Setting the Record Straight

When you screw up and mislead someone, even unintentionally, it’s important to set the record straight.

Unless of course you’re a politician on House of Cards. In fact that case you only cop to what you need to to keep your image and constituents happy. Cause it’s all about power right? Bending the truth after all is what president Underwood is all about, for the greater good of course. Getting people jobs is important!! Sure maybe keeping him president ‘n all is too but that’s just a side benefit right?

Maybe you picked up on it, I’ve been binge watching the Underwoods when I came across this article from the official newspaper of LDS faith. 1

It’s a correction effort to make up for a faith promoting story that had been embellished a bit much before it was publicly shared by Elder Holland, a top leader in the religion.

I remember when it was originally shared myself because it showed up on on my feed so many times as being so faith promoting!

Well it turns out that the more amazing details of the story well… weren’t that amazing.

So kudos for coming clean for whatever reason I say. Because setting the record straight at least gives people a chance to revaluate the way that story impacted them.

For me that’s where this gets interesting for a couple of reasons. The first one is exemplified in this comment seen on the post on Facebook.

I one hundred percent agree with this statement. In fact the Fridge has revealed this very concept using Star Wars and even Legos to help disciples of cool understand the importance of the spiritual feelings in determining historical truth. Which they can’t. As this commentator clearly realizes yet I bet hasn’t taken to the logical conclusion.

This is further shown by the multiple comments that say ‘it’s still a good story‘. Of course it is. It just isn’t historically true. Harry Potter is a great story and teaches great lessons even though it’s fiction. You have every reason to love a book like Harry Potter for the values it teaches!

The problem is when a story is sold as truth but isn’t. That’s when we feel deceived even if it was unintentional.

Whether Holland was just trying to get ahead of a breaking story reacting like he did to the BBC reporter when caught in a fib or he honestly trying to come clean and build trust I will leave to the inter-webs to argue about.

I’m far more interested in a sage piece of advice in the retraction article itself. When evaluating the truth of a story it suggests:

This particular experience has a twist that makes it even more difficult,” Erekson said. “One of the most common recommendations is to go to the source of the stories, not just accept hearsay or second-party retellings…”

I think this is great advice. I’d recommend everyone go to the source whenever possible, especially before trusting your feels to tell if the story is historically true or not.

In fact next time you read the church essay on the Book of Abraham that tosses out this long scroll/missing scroll theory. Go see if you can find even second hand retellings to support that idea. Best I could find was a single third hand telling when it was finally written down.

Now don’t take my word for it, do your own research. Make up your own mind. For me this detail was one of the biggest cracks in my shelf. But who knows for you it might not make any difference at all.

You see some don’t want to even know what the Underwoods are up to. We even tend to forgive the leaders we like when they bend the facts to make the story more special. It’s just how we are wired.

Some consider the story truth, the ideas it teaches as far more important than something being actually historically true.

And honestly maybe I’m one of those people. After all I do worship the Fridge and find a lot of meaning in Star Wars. You might feel the same way too.

May the chill be with you my friends. I got more House of Cards to watch.

  1. In case you wanted to see the original version of the story here is a link. Also turns out this isn’t the first time that Elder Holland shared this story too. Here is a reddit thread with a collection of links to the story.

2 Replies to “Setting the Record Straight”

  1. Shades of that famous baseball palyer and first quorum of the seventy member hmm what was his name again.People believe what they want in spite of evidence and common sense.Just would be nice if the brethren would just admit they lied or embellished the story.Alittle truth and honesty would be refreshing wait is that not one of the articles of faith hmm guess they missed that lesson.Cheers

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