“Every Member a Missionary” is so pass

The Deseret News recently re-posted a story from the Mormon Times on members being missionaries that included 10 tips.

Here is my translation of the 10 tips:

  1. “Be a friend” = Pretend to like people so they will think you’re nice and they will want to know “why” you are nice. Then spring your religion on them, ’cause what else are friends for if not to deceptively pretend to like people so you can shove religion down their throat?
  2. “Ditch the lingo” = Pretend you are more like other Christians than you really are by learning to speak the way they do.
  3. “Stay on message” = Stay on the “milk” message – Mormons are nice and you’ll have a happier family if you join. Don’t discuss what Mormonism is really like or what Mormons actually believe: god lives on a planet near the star Kolob; Joseph Smith instituted polygamy so he could sex it up; the church owns dozens, if not hundreds, of for-profit subsidiaries, including malls and ranches; Mormons mistreat women, gays, and blacks; Native Americans are Jews, they just don’t know it and their DNA is hiding the evidence, etc.
  4. “Trust” = This is a repeat of #1. Basically, pretend to be trustworthy so you can use “friendship” as a tool to convert people. Sure, there is that idealistic notion that friends are people who just genuinely care about you because of who you are. Mormons don’t buy that. Friends are targets for conversion (or are automatically gained through holding membership in common). Friends are instruments and tools, not people.
  5. “Pray” = Fall prey to confirmation bias. When some completely random event occurs that allows you to try to force your religion on someone else, claim that is a prayer answered. Ignore the 10 trillion other random events that do not lend themselves to this opportunity. Ergo, prayer works.
  6. “Invite” = Ditto #1 and #4. Though, with this one, he is also throwing in the old, “Feel free to strain your “friend” relationships with awkward invitations to church.” Sure, you have to work with those people every day, but what’s wrong with a little workplace awkwardness in the pursuit of converting the world to Mormonism.
  7. “Plant seeds” = Ditto #1, #4, and #6. However, this one includes the notion of randomly throwing “seed” around your social network… All the better to annoy people in your social network.
  8. “Community Involvement” = I’m handing this one off to Jesus, one of my favorite mythical characters, “Watch out! Dont do your good deeds publicly, to be admired by others, for you will lose the reward from your Father in heaven. When you give to someone in need, dont do as the hypocrites doblowing trumpets in the synagogues and streets to call attention to their acts of charity! I tell you the truth, they have received all the reward they will ever get. But when you give to someone in need, dont let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. Give your gifts in private, and your Father, who sees everything, will reward you.” (Matthew 6.1-4). Ever heard of “Mormon Helping Hands“? (FYI, the link is a Google News search showing all the trumpeting of their good deeds in the media.)
  9. “Use humor” = What better way to get yourself into your friends’ good graces than to humorously mock THEIR religious views? Come on! This is brilliant stuff here.
    1. If you find yourself talking to a fellow Christian, you can try this line: “What are services like in… THE CHURCH OF SATAN?!?!” (1 Nephi 14:10)
    2. Or this zinger for a Jew: “How is that temple reconstruction going? We Mormons can’t wait until it’s rebuilt, so you can all weep and lament the fact that you killed Jesus!” (D&C 45:51-53)
  10. “Access the keys of heaven” = This one is just weird. It sounds like he’s recommending you pawn off the responsibility on your ward council. Perhaps the smartest suggestion of the bunch!

Is it just me, or do these suggestions seem both anachronistic and dishonest? Anachronistic because people just don’t do this crap anymore – religious ecumenism requires that people be tolerant of others’ religious views and not try to convert them. And dishonest because it is using deception to convert people.

Anyone else want to take a shot at translating the 10 tips of passe member missionary work?


I'm a college professor and, well, a professional X-Mormon. Thus, ProfXM. I love my Mormon family, but have issues with LDS Inc. And I'm not afraid to tell LDS Inc. what I really think... anonymously, of course!

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108 Responses

  1. Goldarn says:

    “he actually personally admitted that a limited geography model for the Book of Mormon kills his entire argument”

    His ENTIRE argument. So, yes, not every bit of work or research or study he EVER did in his WHOLE life is wrong, just his ENTIRE ARGUMENT.

    But you don’t have a link, because you are a liar.

  2. Even if Southerton DID say that, it obfuscates the larger point: the whole point of the LGM is to turn the Book of Mormon into an untestable hypothesis. By construction, the LGM makes it impossible for any evidence to falsify the BOM.

    If Southerton admits that his DNA argument can’t falsify an LGM, he isn’t saying very much; he’s just admitting to a tautology.

  3. Seth R. says:

    You can find Southerton’s remarks here:


    It’s under question #7:

    “In 600 BC there were probably several million American Indians living in the Americas. If a small group of Israelites, say less than thirty, entered such a massive native population, it would be very hard to detect their genes today. However, such a scenario does not square with what the Book of Mormon plainly states and with what the prophets have taught for 175 years.”

    This basically amounts to an admission that IF you accept the limited geography model of the Book of Mormon and the arguments of modern Mormon apologists, then it would be “very hard” to detect any Israelite DNA today. Notice how in the second sentence he shifts his argument to what the text of the Book of Mormon says.

    But at this point, Southerton has ceased making a scientific argument, and is now making an argument of Book of Mormon textual analysis. This is a field where he is out of his depth, and Mormon scholars are more than capable of refuting his assertion that the Book of Mormon “plainly states” a continent-wide sole-ancestry model.

    I just want to point out the shift that has gone on here in this particular criticism. At first the argument was:

    1. Oh wow! We’ve found proof that the Book of Mormon is refuted by DNA evidence.

    Then the easy Mormon apologist refutations came in and now the argument has shifted to:

    2. Well, maybe it doesn’t refute the Book of Mormon – but it refutes the reading that many Mormons had of the Book of Mormon.

    I think the lameness of that shift is pretty self-evident. How the mighty have fallen.

    Interestingly, this quote from Southerton used to be featured on Signature Books website, but Southerton had it removed.

    Gee… wonder why he did that….

  4. Seth R. says:

    Julian, I’m not going to apologize for the Book of Mormon being an “untestable hypothesis.” That’s what Mormons have been saying for centuries.

    As far as I’m concerned, that’s your problem, not mine.

  5. Seth R. says:

    Oh, another quote from Southerton over at the RfM boards where he goes by Simon of Oz:

    In case anyone from FAIR is unclear I will repeat what I wrote four years ago


    Now that FAIR has finally conceded that American Indian DNA is essentially all derived from Asia, I also agree with them that the debate should be about the theology. It is great that we are agreeing about so much. But theres more. I also share the apologists frustration that most Mormons pay not the slightest notice of them, instead FAIR seems to help many who are struggling to make up their minds to leave. If I had my wish, FAIR and FARMS apologists would be given the opportunity to educate the masses in the church about how mistaken people have been about the Book of Mormon narrative. I would love to hear the Limited or Vanishing Geography taught in Institute and seminary. Mormons need to hear the new interpretations of the Book of Mormon on offer from the churchs unofficial apologists in order to immunize them against seeing things in the text that just aren’t there. ”

    Archived by RfM here:


    Again notice how he has conceded that the debate is no longer about the science, but about the THEOLOGY.

  6. kuri says:

    Although I think the Book of Mormon is fiction, I think Seth’s argument is essentially correct. DNA evidence refutes the “hemispheric model” (i.e., what every Mormon believed until the 1930s and what most Mormons believe today). It doesn’t necessarily refute the “limited geography model,” it just provides zero evidence to support it. In that, it’s just like pretty much everything we know about the history, archaeology, and anthropology of the Americas.

  7. Seth R. says:

    I wouldn’t say that every Mormon today believes it. Even as a kid in the 1980s, I was learning some distinctly “limited” models for the Book of Mormon. And this was in rural Southern Utah.

  8. Kari says:

    The only reason there is an LGM is because apologists (and, by extension, LDS Church leaders) got tired of trying to support the hemispheric model against ever increasing evidence against it.

    The current argument is essentially as follows:

    “There was such an overwhelming number of native peoples already here that any evidence of an ancient Israelite migration is swallowed up by the native culture and biology. Therefore, there is absolutely no evidence that can prove the BoM false, and we can keep promulgating our non-scientific evidence such as chiasmus. And don’t forget, if you feel good when you pray then it must be true.”

  9. kuri says:

    I think a limited geography model was first proposed as far back as the 1930s. So no, certainly not every (believing) Mormon believes in the hemispheric model. But my impression (and of course that’s all it is) is that most (believers) still believe in it. I think many Mormons have never (or barely) heard of the limited geography model.

  10. Seth R. says:

    Mormon scholars have been arguing a limited geography for well over half a century – mostly based on a careful reading of the “war chapters” in Alma.

    To claim that these models were invented to answer the recent DNA arguments is just silly.

    And even if they were – so what? Is that supposed to be an invalidation of the argument or something?

  11. kuri says:

    Yeah. Science advances and religion retreats. Happens all the time.

  12. kuri says:

    Oh, “limited geography” definitely predates DNA evidence. But when not viewed through a lens of faith, what you call “careful reading” looks an awful lot like “desperate retreat in the face of mounting evidence.”

  13. Seth R. says:

    I look at it as an advance.

    But you’ve picked your own brand of confirmation bias. And I’m sure you feel I’ve picked mine.

  14. kackyful says:

    So which is it, Seth? Either Joseph’smyth was a PROPHET with the Golden Plates revealed to him and he translated them correctly…from an ANCIENT people that are THE ancestors of the American Indian, or he’s a liar. A man, and MANY men after him said exactly that Seth, testified to it, in fact. Our ENTIRE religion is based on THAT FACT! – That Hebrews migrated here and that the land was UNINHABITED! So said Joseph’smyth. Remember, God told him so.

    You are a fool my friend. There is zero evidence of millions of people, let alone grains, animals and metals (shields and chariots, you keep ignoring), etc., in the time of the B of M and you know it.

    Please feel free to keep your head inserted in your nether region, though. You are clearly desperately invested in this fantasy being true. I honestly want you to be happy, Seth. If you need to believe in this, go with god. Let’s just not pretend Joseph said the land was already inhabited by millions of Native Americans…that’s a lie.

  15. agnes says:

    The new DNA studies that use the whole genome, more or less, rather than relying on special male or female DNA can detect even a tiny drop of outside DNA. The new DNA techniques can even determine when, historically, the DNA entered the population. See the Icelandic example I posted earlier–it looks like a single Native American from somewhere prior to 1400 AD interbred with the Icelandic population. Not too shabby. Also see the Syrian DNA (it entered the population about 1800 years ago) found amongst English populations living along Hadrian’s wall. If there’s Near Eastern DNA (like the Syrian stuff) it would be found. It hasn’t.

  16. kuri says:


    The Icelandic DNA discussed appears to be mitochondrial DNA, which can disappear from a population if a maternal lineage comes to an end. (I didn’t look at the site about Syrian DNA, because Norton Anti-Virus reports it as unsafe.)

  17. Seth R. says:

    Kacky, honestly, from your tone, I’m quite sure you don’t give a damn about me one way or the other.

    And if you think the entire Mormon religion is founded on the continent being uninhabited…

    Well, I’ll let the sheer stupidity and ignorance of that statement speak for itself.

  18. kuri says:

    But youve picked your own brand of confirmation bias. And Im sure you feel Ive picked mine.

    Sure. I mean, it’s pretty much a toss-up between the thousands of data points that confirm conventional history, archeology, anthropology, biology, etc., and the two or three data points found by apologists that don’t disconfirm the Book of Mormon. What explanation other than “confirmation bias” could possibly explain my acceptance of the former over the latter?

  19. Seth R. says:

    Sure Kuri, if you think all those thousands of data points actually offer a competing narrative to the Book of Mormon.

  20. kuri says:

    The Book of Mormon isn’t competition, it’s simply irrelevant.

  21. Seth R. says:

    Besides, I think it’s rather artificial to put the Book of Mormon on one side, and line up against it, this vague and uselessly massive category called “conventional history” and act as if the two were somehow opposed to each other.

  22. kuri says:

    Oh. I was forgetting that they only used to be opposed to each other. But now Book of Mormon scholarship has advanced to the point where the Book of Mormon’s irrelevance to any known history is actually a virtue.

  23. kackyful says:

    Really, Seth? You can’t recall a single talk from a past Prophet who stated what I did? You’ve wiped the history clear, just like FAIR/FARMS has? BRILLIANT!

  24. chanson says:

    kackyful — You’ve presented some good arguments that I’m glad we’re discussing. I’d like to be sure you’re aware of our commenting policy (on our welcome page). In a nutshell, please try to keep your criticism civil and constructive. I’m sure you can make your argument without calling anyone a fool.

  25. Seth R. says:

    Of course I can recall such talks Kacky.

    When did I ever imply there weren’t any?

  26. kackyful says:

    Thx, Chanson, I’ll remember that (this is my first time here, I neglected to read that, sorry).

    Ok Seth, I’ll try to help you out here, since you appear to be trapped into a corner now and are trying to shut the convo down, it appears. What part of the land being uninhabited, and that Lehi and his family created the American Indian (You do remember a little parable in there about Laman and Lemuel, right?), known to us as Lamanites, do you question?

    1. That Joseph’smyth was told by God it was true, and *none* of us believe the story he told us anymore, (including you).


    2. Joseph’smyth was a liar, made it all up (with some help), for profit, and women? And all the current leaders and/or apologists of the church (FAIR/FARMS) are continuing to make things up to save face, due to lack of evidence.

    p.s. I’m still waiting to hear from you what “Lamanite DNA” is.

  27. Seth R. says:

    The reading I have of the Book of Mormon (which I consider to be fully consistent with the text), is that Lehi’s group landed in the New World around 600 BC and found the land already occupied with indigenous people. Both Nephi’s faction, and Laman’s faction then mixed in with those natives and managed to rise to positions of – basically royalty.

    This is consistent with the few historical records we have of Mesoamerican civilizations – where the records that were kept were usually the records of noble bloodlines. the Book of Mormon appears to be a record of the royal lineage of Nephi and Laman.

    So my view is that within a few generations, possibly by the Book of Alma, there was no remaining Hebrew genetic trace that we could have spotted – had we been there with modern genetic testing capability.

    So lets pretend we found a lost record that allowed us to identify a direct descendant of Laman alive today – what would his or her DNA look like?

    It would have the common ASIATIC ancestor that all Native Americans have. Because that’s exactly the DNA pool that Laman’s group mixed in with.

    Julian hit the nail on the head. The Book of Mormon, as things stand, IS non-falsifiable. There’s no way to even detect the sort of genetic data that would prove it true or false.

    Lamanite DNA is no different than common Asiatic-descended DNA found among modern Native Americans. That’s been my entire argument ever since I started responding to you.

  28. Seth R. says:

    Incidentally, Joseph Smith made pronouncements on the scope of the geography of the Book of Mormon on occasion. But these pronouncements tended to change as he learned new information. Nor do I believe he was claiming a divine source for these declarations other than his own best assumptions based on what he knew of the text.

    As such, I do not really feel bound by what he said here. Being a prophet doesn’t make a person infallible – it doesn’t render every pronouncement he ever makes perfect. Mormonism has no doctrine of prophetic infallibility.

    Do many members assume that the prophet is infallible? Sure they do.

    And they are dead wrong.

    Part of the responsibility of every Mormon is to thoughtfully and prayerfully study the words of our leaders in light of what we know and decide for ourselves if they are true. It always has been. It’s not my fault that a lot of people over at RfM seem to have conveniently forgotten that.

  29. chanson says:

    Both Nephis faction, and Lamans faction then mixed in with those natives and managed to rise to positions of basically royalty.

    If they were basically royalty, then one would expect them to have a lot of successful offspring spread through the population over the generations. That’s a scenario where population geneticists would expect to find some sort of clear genetic commonalities with Hebrews. In-mixed sub-populations’ genes don’t simply become so diluted that they’re undetectable especially if the sub-population is highly successful.

    If you argue that Lehi’s group was extremely isolated (and perhaps had some sort of taboo about intermarriage with the neighboring populations), that’s the scenario that’s not falsifiable. But with that scenario, you run into problems with the unrealistically rapid population growth (as calculated by the figures given in the Book of Mormon of people killed in various battles).

  30. Seth R. says:

    I don’t think being a part of the royal elite automatically meant a large enough number of offspring to make much difference – at least not enough to create a big enough drop in the bucket to spot. Especially not after hundreds of years before you even hit the Book of Mosiah.

    As for the warfare numbers, that’s part of the reason I feel mixing with the locals is how it must have played out.

    However, I would urge caution on the battlefield numbers. It is common practice in almost all ancient military records to exaggerate the numbers of men involved in major battles. The Romans did it, the Assyrians did it, the Saracens did it, etc. I think it’s only reasonable to assume that Moroni did it as well.

  31. kuri says:

    So lets pretend we found a lost record that allowed us to identify a direct descendant of Laman alive today what would his or her DNA look like?

    A direct male-to-male descendant of Lehi would have Lehi’s Middle Eastern Y-chromosome DNA. A direct female-to-female descendant of Sariah would have her Middle Eastern mitochondrial DNA. The only way the Middle Eastern DNA would disappeared would be if at least one entire generation of Lehi’s male descendants had no sons and at least one generation of Sariah’s female descendants had no daughters.

    That’s not impossible, so I agree that it’s not falsifiable. But your “royalty” scenario actually makes it much less likely. As chanson noted, the more prominent Lehi’s descendants were (and the more generations of descendants he had), the less likely their DNA would have disappeared. (Especially since there were some polygamists in the Book of Mormon, and extra wives are often a perk of royalty.) If your Book of Mormon scenario had actually happened, a sot of Genghis Khan effect in the Americas would be unsurprising.

  32. Seth R. says:

    You’re cheating Kuri.

    I didn’t say a “direct male-to-male descent” or “female-to-female descent.”

    I’m more careful than that in these kind of arguments.

  33. Seth R. says:

    Incidentally, I believe that some Hebrew genetic traces have been found in South America, but that these are (probably correctly) attributed to European influxes into the population since the Spaniards arrived.

    But it does bring up the question – even if we did find Israelite genetic traces – how would you distinguish them from the stuff brought over by European colonization?

  34. kuri says:


    It’s not “cheating.” That’s how DNA lines are traced. The direct male line of a Middle Eastern male would have have Middle Eastern Y-chromosome DNA. The direct female line of a Middle Eastern female would have Middle Eastern mDNA. The fact that same-sex lines can terminate while still leaving opposite-sex descendants is the only reason that (limited geography models of) the Book of Mormon can’t be truly falsified by DNA.

    But it does bring up the question even if we did find Israelite genetic traces how would you distinguish them from the stuff brought over by European colonization?

    Possibly there would be slight but meaningful differences between Spanish-Jewish DNA and Middle Eastern Jewish DNA, but maybe not. I don’t know.

    Anyway, to me this is one more case where something (an American “Genghis Khan effect,” even on a small scale) could provide strong evidence for the Book of Mormon but doesn’t. Absence of evidence isn’t necessarily evidence of absence, but there’s a large cumulative effect when it comes to the Book of Mormon.

  35. Seth R. says:

    There really is only a large cumulative effect if you assume a continent-wide model.

    Also, sorry about the word “cheating” (even though it was used more humorously than aggressively). That would be one way to track the DNA – if such a direct ancestral line was involved.

  36. kuri says:

    There really is only a large cumulative effect if you assume a continent-wide model.

    It’s almost a “God of the gaps” scenario. The more we learn about the pre-Columbian history of the Americas, the smaller and less significant to that history the Book of Mormon must be made in order to survive. It’s an interesting mindset that can look at that process and see it as simply a movement towards more accurate understanding of the book.

    Also, sorry about the word cheating (even though it was used more humorously than aggressively). That would be one way to track the DNA if such a direct ancestral line was involved.

    No worries. But such lines would be involved if the hemispheric model were accurate. Thus, I’d say it’s fair to consider it disproved. In limited geography models, the fewer descendants Lehi and company had and the less prominent they were, the more plausible the disappearance of their DNA. So making them into royalty is a step in the wrong direction as far as explaining that away is concerned.

  37. Seth R. says:

    You can view this as a “retreat” if you want Kuri.

    I don’t view it as a retreat at all. I view it as an advance – a more accurate picture of what the Book of Mormon is really telling us.

    Again, even as royalty Nephi’s line wouldn’t have been sufficient to create a big enough footprint. The only place royal lineage would have been sufficient to create a big footprint would be in the historic records – which thanks to the efforts of Joseph Smith, we have.

    The only way for Chanson’s point to hold water here would be if Nephi had as many concubines as Solomon, and had children with all of them (which I very much doubt even Solomon managed).

  38. Seth R. says:

    Also keep in mind, we’re merely arriving at the conclusion the TEXT of the Book of Mormon leads us to in the first place. Mormon scholars were concluding a limited geography simply from reading the book of Alma carefully long before DNA was even a question.

    So to paint this as a series of retreats in the face of science doesn’t fit at all – even though I know such smug and triumphalist narratives are popular with online atheists these days. But this really is a very self-serving argument on your part Kuri.

  39. kackyful says:

    Wait, what? So the Nephites now barely made offspring? And the couple they did spring forth, married the indigenous people, and THAT is how we got Lamen and Lemuel=brown people? Wow, Seth, I gots to hand it to you…this is some tricky tricky math/doctrine, one many are clearly still buying…but tricky. We are to ignore, Joseph’smyth’s true teachings, and make it a bigger myth…(wink), Gotcha!

  40. kuri says:

    I dont view it as a retreat at all. I view it as an advance a more accurate picture of what the Book of Mormon is really telling us.

    Like I said, it’s an interesting mindset.

    The only way for Chansons point to hold water here would be if Nephi had as many concubines as Solomon, and had children with all of them (which I very much doubt even Solomon managed).

    No, it’s quite easy for DNA lines to be preserved for hundreds of years. Even one Middle Easterner could leave evidence. All it takes is one unbroken father-to-son or mother-to-daughter line. In the National Geographic piece that agnes linked to, they found 80 Icelanders who were all descended from perhaps only one Indian woman who was brought to Iceland 1000 years ago.

    And we also have the example of the Lemba people in South Africa, who look just like their neighbors and speak the same languages, but many of whose men carry Jewish genetic markers.

    So DNA preservation can — not necessarily will, but can — happen. And lines with power and prestige are where preservation and spread are most likely to happen. Besides Genghis Khan, there are other ancient royal lines with tens or even hundreds of thousands of descendants. If the sons of Lehi ever existed, a similar result seems quite plausible.

  41. Daniel says:

    My understanding is that mitochondrial DNA, which follows the mother’s line and changes very slowly, would be detectable. Since we don’t find any Hebrew mDNA in the Americas, apologists would have to argue that the Lehites didn’t have that many girls, and all their males failed to reproduce. A very unlikely scenario.

    But okay. My question is: What is a Lamanite? Can we point to anyone and say ‘them’? If not, then the Book of Mormon is suddenly without one of its purposes: to bring the Lamanites to a knowledge of God, and to let them know that they have not been cast off. Oops.

  42. Seth R. says:

    Kuri, in the Iceland example, they got lucky – plain and simple. There’s a reason this kind of stuff is newsworthy. Because it’s a rare and wonderful find. Getting an unbroken female-to-female line over several centuries isn’t half as easy as you seem to think it is (or male).

    Daniel, just because we don’t have the genetic means of tracing Hebrew DNA to modern Native Americans doesn’t mean they don’t have a Hebrew somewhere back there in the mix.

    Seriously, it’s like you aren’t even paying attention to the argument at all.

  43. Seth R. says:

    Kacky, I’m not going to apologize for making your attempts to feel good about leaving the LDS Church easier for you.

    Life’s tough all over.

  44. kuri says:


    Every woman comes from a unbroken female-to-female mtDNA line, and every man from an unbroken Y-chromosome DNA line. The only question is whose line.

    It’s not so rare at all to find “outside” lines. It’s happened many times. Just that I’m aware of offhand, old African, Viking, Roman, and Middle Eastern DNA lines been found in the UK. There’s the Native American line in Iceland. There’s the Lemba.

    So Lehi and company could easily have left widespread DNA traces in modern populations even if the Book of Mormon only took place in a smallish area. This is especially true if they were very high-status people, “royalty” as you put it. Again, that this didn’t happen proves nothing. It’s just another case of something that could have been strong evidence in favor of the Book of Mormon but doesn’t exist.

  45. Seth R. says:

    Sure every woman comes from an “unbroken” mtDNA line, and every man comes from an “unbroken” Y-chromosome line.

    It’s just in a HUGE amount of cases, the “unbroken” line only extends back two or three generations at most. So your observation contributes nothing to what I just said and merely obscures the issue.

    Getting a mtDNA find that goes back as far as the Iceland case is basically “genetic gold.” A rare and wonderful find. The more generations are involved, the more chances there are for one of the generations to have no male offspring, or no female offspring, or no offspring at all.

  46. kuri says:

    Its just in a HUGE amount of cases, the unbroken line only extends back two or three generations at most.

    Only if there are a huge amount of cases of women with grandmothers but no great-grandmothers. Do you know of any women like that?

  47. Seth R. says:

    Yes Kuri, that was a mistake.

    But do you get what I’m saying here?

  48. kackyful says:

    Yes Seth, we all get what you are saying. It must be true, it must be true, it must be true…

  49. Seth R. says:

    I was talking to Kuri, Kacky.

    I’m not really all that interested in what your opinion is at the moment. My responses to you were mainly because some of your comments raised issues worth elaborating on. It was more for the benefit of others. Don’t flatter yourself that I ever considered a debate with you even worth winning. Your good opinion is the least of my concerns on this forum.

  50. kuri says:

    I get it, but it’s wrong. The more generations involved, the less likely a DNA line is to die out. Lehi had six sons in the Book of Mormon, so his line increased sixfold in one generation. If they averaged 2 sons each, the next generation had 12 times as good a chance of passing on Lehi’s Y-chromosome DNA. Same average for the next generation and it’s 24 times. Repeat again and it’s 48 times. And so on.

    Of course, population growth isn’t necessarily that regular, and the process can reverse itself if each generation averages less than one son. But high-status families historically were generally more likely to have large numbers of surviving children, which is why in extreme cases we see the Genghis Khan or Niall effect.

    So if the Book of Mormon is a true history, it wouldn’t be at all surprising to find Lehi’s Y-chromosome DNA in the Americas. It wouldn’t necessarily be there, but it would be unsurprising.

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