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“I believe that Judaism was an improvement on polytheism; Christianity was an improvement on Judaism (to some degree and in some departments only); that Protestantism is an improvement on Catholicism; that Mormonism is an improvement on Protestantism. So I give Joseph Smith credit as an innovator and as a smart fellow.”

Thomas Ferguson letter to James Still (3 December 1979); see also Mormon Mavericks: Essays on Dissenters (Salt Lake City, UT: Signature Books, April 2002), 269. Unverified.