<slapping forehead> You're right. Sorry -- I just got my history mixed up. I guess
I must have been thinking of French intellectual influence that preceded the
revolution (ie de Tocqueville, not to mention Lafayette's military assistance).

George Cobabe wrote:

> Marc suggests:
> "If one feels the specific events of the American Revolution were inspired,
> one
> would also have to believe that the French Revolution was inspired, since it
> laid
> the groundwork for the American Revolution, and the intellectuals behind the
> liberalism (in the traditional sense of the term) that arose in the Age of
> Enlightenment, who set up the ideological structure for modern democracy,
> were all
> inspired by the French Revolution, imo. But I think that's history, not
> religious
> doctrine. IOW, I don't think it's an important distinction"
>
> Hate to be picky Marc, but the French Revolution is generally thought to
> have occurred between 1789 and 1799, sometime after the American Revolution.
> You might recall the keys dates of 1776 and 1782 for America.  I think it
> was the French following the American example.
>
> I may not have understood your comment however, and I have been known to be
> wrong about things like this.  You may be looking at the roots of the French
> experience rather than the historical manifestation of the actual
> revolutionary events.
>
> And I have no problem with the idea that the French Revolution was inspired.
>
> George
>
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Marc A. Schindler" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
> To: <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
> Sent: Tuesday, December 17, 2002 2:10 PM
> Subject: Re: [ZION] Curiosity About Alma 1:21
>
> "John W. Redelfs" wrote:
>
> > Marc A. Schindler favored us with:
> > >There's an interesting matter of interpretation here. Is "while" a
> conditional
> > >term here, or is it merely setting up the other party's side of the
> > >covenant? And
> > >if one party breaks the covenant, is the other party free to break it as
> well?
> >
> > Obviously yes because we know from the Doctrine and Covenants that the
> > Founding Fathers of the United States were inspired men raised up by God
> to
> > rebel against Britain.
>
> It actually doesn't say this. See below.
>
> > How do we reconcile that fact with the Twelfth
> > Article of faith?  This is how I make the reconciliation.  Rebel against
> > constituted authority but only when commanded by God to do so.
>
> I know this is a common belief amongst US LDS, but I don't think it's the
> only one
> possible. The D&C does not mention the American Revolution, it says the
> founding
> fathers were inspired, but wrt the principles of the Constitution (see in
> particular D&C 101:80; the interpretation regarding the Revolution is the
> reference
> to having redeemed the land by blood, but that's in a separate, independent
> clause.
> Here's the whole verse: "And for this purpose have I established the
> Constitution
> of this land, by the hands of wise men whom I raised up unto this very
> purpose, and
> redeemed the land by the shedding of blood.."
>
> I certainly believe the US is the "cradle of the restoration" and that the
> *principles* of the US constitution are inspired (in other words, democratic
> government and protection of civil rights, but not necessarily the exact
> form of
> the US republic per se). I think that's pretty solid. What might be a
> cultural
> addition is the assumption that everything in US history is therefore
> inspired. I
> think there's been a bit of mythologization going on, which isn't unique to
> LDS in
> the US -- think of the term "manifest destiny," which alludes to a divine
> mission.
> I think the Lord uses what happens to His own ends but He has lots of
> options and
> uses whatever situation presents itself. It's not that big of a difference,
> actually, as I see it -- we agree in the end result, we might just differ in
> how it
> came about. After all, Canada didn't have a revolution, but that's almost
> certainly
> because Britain learned a lesson from the US situation, and allowed its
> other
> colonies to evolve independence and democracy as they were ready. I know you
> think
> we don't have the same freedoms you do, but in all fairness, I think that
> boils
> down to just one particular issue, which I'd rather not get into. Despite
> the
> differences in the outward forms, Canada (and many other countries -- most
> industrialized countries) have taken the principles of the US Bill of Rights
> and
> applied them in their own democratization.
>
> In fact, D&C 134:5 specifically prohibits rebellion and sedition. Whether
> that's
> unconditional or conditional depends on what you think the word "while"
> means. I
> understand from my brother, who served his mission in French Polynesia, that
> members of an independence movement there, a movement which advocated the
> use of
> force, were threatened with excommunication. In contrast, you can be a
> member of
> the Parti Quebecois, which is separatist, without being in danger of losing
> your
> Church membership because the PQ does not promote violence to attain its
> ends.
>
> If one feels the specific events of the American Revolution were inspired,
> one
> would also have to believe that the French Revolution was inspired, since it
> laid
> the groundwork for the American Revolution, and the intellectuals behind the
> liberalism (in the traditional sense of the term) that arose in the Age of
> Enlightenment, who set up the ideological structure for modern democracy,
> were all
> inspired by the French Revolution, imo. But I think that's history, not
> religious
> doctrine. IOW, I don't think it's an important distinction.
>
> Postscript:
> Here's the entry from the EoM on "civil rights" [warning: it briefly
> mentions a
> topic against the List Charter; I've indicated this by "[deleted]"]
>
> Civil Rights
>
> Civil rights are legal guarantees designed to protect persons from arbitrary
> or
> discriminatory treatment. Common examples are those protecting freedom of
> speech,
> freedom of worship, freedom of assembly, the right to due process of law,
> the right
> to vote, the right to equal protection of the law, and safeguards for
> persons
> accused of crime, such as the right against self-incrimination, the right to
> confront one's accuser, the right to a jury trial, the right to counsel, and
> the
> right to a speedy trial. These and other rights are declared in the
> Constitution of
> the United States of America and in the constitutions of many other
> countries (see
> -->Constitutional Law).
>
> Civil rights are found in statutes as well as in constitutions and may
> provide, for
> example, detailed guarantees against public and private discrimination on
> the basis
> of such characteristics as race, gender, age, and religion. Civil rights
> issues
> arise when people disagree about the rights that are, or ought to be,
> guaranteed by
> law.The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and its members have an
> obvious
> interest in securing their own rights.
>
> Beyond this, several strands of doctrine and belief-sometimes
> competing-shape the
> views of members and leaders regarding civil rights in general. The
> principle of
> free agency seems most compatible with a legal system guaranteeing wide
> latitude
> for individual choice and decision. With respect to religious liberties,
> agency is
> reinforced by individual and institutional interests in freedom from
> governmental
> restraint. In the United States of America, commitment to individual rights
> is
> further reinforced by allegiance to the personal liberties guaranteed by the
> U.S.
> Constitution, which Latter-day Saints regard as an inspired document.
>
> On the other hand, the Church teaches its members to obey properly
> constituted
> governmental authority (D&C 134:5; 98:6; A of F 12), which may lead to
> accommodation and submission when core religious interests are not
> threatened. In
> addition, Church teachings on moral questions sometimes predispose members,
> as well
> as the institutional Church, to take positions on political issues
> ([deleted], for
> example) that run counter to the rights claimed by others. As a result, the
> position of the Church and its members toward current civil rights issues is
> complex.
>
> A Church statement of belief regarding government, adopted in 1835, singled
> out
> "free exercise of conscience, the right and control of property, and the
> protection
> of life" as rights essential to the peace of society (D&C 134:2;
> see -->Politics:
> Political Teachings). This 1835 statement repeatedly stressed the importance
> of
> religious freedom, and the Church and its members have sometimes found it
> necessary
> to take legal action to vindicate free exercise rights. In Corporation of
> the
> Presiding Bishop of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints et al.
> v. Amos
> et al. (483 U.S. 327 [1987]), for example, the Church successfully defended
> its
> right to impose a religious test for employment in certain Church-owned
> establishments. The Church as an institution has avoided legal action where
> possible, but has been willing to defend its rights in court when necessary.
>
> Apart from its special legal interests, the Church is publicly committed to
> a broad
> range of civil rights for all. An oft-cited 1963 statement by a member of
> the
> Church First Presidency, Hugh B. Brown, called for "full civil equality for
> all of
> God's children," saying "it is a moral evil.to deny any human being the
> right to
> gainful employment, to full educational opportunity, and to every privilege
> of
> citizenship, just as it is a moral evil to deny him the right to worship"
> (p.
> 1058).
>
> In the political arena, where competing claims to civil rights are
> frequently
> debated, the Church participates indirectly by encouraging members to vote
> and to
> foster a society congenial to Christian teaching and righteous living.
> Occasionally, when public issues implicate important matters of doctrine and
> morals, the Church publishes recommended positions on disputed issues and
> encourages members and others to follow their counsel. Thus, the Church has
> urged
> restrictions on the sale of alcoholic beverages, opposed the legalization of
> gambling and lotteries, favored right-to-work legislation (no closed or
> union
> shop), advocated the defeat of the equal rights amendment (ERA), and spoken
> out
> against pornography, [deleted], and child abuse.Within the Church,
> individual
> rights play a muted role as compared with secular society. Love and duty are
> stressed far more than individual claims of right. Moreover, the Church is a
> voluntary organization whose sanctions extend only to rights of membership
> and
> participation within the group, so fewer safeguards are necessary. Thus,
> Church
> disciplinary proceedings do not provide the full set of procedural
> protections the
> accused would receive in secular courts. Although due process notices and
> appeal
> rights are given, service of process is not strictly enforced and there is
> no right
> to confront one's accuser, no jury trial, and no right to counsel. Indeed,
> confession of sin by the repentant sinner may be at odds with the right
> against
> self-incrimination (see -->Disciplinary Procedures).
>
> Free speech is another illustration of the contrast with secular society.
> Members
> are free to say or publish what they wish. Yet, Church etiquette and
> policies,
> obligations of confidentiality, respect for divine and holy things, and the
> need to
> avoid offending others impose restraints upon freedom of expression.
> Likewise,
> voting within the Church involves the concept of common consent, but has
> none of
> the trappings of democratic elections and in most instances amounts to
> ratification
> of leadership callings and decisions. As for gender equality and children's
> rights,
> the relationships of men, women, and children are governed by religious
> principles,
> freely adopted by members, which teach equality but emphasize differences in
> roles.
> These principles are taught as eternal patterns, not derived from prevailing
> attitudes toward civil rights in any secular society, past or present.
>
> Bibliography
> Allen, James B., and Glen M. Leonard. The Story of the Latter-day Saints.
> Salt Lake
> City, 1976.
> Brown, Hugh B. IE 66 (Dec. 1963):1058.
> Cowan, Richard O. The Church in the Twentieth Century. Salt Lake City, 1985
> .Firmage, Edwin Brown, and Richard Collin Mangrum. Zion in the Courts: A
> Legal
> History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1830-1900.
> Urbana,
> Ill., 1988.
> Mangrum, R. Collin. "Mormonism, Philosophical Liberalism, and the
> Constitution."
> BYU Studies 27 (Summer 1987):119-37.
> McAffee, Thomas B. "Constitutional Interpretation and the American Tradition
> of
> Individual Rights." BYU Studies 27 (Summer 1987):139-69.
> Melville, J. Keith. "Joseph Smith, the Constitution, and Individual
> Liberties." BYU
> Studies 28 (Spring 1988):65-74.
> ROBERT E. RIGGS
>
> --
> Marc A. Schindler
> Spruce Grove, Alberta, Canada -- Gateway to the Boreal Parkland
>
> "Man will occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of the time he will
> pick
> himself up and continue on" - Winston Churchill
>
> Note: This communication represents the informal personal views of the
> author
> solely; its contents do not necessarily reflect those of the author's
> employer, nor
> those of any organization with which the author may be associated.
>
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>

--
Marc A. Schindler
Spruce Grove, Alberta, Canada -- Gateway to the Boreal Parkland

“Man will occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of the time he will pick
himself up and continue on” – Winston Churchill

Note: This communication represents the informal personal views of the author
solely; its contents do not necessarily reflect those of the author’s employer,
nor those of any organization with which the author may be associated.

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