Bend It Like Glenn Beck


I’ve heard rumblings that some members of the Religious Right are peeved at Glenn Beck’s assuming the position of a conservative religious leader when he’s a Mormon. After all, Mormons believe something slightly different about their wrathful, bloodthirsty deity than Catholics and Protestants do. So do fundamentalist Muslims, for that matter. But how serious is Beck about his Mormon beliefs? I mean, he’s basically admitted that he converted because his wife wouldn’t have sex with him otherwise, right? Well, obviously I don’t know how serious he really is in his own mind (although, to be frank, the guy comes across as totally insincere in pretty much everything), but he’s apparently into it enough to promote Joseph Smith’s teachings on his show. See here for some choice quotations from a show where Beck insists that Native Americans are descended from Jews. (By the way, if you want to see the actual footage of him discussing this, it’s mostly at the end of Part C and the beginning of Part D.) This is what the Book of Mormon says, and it wasn’t an original idea with Smith. Back in the days when Europeans were first exploring America, some of them couldn’t conceive of there being a large population not connected to any other they already knew about. The Bible traces everyone on Earth back to Noah’s sons, so the Indians must be related to an already known culture in some way, right? I believe some tied this to the idea of the so-called Ten Lost Tribes, the inhabitants of the northern kingdom of Israel who were displaced by the Assyrians. Smith took this same basic idea and ran with it, explaining that the Native Americans didn’t look at all Semitic because they had all lost their way over their years, and hence been given darker skin. Yes, Mormonism teaches that the faithful have lighter skin than the heathens, which is pretty blatantly racist. And even as the idea of Indians being descended from Jews has all but disappeared from mainstream belief, due in large part to archaeological evidence that indicates the ancestors of the Indians were living on this continent ages before there were any Jews, the Church of Latter-Day Saints still hangs on to it. To support their long outdated hypothesis, they dredge up relics that they claim feature ancient Hebrew writing, such as the Bat Creek Stone.

According to Beck, the authorities sought to suppress such evidence, because it didn’t fit with their concept of Manifest Destiny. As with all conspiracy theories of this sort, however, why would the people seeking to suppress this history have been so sloppy in covering their tracks, and how did some treasure hunter from New York manage to discover the carefully hidden truth? Oh, right. Because he found some golden plates in the ground and translated them from the otherwise unknown Reformed Egyptian with help from his magic spectacles. That makes a LOT more sense than what the archaeological record shows.

It kind of figures, however, that someone like Beck would choose a religion that’s big on conspiracy theories, openly racist, and totally America-centric. I kind of have to wonder why more of the “God Bless America” crowd hasn’t gotten on board with the religion that believes God LITERALLY blessed America. Not that I think there need to be any more Mormons than there already are, but it makes sense in a way.

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4 Responses to Bend It Like Glenn Beck

  1. vilajunkie says:

    So Beck thinks he’s the American Right’s religious conservative leader? Where’s your proof of ordainment, Mr. Beck? No, getting them online doesn’t count. So does this make you the chief rival of the Sith Lord Pope? Shall we be sending you to international interfaith conferences to speak on behalf of all conservative Christians? If so, will you be civil to the rabbis and imams and ayatollahs, etc., also present? I suppose Beck got his calling from an Israeli angel who gave him a Little Golden Picture Book in a dead alien language and a pair of Babelfish Goggles.

    • Nathan says:

      To be fair, I don’t think Beck ever actually called himself a religious leader, but I get the impression that’s what he’s going for, what with his revival meeting in Washington and all that.

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