Campus Pulse: 7/17/18


Objections to Martin Luther library display

As the product of a Jesuit education, I am appalled by BYU’s Luther exhibit. Many accounts describe the man oft hailed as a hero as anti-reason, anti-Semitic, anti-nontrinitarian Christian and anti-lower class. He described reason as “the Devil’s greatest whore.” He called for the death of Jews, the burning of synagogues, and even encouraged his church members to do the killing themselves. In fact, the last sermon of his life was focused entirely on calling for Jews to be expelled from Germany and killed. He wrote with similar amounts of hostility toward certain sects of Christianity including nontrinitarian sects.

Additionally, his work entitled “Against the Murderous, Thieving Hordes of Peasants” gives permission for his noble followers to openly disobey the Ten Commandments (the same he professed to be the law of God) in order to destroy peasants because of their revolts: “I think there is not a devil left in hell; they have all gone into the peasants.”

Many champion Luther because they profess he brought the Bible to the lower classes, but they fail to mention he also advocated for their death. His history proves him quite a problematic figure.

I merely ask that the University consider how this man whom we hail as a hero had some hateful things to say about our Christian and Jewish brothers and sisters.

—Hanna Seariac

Boston, Massachusetts

As the product of a Benedictine monastic education, I find it ironic that we dedicate space in a library for a man who said “reason is the Devil’s greatest whore.”

Spooked out of his wits by lightning, Luther famously nailed upon All Saints’ Church ninety-five theses to debate Papal authority and the issuance of indulgences in Catholicism.

After a formal inquiry into his apostasy, Pope Leo X extended the olive branch to offer Luther an opportunity to reenter the faithful fold. In a unique attempt at rapprochement, Luther, complainer of Rome, publicly burned the Pope’s bull. His breakaway religion encouraged the citizenry to put king before God, a newfound nationalist spirit that prompted Dr. William Temple to say, “Luther prepared the way for Hitler.”

Luther furnished Germany with a rabid nationalism that we finally killed in 1945. Luther became known, in Christopher Hitchens’ words, as “a bigot and a persecutor, … railing murderously against Jews … and calling on the German principalities to stamp on the rebellious poor.” At some point, we neglected to remember this Luther.

Luther’s Hagen-esque Dolchstoßlegende treatment of the peasantry was most inexcusable. The proletariat has suffered greatly, but never did its cowardly leader advocate their violent suppression. Thus Luther treacherously acted. Like Ghandi’s masochism, Luther sought that Europeans be slain by Muslim Turks for “God had sent this rod to punish Christians.” It is this defeatism that we ought to reject and rebuke when it is encountered — it begins at an exhibit funded by your tuition.

—Patrick Merkle

Washington, D.C.


BYU provides excellent resources to promote financial independence. Some of these include the OneStop center, the ASB and multiple budgeting apps created by people who graduated from where you study right now.

These now financial geniuses were once poor college students too. So how did they get to where they are now? How are they so successful? Budgeting.

Now, you may be thinking, “All this hypothetical financial security is great, but I don’t have time to budget.” However, there are multiple free budgeting apps for students: YNAB, Mint, LearnVest and more. These budgeting apps take only 30 minutes to set up and five minutes, three times a week to track your money and ensure you’re comfortable with where your money is going.

Here is an idea to show you how you can start moving around your money to work better for you: If you were to omit a vending machine snack once a day, that will save you anywhere from $1 to $2 per day. Multiply that by 76 (the number of days in the fall semester), and you’re saving anywhere from $76 to $152 every semester!

As you apply these financial principles, your stress levels will decrease, your security will increase and you will be on your way to fulfilling your dreams. Let’s take control of our lives by starting with a budget.

—Spencer Vickers

Argyle, Texas

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