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Just_A_Guy last won the day on July 19

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About Just_A_Guy

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  1. I would apologize to my child for having neglectfully allowed him/her to come off with the idea that (s)he should only be reading Church-supported sources (Of course, my apology would be somewhat facetious and perhaps a little passive-aggressive; because from experience I know *darned* well that I never told my kids such a thing and that this line is a pretty routine strawman most often set up by perennial gripers who have spent the last six months reading anything but “faithful/Church-supported sources”.) I would also offer my opinion that revelation is to some extent a garbage-in, garbage-out process. If I’m studying and praying about polygamy without reading the work of excellent independent historians like Brian Hales, the quality of any revelation I get through the process may be suspect. But ultimately, professing a belief in individual revelation means being outwardly respectful of the revelations others claim to have gotten, even when you think they are wrong. It means learning to shrug and say “Hmm. I think my personal revelations have been contrary; but so long as you, my child, are still on the covenant path, I’m not going to get bogged down in minutiae here.”
  2. Just_A_Guy


    Mormons pray for “rain”, but only give thanks for “moisture”.
  3. Just_A_Guy

    Discovering the teachings on the plates

    For the Biblical account, see Genesis 48:1-20. In LDS teaching Ephraim is seen as having more of a particularized leadership role in the latter-day gathering of Israel (see D&C 133:26-34). But for Lehi, living 2600 years ago, he explains his own view of the significance of his Josephite ancestry in 2 Nephi, Chapter 3.
  4. Just_A_Guy

    BYU Hawaii - vaccine required

    I absolutely agree that it’s hard to know in detail who to trust and what to believe. Many of the standard “authorities” have not exactly covered themselves in glory here. That said, I think we know enough to paint some broad pictures, as follows: 1). COVID is responsible for a large number of particularly unpleasant deaths, which are occurring in hospitals whose occupancy rates are significantly higher than they were pre-COVID and whose staffs are getting burned out. 2). The average US life expectancy has significantly declined over the past year, and there seem to be no plausible candidates causing such a decline except for COVID. 3). The vaccines were developed around a series of scientific theories about how the virus, and the human immune system, function. When it comes to protecting against the COVID strains for which they were designed, the vaccines appear to be functioning more-or-less as-anticipated—the theory does work in real life. 4). We don’t know a lot—yet—about side-effects. That said: My understanding is that the majority of what has been observed, are similar to the effects that a COVID infection itself would produce in the body (which, as I understand it, is not terribly surprising). I have yet to see a strong case being made that a substantial number of individuals who allegedly died because of the vaccine, had healthy immune systems that would have withstood a full-fledged COVID infection. 5). As it pertains to the young lady at issue here: her excuse note was written by a D.O.—an osteopath—who by definition and training focuses on more naturalistic approaches to medicine, and is neither as confident in or as fully trained regarding synthetic medications. BYUH apparently consulted an MD who took a more nuanced approach about the mechanics of the various vaccines and how each one, individually, could affect persons with the young lady’s condition; whereas the young lady’s doctor was predisposed to—and did—generate a canned bleating about “Big Pharma Bad”. In this context, with regard to the question about why low vaccination rates are a BYUH student’s problem: Legally, I would say they aren’t; because individual liberties and “it’s my body, darn it!” I would certainly argue against a vaccination mandate that was enforced by threat of fine or imprisonment. (Society’s right, collectively and/or as individuals, to draw back from a nonconformer/perceived threat, is a hairier issue—of course, “banishment” was a thing in colonial America . . .) But, given all of the above as well as the factor cited in BYUH’s exemption denial letter, I think it’s well within BYUH’s prerogative to say “we feel we have a responsibility to our broader community to play ball here, and we’re going to make this a condition of attendance.” And at that point, it does become the BYUH student’s problem; just as the facts that per the Honor Code *other* people’s inability to drink responsibly, or sit through a class while a female present is showing excessive skin, or to get a meaningful education without cheating on test scores, all similarly become the student’s own problem.
  5. Just_A_Guy

    BYU Hawaii - vaccine required

    As I understand it, Hawaii is currently a shade over 53% vaccinated, which of course is nowhere near “herd immunity” and I doubt isn’t close even if we count recovered cases. But, the thought process above seems to reduce to “we shouldn’t incentivize people to get vaccinated until almost everyone has already been vaccinated”, which frankly is a little hard for me to follow. Am I misunderstanding?
  6. Just_A_Guy

    BYU Hawaii - vaccine required

    Frankly, if you aren’t trying to suggest that the vaccine *should be* 100% effective and that vaccinated folks are (or ought to be) unaffected by an individual’s failure to become vaccinated, then I don’t see how your question is relevant. Are you trying to lead me to a certain conclusion? If you’ll just tell me the point you’re trying to make, I’ll try to engage with it. And I’m not sure it’s really fair or accurate to say that concepts like “herd immunity” or new or are being substantially redefined. I learned about it in high school, which (as @LDSGator will happily tell you) was kind of a long time ago.
  7. Just_A_Guy

    BYU Hawaii - vaccine required

    I’m assuming you’re aware that *no* vaccine is 100% effective, and that the real power comes from the “herd immunity” that arises once a critical mass of a population has been vaccinated? And to the extent that some folks haven’t been vaccinated—to be sure, some folks are well-informed and have good reason to avoid various vaccines. But another part of the problem is bad information and hysteria being willfully disseminated by certain personalities and outlets.
  8. Just_A_Guy

    BYU Hawaii - vaccine required

    I can see why someone might think themselves justified in drawing the distinction (aside from the fact that the Church leadership constitutes the board of directors); but it’s a distinction that the broader population tends to miss. Harp on BYU, and the ensuing media feeding frenzy will inevitably broaden to include the church as a whole. Off-the-bat I can think of at least two groups: the people who may be exposed to/contract COVID through a more lax policy, and the Church/University/PCC that would have to deal with the physiological, financial, legal, and PR consequences of an outbreak that was traceable to BYUH. But of course, our young Sister Kelley Junior doesn’t give a flying fig about any of that, so long as she gets hers. She’s got her $200K in free money and is ready to come to Hawaii to par-taaaaay; and who do these grumpy old coots think they are to deny her all that?
  9. Just_A_Guy

    BYU Hawaii - vaccine required

    Matthew 18:7: “Woe unto the world because of offences! for it must needs be that offences come; but woe to that man by whom the offence cometh!“
  10. Just_A_Guy

    BYU Hawaii - vaccine required

    (To clarify, my laugh was a response to your first paragraph; not an attempt to deride your overall point.) I guess my response would be: I’m happy to mourn with those who mourn, until they demand that my mourning include the accommodation of their demands to the detriment of others who may be mourning for a whole other set of reasons. I’ve had my spitting matches with BYU, and frankly I would go so far as to say that some of the most evil people in the Church draw a paycheck from that institution. But I never tried to subject them to a campaign of public humiliation in order to get my way. This lady is just an antivax Kate Kelley.
  11. Just_A_Guy

    BYU Hawaii - vaccine required

    Welp. Our little minx seems to have gone whining to Hannity, whence her sob story was picked up and repeated by the Daily Mail.
  12. Just_A_Guy

    BYU Hawaii - vaccine required

    We murder babies. We. Murder. Babies. What careth our God if we also make the trains run on time?
  13. Just_A_Guy

    BYU Hawaii - vaccine required

    Indeed. But what (addressing his fifth point) what happens when the Gentiles ARE the problem? What happens when a defensive alliance merely bolsters the position of people who themselves are planning to devour you in the decades after the current crisis is passed and their own power is assured? As much as I love Elder Benson; I’m not sure his allegiance to the federal government of his day is any more applicable to us at this point in time, than is President Young’s open willingness to let the federal government of his day go hang. I’ll continue to vote rightward and respond to Church calls to action. But I think I’m pretty much over the idea that Elder Benson’s statements constitute a theological obligation for me, as a Latter-day Saint, to consider myself in perpetual hock to the guns-beer-and-bikini-babes faction that now seems to be dominating the 2021 iteration of the Republican Party. We, the Latter-day Saints, have resources that the world knows not; power that the world knows not. I would like to focus on qualifying myself to use that power; rather than giving my allegiance to a political has-been who has a track record of treating his supporters (from Manafort and Cohen and Pence and McConnell on down) little better than his whores.
  14. Just_A_Guy

    BYU Hawaii - vaccine required

    I largely agree with this; but I keep having to remind myself how ephemeral 21st century politics really is in the grand scheme of things. My “side” is the Kingdom of God—period. If Kirk is willing to use his position to lie about/stir up sentiment against The Kingdom (ie, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints), then he is fundamentally an enemy—or at best, an enemy-in-waiting. He does not become Captain Moroni, or anything like, just because in the short term he is successful at getting my tax rate lowered from 31% to 29.5% or makes YouTube videos showing stupid college kids to be (surprise!) stupid college kids. Having hung out in some conservative discussion fora, I think many Church members underestimate the degree of suspicion and contempt a lot of conservatives (especially Trumpian conservatives) have for the Church as an institution, its members as individuals, and its principles (particularly the ideals of self-discipline, sexual restraint, education, and—for lack of a better word—“thoughtfulness” or intellectual humility.) Many of them talk about us very much the way many early-1930s-Germans talked about Jews. They are not our friends.
  15. Just_A_Guy

    BYU Hawaii - vaccine required

    Maybe I’m projecting; but I’ve had a hard time watching Charlie Kirk. There’s a flatness—maybe even a darkness—about the guy.