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Saints Under SiegeThe Texas State Raid on the Fundamentalist Latter Day Saints$
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Stuart A. Wright and James T. Richardson

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780814795286

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814795286.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM NYU Press SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.nyu.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of NYU Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NYSO for personal use.date: 29 June 2022

The Past as Prologue

The Past as Prologue

A Comparison of the Short Creek and Eldorado Polygamy Raids

(p.25) 1 The Past as Prologue
Saints Under Siege

Martha Bradley Evans

NYU Press

This chapter compares the patterns and dynamics of the 2008 raid on the Yearning for Zion Ranch and the 1953 raid on Short Creek in Arizona. It first examines how members of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (FLDS) sought to interpret the meaning of the government raids through their religious beliefs and experiences. It then considers the FLDS's most recent endeavors to build a sacred landscape in Texas and assesses the influence of its prophet, Warren Jeffs. Both the Short Creek and Eldorado raids were driven in large part by allegations of child abuse, but this chapter argues that the principal motive for both raids had more to do with attacking plural marriage and discrediting the groups on a larger public stage. The chapter concludes by discussing lessons that have been learned from the Short Creek and Eldorado raids.

Keywords:   government raids, Yearning for Zion Ranch, Short Creek, Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, religious beliefs, Texas, Warren Jeffs, child abuse, plural marriage, Arizona

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