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
I am sure both the janitors I worked, with at the school in which I taught, would love to speak to Swanson….I taught their daughters, and if anyone watched out for the well being of all the girls at that high school, it was those two men….
I’m reformed, fairly educated and in the “homeschool culture” so to speak. We homeschool our kids, go to one conference a year; fairly active in defending the right for any parent to homeschool their children, and I have never heard of this guy. All homeschoolers I know are rational people that would reject such nonsense. I guess there is an extreme fringe just like in every “group” in the market place of ideas.
Thank you, Dee, and thank you, Heather, for writing about Swanson in particular and the strange world of patriarchal Christian homeschooling in general. The only chance we have to stop this nonsense is for reasoned, rational Christian homeschooling parents to stop handing over their money to the fear-hustlers.
Is this the same Kevin Swanson who is in Family Guy?
They were New Balance sneakers, if you want to know. 🙂
Also the guy at my blog is now claiming he was never advocating for 12yos having sex and children. He was advocating for them getting married. Which is apparently different.
How suffocating it must be for those who buy into this crap. I’m trying to imagine feeling guilty for things such as enjoying games or not eating cilantro when I hate it. Their motto seems to be, “If it feels good, it must be sinful and if it feels bad it’s probably good.”
Which is why I’m a LAZY IRRESPONSIBLE SINNER. For wearing name brand clothes.
“The Flesh is horrifically present on the Web…”–Kevin Swanson Sounds like the opening lines to some kind of horror novel..
Ack!! Why is my comment awaiting moderation? I don’t think I said anything that would be considered objectionable? Did I do something wrong?
Sorry about that. The spam filter is crotchety and picks a few words that I use regularly. Sorry about that.
In the words of Trekkie Monster from Avenue Q, “Why you think the net was born? Porn, porn, porn.”
Oh, wait, I don’t think that’s what he was referencing… 😮
Are you familiar with any of the names associated with this group? I know Voddie Baucham gets around. I would be interested in finding out which homeschool conferences that you attend that do not feature these guys.
There was a great post in Christianity Today on normal homeschooling. You might enjoy it.
Also I was most impressed with the homeschool group who told Ken Ham to get lost! It was about time someone nailed him on his rhetoric. We wrote about it and I spoke with the organizers.
I love NuBalance! Great choice.
I found those comment despicable. In Star trek,TNG, Captain Picard was indebted to Boothby the grounds keeper.I have known some janitors and groundskeepers like Boothby in my days as well.
I’d rather not say publically where I attend. Some of your well known guys are there as well as others who aren’t. I used to work for a company that published classical education homeschool material, and represented them at a couple of conferences. I am actually reading Voddie Bauchman right now. I am finding his teaching on family worship time very helpful. I have never met him or heard him preach. I have heard Ken Hamm speak numerous time, and have met him once. I find some of his material helpful while others not so much. One thing about Ken Hamm I think is important is that he tends to thrive on controversy much like Driscoll. If he would tone down some of the rhetoric, I think he would gain at least a bit more of a hearing than he does. Driscoll is a whole other subject.
A seminary degree is certainly no guarantee of a sane Gospel, but it sure does increase the odds substantially. The looniest, most warped and twisted, destructive and oppressive religious views are the almost exclusive province of guys with no respectable religious training. I think it’s because they are too lazy to put in the time, and so arrogant and power hungry they can’t be troubled with the truth of what the Bible says. Swanson and his ilk are cut from the same cloth as any Appalachian snake handler.
Well, I live in California, one of the most liberal liberaly liberalest states in the country and I’m pretty sure all the liberals I know would not be pleased with their junior high children sexting.
Thank you for this post. It has helped me realize two things:
1. I need to build character
2. I hate eating chocolate
I need to eat lots of chocolate before I have the character to marry someone half my age and protect her from all the janitors and police officers and oh, hell, that’s all just whacked…
Out of curiosity, did the convention have any clothing on sale that would not temp people into materialism (and likely cost just as much as that evil designer clothing)?
If PP is correct, then, unfortunately, Iowa must be the haven for the lunatic fringe of homeschoolers. Kevin Swanson was the keynote speaker for the homeschool convention here several years ago, and my DH and I heard him in person. He was…um…I’m trying really hard to think of the right words. Interesting? Nope,definitely not. Long-winded, illogical, given to much ranting and yelling? Yes, he was. It was an experience. One that we will not be repeating, although I believe he’s scheduled to speak at a different venue in Iowa this year.
No. Loads of curriculum, games and toys though, which I’ve seen claim their fair share of victims too.
The closest I will ever come is when I head out of DC and go to Brunswick, Maryland and railfan CSX Transportation. Along the way I drive past Patrick Henry college.
BTW..I’ve read in other blogs that UCC can be just as fundementalist in its own way.
When I define fundementalism it is not just limited to the Neo-Cals. You can have Catholci fundementalists, you can have Arminian fundementalists (Calvary Chapal), you can have Islamic fundementalists, and you can have Atheist fundementalists.
I leanred this at the Reason Rally on the DC National Mall.
From a child safeguarding perspective this is appalling. How does one decide exactly which of these 12 yr old girls are ready for marriage & sex? Do they have to at least have gone through puberty & started their periods? Do they have to have pubic hair?
I work with many sexually active young women, but very very very few have started as young as 12, & of those that have most of those acts were coercive at best. Very few young women actually want to have sex at that age. Or 13, I have had (non-Christian, i.e no agenda to fulfil)young women express that they wished they had waited & how disappointed they are in themselves & their experience. I’m sickened by those who advocate for early marriage in this way as it is so male focused, they have NO idea of what these young women actually need or want, it is all about them. Are they also advocating that 12 yr old boys get married & become the head of the household, or do they have some spurious reason why that wouldn’t be right, & it has to be older men that marry these girls?
Not only tone down the rhetoric but actually publish reputable science.
You do know that Voddie Baucham runs in that which used to be called Vision Forum circles. He advocates for stay at home daughters as well. You should google him
I’m not sure about “lots of little tiny babies”, but the Pill IS an abortifacient.
Have you heard if anyone has made Swanson walk back the womb tomb comments? I would think people would be rather weirded out by that stuff.
Also, do you know what college he attended? He claims he was a big man on campus but does not seem to give particulars.
What? Aside from the fact that marriage generally involves sex, the decision to marry is of much greater import than the decision to have sex. If you have sex and regret it, you can decide to stop having sex. If you get married and regret it, you can’t stop being married. You have to go to court and petition for a divorce.
No, it isn’t. It prevents ovulation. It was once theorized that the pill had a secondary effect of thinking the uterine lining to prevent implantation of a fertilized egg (which still wouldn’t be an abortion), but the scientific consensus is now that this is not a way the pill prevents pregnancy, particular since the dose of hormones was drastically reduced. And I and everyone else who knows anything about the female reproductive system knows Swansons claim is unmitigated nonsense. The fact that you claim not to speaks volumes.
The correct response to Mr. Swanson: http://youtu.be/C_Kh7nLplWo
Unfortunately (fortunately?), I don’t know anything about Kevin
Swanson other than what has already been talked about here. I’m pretty sure that he hadn’t made his bizarre womb/tomb comments yet when I heard him speak. I would have been all over that one.
The people in charge of the hs convention here are pretty patriarchal. We get some real doozies as speakers. My favorite this year gave quite a show–tears, singing, pleading. I’ll bet you didn’t know that if a child has a name that’s associated with demons (no example given, darn it), that child will be a terrible discipline problem until he/she is given a new name. It was an epic performance.
I’m also pretty sure that the group that is bringing Kevin Swanson in this year believes everything he says and then some, so I doubt his womb/tomb thing causes any one to question. On the plus side, it’s a pretty small group, so I doubt there will be many people there.
Nope. Take a look at this paper by a group of pro-life OBGYNS. http://www.aaplog.org/position-and-papers/oral-contraceptive-controversy/hormone-contraceptives-controversies-and-clarifications/
I’ll give you the summary: it takes lower levels of estrogen to grow a uterine lining than to ovulate. (Many women not on the pill menstruate but don’t get pregnant because they aren’t ovulating.) So if the estrogen and other hormone levels are high enough to allow ovulation, they are definitely high enough for the uterine lining to support implantation. The “uttering lining is too thin to support implantation” theory was from 40-50 years ago and has been disproven. Unfortunately, the pro-life and anti-contraception crowds still repeat this myth.
* that should be “uterine lining” in my second-to-last sentence.
That is not accepted by the vast majority of prolife physicians and researchers. Randy Alcorn writes some decent fiction. But his book on the Pill is somewhat fictional as well.
Ditto on what Hoppy said.
I believe the latest contraceptives are evil crowd since we must push militant fecundity is the reason for the latest hysteria over the pill.
And you can be darn sure that there are not hundreds of little babies inside the womb of a woman who takes the pill. Good night!
@ That Bad Dog:
What an ignoramus. 🙂
That Bad Dog wrote:
Just played the YouTube post and my wife laughed….good stuff, good stuff….
There is a case in rethinking youth ministry programs and age segregated approaches. I read Scott Brown’s book on Family Integration Churches and disagreed a lot on where lies blame on why youth are not being found in churches after college. The stats are staggering and the family integration movement blames youth programs and age segregation of youth. But the reality is that churches are not really into formative discipleship/mentoring. In Jewish culture, it was important that every child had a trade not mere academics. I don’t want to sound contrary on another point but domestic skills are not being taught well to either sexes as well. Trial and either is skill of youth to figure out things.
@Hester – I would’ve been eating the peanut butter pie right with you! Your post brought back memories of driving from Connecticut through Worcester, many years ago.
Shoot, this guy should just go to the inner city where I work. Oh yeah, except the 12-year-olds are having sex, but not getting married. I just cringe when I’m on the bus and I hear high schoolers talking about wanting a baby.
Here’s the sicko/distorted side of marrying girls off young. These same men wouldn’t think of marrying their daughters off to a young man that didn’t prove he was mature and could support his daughter. Is it likely that the man is going to be 12-17 years old? I don’t think so. Maybe the Dads are proposing that their 12-17 year-old daughters be married to 19-25 year old (or older) men. Hmmm . . . sounds like an Elsie Dinsmore novel (no surprise here).
Why don’t these men ever propose that high school boys marry older women? It seems that 15-18 is probably the peak of a male’s libido, so theoretically, it would be easier for a woman to remain chaste until marriage in her twenties than a man. But of course, then women would be stuck marrying sex-crazed immature boys, rather than older men than try to control them…
There are also atheist militants – I find them to be the equivalents to their Christian and Islamic fundamentalists. They almost also rail against Christians, though. I seldom here them discuss or complain about Non-Christian faiths.
The shake up with at the almost defunct Vision Forum should cause the patriarchy crowd to question the safety of stay at home daughters, if rumors are true about who the girl…ummmm….woman was. She would have been safer with the school janitor had she been allowed to be in the outside realm.
Yes to everything you said.
The men who are advocating this are *really* messed up. If Jesus came back to visit this earth, I bet he’d do something to them the would be the current equivalent to his driving the moneychangers out of the temple… It wouldn’t be pretty for these guys, but would be quite satisfying to many, many women (and not a few men), I’m sure.
I also have to wonder if some of these people are registered sex offenders. Would be interesting to find out!
I think avoiding pre-marital sex is very difficult in our culture. Kids go through puberty years earlier than they did historically, yet the age a couple can support a family has gone up several years. Having a 10-15 year gap between puberty and marriage makes it difficult for people dating to wait. I know some people can do it (hats off to you, Daisy!), but on average, it just doesn’t seem to work.
I think Christian culture has a lot of thinking to do in this area. Courtship and gender-segregation may prevent or delay pre-marital sex, but they are not the answer. Pushing high school kids to marry isn’t the answer, either. Maybe we need to come up with a viable economic/career path for young adults where they can earn a living by age 20? Maybe part of the answer is getting rid of the attitude that pre-marital sex is better than marrying in college and needing parents financial support for a few years?
And Re: Swanson’s “womb tomb” remarks:
Sometimes women take birth control pills for reasons not having anything to do with sex or procreation.
I had to take birth control pills in my early 30s for health reasons. I was engaged at the time, but am still a virgin in my 40s. So I did not use the opportunity to fornicate with my ex-fiance.
I also bring this up because I saw this in the original post (quoting David Bruehner):
I can’t for the life of me understand why Christians act as though no Christians take the Bible’s teachings about sexual morality to heart. (I assume he is including Christian teen girls in his comment.)
They act like each and every person is going to have pre-marital sex, when not everyone has or will.
What is the point in denigrating celibacy / virginity like this, and by Christians? The Bible pretty much explains it is possible for people to abstain sexually; it assumes you can.
You don’t have to act on sexual urges, or marry at all, or marry young (to express said urges). You can stay single – and celibate.
What is the point in the Bible supporting singleness and celibacy, if self professing Christians aren’t going to support either one, but insist your only options in life are to:
1. marry by age 12 – 15
The Bible does not teach that only a few are called to lifelong singleness/celibacy, nor does it teach that God “gifts” people with celibacy or singleness, either.
Christians read that into the text, but the text does not support that at all. (But that would take ten more pages to explain, so I won’t get into that here.)
I do not see them addressing fornication by males, either, not in those quotes.
Are they not aware that the Christian faith expects males to be chaste as well?
Would they advocate that 12 year old boys marry 25 year old women?
I didn’t quite understand this quote by Swanson:
Huh? What does having an ‘independent life style’ have to do with fornication (which they were discussing a moment prior)?
As the Bible is fine with lifelong singleness, which usually entails having an “independent life style,” I don’t see their objection to it.
Peanut butter pie sounds good, but okra can be good too, provided it is fried properly!
Some cooks cook it mushy. If you fry it right, and it gets crispy, it is, IMO, very yummy. 🙂
All this talk of Christians advocating child brides sounds to me like…
Child bride, 13, dies of internal injuries four days after arranged marriage in Yemen
So, some nations are attempting to outlaw it, but people claiming to be Christians here are rooting for it here?
I also think that many conservative Christians focus way more on losing one’s virginity than their current lifestyle. Rather than droning endlessly about non-virgins being like used chewing gum, a more positive message would focus on a person’s option to stop pre-marital sex. I became a Christian at 21, when I had been dating my boyfriend for two years. I told him that I was going to wait until marriage and although we stumbled a bit (he converted a few months later), we more or less managed to wait until we were married the following year.
I am thankful that the church I attended as a child taught abstinence without (that I remember, anyway) any garbage implying that if you sin once, you are “used goods” that nobody will want. As I mulled over becoming a true Christian in college, I knew the pre-marital sex would have to go. I stopped, but I didn’t beat myself up over my previous sin. I can’t imagine the shame I would’ve felt if I’d been raisied in the courtship movement. It was much better to just think, “Jesus has forgiven me and I will do my best to avoid that sin in the future.”
I was just wondering the same thing in my post above!
In the quotes provided, they didn’t don’t mention the chastity / possible fornication of twelve or 15 year old boys.
If they go by their own logic on this, they would have to advocate that 12 or 15 year old boys marry 25 – 45 year old women.
If you people in other parts of the world have never had fried okra, you seriously do not know what you are missing. One of the greatest fried foods ever invented…..better than French fries, better than onion rings IMO….
What would a Christian culture look like that successfully helps singles stay celibate without all the legalistic rules of the courtship movement or other shaming tactics? As a mom of two boys, I know that God will be expecting them to swim upstream in this area. Our culture frowns on murder, theft, and many other things, but pre-marital sex is depicted as normal in books, movies, TV, and music. It’s very easy for singles to get the idea that everybody is “getting some,” even if it’s not true.
I was kind of wondering that myself, but I did not come right out and say so, when I mentioned in a post above that the people who push for this stuff are usually pedophiles, like NAMBLA sort of guys.
They will come up with any and all arguments to defend the idea that kids really do want to fool around with much older people.
At the very least, if not that angle, I think most men who want to marry someone much younger want to do so for control issues. They don’t want an equal in the relationship, but prefer someone who is easier to boss around and make act as maid.
The current habit in American Christendom is to go very easy on pre-marital sex and shame Christians who are still virgins past 30.
This started in more liberal-type Christian blogs and magazines, but more conservative Christians have hopped on board downplaying virginity and shaming older virgins, while dismissing pre-marital sex as being so common, it’s okay and should not be strongly preached against.
The difference is, you are homeschooling because you feel it is the best method of getting your children a good education, they are homeschooling because they fear any outside influence infringing on their imaginary world (Liberals want girls sexting??!!???).
To balance this notion, I work in a Canadian public school, in a very liberal city, and we are constantly getting updates on how to warn teens, how to protect teens, how to update our curriculum with internet safety info. So, clearly, the liberals amongst us are hiding their true desires behind a wall of deep concern.
@ burntnorton & Beakerj:
Seriously, guys, go over to my blog and read that thread in all its glory. It’s on its second day now and it’s under the above the fold article about 12yos, which believe it or not wasn’t even about child marriage. I proposed it as a far-fetched hypothetical about halfway through the article and that’s what this guy latched on to. Actually if both/either of you have worked with or around public health or underage girls, your input may be appreciated at this point, not because I can’t defend myself and my position, but because you may know more about the actual medical statistics than I do.
Basically, I’m apparently a “legalist” because I blanket condemned something that isn’t explicitly condemned in the Bible (child marriage). I’m currently trying to get him to explain how this is any different from slavery. If I get an answer back that slavery is still acceptable, I’ll probably end the conversation because at that point it will have gone…beyond.
Though actually this guy is helping me articulate all sorts of great many-layered arguments against child marriage, which I’ll hopefully get a chance to deploy in force later on when I listen to the Doug Phillips lecture about early marriage that’s sitting in my iTunes.
Yeah, still waiting on an explanation of how he separated marriage and sex. I demanded one in my last reply. We’ll see if he delivers. He also may not understand the difference between a divorce and an annulment. The stupid part is that he listed “fulfillment of sexual desires” and “more children” as benefits of young marriage early on in our discussion, so he’s either really, really forgetful and inconsistent; not communicating well at all; or obviously trying to play both sides of something. When I first read he claimed he was advocating only for marriage and not sex, I seriously thought he was gaslighting at first.
Most are not. There are many varieties and most prevent ovulation and do not operate to cause a fertilized egg to have any fate it would not have otherwise had.
Which is another in the long, long list of reasons why I bagged the church. I do not need a bunch of people up in my sex life. Unless I make it your (not “you”, Daisy, but in general, nosy pastors and pastor’s wives and so on) business, you had best not ask me about it. Because I promise you, I WILL lie to you. I have done so–I told a pastor flatly that I did not “self-pleasure”. Yes, I was asked that. At 33 years of age. And yes, it was a serious invasion of my boundaries and I did lie. This is one of those subjects that makes me want to bring out my list of four lettered words to vehemently express my opinion, so I will just shut up now.
My spouse was teaching a fifth grade class. A couple of kids that had been held back a year were caught passing notes. The girl asked the boy if he wanted to have sex with her AGAIN after school! These children would have been 11 or 12. It was in the fall of the year.
Nine year old girls have become pregnant. The doctor that was killed for doing abortions often was the only person who would perform an abortion for children under age 13, and was willing to do late term abortions only for those children, in part because he wanted to preserve their life and their ability to later, as an adult, have children, which ability is often lost when young girls deliver a baby.
Well, in fairness to him, he is saying it should be extremely uncommon and actually admitted he couldn’t think of a real life scenario where it would be a wise idea. However, apparently I’m still a “legalist” for blanket condemning it. Even though we condemn behaviors like smoking, despite the fact that some people manage to smoke without getting lung cancer. You might be able to make it work, if you get lucky. Not so lucky, then…well…
Basically the whole argument seems to revolve around a sacrosanct hypothetical, which no one’s ever actually witnessed and can’t even imagine when you push them to the wall, but must be kept sacred nonetheless.
As for Swanson, he (and homeschoolers in general, speaking as a graduate of that culture) has his own sacrosanct hypothetical: the mythical hyper-mature homeschooled teenager, whom no one’s ever actually seen but they know they really do exist, just in someone else’s family. This imaginary teenager suffers from a bad case of Barbie princess syndrome – i.e., when Susie’s not reading her Bible six hours a day, she makes dinner for her twelve siblings, does all her schoolwork through self-study, is debate champion, taught herself Latin and Greek at age 4, and also sings and plays the harp while finishing her first YA novel in her spare time! Oh, and she’s only fifteen but since she’s so mature (because of all the aforementioned things), she’s started courting early! But don’t worry, she hasn’t given up her purity and kissed the boy in question, or even thought about uncouth, unfeminine things like sex. Her entire wardrobe also strikes that perfect magical balance between style and modesty! Shazam!
The above is only a little bit of an exaggeration. Trust me. I’ve been to enough conventions to know how the myth goes. The male version wears a suit endowed with magical lint-repelling powers.
I gave him a lot of social media pushback because it made me livid. I was part of the Homeschool Movement, popping out babies, feeding my daughter courtship books, yada yada. I can imagine what that kind of comment could have done psychologically to a woman who may have been on the birth control pills.
I tweeted him, tried to contact him by e-mail, left comments on his Facebook page (they were removed, put back, and then finally removed), plus I blogged several times about it. I tweeted Swanson’s friend, RC Sproul, JR and asked him to ask Swanson for me and he said he would – no response – no surprise there.
There was a lot of media attention on this story. Eventually, Swanson pulled the broadcast down (but it’s still floating around on the internet). He then posted a revised statement including “scientific” material from the well known scientist – oops – former pastor and author, Randy Alcorn. That material was over 10 years old. So, no, he never backed down from the dead embedded fetuses comment.
I want to see the b-grade movie version of this evil Flesh virus infecting unsuspecting people through their internet connections.
@ HoppyTheToad: I think it might help to keep in mind that in earlier times, people often married quite early because lifespans were much shorter than they are now. And those people didn’t have the educational (etc.) opportunities many of us do.
To me, this is *much* more about helping kids to learn to make good choices than it is about trying to prevent premarital sex. How many kids are emotionally mature enough to get married at 18-20? How can people get anything but jobs that are low-paying – either in service industries or in jobs requiring unskilled/semiskilled manual labor – by age 20? I’m of the 1st generation in my family to complete an education beyond HS. To me, it almost sounds as if you’re suggesting that young people should forego educational opportunities in order to avoid premarital sex, and that doesn’t make any sense to me. In fact, it sounds like the 50s – the 1850s, that is.
I don’t mean anything against you personally… Just disagreeing with your views. But I do think your concern is legit – just not at all certain that the overall emphasis you’re proposing is the best way to go about things. But we all do need to be asking questions and trying to help kids to navigate from adolescence to adulthood, that’s for sure.
“Ich habe nur meine Befehle ausgefert.”
(“I was only following Orders.”)
@ Daisy: shaming or pitying? In my case, it’s been the latter. Along with some envy as well, because I have much more freedom to do many things than those who are married and have young kids.
The grass is always greener…
I’m really getting the warm fuzzies on this one. He must think LGBT people should be consigned to eternal torment, because he thinks they shouldn’t be befriended – and without relationships, how could he go and make disciples?
Oh, that’s right, I forgot that holding signs covered in scribbled nastygrams and shouting at people from street corners is a fabulously effective witnessing strategy!
I am not arguing with you, but do you have evidence girls lose their ability to have children later on if they have them young? I lived in Nepal and there were medical issues with unattended births, but many, many young went on to have children long after they were tweenish age – many with large families, so I am just curious where you got your info. on young mom = infertile later on.
Everything I have read in the press about the Taliban can be said about these guys. The Taliban banned all fun in Afghanistan, a Canadian kidnap victim reported that the (Taliban-sponsored Somali, or was it Niger, fundies?) avoided any real pleasure – they refused luxury foods, comforts, anything that would make them “soft” and therefore weak to Western lifestyles/temptations. They delighted in tormenting their captors by dangling delicacies in front of their food deprived bodies, then throwing them in the fire as western evils. They like their daughters married off young too.
I’m surprised these Homeschoolers haven’t proposed “Bride Prices” yet. Premium for virgins of course (the east can teach tricks to turn any girl into one for her wedding night), they could add a higher bride prices for virgins who can sew as well as cook. It is so pathetic. I know I am supposed to love and want unity amongst all Christians, but I think these guys need a mental health check, can a person convert if they aren’t in their right mind? Have they been watching too much Taliban?
Look, maybe teens are all hooking up, fooling around, etc. because we don’t give them enough responsibility, but in my books, that would be a part-time job, not a marriage.
They have. It’s common in patriarchy. Doug Phillips talked about it in one of his lectures on suitors. In fact he made a point of suggesting to the dads that they not demand three years wages’ from the young men. I did the math on that and it came out to just under $23,000 for a groom with a part-time job at the federal minimum wage. Isn’t Doug generous? *barf*
Except the mere fact that he had to tell them that, means some dad out there had to have actually asked that of a would-be groom. Poor guy.
Wow – can you give some examples of conservative Christians doing this? I’ve never heard this before. I usually hear the opposite – about not shaming/rejecting those who lost their virginity some time ago. (Where one potential fiancee discovers that the other is not a virgin and thinks he/she is too good for the other.)
As for your earlier comment about older men wanting younger women as a control issue – I think you also need to add the “sex w/hotties” (w/standards only applied in one direction) motivation too…
@ Val: Val, I think he’s correct. There is no way that a 9-12 year old is physically able to sustain a full-term pregnancy and birth w/o very serious consequences. I think I’m going to run this by one of my CNM friends (Certified Nurse-Midwife; requires had degree plus continuing certification and licensing requirements). One of the lived in both west and southern Africa growing up, and their mom worked with such cases, far from any kind of medical facilities beyond basic dispensaries.
@ Val: also, you do realize that the kids he’s talking about have more than likely been rasped by adult men, yes? These things don’t happen in a vacuum; maybe the cases you saw in Nepal were the *extremely* fortunate few.
Also, was there ultrasound or other imaging equipment available there re. diagnosing internal damage, including adhesions and scar tissue? Just because someone is having a period at 10 does NOT mean that their body is actually ready for a full-term pregnancy and delivery, vaginal or otherwise…
Ok, I looked up what our NIH says and…
Risks to mother:
– placenta previa
– hypertension (high risk of preeclampsyia)
– significant anemia
– premature delivery
Risks to infant:
– low birth weight
– intrauterine growth retardation
Jo@ numo: sorry for redundancies above…
I think you’ll find that Driscoll is a whole nuther subject.
I agree; atheism today has evolved ( 😉 ) most of the characteristics of a religion, including an angry, aggressive, embi++ered fundamentalist fringe. Although they do occasionally complain about non-Christian faiths, that’s rare in the west for a couple of reasons, I think. Firstly, western religion is historically Christian, nominally at least. Secondly, at least in the UK, other religions are tacitly categorised as non-white, so criticising them runs the risk that one could be seen to be racist. Among the peer-group courted by the new atheists, even a trumped-up charge of racism is socially very damaging.
However, and still with the UK, we have Islam, Islamophobia (the unfair assumption that a Muslim hates the west and/or supports terrorism), and Islamophobia-phobia (the fear of critically examining Islam in case one is accused of Islamophobia). But we don’t have any significant patriarchal extremism among churches here; I think it would simply fail the laughter test. So when women’s rights vs religion is discussed, it is usually Islam of which commentators are critical.
Because women should never live independently, they need a man – a father or husband – to “cover” them, don’t you know? Otherwise, they’ll fall into unrestrained fornication, or other debauchery. You can’t trust women.
Also, they’re not going to marry us older lecherous fundamentalist pariarchialists once they start making their own decisions, and we definitely can’t have that.
Now, seriously: these older men proposing that marriage of 12yo girls to adults – because they are not proposing that they should be marrying 12yo boys, are they? – is OK definitely look like pedophiles looking for a legal way of doing what pedophiles do. Disgusting!
It is not an always relationship, and a lot depends on the size and specific development of the child’s body, but it does happen and the younger the girl the greater the likelihood of permanent injury.
Nick Bulbeck wrote:
You sure the spelling shouldn’t be “nutter”?
A lot of complications increase the risk of secondary infertility. Damage to the uterus, birth canal, or external genitalia are the main culprits and there is a much higher risk of them for a girl who is not yet fully developed and hasn’t grown to adult size. Most girls will be able to conceive and carry subsequent pregnancies, but a much higher percentage of them won’t THAN would be the case if they were 16 or twenty. Also, remember that many of those who lose this high stakes game are invisible – dead from their injuries or taken out of public view because they lost their value as wives at the ripe age of 13.
You got that right. And when the naysayers have become convinced of the delights of okra, I suggest we start in converting them to eggplant. Eggplant can be awful if done poorly, but it can be terribly good if done well.
Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:
“Ich habe nur meine Befehle ausgeführt.” – or, if your keyboard does not have “umlaut” keys: “Ich habe nur meine Befehle ausgefuehrt.” – Fixed it for you.
Yes, and a terrible excuse this was for the most atrocious deeds. Following orders can be necessary, and as a prison camp guard you may be too scared not to follow some orders, but to just rely on formal obigations as an excuse is terrible.
Actually, most of the few concentration camp guards who did not want to participate in atrocities and applied for front line service found out that nothing happened to them. OTOH, front line service was a lot more dangerous than guarding, bullying and torturing prisoners.
Anybody who says “I was only following orders.” without adding “… and I’m deeply ashamed of and regret the things that I was involved in.” probably was not only following orders but enjoying what they were doing.
@ burntnorton: I know… And yes, they are invisible in this country as well. Having a period does not = physical and emotional maturity or readiness for childbearing – especially true if the girl is being coerced/forced in any way.
The reason I cited the NIH fact sheet was simply to clarify some things for Val, who commented above re. child pregnancies and later full-term pregnancies in Nepal. Maybe your response to me (which is great!) could be turned into a reply to her? You can do so by copying and pasting the blue hyperlink to this post into a reply to her and asking her to take a look… 🙂
@ gus: we hear that over here, too, as an excuse for torture and other atrocities…
” 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”
He left out Doug Phillips.
Sorry, it was my intention to add to your reply to her:)
Opp@ burntnorton: no worries! But I’m guessing she might see it more quickly if you reply to her directly is all. There are so many replies here and it is easy to miss things – I do, all the time!
I just left a comment on your blog. It will not be well received by the child marriage advocates.
I take my function as the resident grumpy old woman of this “group” very seriously. Add to that the fact that in just a few minutes I have to go back over to the cancer center where they will stick needles in me and do disgusting and embarrassing things to me and tell me things I do not want to hear. That means that I sometimes have the opportunity to say things that perhaps some other folks would not say–because I pretty much don’t care anymore about what anybody thinks of me–except Himself. Actually, I experience that as an enormous freedom.
So let me say this. Maybe somebody out there needs to hear this. Maybe somebody who reads what we write here but who never says a word. We all know that there are people among us who remain virgins until age 95. Well, there you go. There are also people among us who threw themselves into the delights of the flesh from middle school on. Well, there you go. And mostly there is everything in between. There are also some people who make their fame and fortune either promoting or decrying sexual sin, and either promoting or decrying sexual virtue, but who are either way obsessed with sex and sexuality, especially while there is still fame and fortune and money to be made in the process.
But the Faith is not about what any of these people did or did not do with their bodies. It is about what Jesus did with his body on the cross. Everything has to be seen within that paradigm. Always. Neither sin nor virtue comes anywhere close to the power of the cross. I am sure most of us would agree on this, but we do not necessarily sound like we do–sometimes. For the sake of humanity we need to sound like we believe this. And for those who may think we are crazy-we are. To change a popular saying a little, we are crazies save by grace. Come join us.
Anon by Choice wrote:
I have worked with at risk children for years. Many of these children have grown up in homes in which they have seen a series of partners, drug addiction, etc. I saw a pregnant 12 year old child.
Did you know that there are many programs in at risk areas teaching girls to say no. But for many of them, sex is the only way they know how to find closeness with another human and getting pregnant gives them another object of love in their lives. It is a sad story.
Advocating early marriage will not break this cycle. Concerned Christians should enter into the lives of the poor and at risk instead of hiding out in suburbia, drinking Starbucks coffee and upping
the entertainment value at church.
I met a young woman in high school who came from an at risk situation. She and I became friends. I helped her to get a Pell grant to go to college. I gave her driving lessons and helped her get her license. She finished and is now a case worker in the prisons and she loves her car that she was able to afford. She is starting on her Masters degree. I used to tell her how pregnancy would interfere with her ability to do what she wanted to do. She listened and is single with no children, waiting for the right guy.
There are many kids out there like her that need someone to give a hoot about them.
Comment of the day!
Absolutely. Eggplant done right is great! 🙂
I don’t understand any quotes by Swanson. That guy has issues.
M. Joy wrote:
Comment of the week! Doug was his buddy!
@ Nancy: I think Paul could have added “neither chaste nor unchaste” to the list that begins “neither Jew nor Greek…”
Making sexual behavior a prerequisite for Christ’s love/approval is putting a millstone around the necks of many. Once we substitute commandments for God himself, love goes out the window. Of course, there certainly are commandments, but Jesus cut to the heart of the issue in stating what the two greatest commandments really are. Paul did the same in l Cor ch. 13.
Preach it, sister!
@ Nancy: also, thinking of you/praying for you, Nancy.
I am praying for you. And you can be our resident grump any day of the week! Besides, I never think of you in that way.
Well, I see Swanson’s wingnuttery still knows no bounds. So intimidated by independent women, he has to advocate for them being married before they even reach adulthood. At least, that’s the vibe I get from him.
From the OP:
If Kevin Swanson cannot recognize the absurdity of this statement, I take it as proof positive that he is utterly cut off from all reality.
And I loved Hester’s take on Jehle’s “prescriptions for character development”. Reminded me of this classic little bit of snark:
So, girls who don’t marry young are going to turn into crazed, wild, nymphos who can’t control their urges and have sex with janitors, police men, and goodness only knows how else simply because they are free to do so. So, then what of the boys? Are they just innocent little lambs waiting, longing, hoping for a beautiful teenage girl to love them for who they are and plan a wonderful white wedding together? What the …? I’m so sick and tired of this spine chilling, nausea inducing bull! But then I think about all my friends who are caught up in this and I want to cry.
I had wonderful fried catfish, jumbo shrimp (3-4 bites per), and okra for supper. Fried okra is a wonderful food. I also like it steamed. But I will not eat it cooked in a soup or stew.
O.k. after the comments regarding fried okra, I had to share this link to Mark Lowry singing about deep fried okra to the tune of “Livin la Vida Loca”. Silly? Yes, but funny too…
I guess I wasn’t very clear then because that isn’t what I meant at all. What I was wondering is how we can change the culture so that young adults can finish their educations a bit earlier, not by getting less of it, but by rearranging things so they have the option to graduate high school and college at a younger age. For example, compared to many other countries, our middle schools often don’t teach much. They keep kids in a holding pattern until high school because for some reason, they think kids going through puberty can’t handle learning much new material. That wastes a lot of time.
Also, I believe in some countries, a bachelor’s degree takes three years instead of four, because they expect students to have gotten a good general education in high school. Here, colleges (rightly) assume that K-12 has done a poor job with a general liberal arts background, and therefore students have to spend up to have of college taking courses outside their major.
My point is, if we rearranged the K-12 system, it seems possibly to shorten the time span to finish K-12 and college by a year or two. That means couples could support themselves a year or two earlier, which might be enough to convince them to skip pre-marital sex. Under the current system, if they know they aren’t employable/able to marry until their mid-twenties, it probably seems pointless to wait.
Some good replies!
But re Phil Robertson and his remarks on early marriage: you do recognize dry humor when you see it, do you not? Also, seems the first guy to say better to marry than to burn with lust was Paul from the Bible.
Perhaps we need some balance: no one telling girls or guys for that matter they must marry before they get an education. But also recognizing expecting folks to wait til near 30 for sex is a problem.
Perhaps a better idea is figuring out how to help them marry when it is physically the logical time and still get that good education.
When I was searching the internet try to find these medical complications I couldn’t find them. was probably using the wrong words in my search.
Do you have links for such things? I’d like to be able to find such info if it ever comes up again. And it will when we have guys like Swanson running around shooting off their ignorant and spiritually stunted mouths.
Dee, I’d like to nominate this for comment of the month.
Holy Moly! Doesn’t this sound like the reasoning behind those fundamentalist Mormons under Warren Jeffs? And yet, the evangelical patriarchs see nothing wrong with the statements. While these things seem fringe, it’s surprising to find how many main stream fundigelical leaders are aligning themselves with this by association.
I second the motion!!
Unless we’d rather believe that Christ’s death and resurrection means nothing and there is no forgiveness to be found. In that case, we are ALL hopeless.
Of course not! This would be too tempting for housewives to not make modest, patriarch approved family clothing. And we know that manly men don’t sew, so this would mean women were taken away from their sphere of house work to make clothing to sell at the convention. Perish the thought!
I know a 16 year-old who got pregnant and was immediately put into the high risk category along with the unborn baby. They were both considered ‘at risk’ for complications through the birth and after. I assume that the risk would only increase as the age at pregnancy decreases. This was in the past ten years, so it’s current. And, no, drug use was not involved at all.
Phew! That just blessed my socks off! Preach it and don’t hold back.
Ummmm, so Swanson did not learn along the way that a menstrual period cleanses out the uterus month to month? Also, anyone who has had an early miscarriage and started bleeding painfully knows that the uterus is not a permanent tomb.
In other news, it’s nearly 5 o’clock in Scotland and it’s still light. The evenings are drawing out!
I think you’re right. Normal and reasonable muslims are often concerned about being associated with them. I feel the same way about Christian fundamentalists.
Most of the risks with young pregnancy are within that particular pregnancy. Low birth weight, preeclampsia, placenta previa, anemia etc etc are limited to that pregnancy and would not affect future pregnancy. I would imagine most 10 olds just flat out couldn’t sustain a pregnancy due to instability of hormones, body structure etc. So, they would have a miscarriage or the baby might be born early or with low body weight or other problems. One the biggest variables of infant mortality is young maternal age.
I knew a woman who had a baby at 15. The one issue it caused her was that her lower ribs were slightly curved. You couldn’t notice it to look at her, and it didn’t really carry a future risk or problem. She said that since she was still growing and her bones hadn’t fully developed, the ribs basically curved around the baby.
The uterus is pretty resilient in terms of carrying a pregnancy despite “damage” to it. Obviously, c section is a common procedure. The uterus heals and doesn’t affect future pregnancy but can lead to rupture sometimes in a future delivery, which is why once you’ve had a c section, you often have them for future births. You can later deliver vaginally, called VBAC, but it requires a doctor to be immediately available and special precautions.
My long winded answer to your question about future risk in childbearing is that most often, no, it would not. Most of the risks are confined to that pregnancy. I’m not a doctor or nurse but my prior profession gave me a lot of knowledge about obstetrics, in particular, bad outcomes and complications.
One issue affecting the future would be post delivery uterine bleeding that can’t be stopped. It would result in an immediate, emergency hysterectomy. I’m not aware that this is a huge risk with young pregnancy and this complication can happen to women of various ages.
The sad thing is a lot of families don’t realize what a weird little world they are entering when they begin home schooling.
@ Bunsen Honeydew
While most 12 year olds who get pregnant won’t experience serious complications and won’t have trouble conceiving and bearing subsequent pregnancies to term, they are at much higher risk of complications of all sorts, including complications during delivery. These complications can cause secondary infertility even where the uterus remains intact. Complicated deliveries can cause physical trauma or infections that make conceiving and sustaining subsequent pregnancies difficult. Which is one of the many reasons people as far back as the middle ages knew that letting 12 year olds get pregnant was dangerous.
Sounds like the ERLC’s “devil-haunted universe” battle.
At the FIC church we attended, one of the men expected his wife (a mother of 7-8 kids, all but one under the age of 12) to make all the kids clothing. That’s pretty stupid, considering she was homeschooling them, usually pregnant or nursing, and they were renovating their house. I don’t think she made all their clothes (shopping at thrift stores is usually cheaper), but it was his ideal.
This is the same man who once said that if he ever had a daughter who seemed to be a tom-boy, he’d “train it out of her.” I’d have hated to be his daughter. There’s nothing like telling a girl that God disapproves of her because she’d rather wear jeans and play soccer than wear dresses and dream about all the babies she’ll have someday. Blech!
@ Serving Kids in Japan:
Well as someone who owns pretty much every Calvin & Hobbes book ever published, I’m now asking myself, how did I not remember that one?!?!?!?!
@Mara – as a special educator with infants and toddlers, I could give you examples of students I’ve worked with who’ve had many complications from their young mothers, up to and including multiple disabilities, cerebral palsy, and visual impairments. I’ve had several mothers who drop their students off in my class and go to the high school across the street. And right now I have two single mothers who have six children each.
Most girls are still growing at age 12, therefore it would be extra difficult for them to get all the nutrients both they and the baby need. Throw in possible morning sickness, and it would be easy for both to end up malnourished. Many (maybe most) adult women don’t put in serious effort to eat nutrient dense foods when pregnant, so I doubt a young girl would be willing to cut out the junk food and load up on vegetables and meat for the baby’s sake.
These people have no idea how psychologically damaging this can be. I’m getting just a taste of some of this through helping a friend, who was homeschooled but in a much, much more “liberal” non-FIC non-patriarchal house. They did not actively try to “train it out of her” but just the semitransparent hint-dropping about her lack of girliness was more than enough. Gender roles and gender stereotypes harm, a lot more than we may suppose. I knew this before but now it has a face for me.
@ Former CLC’er:
Oops, that comment above wasn’t supposed to be double blockquoted.
My son competes in gymnastics. His coach was telling me last week that sometimes he tells the older boys that if someone at school is giving them trouble, to invite to try one of the team workouts. He tells them to say, “I will quit if you can make it through the whole workout.” The coach also said that unlike some gyms, he doesn’t make the boys practice in their uniforms. Being in a farming area full of football fans, people are inclined to think it’s “too girly,” so he allows the boys to practice in regular clothes so potential new gymnasts (and their parents) won’t be scared off.
We discussed how stupid this attitude is because there’s no other sport where pre-teen boys have well developed shoulders, built-up pecs, and sometimes even a little six-pack. Some of these boys are pretty ripped, before they’ve even hit puberty. When Mr. Hoppy attempts even some of the most basic moves that our son does, he’s shocked at how much strength it takes. Thankfully, one of the benefit of homeschooling is that our son isn’t around other kids who would make fun of him for being a gymnast.
The similarities to Mormonism seem so obvious. I do not get how people seem to miss it, dismiss it.
Too many of these homeschooling families could hide out in Utah and blend right in with FLDS.
“I met a young woman …from an at risk situation. She and I became friends….a Pell grant to go to college. …driving lessons and helped her get her license. She finished and is now a case worker in the prisons and she loves her car that she was able to afford. … her Masters degree. I used to tell her how pregnancy would interfere with her ability to do what she wanted to do. She listened and is single with no children, waiting for the right guy.”
very good to read.
I think masterpieces-waiting-to-happen are buried behind laundry piles, carpool schedules, and birthday parties.
Masterpieces — such as cures for diseases, discoveries to abate Alzheimers & Parkinsons & many other body & mind degenerators, solutions for the alternative energy conundrum, songs, symphonies, singing, stories, paintings, screenplays, films, performances of all kinds, gifted leaders who can influence on a national level in favor of integrity.
I’ve thought a bit about this… my potential achievements stopped at age 34 when I had my first kid. Now that they’re all more independent I’m trying to get it going again. But time & energy and focus are very limited.
It is true that raising human beings well, the next generation, is a very worthy thing to do with one’s life.
But… raising them to do what? raise, in turn, the subsequent generation? that’s it?
consumption of space, air, water, & energy with hopefully kindness & good citizenship will happen. when will the masterpieces happen?
We can live to leave the world a tidier place, even a better place. Some can live to leave the world profoundly changed place.
Will she be encouraged? allowed, even?
Strangely enough, some in the quiverful crowd use similar reasoning. They try to badger people into giving up contraception but saying/writing things like, “What if you would’ve had a kid who cured cancer or world hunger, but you were too selfish to ever conceive that child?” Of course, they never think about the tyrants and serial killers that weren’t conceived by parents who didn’t want more kids. They also never consider that maybe somewhere out there are women who may have helped solve these problems, if only they weren’t told that the only godly path was unlimited children.
With the patriarchal/quiverful crowd, most women’s achievements never get started, unless it’s in some “approved” area. These people are hoping their daughters are married with kids by 20-22. Then the daughters will have their last babies in their mid-40s, which means they have kids at home under their early 60s. Then they will be expected to help take care of their ailing husbands or giant broods of grandkids. The “200 Year Plans” don’t make allowances for women accomplishing much outside of having kids and catering to their husbands’ every whim.
My statements are assuming said young girl is receiving medical intervention, at least at the time of delivery. My comments also assume she will have medical care at subsequent deliveries.
Perhaps that context is why we might see this a little differently.
We live in the age of the C-section. This is good or bad depending on perspective. Overall, they tend to save babies lives but there are complications as with any sugery. Any practitioner is going to appreciate the high risk of a 12 year old delivering vaginally, evaluate her pelvis, her ability to push, and consider a C section as the safest way depending on her size/strength and baby size.
I’m not really sure what sort of “trauma” you refer to that would prevent future pregnancy. I am aware of uterine adhesions, and they sometimes can be an issue, but not usually. What condition are you referring to regarding “birth canal” damage? As someone who had a pretty hefty episiotomy, I have never heard of such as thing affecting fertility. It might affect how you deliver in the future perhaps, although I haven’t heard of it.
As for the uterus, Forceps are not usually used unless you’re an “old school” doctor and “high forceps”, which were associated most with uterine injury, are not considered standard of care anymore and arguably negligent. The standard of care would likely require the doc to do a section and NOT use high forceps.
We can agree that a 12 year old delivery is higher risk. Maybe in the old days the secondary complications were more of an issue, but not so much in the modem age. Heck, a hundred years ago having a baby at any age was often a deathly matter.
You mention “infection” as a secondary complication. Ironically, infection associated with delivery is one thing that is often not age dependent and fortunately dealt with by antibiotic therapy.
Most infections that affect fertility are untreated or untreatable STDs, not infections related to delivery that surely can and would be addressed in the hospital.
The whole concept of kids having kids is sad and disgusting. However, someone here was trying to have a factual discussion on the risks. As someone who once had a profession tangential to the obstetrical field, I offered the extent of my knowledge and my resulting impressions.
I hope my response to you is not seen as wishing to debate or a confrontation. It’s just in light of my medical knowledge I’m not exactly understanding some of your points.
These men would say there’s something wrong with ambitious women like us who aren’t satisfied with just being good moms. I had my kids on the young side, which means I can’t accomplish much now. Fortunately, they’ll be adults by the time I’m in my mid-40s, so that gives me another 20+ years to make something of myself.
Only if you get trapped in the homeschooling world controlled by the patriarchists and dominionists who use it to further their own worldview.
Homeschooling is used the world over as an educational choice. It is not exclusive to any religion or lifestyle. Do some digging back through the modern history of home education and read what was going on in the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s, before the likes of HSDLA and NHERI sank their claws into the American movement. Read Dr. Raymond Moore’s White Paper for his perspective on that mess. Read Home Education Magazine. Watch the TED video of the kid who “hackschools”. Homeschoolers are not all alike.
@ Bunsen Honeydew:
You make some good points here. Thank you.
I’m not claiming all homeschooling is the same. However, the point is, a lot of folks who got into homeschooling for educational and or religious reasons, get sucked into this patriarchy crap.
It’s the old, if a little is good, more is better. We’re committed Christians who care about God and family, and so, seemingly, the early steps are just those of deeper commitment. Read the books, attend the seminars, add a few rules here, a few more there, all in the name of obedience to scripture, and after awhile end up in a quagmire.
Most beginning home schoolers (who are not already in the patriarchy movement) have no idea who this movement will suck the life of families and children.
duh…have no idea how this movement will suck the life of their families and children.
So here’s another interesting factoid about Kevin Swanson, that doesn’t seem to be getting any press. In fact this is the first time I’ve mentioned this publicly. Julie Anne, if you are reading this, this may interest R. L. Stollar and the folks at HA. A lot.
Most of you are probably already familiar with Homeschoolers Anonymous, who are now being labeled “homeschool apostates” (I believe by Swanson) by those who don’t like that they’re shining a spotlight on abuse within homeschooling. My mother, who used to be in homeschool leadership at the state level in CT, is still on lots of mailing lists and a homeschool leaders’ eloop (from which all sorts of scary things emerge, let me tell you). A few weeks ago she was forwarded an email about a new study by Brian Ray, which is apparently in the works at NHERI right now. Ray claims in the email that he announced the study at “national conferences” with Kevin Swanson. The study is called the “Gen2” study and is designed “to find out what are the strongest links between how children were raised by Christian parents and the now-adult children’s beliefs and practices (e.g., church attendance, Christian orthodoxy, how they school their children).” From the forwarded email from Ray:
Now it’s been reported on HA and elsewhere that Ray’s study construction is usually terrible and his findings are basically just the party line of “everything’s great, nothing to see here.” He seems to be using the same method (self-reporting by parents) to construct this study, so I have no doubt it will be as bad as all the others. However, the timing of this, in light of HA’s growing popularity and Kevin Swanson’s “homeschool apostates” comments, looks suspiciously serendipitous to me, esp. since Ray announced this study w/Swanson. Frankly – and this is my opinion now – this looks to me like an attempt by Ray and Swanson to quick cook up a study to discredit HA and make them look like a tiny anomalous minority. If that turns out to be true, then they don’t only feel threatened by HA. HA has them terrified and on the run.
Julie Anne, like I said, please feel free to pass this along to R. L. Stollar and the folks at HA – I may do so myself anyway. No one else has mentioned this study at all that I’ve seen, unless it’s been mentioned at HA since the last time I went over there. I assume, then, that it may be circulating only among leadership at this point as Ray looks for survey participants. Thus, it may constitute a leak for me to report this.
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The female Quiverfull uniform with the long hair styled like 1985 and the ankle length skirt is creepily similar to the FLDS prairie dress and the distinctive way they push their long hair high up on their head.
Maybe I’m being a little harsh on the hairstyle thing in that Michelle Duggar might not be representative, although I think she finally got a new “do”.
Hester, I’ll pass that along as soon as I hit enter on this comment. Thanks! And yes, HA has been following this quite a bit lately.
The timing of this article was perfect, Dee, and coincidental. Last night I noticed a tweet from Swanson that he had a new broadcast discussing birth control. I wanted to go to bed, but ugh – I couldn’t resist listening to that part of the show. I wanted to see if he had softened the rhetoric. Nope, same old stuff. I’ve done a new post on the findings and transcribed the important part.
But this is what I came here to share. I publicly challenged Swanson on his Facebook page about his rhetoric and providing credible proof to back up his words and within 10 minutes my post was removed. Here’s the screenshot: http://goo.gl/XTd03d
(I haven’t yet read through all the posts since I was last here.)
Somewhere in a post above, I mentioned that I suspect that what motivates some of these gender complementarian guys is not being pro-Jesus, love for the Bible, or being pro-woman, so much as it is being anti- feminism or anti-homosexuality.
I was listening to Janet Mefferd’s show yesterday, and Peter LaBarbera, from “Americans for Truth about Homosexuality” pretty much confirmed that for me, in a round about way, though I’m not sure if he is a gender comp (though I know that Mefferd is).
I don’t have anything against this guy or his group per se, only that they, IMO, are incorrect to try to fight against homosexuality by hyping traditional marriage as much as they do, as being the only acceptable lifestyle for Christians (as doing so further marginalizes the divorced, the never married, and the widowed).
In the midst of discussing homosexuality, LaBarbera tells Mefferd something like to counter homosexuality, Christians need to “put marriage on a pedestal.” He used that phrase.
That comment comes at the 11:50 mark of the interview:
Hour 3- Peter LaBarbera from Americans for Truth about Homosexuality joins Janet.
Bunsen Honeydew wrote:
The clothing and hairstyles are very similar. Worse is the similarity of the male dominance, the keep sweet mantra the women hold to, the paranoia in regards to the outside world and do on. It’s so far removed from “normal ” Christianity, I don’t understand how they can look at FLDS and not see themselves.
@ HoppyTheToad: most other countries (in western Europe, anyway) have *far* more rigorous curricula and standards. The folks who choose the track that leads to university are doing coursework that most kids here don’t encounter until college – if then. The programs for those who aren’t planning to go to university are not in the least dumbed down, either. And university-level education (per number of years and more) varies from country to country. Am sure some of the European commenters here can speak to that.
We have tons of problems here, but it almost seems that the system would have to be razed and rebooted for real, lasting changes to take effect. About jobs: I don’t see how people could be prepared for high-level professional jobs by age 20. They need more than just education – they need to grow up.
@ Julie Anne:
I can also provide the whole forwarded email if they want it. After that I should probably change my handle to “Benedict Arnold.” 😉
@ HoppyTheToad: I’m still not quite understanding the focus on premarital sex. I mean, there’s much more to that than sexual acts per se, and I can’t imagine that overhauling things to allow for earlier marriages is going to change that one iota.
Am also concerned that it looks like a system that will encourage a mindset of “get married so you can have ‘legal’ sex.” If anything, we are swamped with that now, given the fallout from the whole “purity” movement. How is early marriage going to bring about stable, healthy relationships? I know of far too many people who felt pressured into early marriage due to abstinence demands plus many chuches’ emphasis on marriage as the be-all and end-all. So many of them ended up in horrible marriages, many feeling trapped… and are now divorced.
I really can’t see how pushing early marriage is going to solve a lot of the bigger problems young people face, and I do think it would have potentially disastrous consequences for an awful lot of people – like the kids these folks have.
I was/am still using my phone, and am not easily able to post links. The list came from PubMed, which is run by the NIH. Am sure you can find plenty if you look for complications of early/childhood/teen pregnancy, etc. The medical implications are quite alarming, let alone all the rest of the problems that come along…
@ burntnorton: yep. Which is one of the points I was attempting to make, albeit in a less articulate fashion.
The certified nurse-midwives that I know could rattle off long lists of stuff at the drop of a hat. I learned a lot from them, but it’s been a while and the info. seems to have shifted itself to some cfreaky, unused, dusty mental filing cabinet…
There was an article cross-posted on HA last summer about the Gen 2 survey: http://homeschoolersanonymous.wordpress.com/2013/07/22/crosspost-methodological-problems-with-kevin-swanson-and-brian-rays-gen-2-survey/
Meant to also say: the survey collected responses from formerly homeschooled students, not parents–I took it myself (http://www.gen2survey.com/), and was disappointed at how many of the questions were leading and/or restrictive in possible responses.
@ elastigirl: best comment ever!
It does seem like scrapping the K-12 system and starting over is what is needed. I’ve read a couple books and many blog posts about how low our K-12 standards are compared to much of the world. It’s pathetic. But if you try to bring it up, many (maybe most) Americans protest with drivel like, “Well, over there, they don’t educate special ed kids,” or “Well, we have many immigrants and they don’t.” They never think to see if their faulty presuppositions are true.
Most people aren’t ready to marry by 20 and I don’t think it should be pushed. Under the current system, it’s not really even a financial option for those few that have met the right person and are ready. At the very least, it would be nice if it were easier for young adults to be financially on their feet by 22-25 instead of 27-30.
The patriarchal crowd likes to harp about how our culture has extended adolescence. I think part of it is from people going to college and graduate school, but aside from that, some of the culture still thinks of 25 year-olds like they are in high school. I always thought it was weird that the men at our FIC church would cite examples of 9 year-old ship captains as examples of how people matured faster in the past, but never thought it odd that they controlled their college age kids so much. They hoped their kids would get married young, and gave them much more responsibility than normal parents, but much less freedom. The way I see it, they didn’t loosen the reins until the wedding, which is ridiculous.
I know I might be rambling here. I just wonder how we as parents can help our kids be mature adults closer to 20 than 30. We don’t need immature college students getting married to the wrong person, but there must be some ways to help prevent kids from taking many years longer to grow up than in the past.
LaBarbera needs to be called out for the hateful things he continually says, like, oh, you know, saying that LGBT people should be thrown in jail . If you want to see more of the train wreck, well, I’m not the world’s biggest fan of all of GLAAD’s tactics, but Google will reveal their list of ridiculous things he’s said, if inquiring minds want to know.
I think we conservative evangelicals need to be a little more careful when talking about fighting these battles, because it ends up sounding like we’re fighting against the people themselves (of course, LaBarbera’s unapologetic about his motives, where others are subtle and possibly unintentional). Of course, this will get me thrown out as a heretic in much of evangelicalism, but they have enough reasons to throw me out already.
The reason I’m posting on it so much today is that to Mr. Hoppy and me, it seems like young adults are stuck between a rock and a hard place. They can marry early and avoid pre-marital sex, but maybe marry the wrong person and have a miserable marriage; or they can wait to marry the right person, but have to endure years of temptation in the meantime. Temptation that statistically, they will succumb to.
The only middle path that I can think of is to encourage our kids to wait until they are 18 to date and/or keep them too busy to think about girls much. Fewer years of dating seems like it should reduce temptation, because let’s face it, kids in high school are horny, but nowhere close to being mature enough to marry.
One reason this weighs on my mind sometimes is because I have boys. If either ends up getting a woman pregnant out of wedlock, there’s a high chance he won’t get to raise his own child and I wouldn’t get to see my grandchild regularly. If you’ve seen the show “Lost,” you may remember how heartbroken Michael was that his son Walt’s mother moved away from him, denying him the chance to parent. I’d hate to have that happen to my boys.
My concern is more in how groups such as that turn marriage into a deity they worship, so that anyone who is not married with two children is treated like a second class citizen or an outcast.
If they feel the need to argue against homosexuality, I wish they would find grounds that don’t rely on denigrating singleness, to insist that marriage should be “put on a pedestal.”
Numo at 4:29.
Those were my thoughts exactly. Forcing more immature people who don’t know each other well to get married doesn’t solve anything.
@ HoppyTheToad: grad school is not for the faint of heart! it’s an ordeal, more often than not, and many grad students are working full-time as is…
@ HoppyTheToad: statistics show some things, but there’s a lot that they obscure – like why people do what they do.
as for your kids, i feel for you. but is worrying about something that might never happen the best way to approach things, i wonder? (i do realize that moms worry regardless – it goes with the job.)
Kevin Swanson is the dumbest of the dumb in the homeschooling movement. I call him the Christian Rush Limbaugh.
i just came across this on the New York Times website – it’s all too apropos:
Why do people need to “grow up faster”? We live longer, we can take our time. A nine year old ship captain was as unusual in that time as it would be now, lifespans were shorter, chance of one or both your parents dying was high. People were forced to grow up faster, because they had harder and shorter lives. We have longer and easier lives, therefore the “youth period” has lengthened.
What do people here make of Randy Alcorn? He has written a lot and is popular in Neo Cal circles. It seems as if he is Philip Yancey’s replacement.
@ JustSomeGuy: My dad spent most of his working life as a cargo ship captain. I can’t imagine where/how/why this story about a 9 y.o. ship’s captain got started, but I suspect it belongs on Snopes.com.
@ JustSomeGuy: Well, *we* might have longer and easier lives, but most people in this world are still stuck in difficult circumstances (like dire poverty) and life spans are still short. True of poor people in this country as much as anywhere else, imo.
And why any intelligent person consider that anything but a compliment?
I’d agree, though I – perhaps naturally – come at this from a different perspective, as a person who is celibate, but yet whose very existence makes these busybodies lose sleep at night. My concern, because it affects the mental health and self-perception of LGBT+ youth everywhere, is that they make valid arguments and stop making stuff up.
The problem is that when you strip them of the lies they’re used to peddling (e.g. the nonsense about promiscuity, perversion, and pedophilia in LGBT people), they’re left to fall back on a verse in Leviticus and a few phrases from Paul. And, frankly, that’s not enough to work up a frenzy in the US about enshrining in law the right to discriminate against LGBT people and to prevent them from marrying (they’re still sore from their loss in Lawrence v. Texas).
So, just as the dehumanization of singles rightfully bothers you, the dehumanization of LGBT people bothers me. Some days, I feel like I’m going to have to leave evangelicalism entirely to get away from it and maintain some semblance of sanity.
I hear you Josh, this must be so hurtful. It is a horrible thing to have your value undercut, & this has gone on for so long & so publically for the LGBT community. The American church in particular is so fixated on this, they miss the fact that much worse things are slipping by them, like rampant greed & materialism.
I wish for better days.
And I meant to put ‘worse’ in quotation marks there…it’s late here.
Hester, feel free to send it to me and I’ll fwd it to Ryan/Nick. spiritualsb@ gmail
Randy Alcorn is an excellent writer and theologian. He is staunchly pro-life and has for a long time walked the talk. The name of his ministry, Eternal Perspectives, is emblematic of his writings and his work. All royalties from his writing go to support various other missions and ministries. I have read his books: Heaven; If God Is Good – Faith in the Midst of Suffering and Evil; Eternity [excellent graphic novel about Lazarus and the rich man]; Deadline; The Grace & Truth Paradox; The Purity Principle; Wait Until Then; We Shall See God; and Courageous [a novel based upon and expanding upon the screenplay, which he did not write]. I recommend all of these.
Re: Randy Alcorn –
I also have watched a number of videos including sermons, interviews, and shorter Q and A’s. His website has many good articles and short videos, available freely.
From the EPM website:
So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. (2 Corinthians 4:18)
The Heartbeat of EPM
At EPM it’s our conviction we must learn to live now with the perspective that will be ours one minute after we die.
As there will be no second chance for the unbeliever to go back and live his life over again, this time accepting Christ, so there will be no second chance for the believer to go back and live his life over again, this time serving Christ. Now is our window of opportunity. Now is our chance to follow Christ, speak the truth and reach out to the needy in love. Now is our chance to invest our lives in eternity.
“I value all things only by the price they shall gain in eternity.”
“Only one life, it’ll soon be past, only what’s done for Christ will last.”
“He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.”
I have serious doubts about Dr. Voddie Baucham and would be hesitant to listen to what he says. I recall a video where he is giving advice to a young man who expressed concern that his girlfriend (fiancee?) is kind of rebellious and doesn’t seem interested in the young man’s ideas, leading in the relationship, etc. His advice was the girl shouldn’t pay any attention to the young man because she is still under the authority of her father, and not the authority of the young man. If the young man wants to find out how she is going to react to him as a wife he should observe how she reacts to her father because how she reacts to her father is the way she will react to you. (I’m not sure, but I guess such observation would have to be done surreptitiously.)
Excuse me, rather than playing this game wouldn’t it make much more sense for the young man simply to express his concerns to his girlfriend and ask her what’s going on in the relationship? If he doesn’t like her reply, then break off the relationship and move on.
Okay, good to hear they already know. He must still be hunting for responses because the email we got was dated from December, and he was encouraging leaders to try to get “a big sample from [their] state.”
@ Mara: err… I misspoke in my previous reply to you. It’s Medline Plus, not PubMed.
Have you read Rachel Held Evans’ most recent post? She writes about a conference for Christian GLBTs that she attended. Lots of encouraging comments, too. I think you’ll find comfort there.
Well, on that issue, Baucham is 100 percent correct, it sounds like.
On other issues, well, there may be some problems.
But if you are using that one example to show why you have “serious doubts” about him, I would suggest a more convincing example. I am sure there are plenty.
It beggars belief that the peddlars of this hateful . . . . stuff can so innocently claim that they don’t mean to hurt people.
When do I stop laughing? Care to explain why asking the girlfriend what’s going on is inappropriate?
The whole thing about being under Daddy’s authority if she is of marriageable age is plainly ridiculous, as is the idea of being under the husband’s authority after marriage. That is not NT in any means. It puts the husband into a place that should be occupied only by the Holy Spirit, and makes the husband a usurper. And if she is an adult, and has made a profession of faith, the Daddy had best not be getting between her and God (Holy Spirit) for the same reasons.
Doing this survey myself for fun, these are some of my thoughts as I go through:
A question on ‘inspirational’ books? What’s the point of that?
Churches apparently only contain families? Nope, my experience is that churches contain a mix of families, couples, singles, etc.
There really are no options for people with no religion in their upbringing.
Your church isn’t biblical if it doesn’t do eldership, church discipline, and shepherding (what is shepherding?)
What is worldview training?
I know my parents were raised in Christian families, but how am I meant to know how committed they were?
These questions are worded poorly; they don’t explain what they mean by ‘involved’ in education or anything else.
What does my favourite musician/movie/tv show have to do with anything? Although it is fun to give them answers they really won’t like.
Under the influence of or drunk with alcohol? So all alcohol is bad? I don’t get drunk, but I have no problem with drinking, so these people are going to think I’m some horribly fallen drunkard.
Sexual encounter or physical relationship? What counts as a ‘physical relationship’ and why is it equated with sex?
There really aren’t many questions that will really give them any insight into the educational outcomes they claim to be looking at, or anything on how peoples’ religious and other views change over time. There’s some questions on education, some questions on how much you agree or disagree with your parents, but no questions on how and when your views might have changed/stayed the same. None of the results they get from this survey will be useful. Although that won’t stop them making spurious claims.
Joining Joe in bemused laughter. First, even if one accepts that the husband is the head of the wife, that doesn’t imply that a woman should obey her boyfriend/fiance. And even if both those things were true, why in the name of all that is decent would one expect that a woman’s relationship with her father mirror her relationship with her husband? In a word – GROSS!
Finally, marriage isn’t a magic wand. It doesn’t magically change behavior for the better. If you don’t like your partner’s behavior before marriage, you most certainly won’t like it after.
Not that Brian Ray would ever ask leading questions in a badly constructed study and then wave the results around as absolute proof of his agenda. No sir. 😉
@ Josh: might I suggest investigating more welcoming kinds of churches? I don’t know any lgbt people who’ve been able to remain in evangelicalism after coming out. It seems very counterproductive, and I wish you all the very best in your search, Josh.
Another reason to have serious doubts about Baucham
Thanks for the response.
Actually meant to link this one. Sorry. The other is goof. It just gets long. This is more to the point… I think.
Absolutely , there is a fixation on sex sins. Or what they perceive as sexual sins…..money, greed are “okay” sins….then again, if they preach against them, the offering plates might not be as full….
It would help if I actually put in the second link. :/
Our culture is fixated on sex and our churches are fixated on the gossip/sins that result.
Just because Randy Alcorn is a good writer on some things ( I have read a number of his books and do like his fiction) does not mean he is an expert on all things. This is a problem that I have with the Christian celebrity culture. As soon as someone gets a name, everything that proceeds from their mouth is accepted as infallible.
I take issue with his perspective on the contraceptive issue and believe he is wrong. We have already provided on link to pro-life medical groups that will provide alternative information.
I too am pro life and have written a personal story on my perspective on abortion. I have no problems with people using the Pill.
I am so, so sorry for the pain that many self righteous evangelicals have caused those who struggle with SSA. I have been writing about this for quite awhile. I hate it. I watch self righteous snots who would stab their grandmothers in the back point fingers at those with SSA. We seem to love to point fingers at sins with which we do not struggle.
Thank you for commenting and know that I am praying for you this evening.
Oh, this is so funny. You should’ve seen some of the names in my public school music gradebook that were ‘demonically’ associated. The first one that comes to mind is “Demontre”, properly pronounced Dee-MAHN-Tray. I can guarantee that the mother never knew that ‘demon’ was part of his name. However, he was quite a handful. (Wow, that must be proof.) And then there was DeVilla, DeMonna, and many others. Just last week, I met a bank teller whose name was “Charmin”,as in Please-Don’t-Squeeze-The. If children with demon-associated names will be discipline problems until their name is changed, I shudder to think of where poor Charmin may be headed!
True, although I do wonder how exactly they’ll make any arguments about how/why childrens’ beliefs differ from their parents when they don’t actually ask why their respondents agree or disagree with their parents. Call me crazy, but I don’t see how you can get an answer to a question you didn’t even come close to asking.
Dee, I made no claim or inference that Alcorn is an expert in all things. I made no statements about contraception. I accept no human as infallible, not myself, and not Alcorn. I was responding to a simple request for opinions or information about Alcorn, and I spoke from my experience. I have disagreed with Alcorn on some of his statements but mostly I find him wise and faithful. I also gave a little information from the epm.org website so that anyone can go to the website and evaluate Alcorn’s views for themselves, rather than rely upon my second hand information.
My dad grew up on a working farm during the depression.
When I was growing up we did have fried okra but his comment about steamed or stewed was to avoid it. If not you socks would slide down to the tops of your shoes. 🙂
And I have a feeling that with fried okra the flavor is mostly in the breading. The okra is just a fried grease delivery system.
Personally, I suspect they aren’t interested in how or why the children disagree with their parents. They just want to know whether they do. The only thing that may be important here is whether or not the children are in lockstep.
I think I may go take the survey for fun myself…
Also, I love how my passing remark about okra has created a thread-within-a-thread in the comments. 🙂
Good point, Dee. Taking it a stage further: Because we extol the pulpit so highly for its own sake in “protestant” circles, we tend to assume that someone who is a good speaker is therefore a goodteacher. Worse, we confuse skilled oratory with the calling and anointing of God, judging someone by the gratification their oratory provides us with, rather than by their fruit.
A well-known and commercially successful motivational speaker, who was recently involved in controversy over plagiarism, apparently expressed his appreciation of the ghost-writers and researchers he employs because they enable him to produce “thousands of pages of content” every year. But of course, that “content” is only writing; he does not “produce” it; it has no spiritual substance and is not rooted (or even necessarily visible) in his character and walk with God and others.
As a blogger, of course I face the same temptation – i.e. to write output that just expresses how much I fancy myself. I’ve implemented a small new year’s resolution, therefore, which is to try and start blogging on what I’m actually doing in the Forth Valley that’s making a scrap of difference to the unemployed here.
@ Nick Bulbeck:
I should add: the operative phrase there was the one about taking Dee’s idea “a stage further”. I know nothing about Randy Alcorn himself, so I’ve nothing against him, or his output, or anyone who likes either of them.
I actually tried to grow okra one time. Usually I just grow the usual stuff that any self-respecting southerner has in the garden or in pots on the patio. But okra, right out there with the cucumbers, is not a good idea for me. I did not realize how few pods there were per stalk. Nor did I realize that okra left too long unpicked takes on the consistency of wood.
Fortunately, and intrinsic to our culture perhaps, there is a Saturday morning farmer’s market at the local fair grounds, and I cheerfully buy fresh picked okra from local growers. It tends to be expensive, but then okra takes some doing to grow it, so I support the local economy, chat with the grower(s) and take the okra home in order to “fry up a mess of.” You got to get there terminology correct, right along with the temperature of the cooking oil. The okra knows! If you do not do right by it, it will not do right by you.
Correction: “the” terminology.
@ NC Now:
Like fried potatoes? or fried green tomatoes? There is a different taste than fried dough, which I have had, or hush puppies, and it is a green vegetable.
@ NC Now:
NC Now — does the NC stand for the state, a religious belief system, or what if you can tell without revealing your identity?
Two points, there are varieties that do not get so fibrous and that can grow fairly large and still be good to eat. Second, the production of a plant depends a lot on the variety, the soil and water. Prolific production is possible.
And a story. When we lived in Ohio, we grew okra on our little garden plot next to the sidewalk on the side street, and it would grow 8′ tall. The blossoms are beautiful and people would frequently ask what we were growing. Then the police chief of our small town came to see me, to ask what I was growing. Seems some people thought it was cannabis, as the leaves have a somewhat similar appearance. I introduced him to some fried okra, picked and prepared while he was visiting. We became rather good friends.
Good story. Can you specifically recommend a variety? I don’t really plan to do any further soil modifications just for okra, and I rarely have to water since we usually have enough rain around here (and that saves money to just stick with what nature gives you as much as possible.) This is not Southern Living photos we are talking about. None the less, I might be willing to try again with some specific variety you might know about.
Sorry for jumping the gun. I have been on the wrong side of a few conversations with some folks who believe that all versions of the Pill cause abortions. Most of those folks are rabidly opposed to birth control as well. I have presented the information from scientific sources, including some from the Christian medical groups with which my husband and I affiliate, that show the studies that would disprove the premise of all contraceptive being abortifacients.
Just when I think I have gotten somewhere, I get Alcorn’s book shoved down my throat. I have always liked Alcorn’s fiction. I was reading him before many others. I am also antiabortion and have devoted time and money to groups which help women going through crisis pregnancy.
I believe there is an agenda amongst certain Christian leaders to encourage women not to use birth control. It is tied up in the view of gender roles as well as the continued drop in church attendance in the United States, I think they hope to reproduce Christians to fill in the gap. The recent stats seem to indicate that churches grow primarily by getting people to switch to their church and by baptizing children of members. Funny thing about all of that is Mohler and Patterson, two such advocates, stuck to two kids each and didn’t even lift a finger to adopt children.
Again I apologize for jumping the gun.
NC Now wrote:
Having grown up in Salem, Mass, I find the same thing happens with fish. My mother claims that the only way to eat clams is fried. She will not touch them steamed. Even then they must be eaten with plenty of sauce and butter. I contend few people like clams. They just like the stuff that comes with them.
Yep- sounds reasonable to me. This “authority” thing is whacked and quite ethereal. Remember, Baucham’s daughter lives at home under his authority. She does not function like an adult-merely as daddy’s little girl.
@ Nick Bulbeck:
This entire comment should be read by everybody!
I always knew you were trouble.
@ dee: Really? I like clams on the half shell.
We lost our home-grown seed supply in the drought — no production. And the guy that provided our seed has gone to his heavenly reward. We are trying several different kinds this year.
Oh Dee, you used the word ‘reasonable’ here. That relates to reason. These guys don’t. If it wasn’t harmful it would actually be funny watching them create entire universes full of extra-biblical rules to out-holy each other.
I dont know if you are just on a more liberal homeschool environment or if you havent connected all the pieces, but these people are not fringe. And when you defend the right of “any parent” to homeschool, does that mean you give money to hslda? they not only protect people like swanson, they make sure abusive parents fly under the radar and keep outlegislation that would protect vulnerable kids. Are you outside the system or so deep in it you cant see?
There is a lot in this world that I do not get. Stuff that just sound crazy. But why in the world would any man want to marry daddy’s little girl? Has he not figured out that she is going to compare him to daddy every day of his life? He can’t compete with daddy. Daddy holds all the cards.
And THAT is what patriarchy is all about!
DADDY holds all the cards. Including the official, complementarian, trump card.
All thinking people, including Christians, should run far and away from this good ol’ boys underhanded plot to stack the deck in their favor.
Who would have seen this thread become a dissertation on the virtues of okra? 🙂 especially fried. 🙂
I eat four things, and only four things, that are “breaded and fried” (or battered and fried, but we use corn meal at home): Fish, Shrimp, Okra, Onion Rings. And generally nothing else that is deep fried. That change in my diet lost me 20 pts on the bad cholesterol and 30 lbs. So fried okra is a key part of keeping my southern heritage alive.
Yes-but don’t you put hot sauce on them? My father claimed that the only way to eat them is to apply 5 drops of hot sauce ad then suck the down.
Better okra than chocolate. like some folks here advocate.
@ Nick Bulbeck:It’s so gratifying when things happen like they’re s’posed to! The earth made its revolution around the sun again like it has so many times before, and it’s still appropriately tilted on its axis! Whew! (I’m only partially kidding. I do get a kick out of it.)
If babies were born in a vacuum then I wouldn’t be here typing comment on this blog. Grandma A married at 17. Grandma B married at 30.
Time to ask no-greaterjoy.org what they think about cows and bulls and how to properly relate to one another in a peaceful manner without turning into cannibalistic cows.
Strange as it is cannibalism is mentioned in the bible.
Oh yeah…….If you mention that homosexuality is as low as cannibalism. Expect harassment.
Its easy to do a few social science experiments and see how many negative comments brew.
Reprobate comes to mind in that instance that harassment brews its pretty (or shall I say “ugly”) face.
With this in the blurb – “We look forward to sharing the findings of this survey as we learn the successes and to warn of the pitfalls experienced over the last generation.” – it is pretty obvious that the survey is rigged.
Through a glass darkly wrote:
Exactly. Somehow I suspect my responses will fall within the “warning of the pitfalls” section!
@Dee – your comment about clams made me think of the one time in Connecticut when I ate full bellied (and fried) clams. Not a good experience. I do like the regular fried clams, though.
@Dee – and what about clam fritters!
NC Now: Head down to the far southeast corner of the Tar Heel State, and stop for lunch in ‘downtown’ Tabor City at the Todd House, just above the SC line. The fried okra they serve is not breaded. It’s chopped as if you’d use it for breaded okra. It’s fabulous! The real okra flavor comes through. I plan many a trip to coincide with noontime dinner or supper at the Todd House. Grandmamma’s southern cooking, quick and cheap!
NC Now wrote:
And exactly why is that a problem? LOL
@ dee: no no no! That destroys the taste!
But then, I *love* good sushi and sashimi… 😉
I don’t have a Twitter account but I wanted to respond to your tweet about Sojourn Church. Perhaps you are not aware that he is in Louisville and wrote this blog when he first heard C.J. Mahaney was moving to his town:
I responded with a private email to Daniel Montgomery highlighting some facts concerning Mahaney, sexual abuse cover-up and blackmail and urged him to rethink his endorsement of Mahaney. Not surprisingly Mr. Montgomery never responded to my email. My impression of the young pastor is a that of a guy desperately wanting to gain celebrity status in the T4G/TGC club.
Well . . . a survey is only as reputable as the organization doing the work 🙂
Unfortunately, not much is to be expected. I don’t believe these men have a clue how to conduct a proper survey.
(off topic for this particular thread)
I remember on an old thread here saying it’s my gut feeling and impression that “biblical counselors” (a.k.a. nouthetic counselors) do not have as a goal helping people once for all overcome their pain and psychological problems (as opposed to Non Christian counselors who do have that as a goal),
but are preoccupied with having abuse victims, people with clinical depression, etc., sit around dwelling indefinitely on their sin. Which isn’t going to actually help such people heal and move on.
Well. Someone explained at “Stuff Christian Culture Likes” group that his church is conferring with CTO Ministries to provide counseling services at or with his church. His church members were pointed to this PDF below for more information.
In this PDF, these biblical counselor guys came right out on page one and say clearly (paraphrasing),
“Non Christian counselors are interested in helping you get better and moving on; Biblical counselors are not. We want you to think about your sins. Bad stuff that happens to you is wonderful because God made it happen to you because God wanted you to learn a lesson from the bad stuff.”
You can view that horrifying PDF here:
PDF: Secular Vs Biblical Counseling explained (from the Biblical Counseling Perspective
According to that page, it looks like biblical counselors do not want hurting, damaged people to “function in society” or “experience some degree of ‘recovery’ from addictions, … weaknesses,” and so on. Holy moly. 😯
Well, then color me a hopeless New England Yankee because I’ll eat not only fried clams, but also clam chowder and white clam sauce over pasta. My Midwestern mother won’t touch them though, not even fried. Rhode Island clam chowder is a sin, of course, but that’s not the clams’ fault. And if you don’t know what RI clam chowder is, then you’re not from the CT/RI border. 🙂
Being a millennial, you can safely assume that I’m familiar with Rachel Held Evans’ blog. 😉
Her posts, and the posts of various other blogs that I read on the topic, are encouraging. The comment boxes, well, sometimes, are less so. On occasion, one just has to step away from the internet for a bit to calm down.
A post script here.
I just re-read CTO’s counseling list under “(goals of) Biblical counseling,” and on number #5, they have (as a goal of biblical counseling):
I find that very funny, because all four points under “biblical” negate point 5.
If you want to look at how a ‘Christian can love his fellow man according to biblical standards,’ that can be found under the list of “how secular people approach counseling” on their page. 😆
Their ‘secular list of counseling goals’ looks more godly, compassionate, competent, effective, and humane to me than the so-called “biblical” one. 😆
@ Hester: is it anything like Manhattan clam chowder?
@ Hester: oh, and – white clam sauce is yummy!
Shameful – Thabiti Anyabwile – Former assistant pastor of Mark Dever’s and a rising celebrity in the Neo-Calvinist movement is set to add his name to the shameful list of those endorsing the known blackmailer and sexual abuse cover-up preacher C.J. Mahaney. Anyabwile speaks at Mahaney’s church tomorrow.
No,not like Manhattan. It’s actually made with a clear broth. I ‘ll take New England style anyday….lots of milk and potatoes with the clams.
🙂 I wrote you when I’d read the first sets of comments under that post, and they were kind, plus a couple warmly welcomed for commenting on their own celibate relationship. But going back, yah, more of a mix.
I can imagine that you need much time away from the incessant critical buzz inside the church, on- and off- line. I know I need it just because I am a woman, so…gah! Take care of yourself!
I cannot believe this. Well, I can, but it makes me sick. I hear them saying that if one’s bad feelings are due to some situation, then don’t try to change the situation since God is doing this to you. So if I feel bad because my child is desperately sick, I should not get him medical attention, because God is doing this to my child in order to make me feel bad apparently because of some sin on my part? And this “god” apparently does not want my child or me to ever get over this, according to the logical application of a lot of what they are saying.
This is not just ignorance, I am thinking, This is huge spiritual deception. It makes Jesus a liar and a fraud and an enemy of God, what with all that healing and forgiving and restoring and shameful stuff like that which he did. I have to quit here–I am about to cry. This is so hugely awful.
@ Lin: I looked up some recipes for Rhode Island chowder and it sounds good to me. I like New England style, but it is so rich and heavy that I can only handle it in small doses. Plus, I agree with some folks who say that it obscures the flavor of the clams.
It’s valid harp.
But their “solutions” are all bunk.
NC Now wrote:
Which part do you consider valid and what solutions do you propose? The only non-patriarchal people I read about that think people are taking too long to mature are the parents promoting free-range kids. However, some of them seem to take things too far in the other direction. From talking to our parents, raised in the 1950s, Mr. Hoppy and I have concluded that many families had more kids, but the parents didn’t actually supervise their kids that much.
Kids don’t need to act like adults at age 9. But growing up is about, well, growing up.
In it’s most basic form the job of parents is to turn toddlers into adults. If you allow young people to act like “kids” until they are 20 then you have molded their minds to be kids forever.
Oh, let me add, I read about Boomers complaining about twenty-somethings still living with their parents. They don’t seem to have any solutions, especially for the un- and under-employed college grads. They somehow all assume that every one of them stays up all night playing video games.
Speaking of video games, I have a friend that is in her early 20s. When she was taking a pre-requisite course for nursing school, she said that nearly ever one of the women in the class had complained about her husband/boyfriend wasting too much time on video games. I do think this is a big problem, but it’s mostly boys and men that succumb to it.
I am a fan of New England style clam chowder. I have had the Manhattan style and consider it a waste of clams. I am unfamiliar with the third style. BTW, I have had fried clams and once grilled (on little skewers) over charcoal; neither did I think worth the effort.
Yesterday I mentioned 9 year-old ship captains. I don’t agree with that and don’t know if it’s even true. I was just reporting one example I heard promoted at church.
Meanwhile, there is a guy on Julie Anne’s blog who seriously believes that people taking birth control pills or Prozac causes them to be insane. He used the word insane. 😯
He’s also trying to say that the Bible verse that talks about ‘not suffering a witch to live’ is a reference to birth control. 😯
(That is all in the Swanson Womb Tomb thread).
I have to be in the *mood* for fried clams (with bellies) and enjoy an occasional fritter. I lost my appetite for the fritters, after I worked at our town fair, (in a charity booth) cooking them all day. 🙂
As disgusting as Michael Pearl (author of “To Train Up a Child”) is, back when I used to read his materials, he wrote something that still influences me. He thought that whoever is the youngest person that can do a job should be given the job. He gave the example of having a toddler carry firewood one piece at a time.
I think this idea can be taken to an extreme (and he’s the type that probably does use it that way), but as a result, we’ve made our kids clean up after themselves much more than other kids their age. For example, when my oldest turned seven, he had to start doing his own laundry. We have a front-loading washer, so he can reach, and I buy the pre-measured laundry detergent packets for him so he doesn’t make a mess. It takes him maybe ten minutes per week, so I shake my head when I read about parents doing all the laundry for their teenagers.
Pearl also mentioned that he thought his job was to train himself out of a job. He was hoping his kids would be mature enough to not need parents by age 15. I don’t think he was referring to kicking them out or anything, just that if he and his wife died, the kids would be okay. (I have no idea how he though they’d support themselves.)
While I greatly, greatly dislike most of what he teaches, I do think that many people infantilize their kids with the legalistic religious rules or helicopter parenting. I read about parents who are afraid to let their kids walk to the store at age 12 (in safe towns), which seems a bit nuts. Girls used to start babysitting before then!
@ HoppyTheToad: I’m a baby boom kid and I don’t think that! We’re not monolithic in our ideas or beliefs, y’know… 😉
I guess Thabiti needs to do some prep for the upcoming T4G. Thanks for keeping us informed!
Some are, though. Example:
Folsom Street Fair, San Francisco, September 30
I do not agree with homosexuality and am opposed to the militant wings attempting to force anyone and everyone to accept it. You can’t just live and let live, you are expected to embrace it.
I don’t have an issue with homosexuals who just live their lives and go about their business.
I have the same problem with militant atheists, as well. If you want to be an atheist, I’m fine with that, but I don’t get the ones who are angry all the time, trying to get references to God scraped off every last public building, suing Christians for wearing crosses at work, etc.
I don’t really care what people do or believe in their lives, but I get very uncomfortable living in a nation that is penalizing people for holding different opinions or disagreeing on things.
And the Catholic Pope is doing things the way they are supposed to be done.
Ah, yes, that anti-birth control guy was a real nutter! I didn’t realize that all the female politicians were crazy and destroying the economy, the family, the culture, etc, because they are all made insane by birth control pills – even the ones in menopause! I’m assuming that most female politicians are past menopause, but I doubt a guy like that gave an logical thought to his ridiculous claims. Also, did you know that the “devil pill” is bankrupting the country? And the solution is to have a government DNA database and track down the dad of every baby born out of wedlock and make him pay for a lifetime supply of contraceptives for the mom?
@ Deb:Did you mean he has to sully his rep in order to be acceptable at T4G?
The smiley was supposed to be D!
I know not all Boomers believe that. It’s just that the people *I’ve seen* complaining about extended adolescence have all been patriarchal types, free-range parents, or Boomers.
Some Christians teach that marriage in general acts as a “sanctifier” for bother husband and wife. I’m waiting with baited breath for the folks teaching this to explain how adult singleness also acts as a sanctifier.
I thought it was the Holy Spirit’s job to sanctify people, not other people’s, or not marriage.
I asked him about Viagra. I think Viagra is covered, and I bet not all men using it are married, and the ones who are may be cheating on their wives. I don’t know why Viagra would get covered but not birth control for women.
Not all women who take birth control pills use it for sex or to prevent reproduction, there are other health reasons they take it. To that point, he had some argument about pill use causing cancer.
Just about the whole lot of the celebrity Neo-Cals have sold out their Christian integrity to support an unrepentant sinner. They don’t care how evil the acts are so long as the doctrine is correct (well, there is that little bit about love thy neighbor, but that’s such a minor thing).
These people up in arms never mention Viagra. If insurance covers Viagra, it should cover contraceptives as well.
Many anti-contraception types are disingenuous when they mention negative side effects. How do I know? Because I’ve read the rants where they act like using condoms and spermicide is going to give a person cancer or a heart attack, while ignoring the deleterious health effects of endlessly being pregnant or nursing. In comparison, “health nuts” might mention reasons to avoid hormonal methods, but will encourage alternatives, such as using a diaphragm with homemade spermicide.
I read somewhere, “Wired” magazine I think, about a temporary, easily reversible vasectomy being studied in India. The researchers were getting emails from all over the world from men who wanted to participate. The procedure involved injected some chemical into the vas deferens that disabled (but didn’t block) the sperm going by. Since the sperm couldn’t swim, fertilization didn’t happen. The researchers say that a simple injection of something else could clear the chemical out and allow the man to have kids. If it works, it could be the best option for most people, since hormones aren’t involved, and it would be reversible. I can imagine parents lining up to have it done to their teenage sons to ensure they didn’t get a girl pregnant.
You’re choosing an extreme example, though. Lord knows, s&m and suchlike have plenty of heterosexual devotees, yet nobody *ever* talks about them in these kinds of reductive arguments. (Which is one of the big reasons they are, well, reductive.)
Kind, but – of course – true. Indeed, if everyone on earth read my stuff then Jesus could return immediately.
(OK, now I’ve really nuked the fridge.)
@ HoppyTheToad: without longterm studies on possible detrimental effects,, it hardly seems feasible, nor something a lot of people would accept without proof that it’s not harmful, in the short and long term.
It sure would be great if it ‘*is* safe, though! I’d love to see men taking responsibility for their actions re. contraception, instead of leaving it up to women.
One day they will face the children who were hurt. i wonder how proud they will be then?
Agreed. It is a travesty.
When I said “if it works,” I really meant “if it works and is safe.”
Nick Bulbeck wrote:
This is a very, very good point.
Hi way off subject but I can’t help myself. A teenager who is a facebook friend linked to the trailer for the new Son of God movie. I clicked on the link thinking I couldn’t believe another caucasion Jesus. What should pop up but an ad for Poo-Pourri. I about laughed myself silly. You know there are people out there that believe Jesus was so perfect he didn’t poop. So he wouldn’t benefit from this wonderful product. This probably doesn’t come across as good as it did in my head but there it is.
I always find this hilarious because the Boomers who complain about lazy 20-somethings, are the same people who force me not to work every Sunday at my own church (I’m a church organist) because I need a “day off.” If a church organist wants Sundays off, they got into the wrong line of work. So I sub around at other churches to provide myself some semblance of an income.
I forgot my last post probably won’t get past the filters. With the dreaded P–p word and all.
Must be the week for the crazies or something. First child marriage and now this.
Yes, you can probably tell I’m from the CT side of that particular cultural divide. 🙂
North Carolina is the 4th state of the US where I’ve lived. All east of the Mississippi.
My identity isn’t a big deal but for various reasons I need to keep it somewhat hidden. If it gets revealed life will go on.
Oh blasphemy! 😉
Yep. Just how many people like McD’s frys? By that I mean the potatoes? Those potato sticks are just a delivery system for the salt and tasty fried batter.
Yes….and I’m from the Mass. perspective. 🙂 (although I now live in NE CT.)
I’ve said to people that many Christians are like vampires. They can’t see themselves and their faults in the mirror. They just seem them in others.
Not a direct answer but here’s some of my take on raising children.
The stories in the Bible or even of things in the 1800s reflected their time and place. If there was no more education for children then getting them married in their early teens had some practical results. Find me a teenager at any age who wants their life to involve working for room and board for their parents for 5 or 10 years. And remember that many (most?) of these situations involved the couple moving in with the parents family. It was flat out a different time.
As to raising kids. To be blunt we should be raising adults, NOT raising kids. Let them have fun but at some point in their life they have to start acting as if fun isn’t he only goal in life. And as I mentioned earlier if you wait till their are 20 to give that message it will likely never be heard.
Teach kids to make choices and decisions. Not to argue better. (The entire debate thing.) When my first was about 5 and we were having a lot of arguments about breakfast cereal I made up an arbitrary rule. They could pick ANY cereal they wanted on the shelf with the following stipulations. Under 10 grams of sugar per serving. They had to eat all of it before we buy another box. Want that toy but the cereal tastes like dirt. Well eat dirt for a week then think long and hard before the toy drives the decision. My kids are now in their 20s and think it was a great plan. Not so much at the time. How scientific was my choice of 10 grams of sugar. It eliminated about 1/3 of the choices. That was it. What I did was turn the decision over to them and they had to live with it. And since it wasn’t life threatening I didn’t care that Frosted Flakes met the rules. (They tried it once and didn’t like it.)
On another choice one of them was in a big argument about wearing a coat on a cold day. I just told him to stand outside for 5 minutes without his coat then he could decide. He didn’t make the 5 minutes. He wore the coat.
Were we perfect? No way. But our goal was to raise adults, not 20 year old kids.
@Hester – it’s funny that I grew up on the Connecticut-Rhode Island border and I never knew what Rhode Island clam chowder was. I’ve eaten it, but didn’t know what it was called. At this stage of life, New England clam chowder may be a bit too rich (as well as the fried clams and fritters). However, I am a true New Englander. Once we had a guest speaker at CLC who was talking about something distasteful and he said, “I’d rather eat seafood”. I thought he was joking, but he was just from the midwest and truly didn’t like seafood.
On a side note, I have the t.v. on, and on “Undercover Boss” they have the chairman of Mohegan Sun. A taste of home.
A brief side note: I just took the survey, and I can take it twice from the same computer. It apparently doesn’t remember IP addresses so the same person could potentially take it twice, since you only have to give them your email address if you want to be entered for the iPad drawing.
@ Former CLC’er:
I enjoyed that show tonight, though I rarely watch it. Seemed like a good boss and an interesting business that most evangelicals would condemn for existing.
@ HoppyTheToad: hippy, I was thinking out loud… or just plain rambling. Take your pick! 🙂
@ numo: err, Hoppy. Stupid autocorrect!
And then there’s that perpetual old reprobate contrarian Potter who prefers the Manhattan style concoction.
Everyone’s free to have their own opinion about whether two men or two women should be having intimate relations, but that’s not the sum total of what “homosexuality” is. (“You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means” – Inigo Montoya)
Some day, people will realize how absurd it sounds to say they don’t agree with “homosexuality.” It exists. Some people are LGBT. The earth is round. You don’t have to agree that either assertion is true, but both are facts, and it sounds just about as absurd to disagree with both.
And that’s what most LGBT people want. Some of them would like to be able to marry their partner and many would appreciate not get fired if their employer finds out that they’re not straight (this really happens; it, too, is a fact).
People who say vicious, hateful things are free to do so, and I don’t see that changing in the near future. The government won’t stop them (witness the continued toleration of white supremacist groups and Westboro Baptist Church). They might get crucified in the court of public opinion, but the US Constitution never promised us the freedom from the consequences of our speech.
Frankly, given what people who either were or were perceived as LGBT used to go through – being beaten or murdered, with law enforcement turning a blind eye – I’m glad that public opinion has shifted, even if it makes a few safe and privileged people uncomfortable.
Speaking of Westboro Baptist Church, I read a book by someone whose parents moved to join that church when she was able middle-school aged. The church had a bizarre mix of rules for the kids. In some ways, they were given much more freedom than the teens in most patriarchal churches. They went to school, girls were encouraged to do school sports, teens could travel all over the country to protest, and girls were encouraged to attend college.
In other ways, the rules were much more extreme. The screaming the author endured for even talking to boys outside the church was insane. Also, you could only marry someone from Westboro Baptist, and since most members were related, many of the founder’s grandkids wouldn’t find someone to marry.
I totally agree with you. I, too, believe that homosexuality just “is.”
One of the most impactful days of my blogging life was spent interviewing Justin Lee or should I say, letting Justin teach me. My thoughts and prayers are with those who must struggle with this reality in their lives.
I hope that I can convey my care and concern in a way that is understood. I tried to do so once, before I started this blog and I didn’t say the right things, even though I wanted to do so.
Since that awkward time when I inadvertently hurt someone, I have done more reading and talking and pray that I have become a better listener.
Muff Potter wrote:
Now that does give me pause. Repent. Tomatoes and clams must never, ever be in the same pot!
The thing I found strangest about Westboro is that she said they never tried to convert anyone to being (their brand of) Christian. Phelps and the others were Calvinists that didn’t believe in evangelism. They protested because they were convinced God wanted them to act as prophets (or something) and warn the world of impending doom. Of course, a real prophet would hope people would repent, but no, that wasn’t their goal.
They protested all sorts of things, but homosexuality was definitely the hot button issue. The author stated that Phelps apparently had a negative experience at sleep away camp (?) as a boy or teen that he wouldn’t talk about. If I remember correctly, readers were left to infer that perhaps he was molested and that’s partly why he became so extreme.
Phelps isn’t a main character in the book. The author focused much more on another women (a daughter, maybe?) who ran the day-to-day operations. She, like many church members, was a lawyer, and continued to work despite somewhere around ten kids. Kids were sent to school, perhaps because homeschooling doesn’t fit in with all the protesting, or maybe because it was the 1990s, before homeschooling exploded.
Maybe many people don’t like the idea that people are born gay or bisexual because then they have to wonder about what if one of their kids turns out to be gay? Maybe if there was a more obvious culture of celibate gay Christians, people might in time be more comfortable with it? (Or maybe it will be like so many other things, and we just have to wait for the people with old views to die off: doctors who didn’t believe in hand washing, people against women voting, etc.)
I think one problem is that for many conservative Christians, their most memorable experience with openly gay people has been related to seeing or reading about gay pride parades or drag shows at college. When I was in college, before I became a Christian, I went to a few gay pride club meetings and the drag show they put on. The drag show had an ASL interpreter and the contestants went crazy trying to make the man sign various lewd things. Events like that do not help reduce the stereotype of promiscuity. I’m sure many gay people are also disgusted by behavior like that, but conservative Christians probably don’t realize it.
How are you penalized for “not agreeing with homosexuality”?
Including the guy who wrote the Malleus Malefacarium
This is the first time I’ve developed a hankering for southern fried food while reading this blog. Would it be OK to request a good recipe for fried okra? I could use corn meal, but not wheat.
There is a difference between a “known” offender and a convicted offender. In many cases “known” equates to “suspected of” or “suspected of but can’t prove it” And it would also be prudent to wait and see if Thabiti endorses or condemns this person.
The youngest recorded American sea captain obtained his Master's Certificate at the age of 16 and took his first ship out at 19
"Captain Guy Earle was a Veteran Fishing Captain of the SS Kyle of Carbonear Newfoundland and was manned by 100 men at times. At the age of 8 years old he began accompanying his Father Arthur Earle on his Voyages North to Labrador. Starting as a cabin boy and learned his labor's well and sank his energies into the Labor's of life at sea, eventually becoming one of the great skippers of his time, rightfully taking his place among the great seamen, Captain James Pike, Captain Cyril Taylor and Captain Ned Rorke of Carbonear – all of whom gave the town a reputation as maker of great seamen. 8 years after his first voyages with his Father Guy surviving a rare disease, Scarlet Fever and beating the odds he became skipper of his Fathers Schooner trading back and forth to Labrador. Captain Guy a Master mariner at the age of 19 commanded his first 3-masted stern schooner Betoine in 1938, this was his first Atlantic voyage with a load of salt fish for Portugal. Obtaining his Captains ticket at the Age of 16 with everyone believing he was 18, becoming the youngest known North American Sea Captain ever to date."
It appears that you get arrested in Scotland for this very thing
My personal acquaintance with the openly gay community is less than I’d like it to be, but I do know that some of them (somewhere between 1% and 99%) are exactly as you describe. That is, they are simply building their identity, and not craving to expose their genitalia in public like a bunch of drunk English tourists on a Club 18-30 holiday. (That culture fosters both gay and straight sexual indulgence.)
On the subject of drooling sexual excess, the “men of Sodom” whose behaviour is so infamously noted in Genesis 19 were almost certainly not gay per se. (I mean, think about it for a moment – an entire town, gay? Do me a favour…) Homosexual abuse is almost universal in cruel and oppressive settings, such as the clandestine detention centres of brutal dictatorships; in that context it has little or nothing to do with sexual attraction and everything to do with the assertion of power. The mob in Sodom were most likely a bunch of men out of control, probably drunk, who didn’t care who or what they *****ed because it gave them a rush regardless.
In Romans 1, Paul refers specifically to men and women who have exchanged their normal sexual desires for unnatural ones. This does not remotely describe the young man who finds himself struggling with same-sex attraction in his late teens (I am thinking of someone specific, whom I know).
Nick Bulbeck wrote:
My daughter’s best friend is gay. I really like that boy and would lay into anyone that bashes him, verbally or otherwise. But that doesn’t mean I always know what to do with him.
I’m learning a lot from him and having him around.
Wasn’t there an investigative reporter in KS who dug up all the dirt on Phelps and proved that he’s basically an abusive wacko? And aren’t one or two of his sons estranged from him?
Gav Whi wrote:
Thabiti endorses CJ by appearing at his church. Period. Also, I have met a couple of the families whose children were hurt and affected for life. For one of them, the pedophile who went to jail when the reported him reportedly above the objections of those leaders.
As for prudent, the church has done “prudent” for years and has gotten away with garbage when it comes to pedophilia. I think it is prudent of TW to say precisely what he said. Any man or woman who appears at that church speaks volumes by their actions. It is, in my opinion, despicable.
I have chosen to believe these families. Too many families with too many similar stories.And in the USA, I do not know the laws, as you have pointed out in previous communication, in England, I have a right to choose whom I will believe. I don’t believe CJ and gang. I do believe the families of these children.
I have let you back on this blog so long as you play nice. Let’s start by not lecturing people as to your “rules” for prudence.
@ Gav Whi:
I am not impressed with Tony Miano nor his arrest. He is now planning on going back with his wife, after he convinces a bunch of Christians into giving him money for his stand for Jesus, and doing the same thing. How impressive! They are coming to Jesus in droves.
That is so good. We must always seek first to understand. I wish I had had such an experience when I was younger.
And a daughter.
At least one of them is an Atheist.
You may find more than you want to know in the above links
Here is an old blog post from a friend who found the link concerning Nate Phelps.
Here is a short excerpt from it and comments from women, myself included, who are processing how sick some pastors can be.
Back when I went to college, one of the girls in our suite was bisexual. At the time she has a girlfriend back home who was controlling. The rest of us didn’t know how to protect her from her girlfriend.
Also, she liked Boy George. And on a graffiti wall she wrote the words, “Do you really want to hurt me? Do you really want to make me cry?”
And underneath it, someone wrote, “Yes, I do.”
It really opened my eyes to the ugliness that exists in some people.
And yes, I look back on that and consider it a learning experience.
@Arce – I enjoyed the Undercover Boss show; however, I was disappointed that he didn’t spend more time at the original Connecticut casino, which is quite near where I grew up. Yes, I know a lot of evangelicals would condemn the business, and I myself only participate when I go there to eat. 🙂
@ Gav Whi:
Julie Anne has looked into that event:
@ Gav Whi:
The issue of “innocent until proven guilty” is not applicable here. Considering that there have been convictions of members in his congregations, wisdom tells us that CJ, at least, did not lead properly. When leaders unequivocally support poor leadership, especially of such a nature and with the surrounding detailed and many accusations, their veracity is destroyed. I would never belong to a group with such leaders. I would not be able to trust them.
Plus, prudence asks us to support those who are legally proven to have been hurt rather than siding with a famous leader. There is no prudence in doing what our culture constantly does, give celebrities the pass, “in case”.
Jesus farted. Along with his hangnails, runny nose, and embarrassment over a social misstep, it encourages me.
Nor am I and I have spoken out against their tactics at “theweeflea” blog run by a Free Church minister. If you look at what they say, how they say it and where they say it, one can draw the conclusion that they are seeking to provoke a reaction rather than save souls. Having said that, there is growing concern that preaching the Gospel is being shut down by those who don’t like the message.
Teehee. I guess Freddy isn’t up on the latest Biblical scholarship indicating ancient prescientific notions about testicles are wrapped up in that headcovering passage. 😉
Edit: Discussion of the specific words that might cause moderation is not allowed.
Very interesting article that seems to clear up the confusing passage about head covering, and which also suggests that the idea of a husband “covering” his wife so that she can speak is about as far out as the nearest other habitable planet.
GBTC and/or Deebs wrote:
Though some of them will be reasonably obvious…
Unfortunately, “Manchester United” is not among them.
“The suction power of her hair”
I love ancient anatomy.
Well, thank God someone remembered what this is all about. I haven’t been on the blog long (first time writing) but I wondered…wondered where was the grace, where was reason, and most of all, where was truth. (I’m a grammy too, AND I appreciate humor.). It struck me as funny that I was actually looking at Ken Ham (another first time) on “Answers in Genesis” when I ran across these comments. I do not know the man’s views on homeschooling, but I certainly respect his sounding the alarm on Satan’s attacks on the Faith at this point in time and the need to be a “contender for the faith”. I would not like to get to the point where I thought that there was not a real live Enemy of Evangelicals, Reformed Protestants, Homeschoolers, Schoolschoolers, etc. souls and that my words that I think come from me, may actually be a divisive tactic…but I digress.
I live in a community where if you are not “at risk” you are the exception rather than the norm. Girls do have sex at 12, and 9 and younger…they hear gunshots outside their windows, they are prey for pimps and dealers, and you meet them 3 years later and they have children of their own, and so the cycle begins.
I only want to give them one thing and that is love and the certainty of a Christ with a perfect church made up of imperfect people who loves them, along with the folks in Duck Dynasty and Nouthetic Counselors and RC Sproul and MC Hammer. And women who have learned to be free even with cancer, and folks who just don’t have it quite all together, but like me, are sinners saved by grace.
Liberty requires thought…all things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient. The web scares the hell out of me but I like a good game of Bejeweled 3. I would rather send my child to public school armed with the knowledge of what I believe than homeschool out of fear; point being that yeah, kiddo, you got to learn to walk this faith out rather than sit in a corner with your Christianity because there will be a time when someone must see you and see if your God can take you through a fire.
Mine can. And He’s got a great sense of humor. He made humans after all.
I saw this article late, but I was wondering how is this guy connected to Paul Washer?
I think your comment here is exactly where Dee and Deb and many other commenters are. There are people who are building walls around the faith and trying to make rules or laws that exclude others or limit them, which can deter people from coming to faith. Our faith is a response to love, not to rules. We love because He first loved us and offered forgiveness. And so our faith and love, and the forgiveness we have found, need to be emphasized to the children and to the world, not some set of man created rules. It is those rules and the excluding that flows from them, that stimulate this blog and many of the commenters.
Google the two names together and see how frequently they are in the same place with the same people.
I’m on my phone so I can’t provide a link but big news last week was that the MTV show “16 and Pregnant” led to a 5.7 percent drop in teen births in the 18 months after it came out. The research, by the Bureau of Economic Research, indicates that show accounts for 1/3 of the drop in the teen birth rate. By far the largest factor in the recent drop in the birth rate has been the abysmal economic prospects for teen parents, but the idea that a TV show has this kind of impact… maybe Swanson needs to take a look.
Point taken, thanks Dee!
@ Southwestern Discomfort: Great comment.
@ Southwestern Discomfort:
Part of my job is being in the homes of other people for a time. They often have the TV on and I am exposed to shows I ordinarily wouldn’t watch. Teen mom shows are among them.
What I noted at the end of these shows is that they give the girls watching these shows a number (or webpage or something) for them to contact and learn how to take responsibility for their sexuality.
I’m sure such a thing as a 16 year old taking responsibility for her own sexuality is something that would make Swanson and friends hyperventilate or go into cardiac arrest because they believe that men are the ones who own the wombs of their wives and daughters.
Anyway, here is an old post on an old blog talking about who owns the womb that is quite good. I’m sure some here have already seen it.
This is just for those who haven’t.
Gosh darn it. I wish I knew what I was doing to trip the moderation buttons all the time. I only linked one link.
BTW since there was discussion earlier in this thread about the Gen2 survey, I’ve written an article about it after taking it.
It wasn’t the link. It is a key word that i get moderated for as well. I dpn’t want to take it out because if I was away from the blog for awhile, that word, used in another context, could cause some issues.
As someone with 20+ years in Furry Fandom, I can attest that there is only so much you can do to distance yourself from high-profile Loud Crazies who loudly proclaim to everyone (especially the media) that They’re One of You and You’re Just Like Them.
And the Loud Crazies go towards the spotlight and media. Since they have no lives except their obsession, they can stay in the spotlight “building and maintaining their brand” 24/7/365 when the rest of us who could counter them have jobs and lives cutting into our time. It’s a lot like trying to count a Managawd with a Holy Ghost Machine Gun of Bible Bullet Proof-Texts with the real eye-glazing-over complexity of the issue. You can’t get three words of a complex rebuttal out before he’s hosing you with more Bible Bullets, each taking ten minutes to refute.
Anyone remember The Gong Show and the infamous “Popsicle Twins”?
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