Clayton Christensen has been busy the last couple of days. Last week we wrote about his colleague who was critical of his latest book, The Innovator’s Dilemma, and now is again claiming to be misrepresented, this time by a reporter.
Several months ago, Brother Christensen was interviewed for an article that was featured on Nautilus in which the author, Michael Fitzgerald, implied that Christensen supports gay marriage. The piece is titled “How the Mormons Conquered America: The success of the Mormon religion is a study in social adaptation.” It details how the Church has adapted and thrived in recent years both in the United States and throughout the world. Fitzgerald, in discussing same-sex marriage, quoted Christensen to say, “I think I’m farther along than the church is on this one.” In his published response on his Facebook page, Christensen says that his quote is taken out of context and that he supports the Church and it’s leaders. Below is his response in full:
Regarding the post in the Nautilus
I am writing about an article by Michael Fitzgerald, titled “How the Mormons Conquered America: The success of the Mormon religion is a study in social adaptation.” It appeared a couple of days ago in a journal, Nautilus. I am misquoted in the piece. Fitzgerald interviewed me several months ago relative this article. He wrote notes as we talked; he did not record our conversation.
In the article, Fitzgerald reviews the history of how the church has changed several practices, such as polygamy and ordaining blacks to the priesthood. He then refers to same-sex marriage; and in that same paragraph quoted me as saying, “… I think I’m farther along than the church is on this one.” It implies that I support same-sex marriage, and that I expect that the leaders of the church in the future will agree with that position.
This is not true. I did not say this. I support wholeheartedly every phrase in “The Family: A Proclamation to the World.” And I sustain the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve, who penned that document.
When society is telling me something new, even when it has assembled powerful reasons and powerful people on its side, I do not ask society whether it is correct. I ask God. I am grateful that I belong to a church in which we do not attempt to convince God or our leaders that certain opinions in our society are correct, and God’s are not. Society changes its mind quite frequently. I do not believe that God changes his mind, however. When society is telling me something new, even when it has assembled powerful reasons and powerful people on its side, I do not ask society whether it is correct. I ask God.
I understand that this mis-representation of my beliefs by Mr. Fitzgerald is being widely circulated through the church. I would be very grateful if you could forward this letter to anyone who you believe ought to see this – and by the fastest and most effective ways possible. Thanks for your help!