Josh Duggar Redeemed?

CN Child Molestation

I didn’t want to weigh in too quickly on the molestation confession by Josh Duggar of TLC’s “19 and Counting”, but now the police report is available. Libby Anne of Love, Joy , Feminism has a good list of things that are not quite right about the way the Duggar family handled the problem. The response of course was to lean heavily on their god.

Back 12 years ago our family went through one of the most difficult times of our lives,” Jim Bob, 49, and Michelle, 48, said in a joint statement. “When Josh was a young teenager, he made some very bad mistakes, and we were shocked. We had tried to teach him right from wrong. That dark and difficult time caused us to seek God like never before.

I don’t buy that Josh made “mistakes” molesting girls. He chose to molest girls. To be fair the Duggars did take some real world actions after waiting a year such as turn him in to a family state trooper friend. The result however was just a stern lecture, but no charges. The Duggars actions whether intentional or not kept Josh out of jail. In Arkansas, there is a three year statute of limitations on prosecuting this type of crime.

But Jesus has redeemed him, so he is off the hook right?

I would do anything to go back to those teen years and take different actions,” says Josh. “I sought forgiveness from those I had wronged and asked Christ to forgive me and come into my life. In my life today, I am so very thankful for God’s grace, mercy and redemption.”

I grew up in a Southern Baptist Church where youth leaders who were good people but happened to be women were dismissed, but male youth leaders were forgiven and “redeemed” by god. A lot of people buy this rationale that their god can forgive and redeem male leaders, but women they have to maintain their purity or earn scorn. One of my preteen friends was molested during a house cleaning fundraiser by the middle aged youth pastor. The blame was placed on the victim that she seduced him.  He continued as youth pastor and married one of my other teenage friends from the group.

In my experience, with molestation in the church, there is something creepy about the person to begin with.  They don’t get redeemed by their god, and sin no more. Pedophilia isn’t a casual mistake. Predators look for opportunities, and make choices based on a victim’s vulnerability. Children who are insecure and/or unprotected for whatever reason are singled out.  Invoking god afterwards, has always been a way to get trust they didn’t earn. I can’t be as quick to forgive and trust as they imagine their god is.

Please note: molestation is not the same as childhood exploration that went too far. Those things are not uninvited like molestation is.

Both Parties are the Same! #1 FLPCB HHSC 15-03 , also known as Conscience Protection for Private Child-Placing Agencies

Voter turnout during the US midterm elections was pathetic. There was a definite lack of critical thinking and due diligence evidenced by opposing Republicans, Libertarians, and apathetic liberals in the “Freethought” movement, who repeated the soul sucking canards “Both Parties are the Same” and “It’s a Broken System” during the mid term elections. Aron and I tried to encourage people to vote, but were met with an onslaught of sanctimonious people acting as if not voting was more conscientious a choice than voting.

These same people can’t really be surprised by the slew of theocratic state legislation by the Republican majority state legislatures and state governors given a majority during midterms. This is a party that 57 percent of whom think that Christianity should be the national religion. Indiana is one state among many responding to legalization of gay marriage in many states by passing “religious freedom” bills modeled on the SCOTUS Hobby Lobby decision. Which neatly answers the question, “What about the Constitution?” to those privileged enough not to have theocratic overreach affect you on a very personal level, or obtuse enough to not realize in many states they already live in a theocracy. My question to you is ,”Who decides what is constitutional?” Also, don’t abdicate your civic duty to a piece of parchment. [Read more…]

By God! Legislators take a stand, so that Jesus won’t return and find gay marriage!

Newly elected Christian Right legislators gathered in the Texas Capitol Building’s auditorium today, and vowed to defend marriage from LGBT couples. No mention of a lesbian couple that a judge allowed to marry, because of life threatening circumstances. You bet your bippy, they will put a stop to that though!

A cake to celebrate the 10 year anniversary of Texas's gay marriage ban. A banner day for Jesus!

A cake to celebrate the 10 year anniversary of Texas’s gay marriage ban. A banner day for Jesus!

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Exceeded expectations thanks to FTBCon3

Although, some of the audience wasn’t sure what to expect, The Secular Asian Community panel was well received. It is now posted on youtube. Despite large numbers of Asians in Asia and non-Asian countries, we have yet to see an offline conference that addressed Asian issues both South and East Asian. So we took the opportunity that FTBCon offered us to take the initiative, and add our voices to the freethought community.

We were missing some of our past South Asian panelists like Hemant Mehta, Heina Dadabhoy, Razib Khan because of schedule conflicts.  We still had a diverse contribution from panelists with East Asian heritage. We had the ebullient Yau Man Chan, organizer extraordinaire Vic Wang, the warm-hearted Marissa Torres Langseth, the erudite  Michael Nam, and science educator Cindy Cooper.

The talk ranged from how Asia is not a country and other offputting stereotyping to downright racism, successes in the freethought community, where it is missing the mark, Asian privilege, and how to maintain a secular country with China set to become the largest Christian country as a model.

So now you know who to ask on Asian diversity issues.

Also you can still catch these discussions today before it wraps up at 7:00 PM CST:

Black Voices Matter

White allies may feel uneasy speaking with authority on the the spate of unjust decisions involving a mix of racist cops and unarmed black people. It is a difficult thing to do and hard to do well. One thing is for sure is that a black person can do a better job of speaking to the issue. It may be difficult to take everything on board, but this piece by Briana Urena-Ravelo outlines many good reasons even people who mean well get it wrong. Worse than that, some white writers may make things worse no matter if they label progressive or not

[Read more…]

Tune in live: Texas Textbook Wars with Zack Kopplin

Zack Kopplin, wonderkind  of the creationism textbook wars, is livetweeting the the Social Studies textbook hearings. He is enduring the inanity like a champ, so you don’t have to.

Is this a McCarthy witch hunt?

Is this a McCarthy witch hunt?

Aron couldn’t make it as he is on the last leg of his journey on his motorcycle across the deserts of West Texas.  This part in particular would get his goat if he was there…

I don't understand the founding of our government, and I don't want kids to either.

I don’t understand the founding of our government, and I don’t want kids to either.

It would be funny if they weren’t serious about teaching this to millions of students as fact. If you would like to watch the shenanigans yourself  there is a livestream.