Mormon Apologists attack Mormon Apologists

Subject: Apologists attacking apologists - Rodney Meldrum and FARMS
Date: Jul 04, 2008 (updated Sep. 6,2008)
Author: Simon in Oz

Note for non-Mormons:  Limited Geography Theory (LGT) is an attempt to 'prove' the Book of Mormon is about real people and real places in some yet undiscovered locations in Central America.   The theory is absurd for many reasons and it is now being challenged by another Mormon apologist, Rodney Meldrum.   Meldrum has tours of supposed Book of Mormon locations in the Great Lakes region of North America and has made Mormon apologetics a full time job.  He seems to be making considerable money promoting his theories.  (See bottom of this topic on his presentation in Washington DC area in July 2008)  He is backed by a retired Mormon General Authority. 

Limited Geography Theory is not officially supported by the Mormon Church.   This may be a topic that is too esoteric for someone not familiar with Mormonism and the Book of Mormon.  FARMS and FAIR are Mormon supported apologetic groups.  FARMS is a part of BYU [a Mormon owned university] and has been renamed to the Neal A. Maxwell Institute of Religious Scholarship.

FAIR apologists have now for the first time admitted that American Indians have been present in the New World for as long as the last 20,000 years.

A good site to read on LGT is

A fight has been brewing for months between (unofficial but not to be questioned) Limited Geography apologists at BYU/FARMS/FAIR and the new kid on the block Rodney Meldrum.

Meldrum has a 4 hour DVD that presents evidence for a Great Lakes (North America) Geography and he has been touring numerous US states convincing large audiences that his theory is right.

FAIR are really cranky because Meldrum is openly challenging Limited Geographists who are unofficially the Lords official apologists…unofficially.

A flood (~200 pages!!!) of apologetic scorn is about to be directed Meldrum’s way.
The full version of the “executive summary” is 17 pages long!!!

This is FAIRS official unofficial view of Meldrum’s DVD.
• Mr. Meldrum has attempted to assert revelation for those outside of his stewardship, and has used that revelation as a substitute for solid scholarship.
• The DVD contains much material that is misrepresented because the author is unfamiliar with the large body of work--produced over decades by faithful Latter-day Saints--that addresses the very topics he seeks to address.
• The DVD plants erroneous information, concepts, and expectations in the minds of viewers, making them easier targets for hostile critics when these errors are inevitably trumpeted by enemies of the Church.4
The last point is a cracker. FAIR have their own pathetic DVD entitled “The Book of Mormon and New World DNA”.

Last month John Tvedtnes admitted he had made two erroneous statements in the DVD related to claims of European DNA in Mesoamerica. To his credit he asked FAIR to make changes to the DVD or to place a note on their website alerting people to the mistakes. A month after saying they would “do what is right” and make the corrections, they are still selling the DVD and there are no indications that the DVD contains mistakes.

Utter hypocrites.

Subject: LDS prophet summarily rejects the "limited geography theory".....
Date: Jul 05, 2008
Author: Randy J.
Background Link: 388 What is Limited Geography Theory?

This post is primarily for newcomers or young people who aren't aware of the info. The late church president and long-time church historian Joseph Fielding Smith utterly rejected the "limited geography theory" that modern Mopologists of FAIR and FARMS are now pushing.

For many years, JF Smith wrote responses to doctrinal/historical questions in the "I have a question" section of the old Improvement Era magazine, which of course was the official church voice and the precursor of the "Ensign." He was considered one of the most authoritative church historians, scriptorians, and doctrinarians of his time.

As Smith wrote his remarks in 1956, that tells us that the LGT was being proposed by some Mormons at least that long ago. Smith correctly recognized that in order to accept the LGT, one must reject many statements made in the BOM itself as well as numerous statements of church leaders beginning with Joseph Smith Jr. (such as Smith's noting of specific BOM sites in New York state and Missouri.)

Of course, the FARMSbots and FAIRies would respond to this article with "JF Smith wasn't speaking as a prophet. He was only stating his opinion." And my rebuttal is that Smith stated his opinions based on what's written in the BOM as well as the words of past prophets. Furthermore, the Mopologists have no more "authority" backing their opinions than they claim that Smith had for his, so why should their opinions carry any more weight than Smith's?

Here's the article:


Subject: The bitter pills of Limited Geography
Date: Jul 05 21:01
Author: Simon in Oz

Just a few things most ordinary Mormons find hardest to swallow. The first two are both utterly ridiculous.

1. There are two Cumorahs: the New York Cumorah is not the Book of Mormon Cumorah.

2. Moroni carries the gold plates, Urim and Thummim etc 2500 miles to New York but never mentions this.

3. Isthmus of Tuhantepec is North-South instead of East-West.

4. The Isthmus is 125 miles wide: not your typically 1.5 day march by a Nephite.

5. Leadership has made numerous statements supporting Hemispheric Geography in General Conference.

6. Book of Mormon never mentions the presence of large pre-existing Mesoamerican civilizations.

Subject: Two LDS apostles discuss scientific evidence for the Book of Mormon
Date: Jul 06 14:33
Author: Randy J.

Apostle Russell Ballard:

Note that while the video is entitled "Is there scientific evidence for the BOM?", Ballard offers no scientific evidence whatsoever, but instead repeats the standard mantra that the question of the BOM's authenticity is a matter of faith and testimony.

Apostle Dallin Oaks:

Note that although Oaks' address is titled "The historicity of the BOM," he offers not one iota of evidence to support that title in his entire speech. Rather, he says pretty much the same thing Ballard does.

I'm posting this to illustrate the futility and worthlessness of FARMS' and FAIR's efforts to provide what they claim to be physical evidence to support the BOM's authenticity. If there truly *were* some physical evidence to support the BOM, then these two apostles shouldn't have hesitated to cite some of it. The fact that they decline to provide any tells us that they know that none exists.

Church leaders are willing to let FARMS and FAIR apologists go out on fragile limbs and propose their silly theories and publish their silly papers; but the leaders are much more reserved in their pronouncements, because they don't want to make any statements about "BOM evidences" which can be refuted later.


Subject: Good point.
Date: Jul 06 15:01
Author: Heresy

We've been waiting 150 years for a doctrinal position on the BoM location alone. I'm guessing God isn't about to cough up a revelation soon.

I wonder how the 15 feel pouring all that money into apologetics and getting nothing back.

Nothing from God, nothing from BYU. Hello?

Subject: Hartman Rector, Steve Young, and dozens of testimonials.....
Date: Jul 06 16:41
Author: Randy J.

I read more on Rod Meldrum's website, and noted that in addition to having Hartman Rector in his corner, he did a fireside presentation in Steve Young's home.

There's also a section where dozens of faithful TBMs [Mormons] wrote testimonials in favor of Meldrum's ideas. Some of the people wrote how they never felt quite right about the Central American locale theory that the apologists have been pushing for the last 40-50 years, and that Meldrum's productions make them feel better.

This is hilarious because of the way the FARMbots and FAIRies are desperately trying to shut Meldrum up. They are worried that Meldrum may lead church members astray. From the testimonials, it sounds as though he's already succeeding.

This is just so funny. It reminds me of the storyline in "The Life of Brian" where the two subversive Jewish groups are competing with each other to drive out the Romans. One group calls itself The Peoples' Front of Judea, and the other goes by The Judean Peoples' Front. They wind up spending more time and energy bickering with each other than in dealing with the Romans.


Subject: Voices from the Dust - blame Neal A Maxwell
Date: Jul 06 17:28
Author: cricket

Here is where and why FARMS come to believe they have a mandate from LDS HQ to speak for "The Lord." Just like Maxwell they seek the Holy Spirit and let the facts be damned. They feel all soft, cuddly and warm snuggled in the Lord's protective bosom. C'mon, Neal told FARMS staff at their annual banquets that they were on the right track.

"While insights from scholarly studies are of secondary importance compared with the scriptural truths revealed by the Holy Spirit, we believe, nevertheless, that careful academic research on the scriptures, done from a faithful perspective, can nurture an environment in which interest in and acceptance of the scriptures can flourish. A better understanding of the various religious, historical, cultural, and linguistic backgrounds out of which these sacred records come to us enables us to more easily make these 'voices from the dust' relevant to our present situations."

Neal Maxwell fell in love with Hugh Nibley and by default FARMS. There is large section of his biography devoted to his relationship with FARMS. "A Disciple's Life: The Biography of Neal A. Maxwell"

In fact this is why the name was changed from FARMS to The Neal A Maxwell Institute of Religious Scholarship.,7989,757-1-0-2109,00.html


Subject: FAIR ditches X lineage in order to white ant Rodney Meldrum
Date: Jul 06 10:26

Simon in Oz   

A couple of months ago FAIR claimed in their DNA DVD that the X lineage was evidence of Middle Eastern DNA in the Americas. In their haste to attack Rodney Meldrum they have now ditched that claim. Why? Because the misguided X lineage claims strongly favor the Great Lakes Theory of Meldrum's over the Limited Geography Theory.

This is priceless apologetics.


Subject: Of course, they are right about one thing
Date: Jul 05 20:28
Author: D.P. Gumby

JF Smith was just "speaking as a man and not as a prophet", since JFS (and the rest of them) never were prophets.

Your point, however, is correct. The mopologists are also just men giving their opinions.

If Mormon leaders really *WERE* prophets, then the FARMers and FAIRies would be heretics. I find the whole subject to be delightfully ironic: arguing over which version of a fictional story is correct!


Subject: Yes, it's kind of like a bunch of people arguing ...
Date: Jul 05 21:41
Author: Dr. Baggins

about clues that indicate that the Land of Mordor may have been in Spain or possibly in a region of Atlantis, or arguing about evidence in the Lord of the Rings Trilogy and Tolkiens papers that indicate that the queen of the elves had a bad flatulence problem.

The head of the largest LOTR fan club tries to settle the issue with a pronouncement, but a lot of fans find the pronouncement unsatisfying and persist in making up their own theories.


Subject: Re: Yes, it's kind of like a bunch of people arguing ...
Date: Jul 06 01:20
Author: ChurchOfJoe

Perhaps the faithful should start attending general conference wearing "authentic" BOM costumes...


Subject: Re: your number six
Date: Jul 06 00:28
Author: Steve

It states that if there were any they were all killed in the Noachian flood.

Its the Curelom in the living room.


Subject: But since JFS's day the church has realized...
Date: Jul 06 07:56
Author: Stray Mutt

...the useful service mopologists provide. The mopologists supply authoritative-sounding BS answers so Mormons with the seeds of doubt can have their faith justified and continue to remain loyal to the church. That loyalty is more important to the brethren than doctrinal purity or accuracy. If the LGT or any other mopologist fairy tale can keep people in the church, fulfilling callings, paying tithing and indoctrinating the next generation, then let the members believe it. And if one of those pseudodoctrines comes back to bite the brethren, they can conveniently say it was just the opinion of some mopologist and not official doctrine.


Subject: Yep. What this infighting really reveals is that.....
Date: Jul 05 00:12
Author: Randy J.

...if the BOM was authentic, there wouldn't be such a wide diversity of opinion on where it all took place. The FAIR apologists who are dissing Meldrum have no more legitimate physical evidence that BOM events occurred in Mesoamerica than Meldrum has for his proposed locale.

And what's even funnier is that more than 50 years ago, Joseph Fielding Smith dissed the very "limited geography theory" that the FAIRies are currently pushing with all their might. I guess that means the call to "Come, Listen to a prophet's voice" expires when the prophet assumes room temp.

Joseph Smith Jr. placed "BOM events" in such locales as New York state and Missouri. But the FAIRies are saying that the statements of the second-greatest man who ever lived, who received revelation from God on a regular basis for two decades, are worthless.

Perhaps the Mopologists will soon argue with each other about how many angels can dance on the head of a pin, or if God can touch his elbow.


Subject: Joe Smith had a little lamb,
Date: Jul 05 00:38
Author: flattopSF

Its fleece was white as snow.
And everywhere that Joe Smith went,
His lamb was sure to go.

Joe Smith "had" his little "lamb,"
Whose "fleece" was known to all.
Of all the swindles Joe Smith pulled,
"Lamb" fell hardest of all...

Oh, which fairy tale to believe...

>34) Beware that no one lead you astray saying Lo here or lo there!

>—The Gospel According to Mary Magdalene, Chapter 4



Subject: "My lies are better than your lies neener neener neeeeener!"
Date: Jul 05 00:47
Author: Tiphanie

It's the constant lying that will help split the cult apart, so thanks be to fair and all the other fakers for helping to end the tyranny.


Subject: • Mr. Meldrum has used that revelation as a substitute for solid scholarship.
Date: Jul 05 00:51
Author: Not the Girl you Used to know

imagine that!

golly Gee!
Mormons NEVER do THAT!

"revelation as a substitute for solid scholarship" ???


Subject: This is hilarious! You can't make this stuff up! If there were any real facts, there would be no
Date: Jul 05 01:42
Author: SusieQ#1

need for these goofy Mo'pologist buffoons peddling their bogus baloney!

How many angels can dance on a pin? Depends on the kind of dance! Tango's are very dangerous!


Subject: Now I'm being a bastard
Date: Jul 05 02:00
Author: Simon in Oz

Just sent this to FAIR

Dear Allen and Scott,

I read recently on the FAIR website some severe criticism of Rodney Meldrum's DVD.

I quote from the executive summary "Misguided Zeal and Defense of the Church"

"The DVD plants erroneous information, concepts, and expectations in the minds of viewers, making them easier targets for hostile critics when these errors are inevitably trumpeted by enemies of the Church"

I was informed that John Tvedtnes has retracted two erroneous claims he made in your FAIR DVD "The Book of Mormon and New World DNA". Keith Crandall's claims are also grossly misleading and collectively these claims are planting "expectations in the minds of viewers". Yet the DVD is still on sale, apparently in its original misleading form.

Are you willing to apply the same standards of scholarship you expect of Meldrum to your own publications?

Simon Southerton


Subject: FAIR swipe at Gadfly: Changes to DVD may or may not be made.
Date: Jul 05 03:56
Author: Simon in Oz

Hi Simon,

As we created the DVD, we tried to let the scholars speak for themselves.
Now that John has requested his section be changed, we are working on
getting that done. As for Keith Crandall's part planting expectations, I
believe that is a matter of opinion.

If changes are made or not, it doesn't change the underlying problem that
the DNA argument against the Book of Mormon is fundamentally flawed. One
must make simplistic assumptions about the Book of Mormon and its peoples to
use DNA to either prove or disprove the Book of Mormon. I don't deny that
there have been members of the Church who have made those simplistic
assumptions. But, I was surprised that you would do that.

For the same reason you ask us about making changes, I'm curious to know if
are planning on taking your book off the market. You have been informed of a
number of problems with the book, and yet I still see it for sale on Amazon.
When all is said and done, I suspect we will have made changes to our DVD,
but your book will still be on sale at Amazon. Maybe that should be the time
for us to have this discussion about academic integrity.

Best Wishes,

Scott Gordon


Subject: Re: Now I'm being a bastard
Date: Jul 05 05:39
Author: Marvelous

Simon, to what issues is Scott referring?


Subject: You'd Have To Review FARMS Stuff on That One . . .
Date: Jul 05 06:29
Author: SL Cabbie

Reviewing Mormon apologetics means wading through ad hominems galore ("Simon is a plant geneticist"; "Only a population geneticist like Keith Crandall can understand the data"; "The author ignores scripture which clearly proves the BOM took place in a limited geographical area"). After that, it's "How many straw men do we need to convince the faithful we know what we're talking about."

An example of a straw man is found in the statement, "We don't know what Lehi's DNA looked like." That's a half-truth at best; assuming Lehi actually existed, his DNA could be narrowed significantly to one of a number of groupings, none of which there's evidence for in Pre-Columbian Native Americans . . . The same would hold true for the mtDNA of any women who accompanied him on his mythical voyage . . .
My best guess on the location of the issues Gordon is referring to is they're found in his imagination . . .


Subject: Re: You'd Have To Review FARMS Stuff on That One . . .
Date: Jul 05 06:36
Author: Marvelous

Thanks, SL Cabbie! It's been some time since I posted here. You were one of my favorite RFM regulars.

I'm hoping Simon will respond. I'm really curious. I don't think it's a big deal if Simon needs to revise some aspects of his argument. Essentially, I don't think there is a reasonable explanation for the absence of Hebrew DNA. If one takes the BOM and JS literally, it makes no sense that there wouldn't be a strong genetic connection between native Americans and the children of Israel.


Subject: Cabbie's right
Date: Jul 05 07:23
Author: Simon in Oz

They expect me to revise my book in light of the vanishing geography theory. They believe that they have conclusively shown that the Lehites entered a continent inhabited by millions, entered the large pre-existing civilizations, and then their DNA was diluted away so that we can't detect it. They also set up the straw man that I am arguing that according to the Book of Mormon all American Indians are descended from Hebrews. I have never claimed this.

The vanishing geography theory is utter desperation. The reason they have guys like Rodney Meldrum coming up with the Great Lakes theory and dissing their vanishing theory is because the vanishing theory doesn't gel with the text.

Its fun to watch the bun fight from the sideline.


Subject: Sorry Simon, you've been discredited.....
Date: Jul 05 09:42
Author: Randy J.

>"The author ignores scripture which clearly proves the BOM took place in a limited geographical area".

Apparently, they aren't referring to the scripture that says the BOM people covered the land with buildings from sea to sea, or the ones which assert BOM population figures in the millions. :-)

There simply aren't any locations in Mesoamerica which reconcile the descriptions of the "narrow neck of land" and the settling of lands "from sea to sea" with the currently popular "limited geography theory."

Here's an old ARM post of mine which illustrates some of the problems with the current apologetics:

Furthermore, the population figures given in the BOM would require vast amounts of land to grow enough crops to sustain them, especially considering the era of primitive agriculture in which the BOM supposedly occurred. And the apologists expect us to believe that hundreds of thousands of Nephites and Lamanites occupied the same regions as Mayans, Toltecs, etc., yet somehow those Amerinds never latched onto the technology of the BOM people such as smelted metal tools and weaponry, horse and chariot use, cattle, swine, etc.

Those BOM people must have been selfish bastards---they possessed animals and technology far superior to the neighboring Amerinds, but they declined to share any of it with them. And then they all disappeared without a trace. And the only evidence we have that they ever existed is in a book published in 1830 by a known con artist.


Subject: "Ignores scripture"
Date: Jul 05 10:27
Author: Steve

LOL - this is the funniest thing the farmers and the fairies have ever said.

Their whole limited geography theory rests on ignoring:

1. The book of mormon
2. The Doctrine and Covenants
3. The Bible (including the JST)

According the these mormon scriptures, as well as the statements of mormon prophets going on two hundred years now, the Limited geography is not only incorrect, it is heresy. It directly contradicts what JESUS CHRIST himself has spoken. There were no "millions of people" for the BOM peoples to intermarry with, because whomever was living in the Americas in pre-BOM times, Jesus killed them all off in the Noachian flood.

It baffles me why no one, even Simon Southerton apparently, even notices this giant curelom in the room. ;-)


Subject: Re: "Ignores scripture"
Date: Jul 05 14:33
Author: Randy J.

>There were no "millions of people" for the BOM peoples to intermarry with, because whomever was living in the Americas in pre-BOM times, Jesus killed them all off in the Noachian flood.

>It baffles me why no one, even Simon Southerton apparently, even notices this giant curelom in the room. ;-)

Oh, Simon's well aware of it, although I don't know what he's written about it.

The contradiction first occurred to me around 2001 or so. Although I doubt that I'm the first person to recognize that the flood doctrine utterly destroys the LGT, I'm not aware of anyone else mentioning it before me. I shared it with Simon and a lot of other ExMos during the 2002 ExMormon Foundation conference.


Subject: Re: Apologists attacking apologists
Date: Jul 05 08:21
Author: lightfingerlouie

This stuff is remarkable. The FAIR hucksters call themselves "scholars," which is terribly funny. They are "scholars" in their imaginations. If they are such brilliant and educated men, why are they wasting their time trying to prove the "Book of Mormon?" How long does it take these "thinkers" to figure out the obvious?

They begin with the premise the "Book of Mormon" is true, and then they do everything the can to bend the facts to fit the premise. How obvious does something have to be? They have never found any evidence Smith's novel was true, but they never quit trying.

When someone unearths "Zarahemla," I will listen.


Subject: The Rodney Meldrum tour
Date: Jul 05 08:41
Author: lightfingerlouie

If you look at the details of the Rodney Meldrum tour, you can't believe what you see.

Those who go on the tour are going to visit the "Zelph mound." You have got to be kidding---old Zelph himself. How gullible are these people?

I also note that Hartman Rector Jr. is helping conduct the tour. He must be the "emeritus general authority" who gave Meldrum his blessing.

It would be interesting to follow the progress of a Meldrum tour. You would constantly have to pinch yourself to believe the tour was even real.


Subject: OMG, that's hilarious. Here's a link to the tour.....
Date: Jul 05 14:52
Author: Randy J.

How funny is this. You've got the FARMbots and FAIRies working at a fever pitch to convince everybody that the only possible locale for BOM events is in Central America---but there's a well-loved and respected retired GA endorsing and participating in tours of "Book of Mormon lands" in the good ol' USA.

There may be no better example which illustrates the futility of FARMS' and FAIR'S "limited geography theory" than the fact that THEY CAN'T EVEN CONVINCE ALL OF THEIR OWN PEOPLE of it.

Oh well. I suppose that since the "BOM people" were fictional, Mopologists can place them anywhere they like.


Subject: The Great Lakes are a lot more accessible
Date: Jul 05 09:20
Author: Mårv Fråndsæn

Who goes to Mesoamerica. The common man/woman can go to the Great Lakes to see real live miracles proving their religion.

BTW, Randy J revealed the hidden 14th Article of Faith.

>>"Come, Listen to a prophet's voice" expires when the prophet assumes room temp.


Subject: This gets funnier and funnier - all this bru-ha-ha over imaginary characters with imaginary DNA
Date: Jul 05 13:56
Author: SusieQ#1

who lived in imaginary places and had imaginary swords, and ate imaginary food with their imaginary animals ! This from so-called educated folks!
The smarter they get the dumber they sound!


Subject: I just want to set up lawn chairs, a cooler, and watch the show....
Date: Jul 05 14:34
Author: wings

Simon...remember when we emailed about Rod months ago when he was promoting his snake oil sideshow? I said the corridor multi gen Mormon's would go with his story. It works for them. This was what was taught. LG never did fit.

I love your moxey! Hopefully, your family will see the crazy making of those calling you Bastard.

Joe, the con man, lied. He did not count on those like
Simon. Great information. Thanks for all the efforts, and updates.


Subject: The Limited Geography Theory (LGT) -- is really the Last Gasp Theory. NT


Subject: Thank God for Living Prophets!
Date: Jul 05 16:58

The entire idea of Mormonism's "Living" Prophets is so that we can all escape the "understanding of men" and get answers directly from GOD's MOUTH -- the way they did in Bible Times!

Continuing Revelation!

Truth Revealed!

That's the church's greatest sales point; That's what makes "us" superior to the world! Ask any missionary. The rest of the religious world is running around all confused, so they must rely on "scholars" and old dirty documents to establish their beliefs - but not we Mormons.

We have current scriptures, and continuing contact with the Almighty. Special witnesses, the whole thing just like Biblical days.

...good grief.


Subject: The greatest Universities of the World are holding their breath
Date: Jul 05 17:16
Author: Once Again

while waiting for Mormon Scholars in Utah to provide the entire population of the planet with the final facts regarding Pre-Columbian America!

Subject: Did you catch Allen Wyatt's rejoinder where he refers to FARMS as the church's agent?
Date: Jul 06 10:54
Author: Aaron

"The Church, or the Church’s agents, such as BYU and FARMS"


Subject: Clearly, the Limited Geography Model is the official position
Date: Jul 06 11:13
Author: Simon in Oz

And FARMS/FAIR are the church's agents in propagating it.

I would not be surprised if general authorities are pushing for the attack on Meldrum. They have invested so much in the Limited Geography nonsense that they can't turn back.

If they haven't written to bishops and stake presidents yet it won't be long. Meldrum needs to be silenced.


Subject: How FAIR deals with other people
Date: Jul 06 11:23
Author: Matt

They give the poor sod a solid kick in the testicles. Then, as he falls to the ground, writhing in pain, clutching his groin, they say: "My God! That poor man! He is holding his guts. Yeah. He must have food poisoning!"

Then for good measure they kick him in the head and as he removes one hand from his groin to hold his aching head say: "Oh, geez! Now he has a migraine, too!"

They are unscholarly, boorish and rather pathetic.


Subject: Some heartless FAIR arrogance
Date: Jul 06 11:32
Author: Simon in Oz

From the FAIR Discussion board.

"And thus we watch the early stages of the cycle anew. Zealot defender of the faith gets their priorities mixed up, mistakes hobby horse for gospel, eventually ends up on the other side of the fence, and turns their zealotry back on former friends."

Brimming with compassion


Subject: You can only use the Spirit to back up the Limited Geography
Date: Jul 06 11:27
Author: Simon in Oz

FAIR is incensed that Meldrum is using his own spiritual experiences to flog his Great Lakes theory. Evidently the Spirit can tell you the book is real history but gets confused when you ask where the history took place.

Why hasn't FAIR attacked all the Book of Mormon tour operators who routinely brag about the spiritual confirmations people feel during their tours of Central America?

Subject: Something interesting in one of the comments over there...
Date: Jul 06 19:41
Author: SheWhoHasNoName

In one of the early comments to the blog post linked earlier, one Greg Smith makes the statement: "It seems unlikely that God would confirm a revelatory geography when the Church has insisted that there isn't a revelatory geography."

I find that really interesting. While I admit that I might be reading something into this comment than is really there, it seems to me that Mr. Smith is taking the position that the Church gets to tell God what he/she/it can or cannot reveal in revelation. It's like he is saying that if the Church says something, God isn't allowed to contradict that.

Funny thing, when I was in the church, I was always taught that God told the church what to do, not the other way around. Is Mr. Smith really saying that he believes that the Church runs God, rather than the other way around? Isn't that kind of unorthodox, even for the Mormons?


Subject: This is great
Date: Jul 06 19:54
Author: D. P. Gumby

Just stand back and watch the scene unfold. The Mopologist Civil War has started. These two sides will end up wrecking each other's apologetics, and the end result will be The Cult looking even more bizarre than it does now.

Go FARMS! Go FAIR! Go Meldrum! See how much damage you can inflict on Mormonism before the brethren finally have to stop it.


Subject: Re: "white ant"?
Date: Jul 06 20:42
Author: Nightingale

From site:

Termites (White Ants)

Subterranean termites or white ants are a highly destructive timber pest that cause major structural timber damage to buildings in Queensland. It is important to note that most homes are at risk of termite damage in Queensland, especially if well established gum trees are nearby the building that is, within a 100 metre radius.

Interesting Facts about Termites

* Australian subterranean termites evolved more than 250 million year ago, inhabiting Australia long before flowering plants.
* Termites live in the ground and are known to destroy the wall and roofing timbers of a home within 3 months of construction.
* Termites cause more damage to homes in Australia than fire, floods, storms and tempest, combined.


I'm guessing it means they are wrecking the foundation of his argument? Boring holes in his presentation? Destroying his credibility?

Or something like that. (Trying to, anyway).


Subject: Revelation
Date: Jul 06 20:44
Author: Nightingale

One of the arguments against Meldrum from an apologist is that an individual member cannot receive "revelation" for the church.

Is that what Meldrum is claiming about his theory?

I'd say he's dead in the water on that as far as the membership goes.


Subject: Since this so called church has NO revelation about this subject today,
Date: Jul 06 21:55
Author: yogi

it's all theories and speculation for the members, and Meldrum's are as good as anyone's.

He's not claiming superior "revelation" to the prophets. He's just saying that the "spirit" has confirmed the truth of his theory to him.

And the "brethren" have NOT proclaimed Maxwell Institute theories to be official.

Subject: Allen Wyatt [of FAIR] reveals his lunacy here.....
Date: Jul 06 14:12
Author: Randy J.

Rod [Meldrum] wrote: >Be it known that any use of my personal, private email by FAIR is being done without my consent or authorization.

FAIRie Allen Wyatt responded: >Sort of like your use of Joseph’s personal, private mail to Emma? >When does such correspondence (his or yours) become “fair game” for those staking out an academic position?

This is classic. Wyatt apparently believes that quoting a 150-plus-year-old historical letter, which has long been in the public domain, is as inappropriate as publishing a private e-mail whose living author has expected its recipient to keep private. What a twit.


Subject: DNA Gods smiling on Rodney Meldrum
Date: Jul 05 10:20
Author: Simon in Oz

The Vanishing Geographists frequently explain away the lack of Middle Eastern DNA in American Indians with the excuse that Hebrew lineages could have been unlucky in the genetic lottery and lost over time. John Tvedtnes told me “As a geneticist, you surely must know that genetic markers can disappear from human populations without destroying ancestry.”

Well that might be true for mitochondrial DNA, but not chromosomal DNA. If populations don’t share chromosomal DNA markers they are not related.

A study was published by Sijia Wang last year which examined the chromosomal DNA of 530 American Indians from 29 tribes across North, Central and South America. You can see the paper here if you like.

This is a summary of where American Indian DNA came from (extracted from Figure 6).

94.1% Asian
5.37% European
0.53% African

Prior to Wang’s work it was known that about 0.5% of American Indian mitochondrial DNA lineages were either European or African. A higher proportion of European Y chromosomes (around 10%) were found in American Indians (not surprising really). The proportion of European chromosomal DNA is just as expected, intermediate between the male and female contributions at 5%.

Several North (Pima), Central (Mixe and Mixtec) and South (Ticuna and Karitiana) American tribes have essentially 100% Asian DNA. The Wayuu Indians of Colombia have about 1% African DNA. Tribes heavily impacted by early European colonizers have higher proportions of European DNA. This includes Algonquian tribes that mixed with early French fur traders such as the Ojibwa (16%) and Cree (24%), and tribes impacted by the Spanish including the Maya in Mesoamerica (8%) and the Arhuaco (18%), Huilliche (13%) and Wayuu (11%) of South America.

The chromosomal DNA offers little cheer for the Limited Geographists. The highest proportions of European DNA (the only hope for Hebrew DNA) are located precisely where Rodney Meldrum is staking out his new apologetic territory. But unfortunately, Mr Meldrum is about to cop a truckload of criticism by the Limited Geography crowd (FAIR/FARMS/BYU).

Subject: Meldrum and the Book of Mormon
Date: Jul 07 07:11
Author: BartBurk

I thought the thread on Meldrum was fantastic. But I do wonder about something -- FAIR seems to be endorsing the idea there were actually humans around 12,000 years ago. I thought Mormons believed that humans only got here 6,000 years ago?

What Meldrum has going for him is that he actually believes in traditional Mormonism as taught by Joseph Fielding Smith and Bruce R. McConkie. Neither of them would have endorsed the Limited Geographic "Theory". Both of them would have endorsed a Book of Mormon story which took place around the Great Lakes and in the United States. Neither of them would have accepted a criticism of the Great Lakes theory on the basis of humans living in the New World 12,000 years ago.

In reality Meldrum is the orthodox Latter-day Saint of 1972. This is the Mormon Church which I encountered when I joined the church in that year -- the Mormonism that had a Lamanite Generation consisting of American Indians rather than Latin American Indians. It was the Mormonism which condemned the theory of evolution. BYU professors who taught evolution (and claimed they believed it) were considered liberals who lacked a little bit regarding the faith.

BYU may seem like the bastion of conservative Mormonism, but it has had to pay the price of academia which insists that to some extent its professors live in the real world. Excepting the ones defending Mormonism, they have to go out to conferences and present papers that stand the test of academia. They have to publish in journals that demand they accept theories that were rejected by traditional Mormonism. Even the FAIR guys are having to argue that people were here 12,000 years ago.

The Book of Mormon can't withstand that kind of scrutiny among LDS scholars forever. Only a renewal along the lines that Meldrum trumpets can save Mormonism. It will have to defeat the BYU Mormonism of 2008 to do so. If BYU Mormonism wins, eventually Mormonism loses completely.


Subject: Re: Meldrum and the Book of Mormon
Date: Jul 07 08:48
Author: Feeling Henry Jacobs

The great lakes geography, when formally proposed by an active saint, will get more than a passing interest from casual members who are interested in BoM geography. That's because it makes sense on many levels and it encompasses an area that most long-time american mormons are aquainted with. They know the northeastern U.S., where the rivers, mountains, oceans and lakes are. And it puts the saga where Joseph Smith said it was, which does away with all the 2 Cumorahs nonsense.

Who knows a single mormon(curious enough to investigate it) that has ever been comfortable with the 2 Cumorahs idea?

For that matter, who knows a mormon who, in their heart, is completely comfortable with the BoM taking place in Mesoamerica? Basically, Mesoamerica has been a safe harbor for FAIR/FARMS and the GA's to park the BoM for many years.

It's far enough away that most corridor mormons aren't familiar enough with the history and goegraphy to make any real assessment of their own without a bit of research. They are content to trust someone with a BYU faculty title.

On the surface it can be compared to the book because there were large populations, written language and structures commonly called temples. These loose parallels get some members through the night, but if they ever look more closely, mesoamerica falls apart quickly.

It will be interesting to watch the FARMS/FAIR protect their harbor and resist the great lakes geography the same way they always claim the scientific community resists their mesoamerican nonsense-out of hand.

I think the last thing the GA's want is a lot of corridor, cash cow mormons sniffing around the the Great Lakes/Northeastern US theory for the BoM. What they might find is more than they bargained for, because that location makes the most sense of any. Not because the story took place there, because the story was WRITTEN there.


Subject: Go Meldrum!
Date: Jul 07 10:38
Author: Emma'sFlamingSword

This thread on Meldrum was fantastic! And so is the follow up point about accepting people being here 12000 BC. However I don't think that the church will implode over it. These debates always seem to stay on the fringe. I didn't find out that there were two hill Cumorahs until I was out of the church.


Subject: Re: Go Meldrum!
Date: Jul 07 11:14
Author: BartBurk

Emma'sFlamingSword wrote:
> The thread on Meldrum was fantastic! And so is the follow up point about accepting people being here 12000 BC. However I don't think that the church will implode over it. These debates always seem to stay on the fringe. I didn't find out that there were two hill Cumorahs until I was out of the church.

I agree there will be no implosion. I don't know the debate will stay on the fringe. By the end of Mormonism, I mean an end to the authoritarian-based religion started by Brigham Young and continued to a lesser extent in our own day. Undermining the Book of Mormon will undermine the authority of the Mormon leaders, but I suspect there will always be a cultural Mormonism of one sort or another. It won't include literal belief in the Book of Mormon as a requirement.

I believe the LGT completely undermines faith in a literal Book of Mormon because it is so completely at odds with what the Book of Mormon says about itself. There are plenty of Mormons who resist the LGT -- I suspect a lot of those who resist it live in Utah Mormon towns where Mormonism still is what it always was. That's why Meldrum seems to be having so much success in Utah. Who wins the debate is critical. It is interesting that Hartman Rector Jr., the ultimate convert from the 1950s, is so supportive of Meldrum. The gut reaction of most Mormons will be to defend Meldrum against the BYU Mormon doctors. I've heard enough even here in Indiana to make me believe Meldrum's ideas have some staying power.

If the authorities of the church try to silence him (and I have no doubt the Maxwell Institute people would like him silenced) it will be interesting. Meldrum's expertise is marketing. The popularity of books placing the Book of Mormon story in the Great Lakes area is something which has been stunning to me. There have been several such books in the last few years. Meldrum is tapping into that market with some success.

Subject: Mormon apologist reveals weakness of BOM's case for historicity.....
Date: Jul 10 20:27
Author: Randy J.

...although unwittingly, of course. In his book "By The Hand of Mormon," Teryl Givens writes of the ancient altars found in Yemen carved with the letters "NHM":

>"These altars may thus be said to constitute the first actual archaeological evidence for the historicity of the Book of Mormon."

See the context at

Here's why Givens' statement actually hurts the BOM's case: At that part of the BOM storyline, the Lehites have left Jerusalem and are on their way to the promised land. There are only a few dozen people in the party at most. This carving is in the general area of where the Lehite party supposedly traveled through, and dates from the general time frame. So far, so good. Sounds reasonable.

OK, here's the problem: The BOM storyline goes on to say that the Lehites eventually make it to the promised land (the American continent, of course), and they grow into a mighty nation of hundreds of thousands of people, occupying the land for a thousand years (not to mention the preceding Jaredites, who allegedy arrived circa 2500 B.C. and grew to number in the millions.) The Lehites divide, and war against each other.

The BOM gives very specific details about its characters' culture, religion, politics, flora and fauna, etc. The BOM people speak/write Hebrew and some form of Egyptian. They worship the Old Testament God, follow the law of Moses, and even preach and worship Christ both before and after His ministry.

They train horses and use them to pull chariots as Old World people did. They develop metalworking skills and smelt "swords of finest steel" and other metal tools and weaponry.

They grow into a population as vast "as the sands of the sea" and build great cities which "cover the land with buildings from sea to sea." Early in the 5th century A.D., the wicked Lamanite faction battle and eliminate the entire opposing Nephite nation which numbers more than 300,000.

Now, here's the problem: if the "NHM" carving truly was "BOM evidence"---and if the BOM storyline as I've outlined here were true---then scholars should be able to find A MILLION TIMES MORE ITEMS OF PHYSICAL EVIDENCE FOR THE BOM CULTURE SOMEWHERE IN THE AMERICAS THAN THE SINGLE STONE CARVING IN YEMEN.

Numerous artifacts of that Christ-worshipping, horse-training, Hebrew-writing, steel sword-making culture should be scattered all over the region in which Mopologists claim the BOM took place (Central America.) But of course, there aren't any. None, zip, nada. Mopologists cite tantalizing "possible evidence" such as a few horse bones, meteoric iron ornaments, the Bat Creek stone, etc. They propose excuses for lack of evidence such as "Maybe the horses were deer" etc. But they cannot show a single, unambiguous, confirmed item of physical evidence to show that the BOM occurred anywhere in the Americas.

And that's why Teryl Given's admission is so damning to the BOM's case: If, in his view, the "NHM" carving is the *first* item of evidence for the BOM's historicity ever discovered---after 170+ years of looking for some---then it's safe to say that no artifacts will *ever* be found in the Americas, where the evidence should be thousands of times more likely to be found.

The obvious conclusion being that the BOM is not authentic.


Subject: NHM=PWE (pretty weak evidence)
Date: Jul 10 21:32
Author: Emma'sFlamingSword

"It is also important to note that NIHM is believed to be a tribal name, not a place name, and that the three consonants can have a variety of spellings when vowels are inserted. Aston notes in the web site article that references to NHM are "usually given as NiHM, NeHeM, NaHaM etc." The Journal of Book of Mormon Studies reports that this can also be spelled "NaHM" (7:1, 1998, p. 7). "


Subject: Excellent logic. Deep down, they want to tell the truth... and they do.
Date: Jul 10 21:41
Author: Tiphanie

Like Given's did at wikipedia.

Copy the page as it now is... methinks it's going to be changing pretty soon...


Subject: Re: Mormon apologist reveals weakness of BOM's case for historicity.....
Date: Jul 10 21:59
Author: Anonymous

Teryl is hardly an apologist. Thus his statement. His book deals extensively with compelling arguments *against* the historicity of the Book of Mormon.

Also, the University of Oxford doesn't publish Mormon apologetic material. Such publications are reserved for FARMS.


Subject: Another apologist crackpot - Warren Aston
Date: Jul 10 23:59
Author: Simon in Oz

The man behind the Yemen discovery is Australian apologist Warren Aston and his wife Michaela. Why is it that when you dig a little deeper into the background of LDS apologists you find crackpots at almost every turn?

Warren Aston runs a travel agency that conducts tours to Arabia. He is also an internationally recognized expert on UFOs!!

The Astons ran a travel agency in Brisbane in the 1990s and published the Yemen discovery in 1994 “In the Footsteps of Lehi: New Evidence for Lehi's Journey across Arabia to Bountiful” Deseret Book Company. Aston has a vested interest in promoting his Yemen myths because he manages a tour company called Bountiful Tours that runs tours to, you guessed it, the Arabian Peninsula.
His next tour in October 2008 has been promoted in Meridium Magazine
2008 Tour - "In Lehi & Sariah's Footsteps"
13 days exploring Israel, Jordan and Oman

Here are some weblinks to his tour company
You can read a short bio of Aston here.

But this is what FARMS would prefer you did not know about Warren Aston. Aston is an internationally recognized expert on UFOs.

Aston speaking at UFO Symposium

Aston describing a UFO encounter in a DVD sold at International UFO Congress

Aston claiming UFO cover-up at Pine Gap (US military base in Australia)

Quote: “Aston examines the duality within the UFO phenomenon, exobiology, “contactees”, and question what is really happening in abductions while suggesting new reasons for government cover up.”

Aston lecture to Queensland UFO society
Lecture entitled “Finding the hard answers to Earth's greatest mystery within a scientific paradigm” - Warren Aston's interests include travel (he runs his own travel business in Brisbane), photography, music, theology, feminism and quantum-physics.

Quote: “The evidence that something is happening which defies conventional science is abundant, unambiguous, and is readily available in every category imaginable. UFO’s are a long-term, world-wide, multi-cultural reality with much more physical evidence available than most of us realise. The mounting evidence that UFO’s and aliens are real and are part of the future for all of us deserves our most serious attention and best efforts to understand it.”

Aston: UFO researcher hunting for truth

Aston: Are Extraterrestrials Already Among Us? A Review of Historical Accounts. Go to page 8 at this link

Subject: Cirque Du Apologetique - starring Sasquatch and UFOs
Date: Jul 11 03:07
Author: Simon in Oz

Here are some of the stars in the current apologetic circus juggling dubious claims in support of the Book of Mormon’s historicity. This is the bang you get for your apologetic buck when your mantra is “absence of evidence isn’t evidence of absence”. All of these men start with firmly fixed conclusions and search for evidence that supports it, an approach doomed to miss the elephant in the corner.


Professor of Islamic Studies and Arabic at BYU
Regarded by many apologists to be assuming Nibleyesque (lay prophet) status.
Unheard of by leading scholars in his professional sphere as Tal Bachman discovered when he contacted academics in his field in five US universities. The head of the department at UCLA where he obtained his PhD hadn’t heard of him! Yikes!


Associate Professor of Anatomy and Anthropology, Idaho State University
Meldrum appears in the deeply flawed FAIR DVD (The Book of Mormon and New World DNA, 2008). Meldrum is the foremost authority on BIGFOOT. He is considered a “joke” among his peers and dozens of scientists at ISU have called for his dismissal.

Career apologist with FARMS and retired scholar from BYU. Masters degree in linguistics, but self-appointed expert on DNA studies. Tvedtnes has written at length on the DNA issue.

He was recently forced to retract two of the boldest claims he made in the above mentioned FAIR DVD they were so blatantly incorrect.

Travel agent and UFO expert. No formal training.
Aston runs a travel agency (Bountiful Tours) that conducts tours to Arabia after discovering what Terryl Givens and Daniel Peterson consider to be the strongest archaeological evidence for the Book of Mormon. In his book "By The Hand of Mormon," Terryl Givens touts Aston’s work as “the first actual archaeological evidence for the historicity of the Book of Mormon."

Aston is also an internationally recognized “expert” on UFOs.
Aston speaking at a UFO Symposium
Aston claiming UFO cover-up at Pine Gap (US military base in Australia)
Aston’s tour company

RODNEY MELDRUM (no relation to Jeffery Meldrum but you must wonder)
Studied marketing for one year at Utah State University.
Self-appointed “senior scientist” promoting Great Lakes Geography theory. He is also firmly in the creation science camp, which believes the earth is only 6,000 years old. Currently involved in a stoush with FAIR apologists who are firmly in the Mesoamerican geography camp.

Professor of Physics at BYU. He was “let go” from BYU because even they were embarrassed by his behavior.
Widely known in the US as one of the scientists who believes that the US government was behind the demolition of the World Trade Centers.
Jones was a scientific adviser for a group of Great Lakes apologists and has dabbled in Book of Mormon archeology.

FAIR watchdog and webmaster with no publicized academic background. According to FAIR Wyatt's words “should not be interpreted as official statements of LDS doctrine, belief or practice.”

FAIR apologist with no publicized academic background. Author of newly published FAIR book “Shaken Faith Syndrome”
According to FAIR Ash's words “should not be interpreted as official statements of LDS doctrine, belief or practice.”

Subject: The apologists are contradicting official church doctrine when they.....
Date: Jul 07 11:33
Author: Randy J.

...accept the scientific evidence which shows that the Americas have been populated for at least 12,000 years. Here's how:

*The D&C states that the earth's existence, and therefore human life, is only 7,000 or so years.

*The D&C, as well as other statements of Joseph Smith, state that Adam and Eve began human life in the western Missouri area.

*The current official lesson manual "Gospel Principles" states that before the fall of Adam, there was no death of any kind upon the earth.

*LDS doctrine holds that Adam's descendants continued to inhabit the Americas until the Noachian flood, which destroyed all humans except for the ark's passengers circa 4500 years ago. After the flood, the Noachians landed somewhere in the Middle East (Turkey, if you believe the story) and began re-populating the earth from there.

*Shortly thereafter came the Tower of Babel incident, during which God instructed the Jaredites to sail to the "promised land", which is the Americas.

Thus, using church doctrine and logical deduction, the Jaredites had to be the first group of humans to inhabit the Americas after the flood (and Joseph Smith specifically taught that the Jaredites were the "first settlement" in the Americas.) Church doctrine simply doesn't allow for any Asian-descended Bering Strait-crossers to have continuously occupied the Americas for 12,000 years.

THAT IS WHY THE BOOK OF MORMON DOES NOT MENTION ANY OTHER PEOPLE LIVING IN THE "PROMISED LAND." In fact, the BOM states that the promised land was "preserved for a righteous people" that the Lord would send there, and that the land "was kept from the knowledge of other nations."

Therefore, Mormon apologists who accept the evidence of humans occupying the Americas for 12,000 years or more are rejecting church doctrine. And since they don't even believe their own church's teachings, there is no point in them trying to defend it against us critics.

Subject: rod meldrum in washington d.c. area 25 july 2008 -report out! (longish)
Date: Jul 26 16:47
Author: kairos

rod meldrum gave a 2 1/2 hour power point presentation attempting to downgrade/blow away meso america as the bom lands/area, and promoting as best he could a north american setting-ny hill cumorah, great lakes region extending into ohio, ill, and missouri.

about 100 people, lds for the most part(except me a nevermo with tbm dw) gathered at the mclean, va community center(not a ward or stake building). the director ? of the mormon choir of wash gave the opening prayer, the host was a mclean oral surgeon-the crowd was mixed-elderly,middle aged and a good number or young adults.

they even had a great setup of snacks including shrimp, sandwiches, veggies and cokes(yeah) but no coffee (:.

meldrum comes across as humble tbm,rm, kind of guy, calling himself only a "researcher" and never said what his day job was(his wife told me he is doing this now fulltime). he says there is a crisis over the historicity of the bom and lds people are losing their faith and testimony and walking away.

his full presentation is 4 hours and of course the dvd was for sale at the meeting. he says he has about 12 hours of material but only 4 hours worth on the dvd.

he began by saying some of his friends had left the church due to a video made in 2003? by living hope ministries which uses a number of lds/non lds dna/archeologists "experts" to refute the bom's historicity. he said that video is doing major damage to the church-people are leaving.
so his motivation he says was to "find the truth". his sources/footnotes just about every slide using either an lds scriptural or js quote or the scientific journal he pulled info from-very impressive actually.
he did talkabout the LGT w/o mentioning names or title of a book which he says is the source book for lgt(could be sorenson but i am not sure).
by mixing scripture quotes from js/d&c/bom mostly and the science articles on dna, geography, archeology, evolution etc he emphasizes js as a "prophet" knowing from which he speaks because he is "getting it all from God"-meldrum seems like he is giving his testimony at about 5 points in the presentation.

regarding dna and using scientific journals, he says NONE of the natives in meso/south america exhibit middle east dna, but there is a group of indians in the northeast of the usa that exhibit haplogroup X ,he says specifically X1 and that that group has west asian/middle east,therefore jewish ancestors. he slid over the date that X appears in the americas but told me in an aside that science now says it appeared 40000 years ago, BUT he says science has gotten the generational- transitional rates wrong before(he uses a czar nicholas II dna study to try to "prove " his point).
on geography he shows maps of the great lakes region and uses quotes from the bom. concerning the narrow neck of land, he says byu scholars can only come up with 2 possibilities both in meso america and each at least a 150 miles end to end- he says the bom states that the narrow neck can be crossed in day and half- which makes the byu sites non-viable.
he says that since js marched zion's camp 1000 miles in 60 days, that lamanite/nephites should have been able to cover long distances (rockies to atlantic coast), not the 385 by 85 mile ? claim of the byu profs.
taking on the issue of "snow" he says the bom talks about "seasons" thus there were 4 seasons and "climate" was not a significant enough issue to be written about in the bom. he compares mayan temples with indian mounds/villages and say mayan temples do not look anything like solomon's temple, and further he could not accept the practice of the mayans to bury the dead kings in their temples-he said it pagan, not jewish or christain.
he says the indian mounds and villages more closely resemble a solomon or moses tent/altar/holy of holies/ordinance look alike configuration.
he shows some px of old pottery, candle sticks(says they look like a menorah-hardly(my comment). one object he says among the indians and it had a angle,compass/square arrangement-also seemed far fetched to me.
regarding zelph, he says 8 people around js corroborated that js identified the skeleton as zelph, white lamanite chief etc- he says "why should we thus not accept that account".
regarding js writing in the "times and seasons" that meso america had characteristics of the bom lands, meldrum says that he cannot pin down who actually wrote the account even though js and wm phelps apparently were the editors in 1842.
i asked him about "christian influences" amongst his target tribe. he admitted there was very little, but he says much christian artifacts are being discovered each day by archeologists.
regarding the last battle, meldrum says the 250000 plus bodies were not buried and the skeltons simply decayed and blew away in the winds; he uses the extermination of 60,000,000 buffaloes by the US gov. and the fact that hardly any remains exist in those areas where the extermination took place as a backup for his the "wind blew the decayed skeletons away" theory.
no one asked about horses,swords etc nor did he bring up the subject. he did not try to link possible jaredites, nephites/mulekites at all.

at the end in a personal aside he told me he is being '"attacked" on the FAIR forum and he says he has rebutted some comments via their blog i think; he has no
plan at the moment to go one on one with the FARMERS/Maxwell institute. he believes there are lds scholars who are closeted because they do not want to make waves about disagreeing with the lgt and secretly support a NA setting. i recommended he go and present his stuff to the FARMERS and let the TRUTH prevail.
since he is doing this full time, he now has a financial dependency on the sale of dvd's ,books, talks, tours.
i think he will wait for others to rebut him probably in writing/blogs etc; he has no plans at present to write/present in Sunstone or Dialogue venues.

bottom line, meldrum made a pretty strong case in what he presented and the average mormon attending who has heard all his/her life that cumorah is in ny etc probably were faith strengthened by what he said. the oral surgeon host told me he was blown away by the information and his testimony strengthened.

meldrum sold about 100 videos at an average price of 16 dollars.
he closed his remarks "in the name of Jesus Christ " and there was a hearty AMEN.

let the games/war begin!!

i have his e-mail address if anyone wants it-his website can be googled " ?

it is still all BS!!!!!!!!!!




Subject: Wow. A couple questions, if I may...
Date: Jul 26 17:15
Author: FreeRose

** This gentleman stated members of TSCC were getting informed about the DNA/BOM issues and leaving. Did he just one day wake up and decide to become a full-time "evangelist"? So, he evidently believes everything (based on his multiple testimonies) and is trying to prove/sell it with quotes and research? Do you think he was asked to do this by The Bretheren?

** What was your TBM wife's response to the presentation? Was her testimony strengthened?

Thanks for posting this! At least he confirmed members are "waking up" to the fabrications and walking away.



Subject: Re: Wow. A couple questions, if I may...
Date: Jul 26 17:44
Author: kairos

meldrum was motivated simply by a close rm friend who left the church having seen the "living hope" evidences of the bom. keeping his day job, he began a search on his own-he says due to a textbook research project he had access to a large number of university on-line libraries.

as he tried to lay what the bom states versus the meso theory, he felt it didn't fit. then when he discovered the possibility of X haplogroup in an american indian tribe in the ne, he started working feverishly to gather info and put it in some sort of order- thus his 12 hours slide matrerials.
my wife and i took a bom tour into mexico, guatemala, honduras and mexico and my tbm wife didn't think there was a real fit- she thought meldrum was right on and bought 5 dvd's for 65 dollars for tbm adult children and a friend- i will watch all 4 hours at some point.

he claims he is speaking for himself, but admitted to me ga emeritus hatman rector was very supportive of the work.



Subject: gee whiz, only a 40,000 year difference between BOM dating and current science?
Date: Jul 26 20:41
Author: hello

Methinks Meldrum is disingenuous.


Subject: X1 lineage
Date: Jul 26 21:28
Author: Simon in Oz

You said Meldrum claimed ...
"but there is a group of Indians in the northeast of the usa that exhibit haplogroup X ,he says specifically X1 and that that group has west asian/middle east,therefore jewish ancestors."

Are you sure he said X1? Native Americans have an X2a lineage, not X1. I'm not surprised he made the mistake. FARMS made the same mistake in their DVD. The X1 lineage is most common in Africa and the Middle East. The X2 lineage is most common in the Middle East-Europe-Asia.

Must buy the DVD...but what a sad way to spend 4 hours.


Subject: Kairos, I appreciate this report.....
Date: Jul 26 21:49
Author: Randy J.

...and the time and effort you took in attending and writing it up. As I wrote a couple of weeks ago, I think it's hilarious how Meldrum's stuff is finding acceptance among what must be thousands of TBMs by now. This shows how easily all of FARMS' attempts to place the BOM in Mesoamerica over the last quarter-century or so fall like a house of cards by simply pointing out a few obvious flaws in their claims.

A few comments:

>He says there is a crisis over the historicity of the bom and lds people are losing their faith and testimony and walking away.

Great! That's what we wanna hear. :-) But what I'm sure Meldrum doesn't realize is that a lot more Mormons will leave the church because of his stuff too, because they'll start researching the BOM's historicity more in-depth.

He did talk about the LGT w/o mentioning names or title of a book which he says is the source book for lgt(could be sorenson but i am not sure).

Yep, two of the main LGT books are Sorenson's "An Ancient American Setting" and Joseph Allen's "Exploring the Lands of the BOM."

>He slid over the date that X appears in the americas but told me in an aside that science now says it appeared 40,000 years ago, BUT he says science has gotten the generational- transitional rates wrong before(he uses a czar nicholas II dna study to try to "prove" his point).

This demonstrates the typical Mopologist inconsistency in arguments: He accepts the science of DNA to support his point about Haplogroup X existing in Northeastern Indian tribes, but he disputes the science when it conflicts with the needed BOM timeline. The fact is that all the research places the haplogroup X introduction way back in prehistoric times, and that it occurred in the Old World, rather than anywhere in the Americas.

>Concerning the narrow neck of land, he says byu scholars can only come up with 2 possibilities both in meso america and each at least a 150 miles end to end- he says the bom states that the narrow neck can be crossed in day and half- which makes the byu sites non-viable.

Yep, that's been pointed out by critics many times, such as in my old post at

>He compares mayan temples with indian mounds/villages and say mayan temples do not look anything like solomon's temple

Yep. All the FARMSbots' attempts to force-fit Mayan sites into being BOM sites are are refuted by the lack of similarities and lack of evidence of specific BOM culture.

>I asked him about "christian influences" amongst his target tribe. >He admitted there was very little, but he says much christian artifacts are being discovered each day by archeologists.

"Very little" a.k.a. "none whatsoever". The BOM claims Christian culture ande worship into the 5th century A.D. That's recent enough that there should be ample evidence for it in Meldrum's target area. Considering the "Nephite" population figures given in the BOM, evidence of Christian culture/worship in the Grat Lakes area should be just about as prominent as it is in Rome from the same time period.

>Regarding the last battle, meldrum says the 250,000 plus bodies were not buried and the skeletons simply decayed and blew away in the winds;

That's plain silly. Does Meldrum also believe that all of their clothing, weaponry, jelwelry, pottery, chariots, etc. also decayed and blew away? Did the wind also blow away all artwork, carvings, etc., which would provide evidence of Nephite habitation? Did the wind also blow away all the artifacts of the equally large number of conquering Lamanites? What happened to *their* horses, chariots, and "swords of finest steel"?

This is an example of how apologists make excuses for lack of evidence, rather than providing actual evidence.

?He uses the extermination of 60,000,000 buffaloes by the US gov. and the fact that hardly any remains exist in those areas where the extermination took place as a backup for his the "wind blew the decayed skeletons away" theory.

I've seen Mopologists use this argument before, and it simply isn't true. Although predators devoured most buffalo remains, there are many thousands of bones scattered all over the continent (although most of them have been plowed under to make farmland.)

Hell, archealogists routinely dig up Ice
Age-era animals such as sabre cats, giant sloths and beavers, dire wolves, mammoths, etc. Also, about a dozen remains of 65-million-year-old T. Rex fossils have been excavated in the Americas. So, finding some remains of 1600-year-old Nephites in a limited tarfet area shouldn't be a problem.

>No one asked about horses, swords etc nor did he bring up the subject.

Ah, too bad.

>Bottom line, Meldrum made a pretty strong case in what he presented and the average mormon attending who has heard all his/her life that Cumorah is in NY etc. probably were faith strengthened by what he said.

Yep, if you're a TBM and you rely on what Joseph Smith and other church leaders have said---rather than ignoring them, as the FARMSbots do---then your faith will be strengthened. However, none of Meldrum's remarks that you reported here constitutes any actual evidence that BOM people or events occurred anywhere in the Americas, let alone just the Great Lakes area.

>Meldrum sold about 100 videos at an average price of 16 dollars.

Well, sounds like that made it a successful night. :-)


Subject: "And 'X' never, ever, marks the spot." — Indiana Jones
Date: Jul 26 22:52
Author: Emma'sFlamingSword

Apparently the Deseret News is smitten by Meldrum, comparing him to “Raiders of the Lost Arc” Book of Mormon style.

To get past the sticky issue of this X haplogroup DNA being from the wrong time period the article states,

“Meldrum explained that standard DNA chronology is based on projected rates of mutations in specific areas of the DNA. He parts from geneticists because he doesn't believe mutations are predictable enough to calibrate the "DNA clock" accurately. He believes the DNA clock is just too uncertain at this point to discount the possibility of X coming from Book of Mormon time periods.”

Who is he to ‘part’ with geneticists? Are there any other credible geneticists who don’t believe mutations are predictable? I would love to hear his Czar Nicholas II proof that shows this.

Date: Sep 06, 2008
Author: Simon in Oz

FAIR is now proudly claiming that during a momentary lapse into honesty I conceded that LDS scientists are right.

Here’s a quote from the recent review slamming Rodney Meldrum under the title:


In their more candid moments, some critics admit that their criticisms relative to DNA and the Book of Mormon require that a key assumption be made. Southerton writes of how some LDS (like those at The Maxwell Institute) have argued that

“Bottleneck effect, genetic drift, Hardy-Weinberg violations and other technical problems would prevent us from detecting Israelite genes [in Amerindians].”

This is a technical way of explaining a relatively simple fact: if a small group is placed in contact with a larger group and allowed to intermarry, it becomes harder to detect the small group’s “genetic signature.” Southerton then goes on to say:

“I agree entirely. In 600 BC there were probably several million American Indians living in the Americas. If a small group of Israelites entered such a massive native population it would be very, very hard to detect their genes 200, 2000 or even 20,000 years later.”

This is really quite astonishing—he admits that there are many genetic objections to his argument, unless we accept that Native Americans are only descendants of Lehi and Mulek. Indeed, Southerton went on to insist that this was the only way in which members of the Church can read the Book of Mormon, because it is how some past leaders have read it. He is, of course, mistaken and is not entitled to tell members what they must believe. It would appear, then, that the debate is about theology—how statements within the text of the Book of Mormon are to be interpreted—not about the science of DNA.

In critiquing apologists who are defending totally conflicting geographies (Hemispheric (e.g. David Stewart et al); Limited North American (e.g Rodney Meldrum) and Mesoamerican (FAIR, FARMS et al)) it is inevitable that one group will find ways to twist my words to their advantage.

If anyone at FAIR is reading this I stand by everything I said four years ago. This is a far cry from FAIR who only a few months ago were trumpeting the false claim that the X lineage has been found in Mesoamerica and that this is evidence of Middle Eastern DNA. FAIR is now attacking Rodney Meldrum because of his similarly dubious X lineage claims.

In case anyone from FAIR is unclear I will repeat what I wrote four years ago…


Now that FAIR has finally conceded that American Indian DNA is essentially all derived from Asia, I also agree with them that the debate should be about the theology. It is great that we are agreeing about so much. But there’s more. I also share the apologist’s frustration that most Mormons pay not the slightest notice of them, instead FAIR seems to help many who are struggling to make up their minds to leave. If I had my wish, FAIR and FARMS apologists would be given the opportunity to educate the masses in the church about how mistaken people have been about the Book of Mormon narrative. I would love to hear the Limited or Vanishing Geography taught in Institute and seminary. Mormons need to hear the new interpretations of the Book of Mormon on offer from the church’s unofficial apologists in order to immunize them against seeing things in the text that just aren't there.

Since I have clearly lost the ability to discern what the Book of Mormon narrative says I doubt there is anything I could add to the debate that brave souls like Rodney Meldrum aren’t already saying. And there are many Mormons watching his DVD presentation that share his views. The debate needs to be with these lost souls and it looks like it has already kicked off to a pretty rocky start.

And the debate will only get worse. FAIR have now for the first time admitted that American Indians have been present in the New World for as long as the last 20,000 years. These are some more words I wrote four years ago.

“Acceptance of the molecular evidence creates further problems for Latter-day Saints. Anyone reading the responses coming from LDS biologists will discover that they have not quibbled with the evidence for the colonization of the Americas over 13,000 years ago, for the occupation of Asia and Australia roughly 60,000 years ago, and for the emergence of humans in Africa over 100,000 years ago. Church members who were initially only curious about the Israelite DNA issue are confronted by challenges to other closely held beliefs such as the placement of Adam and Eve on the earth and a post-Flood colonization, events that most Mormons believe occurred within the last six thousand years. LDS doctrine clearly states that Adam and Eve lived in the vicinity of Independence, Missouri, despite abundant evidence that all of the earliest members of the human family dwelt in sub-Saharan Africa. LDS apologists need to explain how Australian Aboriginals and Native Americans and many other native groups have lived continuously on separate hemispheres for tens of thousands of years unperturbed by a global deluge.”

The genie is out of the bottle and it isn’t going back in any time soon.


Subject: Mopologists prove there have been no prophets...
Date: Sep 06 05:08
Author: dubya

and that the BoM is a work of fiction. I find it entertaining to watch the apologists fight with each other about which fabricated attempt to "prove" the historicity of a work of fiction is better, or as they say "generally accepted" theories.

Who am I to remind the scholars and scientists that "prophets of god" have already settled this issue for the faithful. Several boat loads of Israelites sailed from Jerusalem in 600bc and settled the uninhabited North and South American continents. Joseph Smith was clear as to who the Lamanites were and are. Science has already proved that he was wrong. All of the prophets, especially Spencer Kimball, have been wrong. Aparently the god of Mormonism did not forsee the coming forth of DNA evidence to explain the origin of the native Americans.

It is no wonder that the maggots and flies that swarm around the carcass of the BoM twist your words and the meanings. You are a scientist. They are apologists. Apologists have only one standard: find any, and I mean ANY, possible, slight, convoluted possibility of a slim implausible explanation to get out from under the weight of the facts. Damn, facts are stubborn things. Especially when they are pressing against faith.

This argument is over for many of us. For me, it ended with your book. Apologists are not scientists: they begin with the results and then design an experiment to achieve them. Truth is not important, only blowing enough smoke to shield the facts from the faithful. When the true believer reads that there are "explanations" for the "supposed problem" posed by DNA evidence, that is all they need to hear.

If the Mopologists continue to tear down each others implausible limited geography, diluted DNA theories, enough of the facts may get out to cause many who might not otherwise notice that there is no good explanation regarding the story posed by the fictional BoM.

Maybe that will be a positive outcome from all the FARIES and FARMERS working to prove their pet theories instead of just following the prophets like they are supposed to.

Thank you, Simon. Your work has opened the eyes of many and is greatly appreciated.


Subject: Reading the comments section on Meldrum's link is very interesting
Date: Sep 06 07:12
Author: BartBurk

It can be found here:

The following quote from the comments is the most relevant in my opinion:

"Greg, may I ask you a question? Do you believe in the scriptures as revealed by God’s prophets? Please explain to me then how you seem to think that these people arrived prior to Adam, who arrived only about 6,000 years ago. Do you believe God when he clearly states in D&C 77: vs 6 and 12 which state:
vs. 6 “Q. What are we to understand by the book which John saw, which was sealed on the back with seven seals?
A. We are to understand that it contains the revealed will, mysteries, and the works of God; the hidden things of his economy concerning this earth during the seven thousand years of its continuance, or its temporal existence."

In other words the only way the Book of Mormon can be accepted is to rely on a fundamentalist interpretation which claims humans didn't populate the earth until 4000 B.C. If you believe that humans were here 13,000 years ago, the Book of Mormon is false. I don't think that's a viable position.

I continue to marvel at FAIR's acceptance of the idea that humans were here 13,000 years ago. That is truly an anti-Mormon position. Do they really believe there are a lot of Mormons who are willing to accept what they are claiming? Thirty years ago the Mormons I knew were adamently against any idea that humans inhabited the earth before 4000 B.C.


Subject: Well, I ...
Date: Sep 06 08:04
Author: Mårv Fråndsæn

knew the Flood was not literal and so forth for a long time before it occurred to me that Mormonism was a fraud through and through.

Typical "Sunstone" Mormon, no? You can see the dots but you can't connect them yet.

But seeing the dots is the first step.

I agree, it would be great for FAIR/FARMS/MI to trumpet to the members how invalid many of their cherished beliefs are. But the FAIR/FARMS/MI purpose is to face outward and fend off "enemies" at the outer perimeter. The members in the interior are *supposed* to ignore them and hardly know a fight is even going on.


Subject: So how do the FAIR apologists factor in my civilization that left Babel?
Date: Sep 06 08:04
Author: The Brother of Jared

I'm curious to know how the FAIR apologists factor in my civilization where over 2 million died before the last big battle that ended with Coriantumr cutting off Shiz's head. We left the Tower of Babel to lands where no man had ever been before. I got bit in the ass dozens of time each day by those stupid honeybees that Jared insisted on bringing with us in MY barge.


Subject: Aha - Now we will have the "Limited Flood" Theory
Date: Sep 06 08:34
Author: Wilruff

and a re-start the "Pre-Adamite" debate.

I remember Joseph Fielding Smith's book "Man His Origin and Destiny" (Deseret Book Company,1954) where he attacked the debate about the existence of pre-Adamites which had been raised by some LDS since Darwin's theory of evolution gained acceptance in the world. Here is Joseph Fielding Smith's response from p 279 where he quotes D&C 29:34:

"Wherefore, verily I say unto you that all things unto me are spiritual, and not at any time have I given unto you a law which was temporal; neither any man, nor the children of men; neither Adam, your father whom I created.

Here again we find the Gospel, - the revelations from the Lord - in conflict with geological and evolutionary teachings. If there were creatures on the earth before Adam, especially men, where did they obtain their mortal life? They could not be created mortal (temporal) by our Eternal Father, for that would contradict his own word. If they were created at first spiritual and partook of the fall, who brought that fall upon them? If they were originally made mortal and subject to death, then they were not entitled to a redemption from death, and since the Lord is not the author of death, how did they obtain it? Further, how were they entitled to a redemption and restoration to something they never had? The whole thing is absurd. All life comes from GOd and he did not create it temporally, that was achieved through the violation of a law. There is no Redeemer other than Jesus Christ for this earth and since Adam could not have brought death on pre-Adamite life, such life could not obtain the blessings of the resurrection. Yet the Lord has declared that through the atonement all things taking of the fall will be redeemed. So there were no pre-Adamites."

Now we know that Joseph Fielding Smith got it wrong on quite a few things, but this "no pre-Adamite" doctrine backed up by LDS scripture is the teaching of the church. He also has a chapter on the universal nature of the flood, but following their established tradition, perhaps the Apologists will sustain the argument that the flood was of "limited geography."

So, let the let the Apologies continue - fiction apologizing for fiction. As for me and my house we will sit back and watch the entertainment. Thanks Simon for your further clarifications.



Subject: The Mobot Jeff Lindsay proposed that in 2002.....
Date: Sep 06 10:08
Author: Randy J.

You can read his silly remarks, and my response to them, at

Also, it's important to note that the doctrine that Adam and Eve were the first humans on earth, and that there was no life or death before their time, is still clearly taught in current official LDS-published media. Read DuWayne Anderson's quotes and excellent comments at

Obviously, this contradicts the current Mopologists' assertions that "non-BOM people" occupied the American continent before the "BOM people" arrived: since, according to church doctrine, human life began in present-day Missouri about 6,000 years ago---and then a global flood occurred about 4500 years ago---and the only survivors on the entire planet, those aboard Noah's ark, landed somewhere in the Middle East (near Egypt, according to the Book of Abraham)---and they began human life anew from there---that means that the Americas had to be unoccupied when the "Jaredites" emigrated there after the scattering at the Tower of Babel.

The bottom line being: we can ignore everything the Mopologists say about the Americas being occupied before the "Jaredites," because that idea clearly contradicts official LDS doctrines. Mopologists who concede that Asian-descended "non-BOM" people occupied the Americas for thousands of years before the "Jaredites" are apostates from Mormonism just as we on this BB are.


Subject: Please, Please, Brother Monson -- step in and settle all this!
Date: Sep 06 09:16
Author: Crud

We need a Prophet, Seer and Revelator to save us from the "knowledge of men".

The Book of Mormon's great gift is to answer humanity's deep questions, not to make everything even more and more complicated!

Mormonism and "Truth Restored" is supposed to resolve the religious contentions and confusion of humanity - not to create even more MOUNTAINS of that same confusion -- right?

That's why Joseph Smith went into the woods to pray. That's why God appeared. That's the entire purpose of the restored church - to finally provide us with DEPENDABLE ANSWERS!

So, why is everything getting WORSE, not BETTER?


Subject: We Thank Thee Oh God for a Prophet to Guide us in These Latter Days?
Date: Sep 06 09:23
Author: Emma'sFlamingSword

On FAIR’s blog one poster commented on why the prophets have remained silent on unanswered questions about the church. Apparently to him they are too busy “spreading the gospel, perfecting the saints and redeeming the dead.” Are the prophets really that busy that they are not concerned with the members that are leaving en masse. Our spiritual leaders are meant to “be seen but not heard” on any perplexing and unsettling questions from church history to BoM geography.

FAIR seems to gleefully proclaim, now remember that the prophets have never revealed where the geography of the BoM takes place- as if that makes everything all right.
I do not understand why God could OFFICIALLY reveal information to his prophets about where He lives, Kolob, where Adam and Eve lived, Jackson County and not where the Nephites lived. We are derided for daring to ask the modern prophets to give us revelation or speak officially on any of this.


Subject: "...apologist's frustration that most mormons pay not the slightest notice of them..."
Date: Sep 06 09:20
Author: Makurosu

That is really true. None of my Mormon friends have ever even heard of FARMS, much less FAIR, and when I've referred to them I've had to reassure my friends that these aren't apostate "intellectual" groups. Well, not yet anyway. Ironically, only my ex-Mormon friends know anything about Mormon apologists.


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