The Duggars Promote Bill Gothard and the Pearls

“Mommy loves you so much that I’m not going to let you act that way. You cannot talk disrespectful to Momma, and you will obey, and hopefully, you will eventually obey joyfully.” But either way, they need to obey. I won’t budge.

Michelle Duggar on Raising a Strong-Willed Child

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christianbooks.com

When I first heard about the Duggars in late 2008, I thought they were a wholesome Christian family with one quirk – they were quiverfull proponents.  I watched their 'reality' show a couple of times but quickly lost interest.  That was over five years ago… 

Since then the Duggar agenda has become patently clear, and that will be the focus of this post.

We began to investigate the Duggar family in the summer of 2009 and did a series of posts on them.  Here are a couple articles from way back then (our blogging skills have improved quite a bit, as you can see).

"Ma Ma I Need an Appointment, I have a Boo Boo"

Fertility Friday

As the Duggars' star continued to rise, Michelle Duggar was presented with the 'Mother of the Year Award" at a baby conference held in 2010.  The event was sponsored by Vision Forum, and you guessed it…  Doug Phillips and his wife Beall presented Michelle with the award.  Here is an article that shared the news.

Michelle Duggar Receives 'Mother of the Year Award' at Historic Baby Conference (link)

Michelle Duggar, mother to 19 and star of TLC's "19 Kids and Counting" received the "Mother of the Year Award" as part of a special ceremony at the Baby Conference: A Historic Family Summit on the Triumph of Life Over the Culture of Death, held July 8-10 in San Antonio. Michelle and her husband Jim Bob were featured speakers at the event, sponsored by Vision Forum Ministries, which drew more than 1,500 to the Alamo City.

"Michelle Duggar is the real deal," noted Doug Phillips, President of Vision Forum Ministries. "She embodies the very best of a Christian role model for women. She is a highly intelligent and gracious woman of God and a capable and faithful helpmeet to her husband Jim Bob.

In addition, you can read about Michelle's achievement over at Patheos.  There is also a video of this presentation — you may want to skip to the five minute mark when the award is given.

So how does Michelle do it?  After all, the above quote seems to indicate that she is proactive in all of her children's lives.  Here is a clip of a pregnant Michelle attempting to handle two of her children while answering questions for their TV show (notice the baby in the background).

Perhaps Michelle is attempting to work on 'joyful obedience' with these two young ones…

As we began to investigate the Duggars (after blogging for several months), we quickly discovered their ties to Bill Gothard.  The Duggars utilize materials from the Advanced Training Institute (ATI) in their homeschooling pursuits, and some of the children have attended conferences held by Gothard's organization.  In fact, the oldest – Joshua – met his future bride at an ATI conference, as explained in their story (see excerpt below).

Josh: In early 2006, my Dad was campaigning for State Senate.  We were a couple weeks from the Primary Election when my family took our annual trip to the ATI Conference.  I was busy working with the A/V team, and had very little free time… but during one of the breaks I ended up talking through my lunch break with some new friends!…

Anna: …My siblings & I enjoyed meeting Joshua

Screen shot 2014-04-30 at 1.21.27 PMIf you go to their website, you will see that the Duggars are encouraging their followers to attend conferences being held by Bill Gothard's organization.  The screen shot (on the left) is what currently appears in the top right corner.  If you click on the box, it takes you straight to the ATI Family Conferences page.  The first of these events for 2014 just wrapped up at Big Sandy in Texas.  Two more conferences will be taking place in the United States as well as two abroad.  According to the Examiner, Jim Bob and Michelle spoke at the ATI conference that was just held in Texas. 

Recently, one of the 'alleged' victims of Bill Gothard, Megan Lind, wrote a letter to the Duggars asking them to reconsider their involvement with Bill Gothard's organization.  Here is what she had to say:

Dear Duggars,

I speak from the perspective of one who experienced firsthand sexual harassment that parallels the personal stories told on the whistleblower website, Recovering Grace. Those stories were written by girls who worked closely with Bill Gothard, who is the founder of ATI, the homeschool curriculum and training convention your family uses and attends every year. I hope that this open letter will be heard from the heart by your family and the many others who are questioning your continued involvement with this group. Today, I am a married mother of two. My objective is to convey to you as a parent the concern I have for children being brought up in the authoritarian lifestyle espoused by Gothard. 

My involvement in ATI set the stage for the unwanted sexual attention that I experienced at the hands of Bill Gothard. His teachings requiring unquestioning obedience by children that were taught to me by my parents, which they gained through their training via Bill Gothard’s enormously popular Basic Seminars in the early 70s. When I was a teen, I was sent to volunteer for Gothard at his seminars and training centers. Gothard paid special attention to me, and often asked me to travel in his personal van from center to center. When he was in town, Gothard would periodically request my presence in his office for long hours and late into the night for the purpose of counseling. His behavior toward me was what I would now define as predatory in nature, although at the time because of my over-protected upbringing, I was merely confused and uncomfortable. Bill would sit or stand close to me, stroke my back or my arm, and rub his hand along my leg, as he would tell me that he believed God had brought me to his ministry for a purpose. Even though Gothard taught firmly in his seminars and materials that an unmarried man should not touch a woman in this way, Gothard did so regularly with me and other girls I knew at the time.

Gothard’s followers are astoundingly loyal, even to the detriment of the victim. This may be why personal attempts to address the issues within the ATI movement have fallen on deaf ears until the recent public disclosures on the Recovering Grace website. Once, I went to Gothard’s leadership to express my discomfort with his attentions, and was severely disciplined for my efforts by being confined to my room for weeks, even for meals. At the end of my confinement, I was once again summoned to his office, and I did not complain again. This disciplinary structure pervaded his entire ministry at varying levels, and I believe that it was a direct result of his teachings.

Mr. and Mrs. Duggar, I believe that your family has a sincere desire to live your life for the glory of God, and that you desire the best possible upbringing for your children. However, I also know that the lifestyle you have chosen for your children is more dangerous to them than it is protective of them. I am aware that you list ATI as your homeschool affiliation on your public website. I also know that your family takes a prominent role in the annual homeschool seminars ATI hosts for its families. I appeal to you to reconsider your involvement with this group. Some may suggest that Gothard’s inappropriate behaviors over the past forty years which have been carefully documented on recoveringgrace.org are personal to Gothard, and should not be attributed to his teachings or to his followers, who include your family. I do believe that Gothard saw himself as above his own rules. However, I also believe that the authority structure that he designed for his followers created the opposite of its stated intention: the so-called protections designed for women and children which includes removing the right to say “no” to a person in authority has the effect of setting these same women and children up for abuse from within. I know; it happened to me.

Sincerely,

Megan Lind

Screen shot 2014-04-30 at 11.07.12 PMNot only do the Duggars promote Bill Gothard's organization, but they have endorsed Michael and Debi Pearls' books on their website, with To Train Up A Child heading the list.  Back in 2011 the Duggars did an Amazon Blitz, and the information on the left (preserved in a screen shot) is what they posted about No Greater Joy (the Pearls' ministry business).

Screen shot 2014-04-30 at 1.06.59 PM

Michael and Debi Pearl were thrilled about the Amazon Blitz that their 'friends' Jim Bob and Michelle were conducting, and they returned the favor by promoting the Duggars' latest book, A Love That Multiplies (featured at the top of this post), on their Facebook page (see the screenshot to the right).

It is apparent that there is much more going on with the Duggars than meets the eye and that their 'reality show' is just smoke and mirrors.  The next time the Duggars are heralded for their oh so wholesome lives (which has occurred in an SWBTS chapel, in a Liberty University convoction, and at the 2013 Art of Homemaking Conference held at SWBTS), just remember that they are immersed in the biblical patriarchy movement.

Lydia's Corner:   Ezekiel 23:1-49   Hebrews 10:18-39   Psalm 109:1-31  Proverbs 27:13

Comments

The Duggars Promote Bill Gothard and the Pearls — 163 Comments

  1. OK: loosely on-topic, albeit branching a little.

    Helpmeet / Help Meet / Help-Meet

    I find this phrase more unpleasant than many that more commonly trip the moderate function in the blogsphere. But for now, let me focus on just one small thing.

    There is no such word as “helpmeet”, nor any such noun-phrase as “help meet”. There never has been. Even in the musty linguistic necropolis that is King James English, there never was such word nor noun-phrase. “Meet” is an archaic word meaning “appropriate” or “suitable”, and “help” is an archaic form of “helper”. So God, stating that it is not good for Adam to be alone, creates a “help [who is] meet for him”.

    This may seem a minor point. But it’s an example of how quirks of King James English have morphed into doctrines.

  2. @ Nancy:

    I assume “whichever pony is chalk” is a horse-racing idiom describing a likely winner.

    By “the first actual comment”, I just meant that the four previous comments were all about who had commented first, second or fourth. This is, of course, a recent but well-established custom on TWW and I meant to imply no disapproval of it!

  3. “Our friends the Duggar’s are…”

    Our friends the Duggar’s what are? And who or what is the Duggar?

    (/snark)

  4. I’ve always wondered if one or more of the Duggar children will bolt. It’s at least statistically possible (probable?) given that there are 19 of them. You know how those gosh durn pesky individuality and agency things can be sometimes.

  5. @ Hester:

    Well, Susanna Wesley, the shining star of how to have a large number of children, and an amazing woman any way you look at it, had one or more children who exercised the option to just say no to how they grew up.

  6. I’ve never understood the appeal of the Duggars. Between the obvious enslavement of the daughters, who do the overwhelming majority of the work of that household, the neglected educations, terrible food, lack of any privacy, and Michelle’s compromised health, there’s no part of that lifestyle that doesn’t depress me. And that’s before we get to the religious and political whackiness.

  7. @ Nancy:
    That is the great flaw in the plan to outbreed the heathen. Children have a habit of becoming adults who choose their own paths. That, and the fact that most women aren’t actually capable of bringing a dozen + pregnancies to term.

  8. Hester wrote:

    I’ve always wondered if one or more of the Duggar children will bolt.

    I believe the Free Jinger website was conceived with that same question in mind. (Jinger is the name of one of the Duggar’s girls.)

  9. This part of Megan Lind’s letter stood out to me:
    “However, I also believe that the authority structure that he designed for his followers created the opposite of its stated intention: the so-called protections designed for women and children which includes removing the right to say “no” to a person in authority has the effect of setting these same women and children up for abuse from within. I know; it happened to me.”

    This is the same sentiment I tried to express in the previous thread. The teachings themselves are creating an environment that increases the risks for abuse.

  10. Deb

    Great post. Remember what that professor told us last year? He said that this blog was a gold mine of detailed information of the relationships and “goings on” in the evangelical world. This post adds to that base of information.

    You have successfully linked the Duggars to the Pearls and Gothard. The Duggars ares not just some harmless family promoting “family values.” It is more…much more.

  11. Hester wrote:

    I’ve always wondered if one or more of the Duggar children will bolt. It’s at least statistically possible (probable?) given that there are 19 of them. You know how those gosh durn pesky individuality and agency things can be sometimes.

    They’re also reaching the number of kids where it’s approaching 100% likelihood that at least one of the children will grow up and turn out to be batting for another team, if you catch my drift…

  12. burnrnorton wrote:

    great flaw in the plan to outbreed the heathen.

    Outbreed the heathen is such a messy idea. If they really believe that, and they really believe that the one and only basis for any decision or conclusion is the bible, and if they really believe that biblical patriarchal families are the ideal, then they will have to come out for polygamy. IMO the debate will begin soon what with this latest law in Kenya.

    My daughter, who is a pistol, noted that the guys will have to start wearing lapel pins, like forget the sonogram and just go for a selfie of ….

    Fertility cult, anyone?

  13. Hester wrote:

    I’ve always wondered if one or more of the Duggar children will bolt. It’s at least statistically possible (probable?) given that there are 19 of them. You know how those gosh durn pesky individuality and agency things can be sometimes.

    It will be Joy Anna. Wait and see. If that’s the name of the 14-year-old or so girl.

  14. Ugh. A couple of the older girls came to my town recently to promote their new book. I stayed far away from it. I cringe every time I see my friends sharing about how wholesome the show is and they never miss an episode, on and on and on. Yuck.

  15. I’ve already quietly “outed” myself at SSB. I think this may be a good opportunity to let people here know where I’ve come from. Once you understand how damaging the teachings of Gothard, the Pearls, and Vision Forum are, you have a better understanding of the environment in my former cult. TWW wrote about it in a post here:
    http://tinyurl.com/nu9a5j2 They are theologically Oneness Pentecostal with some anabaptist combined. People often compare them to some sort of Amish or Mennonite community. Thousands of visitors attend their annual fair, and they’ve sold their curriculum at homeschool book fairs.
    I’d like to see the abuse that this ideology promotes come to an end.

  16. Just wanted to bring up something mentioned in your earlier posts you linked to. The New Testament concern with longer hair on believing women is directly linked to the notion of not looking like a prostitute. Prostitutes had shaved heads to prevent lice so it was a hygiene issue. This would have been of greatest concern in port cities due to the great influx of sailors passing through. So this can be interpreted as “do not be mistaken as a prostitute so the sailors know you are not available.” I could never manage to have long hair – mine is so thick and heavy that it literally becomes painful once its past my shoulders. As it is I’m going a little crazy trying to grow out my short hair for my wedding in 5 weeks. :)

  17. Mandy wrote:

    As it is I’m going a little crazy trying to grow out my short hair for my wedding in 5 weeks. :)

    Congratulations! May your marriage be as wonderful as mine has been. Today is our 26th wedding anniversary. My hubby and I love each other more now than when we exchanged our vows. I think it has something to do with our egalitarian approach to marriage.  We HIGHLY recommend it!  😉

    Blessings to you both!

  18. The Duggars Promote Bill Gothard and the Pearls

    “These three Kings said one to another:
    ‘King unto King o’er the world is Brother’…”

    “One Hand Washes the Other…”

  19. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Dr. Fundystan, Proctologist wrote: The Duggars promote money. Not trying to be cruel, but it is the plain truth. I expect they will back whichever pony is chalk.

    “IT’S ALL ABOUT THE BENJAMINS, BABY!”

    This is the lesson I believe the Duggar kids are learning all too well…

  20. I’m sure this point has been made somewhere, perhaps even at TWW, but Megan Lind’s open letter makes it worth repeating.

    Had Bill Gothard been a corporate CEO rather than a ministry president, his conduct toward young female subordinates could easily be considered sexual harassment. I’m frankly surprised his defenders haven’t figured that out.

  21. Nancy wrote:

    My daughter, who is a pistol, noted that the guys will have to start wearing lapel pins, like forget the sonogram and just go for a selfie of ….
    Fertility cult, anyone?

    They might as well just adopt the Venus of Willendorf as their symbol and be done with it. Why reinvent the wheel?

  22. burnrnorton wrote:

    That is the great flaw in the plan to outbreed the heathen. Children have a habit of becoming adults who choose their own paths. That, and the fact that most women aren’t actually capable of bringing a dozen + pregnancies to term.

    All that is true, but their view is also not biblical.

    Family lines were physical in Old Testament (some Christians today seem to model their families or understanding of “what is family” on Old Testament cultural models).

    Under the New Testament, the family is spiritual and supposed to be spiritual. This is one of the things that made Christianity revolutionary (anyone and everyone could join and be a member), but today’s Christian groups, who are obsessed with “the (nuclear) family,” actually negate this (by teaching one has to be married with children to count, make an impact, or be considered mature and godly).

    Jesus said (from Mark 16:15),

    He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.

    Jesus said nothing about marrying and having children for the kingdom of God.

    In regards to making converts, Jesus said to preach the Gospel, not “marry and have children.”

    Paul didn’t issue a command or suggestion along those lines, either, but said things like,

    Now for the matters you wrote about: “It is good for a man not to have sexual relations with a woman.”

    ….But if you do marry, you have not sinned; and if a virgin marries, she has not sinned. But those who marry will face many troubles in this life, and I want to spare you this.

    …I would like you to be free from concern. An unmarried man is concerned about the Lord’s affairs—how he can please the Lord.

    33 But a married man is concerned about the affairs of this world—how he can please his wife— 34 and his interests are divided.

    An unmarried woman or virgin is concerned about the Lord’s affairs…

    If God was insisting on Christians marrying and having children (for Gospel sharing purposes), we would not see Paul basically saying singlehood (and childlessness) are preferable for doing God’s work, but there it it.

    Jesus Christ, from Matt. 12:

    Someone told him [Jesus], “Your mother and brothers are standing outside, wanting to speak to you.”

    48 He replied to him, “Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?” 49 Pointing to his disciples, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers.
    50 For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.”

    And, Jesus from Matt 10 (speaking of earthly family),

    37 “Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.

    Being childless and single were considered wrong or bad – and dangerous or unfortunate for women – back in Middle Eastern nations in and before the time of Jesus. Women in some cultures then depended on a male for economic support.

    Jesus changed all that. A woman no longer had to have a spouse and son to care for her, that was in part what a local group of believers (church) was for, to help care for each other.

    Also, according to a teaching by Instone-Brewer, it was illegal to stay single in ancient Rome. You could be sued for staying single, if for instance, you did not remarry after you divorced, and that is why early Christians asked Paul questions about remarrying, divorce, etc. You can listen to him discuss it here:
    Remarriage in the 1st Century (commentary by Instone Brewer)

    Today’s conservative Christians (especially the socially conservative ones, the Quivering groups, etc), with their extreme focus on “the family” (marriage, natalism, and related, e.g., “family values”), have actually negated the work and teachings of Jesus Christ.

  23. Daisy wrote:

    Also, according to a teaching by Instone-Brewer, it was illegal to stay single in ancient Rome.

    As it is today in Focus-on-the-Family Churches. They’ve already adopted the Roman tradition of Paterfamilias (Patriarch with Absolute Power), so why not that as well?

  24. Nancy wrote:

    My daughter, who is a pistol, noted that the guys will have to start wearing lapel pins, like forget the sonogram and just go for a selfie of ….

    Another ancient Roman custom — wearing amulets of a phallus for Fertility. Cult of Priapus (god of the male erection) and all that.

  25. BeenThereDoneThat wrote:

    “However, I also believe that the authority structure that he designed for his followers created the opposite of its stated intention: the so-called protections designed for women and children which includes removing the right to say “no” to a person in authority has the effect of setting these same women and children up for abuse from within. I know; it happened to me.”

    I’ve mentioned this a few times on older threads. A lot of gender role teachings by Christians, whether we are talking about biblical womanhood, patriarchy, or complementarianism, or whatever term we’re going by, esteem codependency as being “godly.”

    One of the biggest qualities of codependency is a fear of, or a reluctance to, say no to people, to have boundaries.

    Usually people become codependent (that is, they always are passive, have a hard time saying no, have weak boundaries, and instantly capitulate to other people to avoid arguments or fighting) voluntarily, or on their own, because it’s a coping skill they learned in childhood, from being abused or neglected.

    However, I see Christians / churches encouraging this behavior even for adult women and saying it’s a godly form of behavior.

    Females are usually the ones who get this message to be passive and never say no, but some Christian men also get this message.

    I guess it depends on the particular church one is brought up in- but it’s usually encouraged more among females than males. Females also get this message from secular culture, in school and other sources.

    I linked to a study or two on this blog some time ago showing how many school teachers reward females in the classroom for stereotypical codependent traits while encouraging / rewarding males when males do not (eg, being quiet vs speaking up, risk aversion vs risk taking, being passive vs being assertive, etc).

  26. singleman wrote:

    I’m sure this point has been made somewhere, perhaps even at TWW, but Megan Lind’s open letter makes it worth repeating.
    Had Bill Gothard been a corporate CEO rather than a ministry president, his conduct toward young female subordinates could easily be considered sexual harassment. I’m frankly surprised his defenders haven’t figured that out.

    501(c)3s seem to have their privileges? In more than one way . . . :(

  27. “Mommy loves you so much that I’m not going to let you act that way. You cannot talk disrespectful to Momma, and you will obey, and hopefully, you will eventually obey joyfully.” But either way, they need to obey. I won’t budge.

    When I hear the term “joyful obedience” or “cheerful obedience”, I see a scene from the WW2 movie Is Paris Burning?:

    The German occupation authorities are Making an Example and Disposing of Vermin. Night outside Paris, lit by floodlights or military vehicle headlights. Close up shot of young German after young German (though they look much more Scandinavian than German, with blond hair in regulation cuts and sparkling blue eyes). Cheerful joyful Nordic face after cheerful joyful Nordic face, eyes sparkling in the flood/headlights. As do the double Sieg-runes on the right collar-patches of their uniform tunics and the Hakenkreuz decals on their Stalhelme. Cheerfully, Joyfully obedient.

    Then the Vermin are dragged off the cattle car transports next to the fresh mass grave, the Order is given, and the exterminations begin. Cheerfully, Joyfully Obedient. “Ich habe nur meine Befehle ausgefert.”

  28. @ Daisy:

    I think you might be making too much of a connection between codependency and passivity. They are separate issues. A person can be one without being the other.

  29. @ Daisy:

    And Post Script, the point of why I posted that: codependents make easier abuse targets than non codependents.

    Books and blogs I’ve read on these subjects say that many abusers, or ordinary mean, rude, obnoxious people, intentionally choose “easy” targets, such as codependents, because they are easier to control and victimize. They don’t put up a fight. They sit there in silence and take mistreatment off people. Bullies love them.

  30. Bridget wrote:

    singleman wrote: I’m sure this point has been made somewhere, perhaps even at TWW, but Megan Lind’s open letter makes it worth repeating. Had Bill Gothard been a corporate CEO rather than a ministry president, his conduct toward young female subordinates could easily be considered sexual harassment. I’m frankly surprised his defenders haven’t figured that out. 501(c)3s seem to have their privileges? In more than one way . . .

    But the internet is the great equalizer!

    Glad the word is finally getting out about these so-called Christian leaders. :-)

  31. Josh wrote:

    They’re also reaching the number of kids where it’s approaching 100% likelihood that at least one of the children will grow up and turn out to be batting for another team, if you catch my drift…

    Do tell? Or, explain further.

  32. singleman wrote:

    Had Bill Gothard been a corporate CEO rather than a ministry president, his conduct toward young female subordinates could easily be considered sexual harassment. I’m frankly surprised his defenders haven’t figured that out.

    Church people tend to partition off church/religious life from non-church stuff and make special exceptions for religious people, or think religious people should be handled differently.

    It’s like in these cases of child sexual abuse, a lot of regular church goers think to go to the preacher first and blab to him about it, where my first impulse would be to call the police, not the church preacher.

  33. Daisy wrote:

    Today’s conservative Christians (especially the socially conservative ones, the Quivering groups, etc), with their extreme focus on “the family” (marriage, natalism, and related, e.g., “family values”), have actually negated the work and teachings of Jesus Christ.

    Good comment. I don’t know about “negated” but they have certainly “misrepresented” an awful lot.

  34. @ Nancy:

    I do think some Christians have negated Christ’s (and Paul’s teachings) on these matters, have cancelled them out.

    Some Christians make it sound as though marriage and having a baby are a Christian’s duty to God and culture.

    Still other stereotypes persist by some Christians, such as, God expects all believers to marry, all Christians will marry, or single people and the childless are not as mature or godly as married people who have children, etc.

    Here you have Jesus Christ elevating being single and childless (as does Paul) and in a culture of his day that put too much emphasis on marrying and having children, but what do most American expressions of Christianity do today, but drag those both down, and make it sound un-godly to be single/childless.

    Al Mohlers, and Christians like him, flat out insult or mock adult singleness (and/or being childless).

  35. Josh wrote:

    Hester wrote:
    I’ve always wondered if one or more of the Duggar children will bolt. It’s at least statistically possible (probable?) given that there are 19 of them. You know how those gosh durn pesky individuality and agency things can be sometimes.
    They’re also reaching the number of kids where it’s approaching 100% likelihood that at least one of the children will grow up and turn out to be batting for another team, if you catch my drift…

    Yes, inDEED-y!! Amen to that, bro….How’s the cow tipping in the heat?

    Oops back to the topic….I can’t WAIT for that person to “COME OUT” on the reality show or some talk show sometime….Bwahahahahaha….Hopefully that youngin can get away from the family before the deprogramming starts….better to not come out until after 18.. ty 4 pointing this out… :-) :-) :-)

  36. @ Sarah:

    It will be Joy Anna. Wait and see.

    I wouldn’t know. I’ve never seen the show. Don’t need to – their theology is clear just from reading about them, and reading things they’ve written. :-)

    I also wish they’d switched away from the letter J at some point (since they had to resort to spelling poor Jinger’s name incorrectly to make the pattern work), but that’s my personal taste so I can’t hold anybody to that.

  37. @ Josh:

    They’re also reaching the number of kids where it’s approaching 100% likelihood that at least one of the children will grow up and turn out to be batting for another team, if you catch my drift…

    Now you just shut your mouth, heretic. Only in other people’s families do such tragedies occur.

    😉

  38. I don’t understand this website. Are you all opposed to raising children according to the biblical imperative, “Children, obey your parents in all things, for this is well pleasing to the Lord”? (Col 3:20)

    Regarding family household structure, do you oppose verse 18 of the same chapter, “Wives, submit to your own husbands, as is fitting in the Lord”, and Eph 5:22-24, “Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything”?

    What is it that those on this site believe?

    After reading this site for a number of months, on the surface it appears you all disagree with God’s instruction manual in this particular area of life. But I find that notion hard to believe.

    Is it because there exist husbands who don’t follow the imperative of Eph 6:25, “love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her,” and 6:4, “fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord,” but instead, act in a selfish, ungodly manner?

    It is clear you do not accept the patriarchy movement. What is not clear is ‘what do you accept?’

    Thanks!

  39. Hester wrote:

    @ Josh:
    They’re also reaching the number of kids where it’s approaching 100% likelihood that at least one of the children will grow up and turn out to be batting for another team, if you catch my drift…
    Now you just shut your mouth, heretic. Only in other people’s families do such tragedies occur.

    Yes, he is starting to look a heretic, Ms. Hester!!! Is there another heretic letter out there that he could use as his Avatar when he posts??? I just love yours….Awesome! :-)

  40. Virgil wrote:

    “Children, obey your parents in all things, for this is well pleasing to the Lord”? (Col 3:20)
    Regarding family household structure, do you oppose verse 18 of the same chapter, “Wives, submit to your own husbands, as is fitting in the Lord”, and Eph 5:22-24, “Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything”?

    Hi Virgil! Welcome!!

    I will take a stab at this, even though I am not a parent. Another poster, Nancy, expressed this well that many of us don’t see the Bible as an instruction manual to take literally.

    Here is a mathematical take on it, since I am an engineer by training.

    I see this as a non-linear relationship between men and women. In math, there are linear models with no interaction terms. One thing that is sort of linear is shoe size and height. As height increases, usually shoe size does, too. But there are some outliers in an any group of people. It’s a great activity for young people to do in a class, to graph everyone’s height and shoe size.

    We can then make a linear equation:

    Shoe_size = Slope * Height + Y-intercept

    and when that equation does not fit the data well, we have the option of adding other terms…..but sometimes there are non-linear interactions…..maybe this could be a better equation (might not be the exact one, it’s just something for illustration)

    Shoe_size = Slope * Height/(Shoe-size)^2 + Y-intercept

    That would lose the linear relationship, and the graph would no longer be a line.

    I was taught not to read Bible verses out of context. I like to read verses, and their cross-references.

    I don’t want to make this a novel, but I believe that there are many men out there that love their wives in a way as to not expect full-on agreement all the time. So I see a non-linear interaction between just submitting without questioning, and being Cartman, “Whatevuh, I do what I WANT”

    Here are two books that I had read when I was single. I still have them in my book collection. The authors treat the subject matter with respect for the complexity involved.

    I feel like the current terms that people use, and their arguments, are far too simplistic. Ok rant over.

    Queen Take Your Throne: Every Woman’s Call to Authority Paperback
    by Eileen Wallis (Author)

    Liberated Through Submission Paperback
    by P. B. Wilson (Author)

  41. Virgil wrote:

    I don’t understand this website. Are you all opposed to raising children according to the biblical imperative, “Children, obey your parents in all things, for this is well pleasing to the Lord”? (Col 3:20) Regarding family household structure, do you oppose verse 18 of the same chapter, “Wives, submit to your own husbands, as is fitting in the Lord”, and Eph 5:22-24, “Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything”? What is it that those on this site believe? After reading this site for a number of months, on the surface it appears you all disagree with God’s instruction manual in this particular area of life. But I find that notion hard to believe. Is it because there exist husbands who don’t follow the imperative of Eph 6:25, “love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her,” and 6:4, “fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord,” but instead, act in a selfish, ungodly manner? It is clear you do not accept the patriarchy movement. What is not clear is ‘what do you accept?’ Thanks!

    Thanks for your inquiry regarding what we believe. I can only speak for myself and my blogging buddy Dee.

    We absolutely believe that children should obey their parents. Our children were raised in Christian homes and attended a Christian school and church during their formative years. We have five children between us (Dee has three and I have two), and I am grateful to report that all of them have continued to embrace their Christian faith into adulthood.

    Both of my daughters regularly attend church (now and when they were in college) and both were involved in Campus Crusade for Christ.  My older daughter met the man she would marry in New York City when they participated in the same five week summer project through Cru.  They were sharing their faith with students on college campuses throughout the Big Apple.

    Regarding our position on marriage, Dee has described her marriage as a relationship where she and her husband strive to out-serve the other. I would say the same about my marriage. My husband and I are celebrating our 26th wedding anniversary today, and we love each other more with every passing day. There is no place for authoritarianism in our marital relationships, only servanthood. I have tremendous respect for my husband, and he loves and respects me. After over a quarter of a century of marriage, he has learned to value my opinion on everything because he absolutely trusts me. Hope this makes sense.

  42. Marie2 wrote:

    I feel like the current terms that people use, and their arguments, are far too simplistic.

    OOps I meant to say that the whole complementarian, patriarchical verbage. When I read the two books I mentioned, I feel a richness and complexity that respects all parties. They are from 20+ years ago…..Whenever I read current proponents of patriarchy or whatever, it feels far too simplistic. Hope this helps. Many apologies if what I wrote was insulting. I think Deb covered it much better. Trust is so important in all of this, and maybe that is the issue that I feel is swept under the rug – over time, trust grows in a healthy relationship, both ways, not just the woman trusting the man at all times. :-)

    Queen Take Your Throne: Every Woman’s Call to Authority Paperback
    by Eileen Wallis (Author)
    Publisher: Cityhill Pub (December 1987)

    Liberated Through Submission Paperback
    by P. B. Wilson (Author)
    Publisher: Harvest House Publishers (September 1990)

  43. Nancy wrote:

    Ummm. Gentlemen. What exactly does that mean?

    Yes, indeed, the “chalk” is the highly favored winner. I live ten minutes from Churchill Downs and we are gearing up for the Kentucky Derby this weekend. Ive got a boxed trifecta on California Chrome, Vicar’s in Trouble, and Danza.

  44. __

    Deb,

    hey,

    Happy 26th wedding anniversary ! 

    Big Bless’ins !!!

    Sopy
    __
    Q. do ya get a cake? (grin)

  45. @ Virgil:

    Hi, Virgil.

    I pretty much agree with what my compatriots have said, but here is another take on this also. This blog is an eclectic mix of a lot of different people coming from a lot of different backgrounds and different understandings of a lot of things, including scripture. For example, we have here catholics and baptists and apparently almost everything in between. We have marrieds and singles, young and old, hopeful and jaded and best of all men and women. We have believers, used-to-be believers and don’t-have-any-use-for-believers folks. If you are waiting for some common statement of belief from this group, that is useless. We are here attempting to have conversation, understand each other’s point of view, and join in protest against abuses in fraternity with abused people.

    If there is any one thing that I think we might all agree on, it would be the idea that it is not necessary that we all agree on everything.

  46. Daisy wrote:

    Josh wrote:
    They’re also reaching the number of kids where it’s approaching 100% likelihood that at least one of the children will grow up and turn out to be batting for another team, if you catch my drift…
    Do tell? Or, explain further.

    One word: HOMOSEXUAL(TM).
    Assuming a one-in-thirty incidence, they now have a 2/3 chance of one kid failing their Saving Throw. (And if there’s a Dice Implosion…)

  47. @ Nancy:

    Well said! Thanks for such an excellent description of the TWW community.

    We have at least one agnostic turned Christian in our midst, and we praise God for him!

  48. Nancy wrote:

    If there is any one thing that I think we might all agree on, it would be the idea that it is not necessary that we all agree on everything.

    Very well said and agreed….on this point. ^_^

  49. @ Deb:

    Happy Anniversary to you!!! If I were in your neck of the woods, I would bake you a cake….with Cheetos somehow….Well it’s the thought that counts, right???

  50. dee wrote:

    Deb

    Great post. Remember what that professor told us last year? He said that this blog was a gold mine of detailed information of the relationships and “goings on” in the evangelical world. This post adds to that base of information.

    You have successfully linked the Duggars to the Pearls and Gothard. The Duggars ares not just some harmless family promoting “family values.” It is more…much more.

    Over 40 years ago, an investigative reporter in my then home town did an amazing piece of work on the power brokers of our little area of the world. She research and verified how a very small number of families created an “interlocking directory” of relationships through owning major businesses, holding significant or controlling interests in multiple forms of media (both print and broadcast), serving on major philanthropical foundations and/or non-profit boards, and involving themselves in the shaping of local politics. In effect, this group formed an oligarchy — a gridlock of elites who wielded their clout throughout the region.

    When the report was released through an independent media source, it created quite the stir. Those named did what they could to minimize the appearance of their influence or the depth of their interconnectiosn, but the documentation said what it said nevertheless. And if you simply sketched out a mind-map showing the various realms of influence and the relationships among the people most intimately involved, the clusters that appeared in this connect-the-dots exercise would be hard to deny.

    And all these years later, I’ve not forgotten that tenacious and courageous reporter’s term of “interlock directory.” I believe that is what we are uncovering as we see the inner workings of this “authoritarian christian industrial complex” of key individuals, families, churches, ministries, agencies, publishers, conferences, seminaries, denominations, movements. The press (including “citizen journalists” and survivor blog writers) have been pulling at the loose threads here and there, and it looks like the entire muffler may unravel as different people and organizations attempt to deny the interconnections, or minimize underlying doctrines that have given shape to their whole gridlock of power. (Such as, “We believe in different gender roles for men and women, but we aren’t *that* kind of patriarchy!”)

    It now seems a rather large bunch of loose threads are sticking out, having primed themselves for counter-authoritarian picking and pulling. Mark Driscoll and his elders. Sovereign Grace Ministries. Bill Gothard and IBLP. Doug Phillips; Vision Forum, Inc.; and Vision Forum Ministries. And with them, out pop those knitted-in key representatives of this interlocking authoritarian directory of patriarchy, quiverfull and homeschool movement, etc.

    I appreciate the constructive parts that The Deebs and TWW have played in this documentation. Thanks for your due-diligence efforts at investigative reportage!

    Perhaps the “Patriarchy Oligarchy” will experience a much warranted melt-down as it gets more exposed to the light …

  51. @ Virgil:

    As Nancy put it:

    Nancy wrote:

    If you are waiting for some common statement of belief from this group, that is useless.

    I’d offer, perhaps, one adjustment to that. The site’s Prime Directive can be summarised: It’s about the victims.

    Deebs set up TWW several years ago in response to well-documented and duly-proven cases in which individuals suffered abuse at the hands of respected organisations calling themselves churches. These cases went beyond the well-known traditions of “heavy shepherding”, and into the domain of brutal physical and sexual abuse of children. And in particular, Deebs noticed that increasing numbers of “church” organisations were habitually protecting the perpetrators and demonising the victims. The primary aim of the site was, and is, to speak out on behalf of the dispossessed, the marginalised and the shunned, on whose behalf there is sometimes no-one else to speak. If you want to understand this site, that’s probably where you should start.

  52. Albuquerque Blue wrote:

    Nancy wrote:
    If there is any one thing that I think we might all agree on, it would be the idea that it is not necessary that we all agree on everything.
    Very well said and agreed….on this point. ^_^

    No, I disagree. It’s important that we agree on exactly how we’re going to agree to disagree.

    I propose setting up a small task force to study the process whereby we might derive such a statement of agreement to disagree. Once that statement is in place, we can split into factions over it.

    I call dibs on Peoples’ Front of Judea.

    The only people we ‘ate more than the Romans are the f***in’ Judean Peoples’ Front.

    AAANd the Judean Popular Peoples’ Front!

    AND the Peoples’ Front of Judea! Splitters!

    WHAT? … WE’RE the People’s Front of Judea!

  53. Nick Bulbeck wrote:

    The primary aim of the site was, and is, to speak out on behalf of the dispossessed, the marginalised and the shunned, on whose behalf there is sometimes no-one else to speak. If you want to understand this site, that’s probably where you should start.

    Yes!!!

    And um, perhaps also to learn to “sit shiva” with the people who have experienced great loss in their lives. I live in a sports oriented town, and we are almost always in a state of mourning for some great loss or other.

    But something else to consider is that abuse survivors have had innumerable losses, including but not limited to financial, family relationships, public respect, etc. church family, and so on. so awful for me to write about. I am digging out of my own losses, but what I am getting from this site, which I could not get from other sites, is just people to sit with me in my dark pain, WITHOUT giving unsolicited advice, or senseless platitudes. I can get emotionally charged on an issue, and post something about it, but I am not immediately bombarded with requests to see a professional, because people think I am unhinged. I might be unhinged, but it is MY decision what to do about it.

  54. Dr. Fundystan, Proctologist wrote:

    Yes, indeed, the “chalk” is the highly favored winner. I live ten minutes from Churchill Downs and we are gearing up for the Kentucky Derby this weekend. Ive got a boxed trifecta on California Chrome, Vicar’s in Trouble, and Danza.

    DR. FUNDY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    As posted on the sports diversion :) on the last Debi Pearl thread with Nick B., I am a big horse racing fan. I am not yet settled on my picks as noted. I know he’ll go out the morning line favorite (normally an “ugh” for me) but CA Chrome’s movement is simply freakishly stunning and I wish the best for the connections.

    Understand Intense Holiday has been putting in some great works, too … :)

    Job 39:19-25

    19 “Do you give the horse its strength
    or clothe its neck with a flowing mane?

    20 Do you make it leap like a locust,
    striking terror with its proud snorting?

    21 It paws fiercely, rejoicing in its strength,
    and charges into the fray.

    22 It laughs at fear, afraid of nothing;
    it does not shy away from the sword.

    23 The quiver rattles against its side,
    along with the flashing spear and lance.

    24 In frenzied excitement it eats up the ground;
    it cannot stand still when the trumpet sounds.

    25 At the blast of the trumpet it snorts, ‘Aha!’
    It catches the scent of battle from afar,
    the shout of commanders and the battle cry.

    :)

    P.S. Happy anniversary, Deb!

  55. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    One word: HOMOSEXUAL(TM).
    Assuming a one-in-thirty incidence, they now have a 2/3 chance of one kid failing their Saving Throw. (And if there’s a Dice Implosion…)

    I’ve never actually played D&D, but regardless, you’ve got to love the lingo! 😀

    I like to go with the more common 5% rate of occurrence, because that makes the math easier. And 5% translates to 1 in 20, which is awfully convenient…

  56. @ Dr. Fundystan, Proctologist:

    Louisville is my home town, and for a time while I was still in training we lived within walking distance of Churchill Downs. We lived in a set of apartments (can’t remember the name) which were at the time owned by Georgetown College, back a little street off Taylor BLVD, if I remember all the names here.

    My husband used to do something (maybe two or three times) when we were too poor to eat, and that was go over to the track and place small bets on the favorites across the board. He always came home with more money that he took with him, but that was just counting on the probabilities. Thing was, we never had more than a few dollars to do that with and so this only happened when one or the other of us could not get an extra shift at the hospital.

  57. The Duggars and their kind are such bizarre walking contradictions

    1. Let’s promote having children without actually parenting them ourselves and delegate that to our older children.
    2. We homeschool because we believe parents should have complete authority over their children, excluding all others, but yet we won’t think twice about sending our daughters away to work in “approved” organizations with a bunch a people we don’t know. . . which happens to be run by a predator.
    3. We will be ultra legalistic about “purity” to the point that we don’t even want to show our knees, but by gosh, we will talk about sex all the time on our show, in particular, how daddy knows when mommy is fertile and joke with our “courting” kids about how they can’t “touch” yet.
    4. We promote marriage and family, yet we will control who can even talk to our daughters so that we can hold onto them as long as possible (because it sure would stink to lose all those caregivers for the younger kids due to them being married off).
    5. We will beat the drum of submitting to authority structures, but we only attend “home” churches, which happen to be under no one’s authority, because our theology and practices are so whacked it doesn’t even resemble any mainline denomination. By the way, there’s a word to describe this. It starts with C and end with ULT.

  58. Bunsen Honeydew wrote:

    but yet we won’t think twice about sending our daughters away to work in “approved” organizations with a bunch a people we don’t know. . . which happens to be run by a predator.

    Hey Bunsen, like Hester, I’ve never watched a single episode of the TLC show.

    Knew they were patriarchial freaks from the get-go and didn’t wish to view the cuddly, aw-shucks, “TLC-ified” whitewashed version of this theologically aberrant misogyny.

    So I have to ask: did their kid go to work for Douglas Philips, Esq. or Gothard?

  59. Thanks to all who provided clarification. I appreciate it.

    Dr Fun, the starting presupposition to my worldview is the word of God.

  60. @ Marie2:

    Ok upon a re-listen to the song my post probably did not make sense. I’m not the one who is drinking…Well whatever. As they say, it’s the thought that counts!!

  61. Bunsen Honeydew wrote:

    The Duggars and their kind are such bizarre walking contradictions

    1. Let’s promote having children without actually parenting them ourselves and delegate that to our older children.
    2. We homeschool because we believe parents should have complete authority over their children, excluding all others, but yet we won’t think twice about sending our daughters away to work in “approved” organizations with a bunch a people we don’t know. . . which happens to be run by a predator.
    3. We will be ultra legalistic about “purity” to the point that we don’t even want to show our knees, but by gosh, we will talk about sex all the time on our show, in particular, how daddy knows when mommy is fertile and joke with our “courting” kids about how they can’t “touch” yet.
    4. We promote marriage and family, yet we will control who can even talk to our daughters so that we can hold onto them as long as possible (because it sure would stink to lose all those caregivers for the younger kids due to them being married off).
    5. We will beat the drum of submitting to authority structures, but we only attend “home” churches, which happen to be under no one’s authority, because our theology and practices are so whacked it doesn’t even resemble any mainline denomination. By the way, there’s a word to describe this. It starts with C and end with ULT.

    These were such great points that they bear repeating!

  62. @ Rafiki:

    Their oldest son, in keeping with Gothardism, ran a family business for a long time. He basically ran a used car lot. Having a family business is often part of Gothard families because it allows you to put all your kids to work for you, especially your daughters who aren’t allowed to get an education or go do anything on their own. They belong and work for Daddy being his “helpmeet”. BARF!!!!

    Their oldest son gave up the car lot and now works for Family Research Council in DC.

    There’s another older son and I don’t recall what he does and many of the older children are daughters, who of course don’t have jobs because their job is to care for Michelle and Jim Bob’s younger children, their siblings. How sad.

  63. @ Virgil:

    If you don’t mind me asking, which version (of the word of God) and in what context, and how does the Holy Spirit inform you? What authority do God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit have?

  64. Virgil wrote:

    Dr Fun, the starting presupposition to my worldview is the word of God.

    Is it the word of God or is it your particular interpretation of parts of the word of God that you use to ignore and/or cancel out other parts of the word of God that disagree with your preferred interpretation?

  65. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Joy

    Josh wrote:

    Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:
    One word: HOMOSEXUAL(TM).
    Assuming a one-in-thirty incidence, they now have a 2/3 chance of one kid failing their Saving Throw. (And if there’s a Dice Implosion…)
    I’ve never actually played D&D, but regardless, you’ve got to love the lingo!
    I like to go with the more common 5% rate of occurrence, because that makes the math easier. And 5% translates to 1 in 20, which is awfully convenient…

    And then there is the quirk of biology that, in very large families, the younger children are more likely to be gay than the older children. One of the theories to explain this is that in the womb, later children get a different hormone mix than their older siblings.

  66. Nick Bulbeck wrote:

    Once that statement is in place, we can split into factions over it.
    I call dibs on Peoples’ Front of Judea.
    The only people we ‘ate more than the Romans are the f***in’ Judean Peoples’ Front.
    AAANd the Judean Popular Peoples’ Front!
    AND the Peoples’ Front of Judea! Splitters!
    WHAT? … WE’RE the People’s Front of Judea!

    I find your ready knowledge of Monty Python’s Life of Brian disturbing…

  67. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Nick Bulbeck wrote:
    Once that statement is in place, we can split into factions over it.
    I call dibs on Peoples’ Front of Judea.
    The only people we ‘ate more than the Romans are the f***in’ Judean Peoples’ Front.
    AAANd the Judean Popular Peoples’ Front!
    AND the Peoples’ Front of Judea! Splitters!
    WHAT? … WE’RE the People’s Front of Judea!
    I find your ready knowledge of Monty Python’s Life of Brian disturbing…

    Why? Because it tops yours? Do I see a manly competition here?

    I would have cheated by looking up the quotes at IMDB…was thinking of doing that, but I have too much to do today.

    Cheers,
    Marie2

  68. Josh wrote:

    Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:
    One word: HOMOSEXUAL(TM).
    Assuming a one-in-thirty incidence, they now have a 2/3 chance of one kid failing their Saving Throw. (And if there’s a Dice Implosion…)

    I’ve never actually played D&D, but regardless, you’ve got to love the lingo!

    I like to go with the more common 5% rate of occurrence, because that makes the math easier. And 5% translates to 1 in 20, which is awfully convenient…

    Fits right in with the D20 used for saving throws. Again, right on the odds, one of the Duggar kids should blow their Save vs Sodomy. (And if the odds go up for later kids, probably more than one. This could get interesting.)

    When I was gaming every week in the late Seventies, I observed gamers are very prone to dice superstitions. Including beliefs in “Dice Futzes” (players thought to influence dice rolls by their presence), “Dice Explosions” (dice futzes who rolled favorably a lot more than by chance) and “Dice Implosions” (dice futzes who couldn’t roll a hit or save no matter what). I was the resident Dice Implosion of Expeditions Ltd, to the point the other players would kick me out of the room when they had to make a vital roll. My DM would sit me next to the resident Dice Explosion in the hope we’d damp each other out.

  69. @ Headless Unicorn Guy:
    Great story!! Gaming without the Internet! Very impressive!! And today is Throwback Thursday, too!!

    In my last post (hopefully not too snarky) I just wanted to point out that with the Internet, it’s easy to look like an expert. But I have a feeling that Nick B. wrote all of that from memory. I’m impressed about that, too.

    My favorite story about my husband’s gaming “back in the day” is that he used to cheat and hack the game so that he could win, because his eye hand coordination was not that great. That was somewhere in the limbo age of computers before the Internet, as opposed to no computer, no Internet.

    Nick, I hope this is helpful to you. :-)

  70. Rafiki wrote:

    I am a big horse racing fan

    Nice! One never knows what kind of degenerates one will meet at TWW :-) Intense Holiday looks very strong. So did Hopportunity before being scratched this morning. I’m not sure Intense Holiday can compete from the 16th, but we will see. In my (limited) experience, the first two rows of the derby have a pretty significant advantage, especially if this brooding weather and accompanying showers holds.

  71. @ Nancy:
    That is very cool. While I do play the ponies, I have a set entertainment budget and take only cash to the races. I’m not a big handicapper, and I generally break even. It is more about the fun and entertainment, plus getting to meet real humans. Plus, we often have corn-hole toss (its ok if you think this sounds vaguely inappropriate – so did I before moving to Kentucky), live music, cotton candy, etc. So you get a whole afternoon full of fun for a couple bucks. Hard to beat for entertainment value.

  72. Deb: Happy anniversary! Hope you and your sweetheart have a lovely day. May you enjoy many more together. My guy and I will celebrate 30 years in July.

  73. @ Nick Bulbeck:

    I can, however, quote whole chunks of LOTR verbatim. And also the following from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy:

    Vogon poetry is, of course, the third worst in the universe.

    The second worst is that of the Azgoths of Kria. During a recitation by their poet-master Grunthos the Flatulent of his poem “Ode to a small lump of green putty I found in my armpit one midsummer morning”, four of the recipients died of internal haemorrhaging, whilst the president of the Mid-Galactic Arts-Knobbling Council survived by gnawing one of his own legs off. Grunthos is said to have been “disappointed” by the poem’s reception, and was about to embark on a reading of his 12-volume epic “My Favourite Bathtime Gurgles” *, when his own major intestine, in a desperate attempt to preserve life and civilisation, leapt straight through his neck and throttled his brain.

    The very worst poetry of all perished along with its creator, Paula Nancy Millstone Jennings, of Greenbridge, Essex, in the destruction of the planet Earth.

    * Altered in the radio broadcast version to “Zen and the art of going to the lavatory”.

  74. @ Nick Bulbeck:

    Wow! So you are an auditory learner??? Sooooo jealous…I often have to focus very heard to retain things delivered through my ears….When I hear a new name, I need the person to spell it out for me to remember it…How cool for you! :-)

  75. It is only appropriate to add a sample of Vogon poetry:

    Oh, freddled gruntbuggly!
    Thy micturitions are to me
    As plurdled gabbleblochits on a lurgid bee!

    Groop, I implore thee, my foonting turlingdromes,
    And hooptiously drangle me with cringled brindlewurdles,
    Or I will rend thee in the gobberwarts with my blurglecruncheon –

    See if I don’t!

    I hope this is helpful.

  76. @ Nick Bulbeck:
    Way cool!! All of my auditory skills went into music, and left nothing for verbal communication. What instruments do you play? I have relative pitch on a good day, I can play violin by ear, and sometimes piano.

  77. @ Nick Bulbeck:

    Actually, like most ADHD people, I’m somewhat synaesthetic. Not strongly so – although most words and sounds do have a taste – but I tend to learn with multiple sense at once. Walking my daughter to school a few years ago, she asked if we could play word association, but I found it impossible because as soon as I tried to think of the first word that came to mind, my head exploded.

  78. Dr. Fundystan, Proctologist wrote:

    Plus, we often have corn-hole toss (its ok if you think this sounds vaguely inappropriate – so did I before moving to Kentucky)…

    I’ve lived in the Midwest all of my life, and I still snicker at the mention of corn-hole, because it still sounds totally inappropriate, no matter how many times I hear it. 😮

    Nick Bulbeck wrote:

    Yeah, and I’ve got perfect pitch too.

    Perfect pitch, where you can throw the accordion into the trash bin without hitting the sides? 😉

  79. Nick Bulbeck wrote:

    I can, however, quote whole chunks of LOTR verbatim. And also the following from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy:

    I assume you know where your Towel is.

  80. Josh wrote:

    I’ve lived in the Midwest all of my life, and I still snicker at the mention of corn-hole, because it still sounds totally inappropriate, no matter how many times I hear it.

    “I AM CORNHOLIO!!!!!”
    — Beavis & Butthead

  81. @ Bunsen:

    in particular, how daddy knows when mommy is fertile

    I read something by the Duggars once in which they talked about sex, particularly rules about sex and the woman’s period. According to this piece, they don’t have sex during menstruation, then wait a week after it is over in accord with some kind of OT standard (can’t remember exactly). Of course this pretty much explains how they got 19 kids, because waiting 5-7 days after the end of your period, is pretty much a recipe for having sex on one or more fertile days if you have an average length 28-day cycle.

    I wonder if they teach their girls anything about NFP/fertility signs, or if you’re not supposed to know even that in Quiverfull/militant fecundity circles because then you might choose not to have sex when you’re fertile.

  82. numo wrote:

    @ Nick Bulbeck: you say nothing of a pint, though, which makes me a wee bit suspicious.

    Look out!!! He’s ashamed of his heritage!! He’s FRENCH!!

  83. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    “I AM CORNHOLIO!!!!!”
    – Beavis & Butthead

    Er um, trying not to be pedantic, especially when I normally don’t believe my auditory memory, but I did check this one with my husband – the correct phrase is, “I am the GREAT CORNHOLIO!! I need TP for my bunghole!” Sorry…I felt a need to quote the whole thing….Part of my obsession with trying not to take quotes out of context… 😉

  84. Hester wrote:

    some kind of OT standard

    What happened to romance and spontaneity? These people sound more like sex is some sort of physical therapy program than a part of love between two people.

    Why do they do this? I know what they and others like them do. I just don’t know why. If they want to be orthodox Jews, why don’t they convert? If they want to be traditionalist Catholics, why not go all the way and do it. Catholicism accepts converts. That would be the honorable thing to do. Obviously that is not the point. So what is? This hodgepodge of ideas and beliefs looks like some crazy quilt made out of scraps out of the scrap bag. It looks like people who have not found the gospel to be enough for them, and they want to rethink the issue of the law and how that might be a good idea after all. Under the law one can be righteous in one’s own eyes, and sometimes in other people’s eyes. The gospel does not leave much room for that. I guess they forgot that Paul noted that if one were saved by works of he law then Jesus died in vain, or that he called reverting to the law falling from grace, or did they not learn that in Selective Bible Quoting 201?

  85. @ Nancy:
    Yes, Nancy, exactly. Lots and lots of rules (especially for women) to make you holy. Everything except Jesus to mediate between the believer and God. Lots of hierarchies and lots of kings to rule over you. What’s with that?

  86. @ Nick Bulbeck:
    Aaah, I have ADHD too, but I’m a wordy person. :) My ADHD husband, OTOH, is very much a numbers/systems guy, who really has difficulty with reading comprehension.

  87. Nancy wrote:

    What happened to romance and spontaneity? These people sound more like sex is some sort of physical therapy program than a part of love between two people.

    Pon farr?

  88. Nancy wrote:

    What happened to romance and spontaneity? These people sound more like sex is some sort of physical therapy program than a part of love between two people.

    “Our Duty to The Party”?

  89. There’s no need for spontaneity when you are trying to out breed the heathen. I don’t know about the rest of you, but my problem with work/rules based religion is that no matter how hard you try, you can never succeed. There’s always room for improvement, so you are constantly running in circles.

  90. Marie2 wrote:

    Er um, trying not to be pedantic, especially when I normally don’t believe my auditory memory, but I did check this one with my husband – the correct phrase is, “I am the GREAT CORNHOLIO!! I need TP for my bunghole!” Sorry…I felt a need to quote the whole thing….Part of my obsession with trying not to take quotes out of context… 😉

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IeWsCuWfzyo

  91. @ Marie2:

    Loved the talking points using straight lines and parabolas! My training is in Mathematics and I spent many years in the Southern Calif. aerospace industry as a multi-axis machine tool programmer.

  92. @ Virgil

    Please be welcomed here at our community. As someone upthread pointed out, we are quite an eclectic bunch. Think of Al Andalus in medieval Spain before the inquisition took over and put an end to free inquiry and a live and let live ethos. There are no faith or culture ‘wars’ here. We’ve learned to live side by side in peace despite our differences.

  93. @ Headless Unicorn Guy:
    Apologies for doubting your journalistic integrity, there. Can’t think of a clever way of saying sorry, except that I won’t trust my auditory memory for quite some time. Ty for enlightening me.

  94. Nancy, the Duggars’ rules about when to have sex come from Gothard’s teachings. An unmarried, self-professed virgin, he made up a great many rules for family life, child rearing, and sex for other people to follow.

  95. @ Hester:

    I was aware too of those sorts of rules of engagement so to speak. It’s interesting to me how this turns from “having as many children as The Lord will allow” and actually turns into taking matters into your own hands by having sex frequently and mostly at times when you conceive. I’m sure that is lost on them though. If you truly trust The Lord with your family size while all the purposeful and deliberate acts to get pregnant as much as possible, which is not trusting as they represent, but really forcing an outcome.

  96. @ Muff Potter:
    Thank you for reminding me of the name of that time period! When I was 20 I was lucky enough to go Spain with my father and we saw the Cordoba mosque. http://bit.ly/IUFQ5R It is one of the most beautiful and awe inspiring buildings or places I’ve seen. Right up there with Stonehenge and Hadrian’s Wall. And that time period is so fascinating. Right by that mosque was one of Europes oldest synagogues. It was so amazing to hear about how they worked as a society. A true predecessor to the pluralistic societal ideal that we currently enjoy (assuming you are a westerner).

    That was an awesome trip, thanks for sparking the memory.

  97. Josh wrote:

    and I still snicker at the mention of corn-hole

    In Blighty, “corn-hole toss” sounds even worse (“toss” has an extra meaning… I’ll leave it at that!).

    Perfect pitch, where you can throw the accordion into the trash bin without hitting the sides?

    :-)

    There’s a long-standing joke here in Scotland:
    Q: Why does a pipe-band march?
    b>A: Because it’s harder to hit a moving target.

  98. Jeannette Altes wrote:

    Ah…by Monty Pythonian logic, then, I must be a UK Christian…..

    No, I’m afraid that’s a classic logical fallacy. “All UK Christians are guitar-players” does not imply that all guitar-players are UK Christians. Consider: All dogs have four legs; my horse has four legs; therefore my horse is a dog.

  99. @ numo:
    @ Marie2:

    Certainly not. But as a rule, I only drink real ale on tap. Bottled beer has its place, but as it’s inherently gassy, I don’t want it with dinner. I would never drink wine in an establishment selling draught ale.

    The Alloa Beer Festival should be on soon. But it’s not that well advertised.

  100. Nick Bulbeck wrote:

    freddled

    It strikes me that, if Virgil genuinely and constructively wants to understand this website, (s)he has probably picked the wrong thread to come in on!

    Or maybe not… it being a community, after all.

  101. Nick Bulbeck wrote:

    Nick Bulbeck wrote: freddled It strikes me that, if Virgil genuinely and constructively wants to understand this website, (s)he has probably picked the wrong thread to come in on! Or maybe not… it being a community, after all.

    Agreed.

    Vigil, come back and dialogue with us.

  102. I don’t get it. These people promote large families, yet they oppose welfare, yet so many of them have to take government handouts, such as wic, to feed those large families. Not everyone who is in this quiverful movement goes on book tours and tlc reality shows and talk shows and news magazines and merchandising campaigns. Homeschooling isn’t cheap. I realize there are lobbying groups that attempting to get rid of much of the standards for homeschooling families required of public school students. So we will end up with a less educated group as time goes on. The large family might be helpful as free labor on the farm as in olden days.

    We aren’t discussing the Patrick Henry group, who may come from affluent, connected families. This relates to common folk. And then there is generation upon generation of families who are more separated and isolated from a “mainstream” society. They will be more dependent the government subsidies they despise as time goes on, and less socialized to the larger society, and possibly more extreme. They are probably against multi-culturalism, yet what they promote is multiculturalism. There are some contradictions in all of this and also some hypocrisy.

  103. Nancy wrote:

    Mark wrote:
    There are some contradictions in all of this and also some hypocrisy.
    Some? Some?

    Mark was practicing the subtle art of understatement, unless I am mistaken…

  104. Bunsen Honeydew wrote:

    @ Hester:

    I was aware too of those sorts of rules of engagement so to speak. It’s interesting to me how this turns from “having as many children as The Lord will allow” and actually turns into taking matters into your own hands by having sex frequently and mostly at times when you conceive. I’m sure that is lost on them though. If you truly trust The Lord with your family size while all the purposeful and deliberate acts to get pregnant as much as possible, which is not trusting as they represent, but really forcing an outcome.

    Precisely right!!

  105. @ Josh:
    Actually, when studying genetic links in homosexuality, it was found the second sons had a .33% increase in the likely hood of being homosexual over first born sons, third sons had an additional .33% chance and so on… so among the Dugger’s later born sons the likelihood is a lot higher than 1/33 (it could be more like 1/20 or so, but don’t quote me on that, I am horrible at percentage increases).

  106. They say a first son has a 3% chance to be gay, a second son about 1/3 higher (4%), and so on, with the fourth being 6% according to a source not on this blog. I doubt if they had many families with more than 4 sons to test, but if the sums hold, it will be:
    Boy 1) 3% chance Boy 2) 4% 3) 5% 4) 6% 5) 7% 6) 8% 7) 9% 8) 10% 9)11% 10) 12%

    That is a very good chance of a gay boy. The same sum does not count for sisters.

  107. Mark wrote:

    We aren’t discussing the Patrick Henry group, who may come from affluent, connected families. This relates to common folk.

    In the words of Game of Thrones, Highborn and Lowborn. Milords and Serfs.

    Gives a whole new angle to all the Victorian-like Medievalism in the movement, doesn’t it?

  108. Retha wrote:

    Boy 1) 3% chance Boy 2) 4% 3) 5% 4) 6% 5) 7% 6) 8% 7) 9% 8) 10% 9)11% 10) 12%
    That is a very good chance of a gay boy. The same sum does not count for sisters.

    I flunked Statistical Analysis in college, but plug in the number of Duggar heirs and spares and that should be enough data to come up with a general probability.

    Oh, and when it comes to “God Hates Fags(TM)”, MALE homosexuality causes a LOT bigger freakout than female. So (appropriately) the girls don’t count anyway.

  109. Marsha wrote:

    Nancy, the Duggars’ rules about when to have sex come from Gothard’s teachings. An unmarried, self-professed virgin, he made up a great many rules for family life, child rearing, and sex for other people to follow.

    Ever notice the guy who has NEVER been there himself is always the one with all the micromanaging advice for YOU?

    And when the micromanaging advice is SEXUAL(TM), there’s always the possibility of the guy trying to Live his Dream(TM) vicariously. Making YOU do what HE always wanted to do but couldn’t.

  110. Retha wrote:

    They say a first son has a 3% chance to be gay, a second son about 1/3 higher (4%), and so on, with the fourth being 6% according to a source not on this blog. I doubt if they had many families with more than 4 sons to test, but if the sums hold, it will be:
    Boy 1) 3% chance Boy 2) 4% 3) 5% 4) 6% 5) 7% 6) 8% 7) 9% 8) 10% 9)11% 10) 12%
    That is a very good chance of a gay boy. The same sum does not count for sisters.

    Poor kid born in this environment doesn’t stand a chance. Odds are also pretty good for suicide and the family would probably feel this is was better such a son want born. Pretty hypocritical if you ask me.

  111. Virgil wrote:

    I don’t understand this website. Are you all opposed to raising children according to the biblical imperative, “Children, obey your parents in all things, for this is well pleasing to the Lord”? (Col 3:20)
    Regarding family household structure, do you oppose verse 18 of the same chapter, “Wives, submit to your own husbands, as is fitting in the Lord”, and Eph 5:22-24, “Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything”?
    What is it that those on this site believe?
    After reading this site for a number of months, on the surface it appears you all disagree with God’s instruction manual in this particular area of life. But I find that notion hard to believe.
    Is it because there exist husbands who don’t follow the imperative of Eph 6:25, “love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her,” and 6:4, “fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord,” but instead, act in a selfish, ungodly manner?
    It is clear you do not accept the patriarchy movement. What is not clear is ‘what do you accept?’
    Thanks!

  112. Virgil wrote:

    I don’t understand this website. Are you all opposed to raising children according to the biblical imperative, “Children, obey your parents in all things, for this is well pleasing to the Lord”? (Col 3:20)
    Regarding family household structure, do you oppose verse 18 of the same chapter, “Wives, submit to your own husbands, as is fitting in the Lord”, and Eph 5:22-24, “Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything”?
    What is it that those on this site believe?
    After reading this site for a number of months, on the surface it appears you all disagree with God’s instruction manual in this particular area of life. But I find that notion hard to believe.
    Is it because there exist husbands who don’t follow the imperative of Eph 6:25, “love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her,” and 6:4, “fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord,” but instead, act in a selfish, ungodly manner?
    It is clear you do not accept the patriarchy movement. What is not clear is ‘what do you accept?’
    Thanks!

    Okay Virgil
    Having been lurking around here long enough I think I can attempt to explain this to you. The people who make up this website promote an equal leadership between husbands and wives where as they both agree and submit to one another and to the Lord. As my former Priest put it, Husband’s and Wives in a Godly marriage are to assist one another to get to heaven. Its not my will over your will but we make the decisions together. How to spend the finances encourage each other each one etc. a sort of 50/50. As for children. Yes you teach them limits and boundaries and as parents we are supposed to guide them, But did a shepherd “beat” the sheep with the rod? No the shepherd beat the enemies of the sheep and at best would frighten the sheep if they were near danger. As in use the rod to shove them near the heard. In Judaism mothers rarely physically discipline (unless in grave danger) but rather use a set of strong guiding principles so as to teach children to obey. We as parents also Shepherd our children guiding them to obedience. We do not “train them.” Children are not animals. Do children need to know limits to grow by leaps and bounds? Sure. Do we as parents wives and husbands require the ability to respect one another? Yup. And we should do so with our children. So we should do so as a Church. That’s the command here Mutual Love and Submission. So reread that again. How does Christ Love the Church? So much so that he died for us!.