In a display of total disconnect that would put Canadian lawyer Bob McCue to shame, along comes “Aleksandr Zinkovsky, head of the department of psychiatry at the Tver State Medical Academy,” who says that Latter-day Saints “have a low level of intelligence” because “they practice inbreeding.”
While this slur might impress neo-Communists in Tver, Russia, it is entirely unconvincing to better-educated people, like the readers of the Financial Times, which in 2006 rated the business programme at LDS flagship Brigham Young University as the 45th best–in the world.
Furthermore, people familiar with former Governor Mitt Romney [R-MA] may wonder how any rational person could label a man who simultaneously graduated–with honours–from two of the most rigourous academic programmes on earth (Harvard’s business and law schools) as an idiot.
What does this insult say about the Russian attitude towards their decades-long allies, the Muslims, who “inbreed” even more than Latter-day Saints? Does Zinkovsky attack “Mormons” rather than Muslims because he has more to fear from the latter?
Of course, this slam is typical of bullies, who refuse to “pick on somebody their own size.” Moreover, insulting others in so blatant a fashion implies a contempt, not only for his target, but also for his audience. But then, that is also true of demogogues.