David O. Calder says John Doyle Lee's distorted view of doctrine caused massacre.

Mar 24, 1877
News (traditional)
David O. Calder

David O. Calder, "Lee's Last Speech," Deseret Evening News, March 24, 1877, 2

Deseret Evening News
David O. Calder, John Doyle Lee
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If Lee's fanatical and misguided zeal led him to commit crimes of a heinous nature, it was because of his erroneous and distorted views of true principles, and not the legitimate fruits of the principles themselves operating upon an honest heart. The doctrines of the Church are diametrically opposed to the shedding of innocent blood. "Thou shalt do no murder," is a divine command. "The murderer hath not eternal life abiding in him," is a divine precept. So distinctly is this principle understood among the Latter-day Saints that they regard as nonsense the belief of many religionists that a murderer can step from the scaffold to heaven. They do not believe there is any forgiveness for that sin. It must be atoned for by the criminal himself, as the Scripture says--"Whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed." So far as Lee is concerned, the Church and the people are gratified with the fact that justice has been done so far. It was their desire to have it done much sooner. That it was delayed so long, was none of their fault nor wish.

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