We have learned to never trust the ever-present bloggers with agendas. The "Flesh" is horrifically present on the web and pours out like a sewer into the minds and hearts of thousands (especially within the reformed world).-Kevin Swanson link
Kevin "Womb Tomb" Swanson is at it again. Why the homeschooling crowd embraces this man is beyond me. For a background on Swanson, his role in the homeschooling community and other patently false and bizarre comments, please see our post on Kevin Swanson and Womb Tomb Babies.
Before I get to that, just who is Kevin Swanson? It should surprise no one that Swanson has ties to the Christian film industry through a highly controversial film, Divided, which TWW reviewed at this link. This film also has ties to the NeoCalvinistic Vision Forum and the National Council for Family Integrated Churches and includes the following cast of characters:
- Ken Ham (Answers in Genesis)
- Brett McCracken (Hipster Christianity)
- Tryg Jacobson (founder of Jake's Cafe and Jackobson Rost Advertising and Producer of Divided according to Leclerc website)
- Scott Brown (Director of NCFIC and author of A Weed in the Church)
- Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
- Doug Phillips, Esq. (Vision Forum)
- Dr. Voddie Baucham
- Craig Houston (Westside Baptist Church)
- Kevin Swanson (Generations With Vision)
- Paul Washer (Heartcry Missionary Society)
- Geoffrey Botkin
From that same post we linked him to RC Sproul Sr as well. Add to the list Doug Wilson link and other pastors with ties to The Gospel Coalition and it should be concerning that this man has any influence at all.
From that post
Homeschooled himself in the 1960′s and 70′s, Kevin Swanson and his wife, Brenda, are now homeschooling their five children. Since graduating from his homeschool and then serving as student body president of a large west coast university, ( ed. note- he does not name the university) he has gone on to other leadership positions in corporate management, church, and other non-profits. Kevin has 35 years of experience in the homeschooling movement and serves as the Director of Generations with Vision
He has even been on Fox News as a homeschooling "expert."
Kevin has also served as the Executive Director of Christian Home Educators of Colorado for the last nine years. He has also authored several popular books for homeschoolers, including Upgrade-10 Secrets to the Best Education for Your Child, The Second Mayflower, theFamily Bible Study Guide Series, and others. Serving as a passionate supporter of home education, he has been interviewed on hundreds of media outlets, including Dr. James’ Dobson’s Focus on the Family and the Fox News Network.
Why do we list his associations? We believe people might be tempted to blow off these bizarre claims by Swanson. It is important to know that some of the Neo-Calvinist elite play footsies with this guy. As issues such as contraception and early marriage get bandied about in these groups, never forget that these guys know one another and, from what I can tell, rarely, if ever, disavow their freakish views.
Womb Tomb Babies
Even after making the following nutty comment, Swanson continues to be an accepted as an "expert"by many in the homeschooling community. I would think the normal homeschooling crowd should be distancing themselves from these guys.
And they have found that with women who are on the birth control pill, there are these little tiny fetuses, these little babies, that are embedded into the womb. They’re just like dead babies. They’re on the inside of the womb. And these wombs of women who have been on the birth control pill effectively have become graveyards for lots and lots of little babies.
Homosexuals and Cannibals
There was an outcry about the womb tomb but mainly within the secular media. Did Swanson learn his lesson? Nah! It is men like him who keep this blog cooking. He, along with Dave Bruehner, his co-host, is at it again. Just in case you think they brought in Bruehner for gravitas, think again. Bruehner is known for this amongst other "thoughtful" comments link
Bruehner compared making gay friends to befriending cannibals and likened gay marriage to the Sandy Hook shooting. (ed. note: I believe the word "almost" should be inserted before Sandy Hook to better describe Bruehner's bizarre comment)
Kevin Swanson and Early Marriage
Given this as a background, can you imagine how they might discuss early marriage? Can you imagine them saying or implying the following?
- Liberals want kids to do as much fornicating as possible.
- Liberals want these girls to have a lifetime of fornication.
- Janitors in high schools and policeman are sexual opportunities for high school girls.
- It is good for girls to get married at 15.
Here is the proof. We thank R.L. Stollar and Homeschoolers Anonymous (updated 1/17/14) for allowing us to reprint ON CHILD MARRIAGE: KEVIN SWANSON AND DAVE BRUEHNER DEFEND PHIL ROBERTSON
Kevin Swanson and Dave Bruehner have now publicly joined with Phil Robertson (in particular) and Matthew Chapman (in general) in defense of child marriage.
In their latest Generations with Vision broadcast, “Sexting and Christian Modesty,”Swanson and Bruehner propose that liberals want pre-teen and early teen girls “sexing” it up all over the place, whereas biblically-based Christians should want them… “sexing” it up at that age only in marriage?
Generations with Vision describes the program in the following way: “Public junior high schools are doing more sexting, and Kevin Swanson recommends a biblical view of womanhood and modesty for Christian families.”
Starting at the 13:45 mark, Swanson and Bruehner mount a defense of Phil Robertson’s advocacy for child marriage. Shortly thereafter, Swanson presents his own ideas about child marriage.
Transcript from the radio broadcast
Remember that one concern people had over Duck Dynasty, when the guy came out and said the girls, 15 or 16 years of age, she’s able to get married, they got all mad. Because boy, you get a girl married at 15 or 16 years of age, that’s a sin!
Well it is because she doesn’t have a whole life of fornication ahead of her anymore.
I mean, there’s a whole junior high, soon to be a high school, there’s the staff, there’s the janitors, there’s… there’s the police department, there are so many sexual opportunities for a young woman that are cut off if she actually commits to one guy and tries to live a pure life.
Yeah! Yeah! So see, again, the liberals are really excited about getting the kids doing as much fornication as possible. But the rest of us are saying, “Hey, what about God’s law? What about God’s law?” By the way, nothing in God’s law that would prohibit a young girl who’s ready to get married, at 15 or 16 years of age — now it takes some wisdom, it takes some wisdom — but nothing in God’s law that forbids — it’s not like immoral. There’s nothing in God’s law: “it’s immoral for a 15 or 16 year old to get married.”
By the way, my grandmother was married at 15. I think it was 15. My grandmother on my father’s side was married at 15. It was during the Great Depression. Her father had died and her mother was trying to provide for the 5 kids or whatever. So you know it just made sense. She was 15 years old, she was ready to get married. So that kind of thing has happened, friends. But a sin! A sin in a modern world?
I mean, think about what the president of the Girl Scouts would say about this, Dave, if we said, “Hey, these 15 year old girls, 16 year old girls, they may be ready to get married. They don’t have to live these, you know, independent lifestyles.”
Heather of Scarlet Letter Goes to a Homeschool Conference
In case you think that this is just an isolate example of weirdness, Hester, a TWW reader and blogger extraordinaire, Scarlet Letters was our boots on the ground during a recent homeschool conference in Massachusetts. The following is her report.
Before I turn it over to Heather, I went to the website of MassHOPE Boston link to see if any of the above mentioned individuals were speaking. Much to my dismay, yet not surprise, I found this list proudly displayed!
Come to Boston — where religious and political freedoms were birthed in America — to learn from top Christian historians and speakers including
- Marshall Foster
- Joe Morecraft
- Doug Phillips
- Kevin Swanson
- John Eidsmoe
- R.C. Sproul Jr.
- Geoff Botkin
- Paul Jehle
- Bill Potter
And, as you will see, Voddie Baucham is a featured speaker. Go back to the top of the post and compare this list to our post written in 2011. Nothing has changed, has it!
We would like to commend Heather for keeping up the high standards of dressing well whilst on blog business set by the Deebs. Unfortunately, she omitted the description of her shoes which, as you know, is important because they pull the whole outfit together!
L. L. Bean jeans, a Talbots cardigan, a Nordstrom scarf and SmartWool socks,
Hester on Safari: Homeschool Conference Edition
This past spring, I exchanged emails with Dee at The Wartburg Watch and offered to write her a guest post about my trip to a Christian homeschool convention. Well, after realizing that my holiday concert schedule this week wouldn’t allow the several hours of preparation required for a Big Box post, I decided to finally write that guest post. Many apologies to Dee for the delay.
Since I live in New England, the homeschool convention in question was MASSHope. This is a longstanding regional convention, held every April in Worcester, MA, which I attended numerous times as a teenager. This year, however, was my first time attending with a full awareness of patriarchy and the other issues that have plagued the Christian homeschooling community almost from its inception. MASSHope is a self-consciously Christian convention, as we can easily deduce from its motto (“Promoting and safeguarding home education for the glory of God”) and the list of speakers from the 2013 convention – and lest there was any doubt that it’s ideologically in bed with patriarchy, the keynote speaker for 2014, at least at this point, is Voddie Baucham (whom I’ve critiqued here at my blog Scarlet Letters).
I won’t – more like can’t – go into all the details of my trip to MASSHope 2013, so for this post, I’ll just hit the highlights.
The first, and I think most telling, one actually happened before I even got to the convention. As I was looking over the registration materials with my mother, I happened to read the details of the “teen” registration (significantly cheaper than the adult registration). Now at a normal convention, I would expect teen registration to end at 18, maybe 16. Granted, I don’t attend many conventions so perhaps I’m in the dark on this point. At MASSHope, however, the “teen” registration price is available to anyone who does not have children and is still living with their parents – and most notably, there did not appear to be an age restriction of any kind! To those in the know, this is a flagrant nod to the patriarchal idea of stay-at-home daughterhood (which I critiqued here, here and here), in which girls live under their fathers’ roofs until marriage and “serve” their fathers as “helpmeets.” It applies equally to boys, as well, since they’re often encouraged to work in their fathers’ businesses or be home-based entrepreneurs. Thus, the very pricing structure of the convention assumes the patriarchal model – and we haven’t even gotten in the door yet.
But it goes even deeper than that. If we turn the teen registration criteria around, we can determine the criteria for adult registration. Those criteria are, essentially, marriage and children. Thus, according to MASSHope’s pricing structure, I am apparently not a “real” adult until I get married and have children – even though I’m 22 (now 23) years old.
Once I did get to the convention, I decided to take full advantage of my perpetual adolescence and attend what’s known as the “teen track.” This is a special series of sessions aimed just at teenagers, which most kids start attending in the late middle school years. Typical topics for these sessions include courtship and dating, apologetics, and creation vs. evolution; the usual tone is that of a polemic mixed with a substantial dose of mockery, outright silliness and antics on the part of the speaker. I’d attended many of these as an (actual) teen and thought they were fun, so I thought it would be informative to revisit the experience with my new glasses. I was correct – more correct than I ever would have thought possible.
Once again, I can’t cover all the ridiculous things that were said in the teen track, so I’ll focus just on the first session, “Lessons from the Battle of Iwo Jima” by Paul Jehle (who you can read about here). This session was described on MASSHope’s website as follows:
How the cause, character and courage of brave, young men brings conviction to a generation that has embraced play as its motto rather than purpose
Okay. So I should expect this lecture to be about how teens can develop character, right?
Maybe. Or, you know, maybe not.
Now to be fair, I did learn many things about myself in Jehle’s lecture, as well as a lot about what character means. I learned, for instance, that the Marines at Iwo Jima had character because they followed orders unquestioningly, even when it meant going into extreme danger. Their Japanese opponents, however, did not have character, because they followed their emperor’s orders even if meant going to their deaths as a kamikaze. I learned that if teens are to develop true character like the Marines at Iwo Jima, they must not only put away their video games, but also ask their parents to feed them large portions of food they hate and give them even more chores than they already have. They must also avoid wearing designer clothes, lest they risk falling into the trap of materialism.
After Jehle’s lecture, I realized I have no character whatsoever. How else could I have listened to Jehle’s statements about designer clothing while wearing L. L. Bean jeans, a Talbots cardigan, a Nordstrom scarf and SmartWool socks, and not be stricken with an overwhelming urge to exchange my name-brand wardrobe – purchased primarily on sale and clearance, FWIW – for sackcloth and ashes? And then at dinner that night, I did not order a big steaming bowl of okra (more commonly known as “purple snot vegetable”) but peanut butter pie. At a bar, no less. What a disgrace to my poor mother I am.
Okay, being serious again. Everyone agrees, of course, that the Marines at Iwo Jima had loads of character and are undoubtedly heroes. And to be fair to Jehle, he did mention virtues like bravery and willingness to sacrifice, not only the fact that the Marines followed orders. However, he clearly can’t even agree with himself about following orders – since when Americans do it, it’s virtuous, but when the Japanese do it, it’s dronelike and evil. How he explains this contradiction is beyond me. Most amusingly, he doesn’t seem to be aware of its existence.
It’s also patently obvious that Jehle’s prescriptions for character development are complete bunk (at least the more ridiculous ones). Is it really necessary to deliberately eat food you hate to develop character? Taking this argument to its logical conclusion would tell us that a person who donates to charity, helps at a women’s shelter, and serves selflessly at their church, but cannot stomach cilantro and does not deliberately seek it out, has either no character or a character flaw. (Note to Jehle: hating cilantro in particular may in fact be genetic.)
In the end, I sat through three straight hours of lectures like Jehle’s. By the time it was over, I was beaten down and exhausted – not physically, of course, but mentally (maybe even spiritually). And it was only the first day of the conference, before lunch! So instead of staying for the afternoon sessions, I happily went to the bar and grill for an early dessert and bought the rest of the teen track on CD.
The final irony happened the next day, during the morning keynote. As the speech wrapped up, and I was dreading another three to five hours of teen track, my iPhone buzzed in my pocket. It was the (female) pastor of the Congregational church where I had my first long-term substitute organist job. As soon as the session finished, I scurried into a quiet corner to call her back. Come to find out their regular organist had to leave town suddenly after a death in the family, and since it was Saturday, the pastor had only a matter of hours in which to find a substitute. So should I stay and subject myself to one more day of patriarchy and indoctrination, or help out a friend in need?
As you can tell, it wasn’t really a choice. My mother and I left the conference, and Worcester, and headed back south to Connecticut. So in the end, I was unexpectedly rescued from the patriarchal Christian homeschool conference…by a UCC woman pastor.
Sometimes, you just can’t make this stuff up.
Great job, Heather!
To sum things up, no wonder Swanson doesn't like bloggers. See the quote at the top of this post. There is garbage found in blogs, especially when Swanson and friends are being quoted. Shame on those who allow this nonsense to persist.
Lydia's Corner: Isaiah 57:15-59:21 Philippians 1:1-26 Psalm 71:1-24 Proverbs 24:9-10