Tags: petition | new york times | apologize | mormon | thomas monson | obit

Petition Demands NYT Apologize, Rewrite Obit of Mormon Leader

Petition Demands NYT Apologize, Rewrite Obit of Mormon Leader
(George Frey/Getty Images)

By    |   Tuesday, 09 January 2018 01:34 PM

More than 163,000 people have signed a grassroots petition insisting The New York Times apologize for and rewrite its obituary of Thomas S. Monson, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Prophet who died last week.

"Instead of highlighting the positive aspects of his life, or a neutral statement about the facts of his life, they decided to attack and disparage his character …" reads the petition posted on Change.org.

"[The Times] used his obituary as a political statement against him and the Church as a whole and tweeted a click-bait headline to attack even further. Fidel Castro and others have had more neutral obituaries which shows this as either a direct attack or a complete misunderstanding of religions or religious people. Would they write similar scathing remarks about the Pope?"

The petition concludes that "an obituary should not be used as a political platform. We are asking that the New York Times formally apologize for this bias in reporting and present an honest, neutral, and balanced obituary."

At issue is the obituary's mention of the church's stance on LGBT rights and the inability of women to become priests under Monson.

The Times obituary begins:

"Thomas S. Monson, who as president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints since 2008 enlarged the ranks of female missionaries, but rebuffed demands to ordain women as priests and refused to alter church opposition to same-sex marriage, died on Tuesday at his home in Salt Lake City. He was 90 ...

"Facing vociferous demands to recognize same-sex marriage, and weathering demonstrations at church headquarters by Mormon women pleading for the right to be ordained as priests, Mr. Monson did not bend. Teachings holding homosexuality to be immoral, bans on sexual intercourse outside male-female marriages, and an all-male priesthood would remain unaltered."

On Monday afternoon, Times obituaries editor William McDonald wrote about the controversy:

"Readers, including many Mormons, wrote that the obituary focused too narrowly on the politics and controversies of the Mormon Church and overlooked Mr. Monson's contributions to the community. I think the obituary was a faithful accounting of the more prominent issues that Mr. Monson encountered and dealt with publicly during his tenure.

"Some of these matters — the role of women in the church, the church's policy toward homosexuality and same-sex marriage, and more — were widely publicized and discussed, and it's our obligation as journalists, whether in an obituary or elsewhere, to fully air these issues from both sides. I think we did that …"

But, added McDonald, "In 20/20 hindsight, we might have paid more attention to the high regard with which he was held within the church. I think by his very position in the church, all that was implied. But perhaps we should have stated it more plainly."

Joel Campbell, a professor in the school of Communications at BYU, told The Daily Herald newspaper of Provo: "Even non-Mormons I've talked to say it's biased … The controversies are over-blown and over-stated."

© 2018 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

   
1Like our page
2Share
Newsfront
More than 163,000 people have signed a grassroots petition insisting The New York Times apologize for and rewrite its obituary of Thomas S. Monson, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Prophet who died last week.
petition, new york times, apologize, mormon, thomas monson, obit
496
2018-34-09
Tuesday, 09 January 2018 01:34 PM
Newsmax Media, Inc.
 

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved