These cults have some very clear similarities that classify them, by definition, as a cult. One of these is: the group is elitist, claiming a special, exalted status for itself, its leader(s), and members (for example: the leader is considered the Messiah or an avatar; the group and/or the leader has a special mission to save humanity). Joseph Smith, in starting his Mormon Church of Latter Day Saints, proclaimed he was a direct descendant of Jesus and his followers can become gods themselves, replete with their own worlds to rule with a plethora of wives. He urged followers to take up arms against the U.S. militia and died as a “martyr”. Branch Davidian leader David Koresh proclaimed messiah status in 1990 when he changed his name from Timothy Howell and strongly favored polygamy for himself and also dealt in illegal firearms. People’s Temple cult leader James Jones proclaimed exalted status where members even signed over custody of their children to Jones. All three men proclaimed a sense of divinity and demanded allegiance through intimidation and threats towards their followers. All three led their followers to an untimely, violent death in defense of the cult and its leaders.
My primary issue with the Mormon candidate, Mitt Romney is, how can he believe the fallacious assertions made by Joseph Smith as veritable and still be considered a logical human being, let alone a candidate for president if he’s a devout follower of such cultish nonsense? In my opinion, all religions have fantastical notions but usually, have some fairly valid historical premises, based on love and inclusion essentially. The Mormon cult is another case altogether. Everything about the history of this religion has categorically been proven false by scientific evidence. Joseph Smith was a magnanimous megalomaniac with a penchant for drama. A church without theater wouldn’t last long, Smith believed. The ritualistic nature of Temple Endowment Ceremonies, for instance, show a unique interpretation of the Masonic rites they were modeled after. People need the fantasy, the performance and the mystery, which Smith provided in his founding of a new church—rife with rituals, stories of travel from faraway lands and theatrical acts of mystical translations that are at the core of the church’s history. A new “gospel” is easier to sell with the extravagant pomp, circumstance and surreptitiousness of the Mormon Church.
The utterly violent and devastating end to both the Branch Davidians and the Guyana Settlement at Jonestown are eerily similar to Brigham Young ordering non-LDS settlers to be slaughtered in the Mountain Meadows Massacre. A cult that will kill with the intention of protecting its interests and the secrecy of its faith should be considered suspect. Moreover, the incident remains buried in political turmoil, even to this day, and was a media sensation for more than 20 years after it happened. Most Mormons know nothing of the original 9/11 and they’d like to keep it that way.
Another technique used by cults is to discourage the acquisition of information and to keep the indoctrinated firmly rooted in the faith. A recent ploy used by LDS hierarchy to keep its young cult members in the dark is the lowering of the age of missionary service to 18 (from 19). Years of indoctrination and brainwashing could easily be lost with a year spent at a liberal arts college, so LDS President Monson and Company aren’t taking any chances. They are reluctant to lose any potential tithing members who will perpetually contribute 10% of their net worth to the post mortem afterlife insurance policy. It is absolutely amazing how many people buy into this fraud, yet it is far more terrifying for our President to subscribe to this nonsense.
End Times predictions abound in cults, the Mormons being no exception. Gun ownership is certainly encouraged. The Mormon Church owns one of the most active and unregulated gun sale portals on the web, according to a national investigation released by the New York City Mayor’s office. The website in question is KSL.com, the online hub for Utah’s NBC affiliate and sister radio station, which are both owned and operated by the for-profit arm of the Mormon Church. In addition to local news, KSL.com produces a popular classifieds section that reaches millions of users well beyond Utah. Jim Jones’ murdering of Congressman Leo Ryan in 1978, the mass suicide and the fiery Branch Davidian siege in 1993 remind us of the drastic measures cult leaders and their followers will resort to if they feel threatened.
Anyone can say that all religions have cultish characteristics, and, to a degree, they’d be right. But for a religion, in this era of technology and information, to assert such provably false claims as veracious is preposterous. Jesus Christ was a figure who preached peace, tolerance and acceptance. The Mormon Church, like others cults, has a history of violence, exclusion and bigotry, no matter how much they try to hide the facts. It is certainly not a faith which should supercede the United States Constitution by the Leader of the Free World.