Zanlock, a community member who has been around for a long time, has accused me of violating COC and being impolite when I asked this question. Can anyone give a 3rd party view on how this question may be impolite (if it is) and what I can do to rectify it?

4 Answers 4


I deleted those comments, it wasn't clear to me how any of the comments were attempting to help improve your post.

COC violations ideally get flagged and handled by moderators and/or community managers.

I am gonna take it out of the Hot Network Questions list. It's a good question, but as a moderator, I'd prefer not to advertise these kinds of questions. I think the site's better served by the regulars answering your question than people popping in to talk about what constitutes racism.

  • I appreciate the attention given to the question. ftr, The question came on my radar due to watching for posts with the "lds" tag.
    – zanlok
    Dec 13, 2021 at 21:26
  • tbh, I'd actually also question the necessity of the "racism" tag in general, but that's a topic for another day. The relevant point there being something like: How would a Catholic like it if a bunch of questions were here flagged with "pedophilia" tag? I'm pretty sure we're all against racism and pedophiles, but we can still have a dialogue that follows code of conduct when discussing those real but difficult issues.
    – zanlok
    Dec 13, 2021 at 21:29
  • I understand Peter. I got my upvotes and the question isn't gaining attention anymore. However, I still feel my question was not offensive, nor did it violate COC.
    – Luke Hill
    Dec 13, 2021 at 21:39
  • Also for the record, my first comment on the question was definitely intended to help improve the post. Quote: The exclusions previously applied could be qualified differently than "doctrine". The word "racist" has a lot of other connotations associated with it such that a revised title of this question would be more polite. As it stands, it does not really fit well with the code of conduct.
    – zanlok
    Dec 13, 2021 at 21:40
  • 1
    @luke no, I don't think it's offensive, saying speech that looks racist as racist is OK in my book. People ask the same thing about Jesus when he calls Samartians "dogs".
    – Peter Turner Mod
    Dec 13, 2021 at 21:41
  • @zanlok again, I need to see what part of the Code of Conduct my question violates.
    – Luke Hill
    Dec 13, 2021 at 21:41
  • 1
    The question is "how do Mormons justify racist speech?" the implication is "Mormons justify racist speech" I understand that raises hackles. But it's not CoC material.
    – Peter Turner Mod
    Dec 13, 2021 at 21:44

If the average person with little Biblical knowledge looked at certain things in the Bible or other Christian texts, we would expect them to label them as 'racist', 'sexist', etc. Prohibiting racial intermarriage is far from the only example, and Christians of all sorts would be used to getting questions on these topics. As long as the question is broadly respectful and seeks to give the denomination a chance to explain how their position or reading of the Bible shouldn't be seen as offensive, then I think it's fine. We'll deal differently with questions that look like they were asked in bad faith, but the question that started this discussion is fine.


One possibility is the use of the word "racist", which apparently means something different from what you and I thought it meant.

"Racist" has come to be closely related to "systemic racism", and applying it to other situations is now considered inappropriate or even racist. In today's world, while anyone can be biased, racially prejudiced, etc., only white people can be racist.

That's not simply my white paranoia showing, it's become official policy in surprising places, Government of Canada Anti-Racism Training Documents | PDF for instance.

One section lists "Myths and Facts":

  • Myth #1 — Reverse racism exists, BIPOC can be racist towards white people.

That is, it is not true that non-whites can be racist towards white people. By definition it isn't possible.

Please always remember to be politically correct and to accept whatever the bullies tell you.

  • Well this response was more offensive than my original question :) (just kidding I laughed). I don't think anyone would say say that there is only systemic racism, just that its the most prevalent form of racism today. Either way, a word having connotations that don't fit my question doesn't mean my question contains those connotations. I was very clear about the kind of racism I was referring to.
    – Luke Hill
    Dec 13, 2021 at 20:10
  • Thanks for your input, Ray. The mainstream news media definitely discuss racism in the context of systemic racism - here's an NPR example. Things have become even more heated over that word in the USA during 2020 in most major cities with many protests some of which became riots. It is clearly a heavily charged word.
    – zanlok
    Dec 13, 2021 at 20:52


Calling out a major religious organization of the world "racist" is offensive. How could it not be?

There is a claim in the attendant comments of that question that the Code of Conduct was read. The entire spirit of that code isn't being respected. It hardly seems appropriate to require others to explain to a user with over 1k reputation how to adequately interpret that policy for this community.

This Code of Conduct helps us build a community that is rooted in kindness, collaboration, and mutual respect.

There are many examples that show a friendly post and an unfriendly post. It doesn't seem the OP is willing to accept any reasonable criticism about what would be a friendlier tone.

What can be done to make the question more friendly? That is a better question, and that's something that was attempted previously in the comments.

  • The #1 suggestion so far has been to simply select a word other than "racist" which is heavily charged right now. Seems easy enough. Why that course wasn't taken remains a mystery. Unless of course there is an unfriendly agenda at work.
  • Another suggestion is to refer to the proper name of the church in the question. If my assumption is correct about which church, that name has been official since 1938 and is "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints".
  • A final suggestion when asking questions and honorably striving to maintain a friendly tone, is to not insist on the last word in the comments. No one edited your question, the friendly thing to do is to adjust it yourself. The appearance thus far to any others outside of the discussion would be to confirm it seems an unfriendly tone.
  • It's tradition to share the reason for a downvote? In the SE universe, better reasons to downvote than just disagreeing would hopefully be something like this answer doesn't address the question.
    – zanlok
    Dec 13, 2021 at 21:44
  • I know it’s late, but I was reading through this and your first sentence gets it wrong. I never “accused” anyone. I asked how the LDS church defends a seemingly racist doctrine of its past. Taking offense to such things is silliness. CSE is all about asking difficult or convoluted questions about the nature of religious denominations and their doctrines. I was neutral with my language. I didn’t attack. I just asked a question. I have respect for my Mormon brothers and sisters, even though I don’t view them as Christians.
    – Luke Hill
    Jan 25, 2022 at 5:27
  • That being said, my apologies for not using “LDS”. I use mormon not as an insult, but as an efficient term that is understood by everyone. I’m sorry if that offended you, it wasn’t meant to be.
    – Luke Hill
    Jan 25, 2022 at 5:28
  • That last sentiment is appreciated. However, my feelings weren't involved; merely making statements about correctness and propriety. This issues were definitely not resolved and remains a problem. p.s. The correct term would actually be "Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints".
    – zanlok
    Jan 26, 2022 at 7:25
  • calling a US citizen “American” technically isn’t the correct “term”. The correct term would be “A citizen of the United States of America”. Shorting that term, or using an acronym is not offensive nor incorrect, it’s merely meant to be more efficient. The same goes for mormon or LDS. Even though those aren’t the full terms, I use them. Not to be offensive, but to be efficient in my speech while getting the same message across. Some of my friends that are Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (see how long that took?) are in total agreement with me here.
    – Luke Hill
    Jan 26, 2022 at 13:59
  • Luke, you sure seem bent on arguing. No, it's not right. You refuse to be educated about anything. The better analogy would be you're calling Americans as Gringos, which isn't correct. Sure, maybe they do it in Mexico, and sure maybe it's not offensive because who needs to waste time being offended. Also - it's not "correct". Calling racial groups or citizens is similar but also not adequate because a church is an institution precisely defined by itself and not others. Just drop it, dude. No one cares how many people you know. The correct and polite thing has already been shown to you.
    – zanlok
    Jan 27, 2022 at 22:16

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