Reason #107: The Silliness of Tapir Warfare
Mormon apologists, such as those at FAIR, sidestep the complete lack of scientific evidence for the horses mentioned in the Book of Mormon by saying that perhaps they were tapirs. (The book that mentions cureloms and cumoms called a boar-like animal a horse? — Just redefine the word.)
I found particularly interesting that the author of the hyperlinked article from FAIR actually uses as evidence a Mayan carving of a man sitting on a pig.
Here’s an article from a newspaper about the temperament of a tapir when riled:
Tapir Bites Off Zookeeper’s Arm
November 21, 1998
A tapir pulled an Oklahoma City zookeeper into its cage and bit her arm off at mid-biceps as she tried to feed the animal before the zoo opened, authorities said. The woman, whose identity was not disclosed, also suffered facial injuries and a punctured lung and was in critical condition at University Hospital. Her arm could not be reattached, a surgeon said. Oklahoma City Zoo officials are not certain why the Malayan tapir named Melody attacked the keeper. The tapir’s 2-month-old baby was also in the cage. The piglike, donkey-sized tapir is an herbivore related to the horse and rhinoceros.
Now, can you imagine storming into battle on one of these? Their maximum height at the shoulder is 42 inches.
Just where would one put one’s stirrups (or would the Nephites just let their feet drag?) And could one possibly expect to outrun a foot soldier enemy while sitting on the back of one of these short-legged little beasts?
And since Joseph Smith spoke English, and God can speak English, why call one of these creatures a horse?
For more information, see The Mormon Mirage 3rd Edition: A Former Member Looks at the Mormon Church Today(Zondervan, 2009). Also available as an audiobook and as an expanded-text E-book for Nook, Kindle and other reading devices.