Dana Milbank, a cleverly snarky writer for The Washington Post, is tub-thumping a new hit-job book he’s published on Glenn Beck. Milbank can write, and I want to read it. On the Huffington Post, Milbank has penned a blog claiming that Mormon Beck is pitching the old Mormon wives tale, “The White Horse Prophecy.” Milbank’s evidence: Beck frequently refers to us being in times where the “Constitution hangs in the balance,” or the “Constitution hangs by a thread.” That’s exactly what The White Horse Prophecy claims the Mormon Prophet Joseph Smith said.
One amusing evidence from Milbank’s post recalls a 2009 Beck interview with Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch where the radio and TV commentator gets an eager Hatch to agree that “the Constitution is hanging by a thread.” In his HP blog, Milbank tries to pin Beck as citing The White House Prophecy with apocalyptic, fundamentalist Christian last days violence. It’s a fairly unconvincing analogy. Beck just spouts rhetoric anyone hears from extremes on both sides of a future-government-versus-defenders-of-Constitution crusade. Read
Beck is a big fan of Skousen, and I’m sure he’s heard of the White Horse Prophecy, and it likely crosses his mind when he uses the “hanging by …” analogy. The problem is that The White Horse Prophecy, even before its credibility faded away in recent years, never had anything to do with violence. Growing up in the late 60s and 70s, I heard the WHP pitched at home and church, but it was never equated with revolution against the state. The culture of Mormonism is foreign to fundamentalist Christianity. The most energetic soldiers in the LDS faith are missionaries. The White Horse Prophecy, regardless if Beck believes it, is a legend that involves people turning toward LDS elders and LDS lands to help the nation avoid collapse. It’s not about fanatical Mormons bearing arms against the government. That’s the Left Behind” series, folks, and its authors would be outraged to be affiliated with any Mormons. Milbank, intentional or otherwise, has spun a yarn worthy of the man he hopes to make a bunch of money off.
To read The White Horse Prophecy, go here