Periodicals; Mormons; Religious thought; Philosophy and religion
Independent national quarterly established to express Mormon culture and examine the relevance of religion to secular life. It is edited by Mormons who wish to bring their faith into dialogue with human experience as a whole and to foster artistic and scholarly achievement based on their cultural heritage. The journal encourages a variety of viewpoints; although every effort is made to insure accurate scholarship and responsible judgment, the views expressed are those of the individual authors and are not necessarily those of the Mormon Church or of the editors.
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Bradley, Martha Sonntag ; Roberts, Allen Dale
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72 Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought Not long afterward, the author of this article lost his job in the LDS Publications Department. His supervisor had told him that it was "inappropriate" for him to be a member of the John Birch Society and an editor of the ultra-conservative Utah Independent. When informed of this incident by the state coordinator of the Birch Society, Apostle Benson said he could do nothing to remedy it. While Harold B. Lee was in the presidency, he evidently even gave an embarrassing rebuke to Apostle Benson during a meeting of general authorities in the Salt Lake Temple. As reported by Henry D. Taylor, an Assistant to the Twelve, individual apostles were delivering formal presentations on various subjects to the assistants. Benson's assigned topic was the church's youth program, but he began presenting charts and quotes to show Communist influence in America and the need to teach anti-Communism to Mormon youth. Lee walked out while Benson was speaking, soon followed by the other apostles. Taylor and the other Assistants to the Twelve were the only ones who remained seated during 283 Benson's presentation. Ernest Wilkinson and Benson both gave a less dramatic indication of the frustration felt by Mormon ultra-conservatives during the Smith-Lee presidency. BYU's president complained to Benson in April 1971 about not being able to establish "a chapter of the John Birch Society on our z84 campus." In April 1972 Benson told general conference listeners that "I would highly recommend to you the book None Dare Call It Conspiracy by Gary Allen." Allen was a member of the Birch Society and editor of its 285 official magazine. Benson's advice appeared in the report of his conference address by the Mormon-Birch Utah Independent, but the First Presidency deleted that recommendation from the official report of Benson's 286 sermon. regular column from national headquarters in Belmont, Massachusetts, was formally named "The Birch Log" as of Utah Independent, 5 Aug. 1976, 3. 282. Byron Cannon Anderson interview, 18 Jan. 1993. 283. Statement of Henry D. Taylor to his friend Mark K. Allen as reported in Allen interview, 3 May 1984, by Alison Bethke Gayek, photocopy in my possession. See above for Taylor's negative assessment in 1962 of Reed Benson's work with the Birch Society. 284. Wilkinson to Benson, 13 Apr. 1971, also follow-up letter of 4 May 1971, Wilkinson Papers, photocopies in my possession; Bergera and Priddis, Brigham Young University, 190. 285. Gary Allen, None Dare Call It Conspiracy (Rossmoor, CA: Concord Press, 1971). For Allen's prominent role in the Birch Society, see his, "The Life and Character of Robert Welch," American Opinion 28 (Mar. 1985): 127, and Allen's permanent position as a "Contributing Editor" of American Opinion since September 1967 286. Benson, "Civic Standards for the Faithful Saints," Utah Independent, 14 Apr. 1972, 4; compare with censored version in Deseret News "Church News," 8 Apr. 1972, 12, and Ensign 2 (July 1972): 59-61. On 12 December 1972, BYU professor J. Kenneth Davies reported