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NBC's Dateline commits slander, say pro-polygamists

Date: Oct 04, 2003
Word Count: 235 words
Cross-Reference: Tom Green, Rodney Holm, polygamists, Dateline

NBC's Dateline associates individual Mormon polygamist criminals as representing all in "the polygamous lifestyle."

Old   Orchard   Beach,   Maine---   Pro-polygamy   supporters   say   that   the   October   3,   2003,   episode   of   NBC's   Dateline   slandered   all   polygamists.     The   show   reported   on   two   publicized   Utah   polygamy   cases,   Tom   Green   and   Rodney   Holm. 
Green   has   been   in   jail   for   the   last   two   years,   serving   a   five   year   sentence   for   criminal   non-support,   plus   four   counts   of   bigamy   being   served   concurrently.     Holm   is   a   former   policeman   who   was   convicted   in   August   for   having   sex   with   a   16   year   old   and   for   bigamy.     Both   cases   involve   Fundamentalist   Mormons   in   Utah. 
All   polygamists,   however,   are   neither   Fundamentalist   Mormons   nor   residents   of   Utah. 
In   Maine,   Mark   Henkel,   founder   of   the   Christian   Polygamy   organization,,   said   that   Dateline's   chosen   way   to   present   what   the   show   termed,   "the   polygamous   lifestyle,"   is   slander   against   all   normal   polygamists. 
"Never   once   did   Dateline   clarify   that   these   two   Utah   Fundamentalist   Mormons   do   NOT   represent   other   polygamists,"   said   Henkel.     "Christian   Polygamists   oppose   both   of   these   men's   actions,   especially   with   young   girls.     Even   some   Mormon   Polygamists   do   not   support   them   too." 
Showing   the   criminal   examples   in   the   unclarified   context   of   representing   "the   polygamous   lifestyle"   is,   according   to   Henkel,   "as   irresponsible   and   reprehensible   as   the   media   associating   two   individual   black   criminals   with   all   good   and   normal   African   Americans." 
Said   Henkel,   "Forget   about   so-called   'journalistic   balance'   or   'media   ethics.'     Dateline,   without   making   a   single   clarification,   clearly   associated   all   normal   polygamists   with   these   two   individual   convicts.   That's   slander,   pure   and   simple." 


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