Glenn Beck and Mormon attitudes towards Native Americans are in the spotlight these days, after Beck launched into a meandering, half-baked discourse on the Bat Creek stones on his show last week.
Since then, lots of folks who know a little about Mormonism—from liberals at Gawker to conservative evangelical Christians—have seized on the foray as another evidence of the way his Mormonism shapes Beck's messaging, pointing to traditional Mormon beliefs that Native peoples of the Americas are related to ancient peoples of the Middle East.
Today, RightWingWatch is pushing the envelope a little further, suggesting that in his ongoing discussion of Native origins and archeology as related to the "Divine Destiny" of the United States, Beck is smuggling a "foundational premise upon which the Book of Mormon is based" into his programming, in the service of a Mormon agenda....
Beck's new take on American Indians is like his old infatuation with Cleon Skousen: when Beck is desperate for material, he reaches into rich archives of Mormon thought and writing unfamiliar to most outsiders and (forgive the pun) strikes gold. In so doing, he enthralls his base of hardcore LDS conservatives and confuses or even embarrasses the rest of us.