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Answer Them Nothing : Bringing Down the Polygamous Empire of Warren Jeffs
by Debra Weyermann


Overview - When police raided the Short Creek compound of the Fundamental Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in 1953, it soon became a political and publicity nightmare and eventually cost the governor of Arizona his job. From that point on, skittish public officials allowed the polygamist sect to practice its tenants unmolested for the next 50 years and turned a blind eye to child abandonment, kidnapping, statutory rape, incest, and massive tax and welfare fraud.  Read more...

 
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More About Answer Them Nothing by Debra Weyermann
 
 
 
Overview
When police raided the Short Creek compound of the Fundamental Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in 1953, it soon became a political and publicity nightmare and eventually cost the governor of Arizona his job. From that point on, skittish public officials allowed the polygamist sect to practice its tenants unmolested for the next 50 years and turned a blind eye to child abandonment, kidnapping, statutory rape, incest, and massive tax and welfare fraud.

But then Warren Jeffs, a new FLDS prophet, escalated the sect's crimes to near madness. Activists watched in horror as he used his limitless authority and the resources of a tax-supported community--in essence, a feudal empire on the Utah/Arizona border--to devastate thousands of lives on cruel whims, marrying girls as young as 11 to 60-year-old men and driving off teenage "lost boys" who Jeffs felt threatened his authority.

Answer Them Nothing is the chilling story of the victims, activists, prosecutors, judges, cops, and attorneys who in 2001 began the struggle to dismantle the FLDS empire and bring Jeffs and his henchmen to justice. It is a mesmerizing journey into one of America's darkest corners, a story that stretches over three states and deep into history of the powerful Mormon Church.


 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9781569765319
  • ISBN-10: 1569765316
  • Publisher: Chicago Review Press
  • Publish Date: August 2011
  • Page Count: 386
  • Dimensions: 9.27 x 6.34 x 1.12 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.51 pounds


Related Categories

Books > True Crime > General
Books > History > United States - State & Local - West
Books > Religion > Christianity - Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
  • Review Date: 2011-05-30
  • Reviewer: Staff

Pedophilia, fraud, and litigation stoke this cogent if overstuffed exposé of a lurid down-home theocracy. Journalist Weyermann probes the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, a polygamist Mormon sect entrenched in the Short Creek area straddling the Utah-Arizona border. Under all-powerful Prophet Warren Jeffs, it's a fertility-cult run amok: unwilling pubescent girls are married off to lecherous church elders (Jeffs is charged with raping child-brides as young as 12); children are beaten, and adolescent boys abandoned; husbands are suddenly exiled and their wives and children given to other men; local government and police, run by the faithful, stonewall outsiders and intimidate dissidents while siphoning public funds into church leaders' pockets. It's a snake pit of bizarre theology, brainwashing, and harem rivalries clad in gingham and overalls, and Weyermann's well-researched muckraking is colorful and gripping. Unfortunately, her reporting on the coalition of runaway wives, pro-bono lawyers, and state prosecutors who challenged the Jeffs regime in recent years rambles between melodrama—"some women... find the yawning jaws of hell preferable to their situation in FLDS"—and eye-glazing court battles over FLDS real estate. Still, Weyermann presents a disturbing account of how a religious quasi-dictatorship can flourish on American soil. (Aug.)

 
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