Congratulations 2011 X-Mormon of the Year: Joanna Brooks!!

One more time with the disclaimer: For the purpose of this award, the “X” is a variable standing for any category of exceptional Mormon — it does not imply the nominee (or winner in this case) has left the church. Sorry to be a broken record on this point, folks, but I’m sure we’ll have new readers arriving at Main Street Plaza on this post, and I don’t want them to mistakenly think we’re calling Professor Brooks an “ex-Mormon”.

Joanna Brooks made a huge splash in 2011 as a positive spokesperson for Mormonism with her popular column in Religion Dispatches and her Ask Mormon Girl blog, not to mention writing for the Washington Post (which had a few questionable points, but was cool overall).

Brooks has done a great job of demonstrating that Mormons aren’t just a bunch of weirdos, but are a diverse bunch of people who are capable of thinking and speaking for themselves! A far better job than the ?-million-dollar “I’m a Mormon” publicity campaign (which, despite showcasing diversity, on a meta-level gives kind of a culty vibe). So, has the CoJCoL-dS thanked her for it, or given her any kind of positive recognition for her efforts? Well, not exactly. So, we here at the Mormon Alumni Association are picking up the slack. 😉

Congratulations Joanna — “X”-Mormon of the year 2011!!!

Published by

chanson

C. L. Hanson is the friendly American ExMormon atheist mom living in Switzerland! See "letters from a broad" and the novel ExMormon for further adventures!!

73 thoughts on “Congratulations 2011 X-Mormon of the Year: Joanna Brooks!!

  1. William Law was excommunicated, but even with the Expositor he didn’t want to tear down the Mormon faith. He just wanted Joseph Smith to admit publicly that he was a practicing polygamist.

    I can’t speak for JB or anyone. But I hate the idea of an award where we have to figure out who is still on the official rolls in Salt Lake City. If someone’s not, then they’re eligible. I think that’s bullsh*t. Who knows if someone’s on those rolls or not, and if they have the mormon chops. Or if they have the exmormon chops. I like the idea of an award for anyone who is not the PR person in SLC speaking for mormonism…maybe we should have nominated Randy Bott.

    I’m tired of the suits in SLC defining who former or current mormons are and what they believe. Bott is retiring at the end of this semester, or something like that. Not surprisingly.

    Maybe things are changing. Maybe this time things will be different. It’s still the same leadership (basically) than in 1993, but who knows? It’s been twenty years.

  2. ** Administrative Announcement **

    I don’t normally like deleting posts or comments, but I have removed one post (along with all of its comments) at the request of the author because it attracted some harassment.

    If you have any questions or comments about this action, please feel free to add them on thread.

  3. Chanson,

    What are you talking about? What did you edit, who wrote it, and who harrassed whom? The only stuff I saw change was what I thought were edits by Chino Blanco who I thought must have deleted or edited his lazy, loud-mouth detractor comment early in the thread.

  4. Huh? I wouldn’t edit/delete anything I’d posted w/o explanation. Anyway, thanks for playing along. By the way, our view counter is still broken.

  5. It wasn’t something on this thread. It was an old post that I had linked to from this post (and I’ve now removed that link). Someone read that old post, didn’t like it, and clicked from it to the author’s website, and there left an inappropriate comment. I’d kind of prefer not to go into more detail than that because it would just encourage the person who did it (who’s probably still hanging around, reading this…)

  6. Yes, Chino’s comment is still there — along with the rest of that discussion. The comments thread has rolled over to page 2 (look for the small boxes with numbers).

    What’s the problem with the view counter?

  7. Well, go down and click on the sitemeter button and check how many visits we’ve had today. This post is going to get upwards of 5,000 views during the next few days. Sitemeter will record the traffic but the post view counter widget displayed above is worthless.

  8. @chino, must have missed your words when I saw others quote you and tried to find it in your comments. I’m glad you didn’t delete/edit, which is highly annoying behavior.

    @chanson, let’s do Paris again sometime. That’s way more fun than coming here and being thanked for “playing.”

  9. This post is going to get upwards of 5,000 views during the next few days.

    Excellent!! That should liven things up a bit. Regarding the widget, maybe that’s one of the two updates that my dashboard is telling me about…

    SML @59 — I’d love to do another Paris weekend!! That was so much fun!! Or you (and Equality, too, perhaps…?) could come visit me in Zurich!

    BTW, regarding the discussion on page 1 of this thread: When a couple of misunderstandings degenerated into flames, it seems like half of FLAK arrived to join in the fun. Then, when I tried to clear up the misunderstandings and asked people to have a constructive discussion of people’s various criticisms of the guidelines of the WLX-MotY award (and of Joanna Brooks and what she stands for), I get radio silence (except one comment from Aerin [thanks, aerin!] plus a last jab at Chino). I value the friendship between MSP and FLAK and the friendships among the participants of the various sites around here… Can you and the FLAK folks throw me a bone or something….?

  10. BTW, regarding the discussion on page 1 of this thread: When a couple of misunderstandings degenerated into flames, it seems that half of FLAK arrived to join in the fun.

    First, I havent been on FLAK in at least a year, maybe two. Every so often, I take a break from creating art and remember MSP, so I log in and check it out. This thread looked interesting because Ive had discussions about Joanna Brooks in the past year after having seen people extensively quoting her and marveling at her wonder on facebook (much like they do John Dehlin in my opinionin fact, the first I ever heard of Joanna was when Dehlin was fawning all over her on his facebook page), and I admit to curiosity over the hype. Someone named Cut came on here and wrote something about JB that I agreed with, and I read further to see that Belaja also agreed. Then, interestingly, k8 compared JB to JD and I found I agreed some more. I had the thread up on the computer as I was cooking dinner, and Equality saw it, read it, and commented @19. He didnt jump over from FLAK. I dont know how Cut got herebut even if it were true that someone did jump over from FLAK, SO WHAT? That has to mean the trolls are invading?!

    when I tried to clear up the misunderstandings and asked people to have a constructive discussion of peoples various criticisms of the guidelines of the WLX-MotY award (and of Joanna Brooks and what she stands for), I get radio silence (except one comment from Aerinplus a last jab at Chino).

    The discussion about peoples various criticisms of the guidelines of the WLX-MotY award and Joanna Brooks and what she stands for WAS already happening when suddenly @22 we were given this condescending nugget from Chino: More brilliant timing from bitter exmos pissed off that somebody else got the ribbon this time. And kuri with his own condescension making it known @25 that normally hell apologize when people misread his intent, but not this time, implying that belaja and I are beneath his consideration. There was push back then, and @30 we were labeled FLAK trolls. It was clear by then that discussion wasnt going to be productive any more, and I vowed to myself not to engage further.

    You came back from your weekend away, and restated some of what was already discussed early in this thread about the award, its intent, and Joanna Brooks, but do we really need to restart the discussion now that youve personally assured kuri and Chino that were not trolls? We already assured them of such. We keep getting called the folks from FLAK even by you, and @48 you mention the Brodie Awards which TWO OF THE FIVE posters in this thread who are being labeled the trolls from FLAK have wonand I am familiar with both because I illustrated one of the winning posts and married the other Brodie Award winner.

    Gah. This entire post feels like banging my head against the wall. My last “jab” at Chino gets mentioned but his last jab at me (another condescending comment: but thanks for playing) gets a pass. Honestly, if I could unsubscribe from getting follow-up emails from this thread after hitting the check mark at the bottom of a previous comment post, I would.

  11. @61, Clearly there were a number of misunderstandings in the early part of the discussion, so thanks for helping us get them cleared up. I didn’t realize you hadn’t been on FLAK lately, as I visit there only rarely myself. I like the people there, but I’m not much of a message board person.

    Regarding “giving people a pass” — it’s not so much that I’m OK’ing one comment but moderating another, rather once the thread goes downhill, I don’t find it constructive to micromanage precisely who said what. As a standing rule, I ask everybody to try to keep their comments civil and constructive, and I hope everyone reading this is capable of figuring out whether their own comments are civil and constructive or not.

    Every so often, I take a break from creating art and remember MSP, so I log in and check it out.

    That is an excellent impulse! It’s unfortunate that you arrived on a thread that had some drama on it; drama that (by bad luck) I wasn’t around to nip in the bud before the downward spiral. I hope that next time you’ll be here for a more constructive thread, so we can give you a better (and more accurate) impression of how MSP usually works, and what our regulars are like.

    It was clear by then that discussion wasnt going to be productive any more, and I vowed to myself not to engage further.

    Excellent! That’s what I like to see people doing. As a general rule, if you see drama, don’t exacerbate it — just state your own position in a clear and civil manner, and move on.

    You came back from your weekend away, and restated some of what was already discussed early in this thread about the award, its intent, and Joanna Brooks, but do we really need to restart the discussion now that youve personally assured kuri and Chino that were not trolls?

    Sort of. I don’t want to discuss whether you guys are trolls — I agree, we’ve established that you’re not.

    The discussion I wanted to reboot was people’s input on why/whether Joanna Brooks is or is not a good choice for William Law X-Mormon of the Year. It’s moot to some degree (because we’re not going to rescind the award at this point), but there are some interesting points to be discussed about her objectives and strategy. To what degree do we here agree with what she’s doing?

    You yourself made an interesting point about whether she’d have to get her husband’s permission to attend the temple. (I think she would, but that she has publicly stated that she does not attend the temple — I forget what her reasoning was.) That’s an interesting topic! Let’s reboot and discuss it in a friendly way without the background atmosphere of hostility.

  12. Oh, that’s ok. You can delete things that you don’t want people to see.

    We’re used to that from the Mormon church.

    I mean, you have silly Magic underwear, secret planets set aside for men with mounds of virgins waiting for their pleasure …

    Yes, this all sounds a lot like what Jesus preached … Now go cook some books, like we know you’re used to doing … and try to keep your pedo hands off of the children.

  13. Gotta feel sorry for those middle of the road Mormons like Joanna Brooks. She gets flack from both sides of the aisle. One side rails on her for being too liberal, the other for not breaking with her cultural past. If anything, she sees a benefit to her family by participating in Mormonism and is staying authentic to what she feels and believes. Who can fault her for that?

    Also interesting to see the divisions in the ex-mormon world. That bodes poorly for those who would like to schism from the Mormon church to set up a “reform” tradition.

  14. Gotta feel bad for the women involved in this religion when men tell them they aren’t as good as the men, and even feel men are entitled to more than one wife. Can’t commit to a particular woman? Oh fine, go have 5 or 6 or 10.

    But those people with Dark skin, they can’t be leaders … and the gays are just demons on Earth.

    You people are loons.

    WOMEN: Quit listening to these pathetic excuses for men, and leave the church like I did. You’ll be so much happier when not being routinely stepped on by men.

  15. Also interesting to see the divisions in the ex-mormon world. That bodes poorly for those who would like to schism from the Mormon church to set up a reform tradition.

    lol, if you’re talking about what happened on page 1 of this discussion, I don’t think it’s indicative of anything except the fact that misunderstandings bloom quickly on the Internet. If the same group had been hanging out in person, that wouldn’t have happened.

    That said, there are indeed very real rifts within the exmo community. Not everyone wants to schism from the Mormon church to set up a reform tradition. (Though, if enough people do want that goal, the existence of people who don’t want to do that shouldn’t really be an obstacle.)

  16. For what it’s worth, I have a soft spot for the FLAK board. It was the first exmo board I’d ever read, and folks like Equality, Belaja and Sister Mary Lisa impressed the hell out of me with their wit and wisdom. I’ll fess up to my own trollish comments in this thread. Peace out.

  17. Thanks, Chino! I think we’re all friends with the FLAK folks, and hopefully the people who joined the discussion on page 1 will come back and participate in more constructive discussions in the future. Or maybe we’ll see them at Sunstone — that would be cool! 😀

  18. You’re post is really stupid, we are hear to listen to those that are smart enough to denounce a religion that believes that black people are the condemn made black to be unattractive to white people. Too bad it’s white girls that are the most used in interracial gangbangs…

  19. Never under estimate the rich cultural adventure that has been ours in coming
    out of Mormonism. We have a view of life that enlightens and broadens in a way
    few others have experienced. Having made the journey we have we are equipped,
    when we realize it, to enrich all that we touch.

    The campaign begins! I want to be the X-Mormon of the Century.

    My new book is out you guys. A labor of love if there ever is one.
    Name: The Complete Mystery of Matthew Alcott, Heritage of secrets.
    Genre: Suspense fiction.
    Amazon.com has it as both in Kindle and paperback.

    “Women make up over 50% of the population of our country. I fear our
    constitution will never be safe until congress is fifty percent women.”

    “When will women stop allowing themselves to be the crutch upon which the fundamentalist male ego ambulates?”

    “As Matthew Alcott looked back he realized it was in making statements like that he came under the scrutiny of a political power he never dreamed existed.”

    I ended up writing a book I couldn’t find anywhere. It was one I wanted to read, one that extolled Joseph Smiths genius and why it led him to his own destruction.

    Michael Oborn
    (let the voting begin.)

  20. Never under estimate the rich cultural adventure that has been ours in coming out of Mormonism.

    I completely agree! I’d be curious to read your book and review it for this site. Please email me: chanson dot exmormon at gmail dot com.

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