Examining the claims of Jonathan Neville and the Heartland movement

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Jonathan Neville libels Church employees

Sometimes I wonder if Jonathan Neville understands the implications of his own blog posts.

In his March 12, 2019, post, “more on ‘good information,’” [sic] he claims,
Church employees and departments are censoring information at various levels. I’ve been informed about instances in which they are even depriving Church leaders and members of important information and perspectives.
He doesn’t tell us who his sources are who informed him of this disturbing information, but let’s be clear: He is accusing “Church employees and departments” of willfully “depriving Church leaders and members of important information and perspectives.” In other words, these employees have knowledge that they know is important and yet they are purposely keeping this information from the First Presidency, the Quorum of the Twelve, and other general authorities and general officers, as well as the body of the Church.

Jonathan Neville is accusing Church employees of lying by omission.
A lie of omission is a lie in which someone deliberately withholds pertinent details about something in order to skew someone else’s idea of the truth or engender a misconception. Although a lie of omission is not technically a lie because it contains no false information, it is still referred to as one colloquially because it is deliberately misleading.
This is a serious charge, and yet Neville tosses it out casually in a blog post. If his anonymous sources are not accurate, his accusation could rise the level of libel.

Two other items of note in Neville’s blog post:
By now, it’s apparent to everyone that the dominant intellectuals in the Church have established and enforced their views through censorship.

This is particularly true of the M2C citation cartel* and the Church History Department. Both groups deprive members of the Church of “good information” solely to promote their particular agendas.…

An easy remedy for the Cumorah issue would be to provide all students in CES and BYU with my proposed BYU packet, which is available here.
I’m not sure who “everyone” is; it’s apparent to Jonathan Neville, but it’s not apparent to the many people who disagree with his odd views.

Neville’s “BYU packet” is his version of a similar packet that’s given to BYU students who have questions about the Church’s position on evolution and its teaching at Brigham Young University. That packet includes four official statements by the First Presidency on the Church’s position on the origin of man. Neville’s “BYU packet,” on the other hand, is his one-sided collection of statements from various Church leaders, none of which is an official statement by the First Presidency.

Finally, did he actually write this incredible statement with a straight face?
This blog focuses on Book of Mormon geography.

It may surprise some people, but this isn’t a topic I spend a lot of time on.
I’m dying to know his definition of “a lot of time.” Blogging about it daily in lengthy posts on multiple blogs seems to me to be the very meaning of “a lot of time.”

—Peter Pan

* “M2C” is Jonathan Neville’s acronym for the theory that the Book of Mormon took place in Mesoamerica and that the hill Cumorah in the Book of Mormon is not the same hill in New York where Joseph Smith received the plates of Mormon.


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