Started by Bryce Hammond
To apostate disinformation.
Yesterday on his Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/johndehlin), John Dehlin posted the following:
Urgent: Need specific examples of LDS apologetic ad hominem attacks for a presentation I’m preparing. Please post them here if you can. Thanks in advance!
Frankly, this leaves me both puzzled and astonished.
1- If he doesn’t have enough examples of apologetic ad hominem from his own past study, why has he been so loudly and publicly proclaiming that LDS apologists consistently engage in serial ad hominem? His claim couldn’t be mere but ideological posturing, could it?
2- If he doesn’t have examples, doesn’t proper scholarly methodology dictate that he actually read the Review himself to get a complete and nuanced understanding of what the Review is really all about? Is it really adequate to ask a self-selected audience to send you pre-selected data? Talk about confirmation bias!
3- So now, not only is Dehlin openly engaging in egregious cherry picking, he’s apparently even too lazy to pick his own cherries.
Which leads to the final question:
4- Why should anyone take Dehlin’s musings on this topic seriously?
The apostates endlessly complain that the FARMS Review under Dan Peterson’s term as editor included nothing but ad hominem insults. (The irony that that claim is itself an ad hominem excuse to dismiss the Review without reading it seems lost on them. They also seem to confuse negative reviews with ad hominem.)
If you want to see what real ad hominem is like, take a look at Edwin Firmage’s rant in the Salt Lake Tribune comment section of Peggy Fletcher Stack’s article on the “shake-up” at the NAMI:
Good riddance. Daniel Peterson is a self-righteous, pretentious, embarrassment to Mormon scholarship.
Sadly, he and other apologists (not to mention mediocre scholars) remain in BYU’s departments of ancient scripture and church history, …
The firing of Peterson, and its implicit recognition of the failure of apologetics, …
It will take DECADES more to undo the damage that Peterson et al. have done. …
Democrats are as invisible in Church leadership as real scholars are in religious studies at the Y.
… Time and again, the Church demonstrated to thinking Mormons with an interest in history and religion that honest scholarship cannot exist at BYU. …
… The predictable result: an exodus of everyone with a brain. …
there would be no real scholarship at the Y in faith-related fields for the foreseeable future. Instead, the Church got poseurs and prostitutes like Daniel Peterson, …
So, you can continue Daniel Peterson’s brand of ad hominem attacks against me. [Does the man have no sense of irony?!]
They welcome debate, but only when the other side is a straw man without a brain. …
… What is disingenuous about Daniel, in my view, is that he parlays his real expertise in Arabic into writing and speaking gigs (e.g., his columns in The Church News) on topics that he actually knows little about. …
…. Thus, you have lots of people with only peripheral knowledge and virtually no one with solid credentials teaching the, for Mormons, most important subjects. And the closer you get to the core issues, the lower the actual expertise. I would say this criticism holds for ALL of those now teaching Hebrew, Bible, and religious studies at the Y, many of whom I know personally.
… The expertise is very shallow, and largely focused on areas that allow the faculty in question, … Real scholars know real scholarship when they see it, and in religious, and especially biblical studies, BYU does not represent real scholarship.
It would be impossible to find anything even remotely like this in the FARMS Review. This is ad hominem. A negative review containing pithy satire is not ad hominem. And I should add this is not exceptional. This is the normal way apostates speak about Dan and other LDS scholars.
From the always insightful Ben McGuire;
This blog contains a very important graphic representation of the decline of the quantity of FARMS publications since its merger with BYU. It’s really striking and obvious.
Great analysis of the controversy by Ralph Hancock.
My friend Mike Parker has posted an excellent article illuminating the spin that has been put on the controversy by the apostates and anti-Mormons. It is well worth a read.