the [lack of] intelligence, sanity, and abilities of a believer.
- Exploiting differences in vocabulary, playing word games, asking loaded questions, etc. to trap and confuse others.

It's also tempting to label as an "anti" any person who consistently refuses to accept what LDS folks consider "reasonable" explanations for things -- they come off looking like they've got an axe to grind. However, this definition's risky because fundamental differences in world view can make my compelling evidence seem completely nonsensical to you, and vice-versa.

For me, the clear evidence of a person *not* being "anti" is a willingness to engage in dialogue instead of ranting, a desire to understand (if not agree), and the ability to recognize common beliefs.

Does that help?

Ryan said...

The FDLS believe John Taylor appeared in a vision shortly after the church rejected polygamy, and told them to keep the practice of polygamy alive. How can we condemn them for believing the vision?

In general, discerning revelation is a pretty thorny question, and one that caused plenty of problems in the early days of the Church, but this particular case seems clear enough to me.

They do still accept Joseph as a prophet and the Doctrine and Covenants as scripture, do they not? Section 28 is *very* clear about how revelation for the Church works:

6 And thou shalt not command him who is at thy head, and at the head of the church;
7 For I have given him the keys of the mysteries, and the revelations which are sealed, until I shall appoint unto them another in his stead.
...
13 For all things must be done in order, and by common consent in the church, by the prayer of faith.


If the living prophet and the main body of the Church is going against you, it should raise HUGE warning flags. Doctrinal changes that go against the law of the land should raise even more huge warning flags (law changes that go against doctrine are a little trickier).

In the end, I think anyone who honestly follows what they see as God's will can expect a lot of slack at the last day, as long as they repent and accept the truth once they understand it. God will not condemn the ignorant, and only God can know when someone really understands and rejects the truth, so we have no business judging them.

However, we *are* expected to follow the laws of the land or accept the consequences, and we don't have to agree with "revelation" others receive -- we're even supposed to seek personal confirmation for what the prophet says!

erelis said...

I noticed shortly after this article went up that there were comments in which a number of Mormons responded by pointing out -- among other things -- that mormoncult.org is not what it appears to be.

The comments have disappeared and further comments appear disabled. Nice. Put up a hack job of an article, then eliminate the comments that point out your flawed "research". Of course, he still has the link to mormoncult.org up.

Bookslinger said...

Kevin,

Just keep surfing the "bloggernacle", the collection of LDS blogs, which you can see listed at www.LDSblogs.org, or www.ldselect.org, or mormonblogosphere.blogspot.com

I think Tom and Ryan gave good answers about more legitimate criticisms. Even members in good standing sometimes (and online, it seems rather often) point out things that the church could do better at, or point out the collective shortcomings of church programs or policies.

Sometimes bad apples get through the screening process so that we don't always have exemplary members. Occasionally, even a leader messes up. We're human, and subject to the whole spectrum of human failings as all of humanity.

Sometimes, in answer to critics of the LDS curch, we have to say: "Yeah, that was a bad thing, and it shouldn't have happened" such as the events of the Willie-Martin handcart companies, and the Mountain Meadows massacre.

As an organization, the LDS church is young compared to most of established mainstream Christian churches or movements, having been established in 1830.

Even the various branches of "new" Protestant churches still are pretty much based on the work of the Reformers from Luther onward, and even most of them still cling to the creeds (such as the Nicene, Athanasian, Apostolic, etc) of the 4th Century.

Good luck in your study of LDS beliefs and history.

For the basics, I'd like to point you to official church teachings. Other than what we call the "Standard Works" (Bible, Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, and Pearl of Great Price), the best way to learn what mormons believe by topic is the Sunday School manual "Gospel Principles"

My observation has been that respectful inquiries are always handled respectfully on this blog, Mormanity.

Kevin said...

Thanks for the comments, everyone - very thorough and helpful answers.

dubhe said...

...I went to "The Conservative Voice.com" and the site was down at 10:00 pm Pacific. They must be dumbstruck due to the erudite nature of their contributors.

JimD said...

The FDLS believe John Taylor appeared in a vision shortly after the church rejected polygamy, and told them to keep the practice of polygamy alive . . .

In point of fact, my understanding is that they believe John Taylor called a secret council while he was still alive, warned those present that the church would soon publicly repudate polygamy, and then instructed them that they were to keep "the principle" alive no matter what he or subsequent church leaders might say. See http://www.mormonfundamentalism.com for a lengthy-but-thorough explanation of the origins of the FLDS and other polygamous LDS offshoots.

Hans said...

It is amazing to what lengths people go to connect two different entities. These people totally miss the whole purpose of Joseph's last charge to the 12. If you follow the 12, you will be fine. Some criticize the church for having evolved from the 19th to the 20th century hierarchy, saying that FLDS are closer to what JS preached. They fail to realize that even within the early church, with JS at it's head, the roles of the 12, First Presidency, Bishop, and High Councils all evolved greatly as set forth in the D&C.

One of Mormonism's critiques of main-stream Christianity is that they failed to follow the 12 and did not evolve by mains of revelation. The FLDS argument and those who tie us together with make the same mistake when arguing that the church now is different from 1844. That was the point of the last charge and the complete handing of keys to the 12.

As a separate question, does the audit email address really work?

Dan and Wendy said...

Jeff, Thanks for putting a smile on my face. This story will have me chuckling at least until the end of the week.

Marsha said...

- Exploiting differences in vocabulary, playing word games, asking loaded questions, etc. to trap and confuse others.

I have found that there are differences in vocabulary between Mormon and Christian language. How is a Mormon and a Christian supposed to have a conversation about their various beliefs if the language they each speak is different? You almost have to define terms when a lot of the words are the same but have different meanings. Otherwise one person is thinking the other is talking about the same thing when in reality they are not.

Anonymous said...

It depends on what you're talking about. In my opinion, and experience, I've found it's not that different words mean different things. What I've noticed is that different people have different assumptions. Mormons have some subtle and not-so-subtle differences in assumptions, which is why it appears that we have a *different vocabulary*. As far as I know, everyone has different assumptions, and I've seen Christians from different denominations talk with each other and appear to be using *different vocabulary*, but in reality, they just have different assumptions being made concerning the topics they bring up. I don't think that it is so much a Mormon / Christian misunderstanding as it is a general miscommunication problem between people. Mormons, on average, tend to have more different assumptions concerning the various topics of discussion than various Protestant relgions do with each other, so naturally, more misunderstandings tend to occur. The fact of the matter is, there are people out there who take our beliefs, sometimes accurate and sometimes not-so-accurate, and impugn there own assumptions on them to make them seem just down right weird. They aren't interested in understanding where we come from. If you want to have meaningful dialogue with someone who doesn't share the same world-view as you, you *should* take time to define terms and understand the underlying assumptions. Otherwise you come off as callous, and don't appear to actually care about the individual at all. All that does is stir a spirit of contention, and in no way helps to give useful discourse. Sorry for the lengthy reply, but it sometimes just frustrates me when I hear people complain about a *different vocabulary*. Hopefully I haven't offended. I just think that, sometimes, it really is worthwhile to stop complaining about the differences, and take the time to understand another individual's world-view to help foster meaningful dialogue. That's just my two cents.

Ryan said...

anon@2:23 said:
What I've noticed is that different people have different assumptions. Mormons have some subtle and not-so-subtle differences in assumptions, which is why it appears that we have a *different vocabulary*.
...
it really is worthwhile to stop complaining about the differences, and take the time to understand another individual's world-view to help foster meaningful dialogue.


++

I also get the feeling that all too often people talk past each other instead of trying to understand each other. You've just said it more clearly than I did.

Michemily said...

"Oh brother" is all I can say. Oh brother.

Doug Forbes said...

The truth about the FLDS is that they are a lot like the mainstream in terms of teen sex.
There are 27 FLDS girls aged 15-17 and 8 are married in the eyes of the FLDS and thus sexually active. That is 29.6%. According to the National Center for Disease Statistics (NCDS), 30% of American girls 15-17 are sexually active nationwide. The NCDS further reports tha
5.7% of girls have sex before they turn 14 nationawide (this is the USA folks not the FLDS)
13.0% before 15
26.8% before 16
43.1% before 17 and
58.0% before 18.
31.5% of girls 15-19 use contraceptives. There were 212,000 teen abortions in 2002 and 351,000 in 1995. About 2% of girls 15-17 give birth every year.

The FLDS looks good when compared to the nation asa whole. Texas does not. The Lone Star state tends to run 33% higher than the national average in teen sex related stats.


Yes I know the Texas CPS claims there are 53 FLDS girls 16-17 years old and 31 are pregnant or mothers. Most of that 31 are women in there 20s and have drivers licenses and birth certificates to prove it. Whatch carefully because the news media will "forget" to report the truth when it comes out as prominently as they reported the lies.

Kevin said...

"The truth about the FLDS is that they are a lot like the mainstream in terms of teen sex."

This sidesteps the real question issue though: is it OK that teens are having so much sex?

I know that the FLDS calls them marriages, but when they are (illegal)polygamous marriages involving underage girls, the FLDS becomes an institution actively promoting teen sex or sex between teenagers and adults. That is far more problematic for me than two non-FLDS consenting teens using contraception, even if it goes against their parents' wishes. The FLDS could be going against a 15 year old girl's wishes.

"Most of that 31 are women in there 20s and have drivers licenses and birth certificates to prove it."

This doesn't change the fact that there are very very young girls "married" and having sex with adults.

Even if we accept that marrying young isn't necessarily a bad thing, I think we can all agree that it is problematic when the woman is unable to make her own decision about the matter without being presented with other options and we know that women are being "assigned" to husbands in the FLDS.

Instead of outrage at this situation, I see more sympathy and defense from mainstream Mormons, when this clearly goes against the church's teachings.

Why the complacency? This isn't meant as an attack; I just don't understand the typical LDS response to this.

Anonymous said...

I saw that Grant Swank, on his blog, cited his Masters in Theology as infallibility for his position and that any complaining about his labeling the LDS as a cult is irrelevant because he is smarter than anyone that would complain about his position. I wonder what his emphasis was in his theological training? Obviously, well documented research was not part of it.

Anonymous said...

There is plenty of outrage among us Mormons over the FLDS problems. But we also find outrage over the violation of their constitutional rights and the religious bigotry that is being used against us as well.

bec said...

classic. :)

Doug Forbes said...

Texas news station reports on 24 year old FLDS woman held as minor.

http://flds-news.newslib.com/story/7739-1019/

Doug Forbes said...

The anti-polygamy Left has two goals. (in my opinion)

1. Deny women the right to choose who they have babies with.
2. Water down the Genocide Statute.

Underlying it all is a vicious hostility toward Western Civilization.

Kevin said...

"The anti-polygamy Left has two goals. (in my opinion)

1. Deny women the right to choose who they have babies with.
2. Water down the Genocide Statute.

Underlying it all is a vicious hostility toward Western Civilization."

A lot of people think that polygamy does deny women the right to choose who they have babies with. This aversion to the "Left" sounds more like paranoia than anything substantial.

Are Mormons pro-polygamy or anti-polygamy? Or is it somewhere in the middle? I'm still confused about this. I know the official stance, but can anyone tell me the more realistic/practical Mormon position on it? I get confused with all of the conflicting comments on it. Most seem sympathetic towards it, but I know Jeff has difficulty with the idea. Just curious.

erelis said...

Are Mormons pro-polygamy or anti-polygamy? Or is it somewhere in the middle? I'm still confused about this. I know the official stance, but can anyone tell me the more realistic/practical Mormon position on it? I get confused with all of the conflicting comments on it. Most seem sympathetic towards it, but I know Jeff has difficulty with the idea. Just curious.

Kevin, I think you answered your question when you wrote the bolded sentence. There is no "Mormon" position on the FLDS or polygamy - I think that opinions of Mormons are all over the map.

Speaking for myself, while I find the FLDS practice of polygamy abhorrent and think that there are ample grounds for concern over the children involved, I also have a deep sympathy for the legal rights a people who have just had the government unload on them with a sledgehammer because of their religion.

Zera Pulsipher said...

Your question is really hard to answer this time kevin and I'll share my views on it but they are just that my views as I cannot speak for the church or its other members in any official capacity. In short with me it is somewhere in the middle. I personaly would never want to practice it as I am very happy with just one wife. This of course is due solely to the romanization of our culture. At the same time I have a real problem with laws that were created with only religious bigotry in mind. Considering every religion including main stream Christianity practiced or practices polygamy I have a problem saying that its immoral. From a an economical stand point it also makes more sense then staying in only one monogomous relationship. So the problem I have is that it's illegal behind a farce that was firmly set in place in the late 1800s specifically meant to demonize and try to destroy the saints. Yet it was and should have remained moral as there is nothing close to prohibiting its practice in the constitution. At the same time I feel that the FLDS should have taken it to the supreme court a long time ago and sought out legal ways to change the laws rather then ignoring them. So that's just my two cents. While I would never be able to practice it I believe anyone where all the participants are willing and of legal age of course, should be allowed to. Sorry for any grammer or typos.

Kevin said...

Thanks for the responses. I recognize that there are varying Mormon opinions on this. I was just curious if anyone noticed any sort of consensus on the matter.

If the the law against polygamy was created with the intention of bigotry or destroying the LDS way of life, what does this mean for the revelatory aspect of doing away with the practice?

Was it abandoned because the government was bullying Utah or because of divine revelation? Both perhaps?

Anonymous said...

Funny. You saw the folks in TX don't represent you want to criticize theconservativevoice.com about a column on its site. What is different here? If you belong to the Mormon church are you then a child molester or are there some child molesters who happen to be mormons? From the argument presented on this blog all Mormon's are child molesters because of the remarks about Swank and theconservativevoice.com

Peter said...

Hi Kevin,

It is very possible that it was due to both. As we see in history there was the pressure but also revelation to stop the practice of polygamy. From what I recall of things I have read, the Saints were still practicing until the declaration was given. Because our Articles of Faith declare that we will be subject to law I believe that God would and does direct us in accordance with the law.

Peter

Zera Pulsipher said...

As with Peter I would also say it was due to both. I think it was probably one of the harder decisions our leadership has had to make simply because it was a decision they were forced to make because of the circumstances. That being Said I think that they did receive revelation that rather then going to war with the US government, that they complied with it and I believe that Utah being granted statehood because of it has been a greater blessing then is possible to measure for the Church and its members.

erelis said...

I'll add my vote to the "both" category. I think that polygamy had served its purposes, and it was clearly time to move on.

My reading of the Manifesto ending polygamy is that it wasn't actually commanded that it be given up. There was a distinctive choice that the Lord gave to President Woodruff -- either continue polygamy as before and risk annihilation (which doesn't help God's purposes out very much), or give it up in exchange for peace. Perhaps the choice was a little loaded given the circumstances, but President Woodruff made the choice that God wanted him to make.

The elements of agency and choice are subtle ones, but important to note in the discussion of polygamy.

Anonymous said...

People like Swank aren't interested in being accurate or providing anythng even close to the truth. Credibility is relative. It is like the left wing radicals and thier moral relativism. It is "the truth is whatever I want it to be when I want it".

Nate Nead said...

That's what people get for "piece-mealing" information and reading everything. What happened is an exact reflection of what they do with the doctrine: they only read enough to get the information they were looking for at the outset.

Aaron said...

There have been times and throughout the Bible where polygamy was clearly authorized by the Lord. To completely condemn the practice you also be condemning Old Testement prophets like Moses and Abraham. There are also clearly times in the scriptures where the Lord chastens people for practicing unauthorized plural marriage. The Book of Mormon has the Nephites being condemned at one point. My take on it is we try to follow what the Lord would have us follow. He knows what is best for us.

Ray said...

UPDATE: Over a month later, Swank's column is still there. Ironically, the "Ads by Google" at the bottom of the page include a link to an article in the www.lds.org newsroom. Here's the text of the ad on Swank's page:

"Polygamy in the News:
Church has no affiliation with polygamists - Read more here"

As I said, the link goes to an official statement on www.lds.org.

Giuseppe said...

Jeff,

you are doing a great work!