New biography tells all about a forthright Mormon historian, Leonard Arrington, who told all
“The attempt to suppress problems and difficulties, the attempt to intimidate people who raise problems or express doubts or seek to reconcile difficult facts, is both ineffective and futile,” Arrington wrote to his children. “It leads to suspicion, mistrust, the condescending slanting of data.”
The more Mormons “deny or appear to deny certain demonstrable ‘facts,’ ” he told them, “the more we must ourselves harbor serious doubts and have something to hide.”
Ironically, such an appeal to openness, says Prince, is now embraced by top Mormon leaders and is evidenced in the faith’s essays, lesson materials and sermons from the pulpit.