Having once called Utah and the Mormon Church home, I found Gerald M. King's story "The Mormon Underground Fights Back" (Jan.) extremely perceptive and sensitive. I share Mr. King's optimistic vision for the future of liberty in the Mormon movement. A few years ago I did not have the wisdom (the courage?) to appreciate the concept of "free agency" or such spokesmen for liberty as Ezra Taft Benson, a man of enormous courage and integrity. Under its present leadership it is quite possible that the Mormon Church will overcome its passion for respectability and again emphasize the important principle that is its reason for being.
Beware the Fundamentalists
As an advocate of laissez-faire capitalism and objective reason, I was saddened and dismayed to read Gerald King's depiction of Mormonism. I do not take issue with the rights of either polygamists or Mormons to practice their religion without interference from federal and state governments or individuals; however, it is nothing short of an attack on man's mind and reason to suggest that Mormonism, especially fundamental Mormonism, is somehow associated with individualism, capitalism, and liberty.
I have worked and lived in Utah on three different occasions and find King's article inaccurate and misleading. Collectivism and mysticism are rampant throughout Mormon lore and culture. Anyone who believes otherwise should read No Man Knows My History by Fawn Brodie.
Reason magazine should not fall prey to the fundamental religionists' cry against statism and for a return to constitutional purity. Their ultimate goal is to replace both with mystic revelations and anarchy, not to promote a "free mind" or a "free market."
James C. Bishop
Holding the Line At One
I wish to cancel my subscription to Reason. Why? Because of your defense of polygamy in the January issue. If everything is defended because of religion, homosexuality and drugs are a shoe-in. God gave Adam one wife, Eve, and that is the ultimate precedent.
What I would like to know is how the men get their wives to believe the line, "I love you more than anything, so I'm marrying an additional wife"?