Monday, February 8, 2010

A Correction

One of our commenters [a PhD himself] challenged the credentials of Lorianne Updike Toler, who recently did some original document research on the Founder James Wilson:

I noticed two other things that make me doubt her credentials. One--and I know some will find this objectionable--she was home-schooled. I have dealt with home-schooled students, and while they don't differ from other students in intelligence, in my experience they tend to emphasize a dubious "creativity" over analytical ability. That's a rather natural consequence of being taught by people who aren't themselves experts in all the fields you're studying. Second, the article suggests she has only a B.A., although it's not clear. I would think that if she had a graduate degree they would say so (but I'm open to correction, as that is a factual matter). So I'm left wondering whether she has the proper training to make real sense of this find.

Our commenter stands open to correction, so here it is:

Lorianne Updike Toler replied to American Creation:

Wanted to share a few of the missing facts in the Deseret News article:

* I was homeschooled for two years during junior high. I attended Timpview High School for all four years of high school (9th-12th grade).
* I graduated with my BA in 2000, my JD in 2005, and will graduate with my MSt from Oxford this year, and my doctorate from Oxford in 2012.
* I was misquoted on Jefferson. The Deseret News has apologized individually to me, and I have asked them to officially print an errata. The quote should have been "I believe this draft may indicate that James Wilson is to the Constitution what Thomas Jefferson is to the Declaration of Independence." Understandable error: it's hard to type as fast as I talk.

Feel free to email with any other factual questions,, or review the Q&A at

Ms. Toler's conclusions might be in question, but her credentials and research should not be put under a cloud. She is a postgradute at Oxford [that's in England], and examined the original James Wilson documents.

American Creation is happy to help put her record straight, surely to our PhD commenter's relief, and ours.

1 comment:

King of Ireland said...

The home school comment is something you would see at Dispatches. I understand where James is coming from but this was too sweeping of a statement. This is coming from someone that does not have a lot of support for the Home School movement and see some real issues with kids I met that were home schooled.