What Tony Jones Should Learn From Stanley Hauerwas About Marriage

"Dad could talk about peace and love out loud to the world, but he could never show it to the people who supposedly meant the most to him: his wife and son. How can you talk about peace and love and have a family in bits and pieces – no communication, adultery, divorce? You can't do it, not if you're being true and honest with yourself."– Julian Lennon link

http://www.publicdomainpictures.net/view-image.php?image=85587&picture=broken-heart-painting
Broken Heart

(updated a few dates-8 pm)

Gone Girl-*Spoiler alert*

Last night we watched the movie Gone Girl. The basic plot revolves around a man (who is a cheat)who is married to a probable sociopath who disappears and then reappears. Ms Sociopath set up her own disappearance to make it appear that her husband killed her, hoping he would go to jail for life or get the death penalty. Then, in true sociopath form, changes her mind and returns home. Her husband, who now fears her, decides to divorce her but discovers she is pregnant with their child. He sacrifices his own peace of mind to stay with his wife in order to protect the coming child. He knows that the commitment will last at least 18 years. 

Allegations of spousal abuse and whacked theology by Tony Jones, a well-known progressive, Emergent leader.

On September 5, 2014, the Naked Pastor published Tony Jones on Mark Driscoll: What came first, the thug or the theology?. In the course of the comments, Julie McMahon, former wife of Tony Jones, joined in on the discussion, alleging that she had been abused by Tony Jones. This thread received over 1,000 comments. Such claims have circulated throughout the internet for some time.

 Stuff Christian Culture Likes posted this synopsis:

allegations have been made in various social media for some time concerning aspects of Tony Jones’ behaviour towards his ex-wife Julie and their children at and since the time of their relationship breakdown, specifically assault, incorrectly claiming that Julie was mentally ill and his and Doug Pagitt’s alleged theological justification for Jones’ affair with his now-wife. Strong feelings have been raised this week by the discovery that JoPa are facilitating a conference with a strong diversity/feminist agenda, that this attempts to present an image of supporting women while major personal issues are still unresolved. Leaders involved have refused to discuss the issue, referring to it as ‘gossip’, and some saying they have investigated the events and are satisfied. Yet Julie continues to claim that no one from the Emergent community has even spoken to her about the events since they occurred. 

Let's sum up the basic allegations:

  • Tony Jones divorced his wife in 2009. Julie discovered the affair in 2008
  • His BFF, Doug Pagitt, knew Tony was having an affair and came up with a theological argument to justify Jones' actions. Jones allegedly told Julie that he had a spiritual™ wife  which took precedence over their marriage because their marriage was simply a legal matter. (2009- one month before official divorce).
  • Julie claims she was assaulted by Jones.
  • Rumors circulated amongst their Emergent group that Julie was mentally ill. She claims that the leaders tried to get her committed to a mental institution.
  • Julie was awarded custody of the children and Jones was given visitation rights.
  • Tony Jones sacramentally (his term) married his new wife in 2011 and legally married her in 2013. They refused to get legally married until gays could get married.

Why Christian?

This conference is being planned by Rachel Held Evans and Nadia Bolz Weber. It is being sponsored, in part, by JoPa- a group run by Jones and his friend Doug Pagitt. This is where it gets messy.

A thoughtful comment on this blog post by Rachel Held Evans was followed by this response by RHE.

Danica Newton • 20 hours ago

Hi Rachel, I posted this on your Facebook but also wanted to leave a comment here because it seems that you interact more here on your blog, and I wanted to make sure you hear me.

I saw your upcoming conference featuring women and got super excited … until I saw that you're partnering with Tony Jones and Doug Pagitt for the event. This is surprising to me because you've always been an advocate for the abused and for victims, but Tony Jones had been accused by his ex wife of some serious things, including throwing her against a wall and dislocating her shoulder from its socket.

This happened many years ago (probably six? ), and his ex wife tried for a long time to tell her part of the story, but was shut down every time by Jones' pressuring of blog hosts, etc, every time she tried to talk. He even threatened law suits when the pressure of his position in the Emergent community didn't work to make them delete her comments and block her participation.

A few months ago Julie left a comment on Naked Pastor's blog, but instead of censoring her, he let her tell her story … for the first time ever. The comment thread on that post is very long, but worth the read, especially if you are familiar with the silencing tactics commonly employed by men in power against victims of abuse.

I'm hoping you are not aware of Julie's story, and that is why you agreed to partner with her abuser. I also hope that this comment will be left up, and not taken down, because if it is (taken down), then although it pains me, I will have to assume knowing of Julie's allegations, you are continuing to work with Tony Jones, which means you would be taking sides with the abuser (who wields a lot of power, I know – he's giving you and others a platform to speak, after all).

Below is the link to the conversation. I truly hope you read through, and at the very least allow Julie to tell you her side of the story (since Jones denies it, and labels her as having a mental disorder)

Thank you.

********

RHE I take abuse allegations very seriously, and if I had good reason to believe Tony was an abuser and these allegations were credible I wouldn't work with him on a conference. But my personal experience with and diligent investigation of this situation has given me reason to doubt that this is the case. (The fact that I too was accused of being part of a massive EV coverup when this all happened before I was even published and not even remotely connected to EV raised some red flags from the start.) There's always the chance I'm wrong, of course, but I've made the decision to continue participating in the conference with Nadia. To debate the circumstances of another couple's divorce further, in this forum, would be unwise – legally and ethically – so I'm not going to comment on it again, and I'm going to have to moderate comments so that the comment section isn't inundated with rumors, which I also take very seriously. There are other forums for such conversations. Part of advocating for abuse victims is to encourage them to work through the proper legal channels to achieve justice. I have done this consistently. 

So Rachel Held Evans appears to say that the accusations against her friend, Tony Jones, are not credible. From that point forward, any comments about this subject were deleted and the post was eventually closed to comments. Here is a screen shot taken by one of our readers who attempted to comment and had it deleted. (Good comment-Sensible!)

Screen Shot 2015-01-17 at 4.18.28 PM

Twitter/Email Food Fight

Naturally, abuse advocates began to speak out about Julie McMahon's claims. There appeared to be a feeling that Julie did not have a platform for her concerns in the past and that she was finally able to express herself in a public forum. In fact, one person who claims to have known Julie in the past wrote the following comment on the Naked Pastor's comment thread. This comment seems to corroborate Julie's allegations and offers an insight that I will get to in a minute.

I come in peace. I am a former member of Solomon’s Porch (I moved out of state in 2007). I am an anthropology professor, wife, and mother. I was raised in a church pastored by a pedophile (Al Magnuson, Redeemer Covenant Church, Brooklyn Park, MN. I have experienced spiritual abuse.

Solomon’s Porch was a haven, a rescue, and a healing balm during difficult years. The dreams of the church continue to be my dreams, and my friends there, including Doug, are still my friends. I spoke on Doug’s radio show, promoted my book by speaking at Christianity 21, and so on. I am not an emergent figure, but I benefited by association. 

I have met Julie only briefly (in person), and have never interacted with her children. I have interacted with Tony several times, but not socially or extensively. I was not present for any of the incidents described by her or anyone else, but I did follow things on-line.

This comment thread makes me sob. No voyeuristic glee; only heart-rending pain at my repeated role of by-stander, and at times victim, in religiously abusive situations. I am speaking up to satisfy my conscience. 

I saw Julie’s reputation smeared, and her attempts to speak silenced. At Christianity 21, an emergent insider told me that the evening was very difficult for Tony and Courtney, because they were coming out as a couple, and the expectation was that people be kind to them. When I questioned, “What happened to Tony and Julie?”, the answer was that regardless of the “official” divorce, their marriage had ended long ago, so Tony was free to be with Courtney. The marriage ended, so I heard, because Julie was destructive and mentally ill. It didn’t add up – why is the crazy person doing all the child care? You try caring for three little kids even just for the duration of a C21 conference…if Julie really was that crazy, people should have been intervening on behalf of the children at that very moment, not standing around drinking wine and talking shit about her. 

(Side note: so what if she, or anyone else, is, in fact, mentally ill? I interact regularly with people who have autism, OCD, bipolar, anxiety, depression, and so on. Every single one takes responsibility for their behavior, and is capable of accurately describing abuse. Even a psychotic person in a psych ward can speak up and say they are being abused, and their claims will be investigated. American law doesn’t allow us to write off someone’s testimony because of their mental health.)

Then, another comment.

Steve K @Becky – I just want to add that the rumor about your mental health was spread by Jeff Kursonis, who I (and the rest of us in Emergent at the time) later learned was not someone who was trustworthy. (That's a whole other story that is being conflated here, I'm afraid, with the accusations of mental illness by Tony towards his ex, Julie. Two different situations entirely.) 

Anyway, it was a hard lesson learned, and I apologized directly to you for my complicity in spreading that rumor — and I made every effort to correct that and connect you with the board of Emergent Village at the time so they could offer an "official" apology directly to you as well, but you refused to speak with them.

Brian McLaren, another well-known, Emergent BFF of Jones, also appeared on the comment thread.

Brian McLaren
 September 24, 2014 at 11:19 am

Last Friday, I received an email from Julie McMahon requesting that an apology to her be posted on this thread. I was one of several people who had been asked by both Tony and Julie in 2008 to help them in a time of marital crisis. We tried our best to help, but the marriage didn’t survive.

I read through all the postings on this thread and checked back as the list grew. I saw significant discrepancies between the version of the story that was being told on this thread and my experience and understanding of what actually happened. 

However, I was at a distance and was only peripherally involved because I extricated myself from the situation early on. Because I take accusations of spiritual abuse seriously (as, I’m sure, do all the people named in Julie’s email), in recent days I’ve gone back in my email archives and reread the many emails Julie sent or forwarded to me during and since 2008.

I have come to see a few things that could have been done differently, especially with the benefit of hindsight. I also see areas where, if the counsel given to Julie and Tony had been followed more fully, outcomes could have been better. But I have never witnessed or observed anything even close to abuse by any of the people named; in fact, I have only witnessed sincere and solid pastoral care in a tragic and volatile situation, right up to this moment. 

I think that someone on this thread made a good suggestion. She shared that she was once accused of something. A group of qualified and mature people reviewed the evidence in a responsible way. She suggested taking what has been shared on this thread, along with information that can’t in good conscience be shared in public, for private professional review, making use of structures developed by denominations over many years of dealing with situations like these.

I think that is a good idea, and I will do my best to see it is done. Because I have some idea of the legal dimensions of situations like this, I do not believe it is wise or appropriate to say anything else at this time. 

Counter attacks begin

 As folks expressed concern for Julie's situation on Twitter, counter attacks began. The best example of this is one received by Amy Smith. As you know, Amy is a tireless defender of the abused. She had retweeted a comment about Julie's allegations and received the following email which she placed on her website. When a retweet is described as perpetuating the violence: Tony Jones and the Sonoran Theological Group


From: Amy Jacober <amy.jacober@gmail.com>
Date: January 14, 2015 at 10:19:34 PM CST
To: watchkeepamy@gmail.com
Subject: retweets

Hello! My name is Amy Jacober. I have referenced your blog many times and recommended it to many readers. I have written about you when you were egregiously treated and prayed for you. 

I was a professor at Truett Seminary. It is a long story but the abuse that takes place in and around Baylor and the seminary is rampant. I had my fill. Upon leaving to care for sick parents, I am part of a small group trying to offer affordable theological education. I spend a lot of time with those abused by churches, academic institutions, and systemic financial problems. It has cost my family in ways that are far too great to detail here. 

Our small start up training the poorest ministers was asked to be a part of a conference where we might meet some people in our community to better serve the needs of untrained leaders. I consult and help churches with things like back ground checks and writing safe sanctuary policies. My world for twenty years has been advocating for the least of these, including spending a great deal of time with friends with disabilities and crying out to my teaching colleagues to address the spiritual and physical needs of these friends so that further abuse does not continue. The name of that conference is C21. 

Today, one of my colleagues at our small start up responded to an accusation that we (STG) support abuse. You retweeted it. We had never heard of any such allegations and were taken by surprise. Within moments, it was misquoted, edited in multiple variations at this point. We should never have responded to the bait. What you have taught me is that speaking up for what is right brings violence, unless you are the person in power. Today, you are the person in power. It has grieved me to my very soul. It has been like living with the abuse of Baylor (your alma mater) all over again. People in power, who do not fact check, sling mud and then think nothing of the lives they are destroying always stun me. Mostly they stun me because I honestly don't think they realize what they are doing.  I know, you know this pattern well. I assume you did not do this maliciously, rather it was an easy sound bite and you bought into it. 

I know you have done good work in the past. I have been an advocate and ally. Please, in the future, do not do this to others. You have just become the very thing you fight against. I have spent much of the day dying inside as I think through all of the young women I have ministered to over the years assuring them that there are responsible, non-reactionary advocates out there and they can be brave. I wonder if I'll have that chance again. I wonder about my very reputation as the retweets keep flying. You are powerful, whether you realize it or not. Please, please, please, before you ever retweet something where a person or organization is being accused that you do not know, do your homework before you perpetuate the violence. 

Perpetuate the violence? Seriously?  Here is another twitter exchange that you might find interesting.

Then, Dave Hayward, Naked Pastor, left this comment on the original comment thread.

Dave Hayward

4. I have been contacted outside of this conversation by many, mostly leaders, who have provided advice to me on how to manage this blog post and comments. I'm sure, for the most part, their intentions were good. But at the same time this indicates how those with authority or a reputation enjoy other ways to control or influence conversations. Maybe this wasn't always done to silence me or others, but it does tell another story about how influencers assume various methods to manage information that the silenced cannot.

5. The alleged abused invited the accused into this space to respond to their demands for apologies. As unsettling and uncomfortable as this would be, some risked it and graciously met their demands. As far as I know, there has been healing in those relationships. On the other hand, some didn't. Those who didn't have their own reasons why, from good to suspicious to bad.

Tony Jones responds in Some Hard Truth

In this post, Tony makes it clear that he is the one who filed for divorce. He also alludes to some conduct of which he is regretful.

Unfortunately, during this same time, my marriage suffered and eventually collapsed. When I filed for divorce in August, 2008, it caused ripples of pain that are still lapping up on the shores of many lives. My former spouse, my three kids, and many relatives and friends were affected.

Divorce is a tragic event in the life of any family, and our divorce was particularly hostile. While I tried to conduct myself with compassion and grace, I didn’t always succeed. I made many mistakes along the way. I said things that I now regret, and I often thought of myself and my own pain before that of others. I have grieved these failures, I am profoundly sorry for them, and I will carry regrets with me the rest of my life.

My thoughts

 1. Tony Jones had to get away from his wife but he had no problems leaving his kids with her.

This jumped out at me immediately. Tony could no longer stay married to his wife, allegedly because she was mentally difficult. I have heard this excuse from others before and I don't buy it. Why? It appears that it is OK for the children to stay under the care of his wife and allow them to endure the supposed mental illness but he can't. Does this make sense? He leaves the most vulnerable members of his family with his wife while he takes up with his spiritual™ honey.

A father who is really concerned for his children would have stayed put, enduring difficulty for the welfare of his kids. Not only that, he removed himself from the home and immediately got a new *friend.* That is just what his kids needed. Their father is now absent from the home, they are living with a mentally unbalanced mother, and their daddy now takes time to court the new "love of his life." Oh yeah, the court gave the *mental case* custody.

Unless… that mentally unbalanced thing gave him a good excuse…Neither of these two possibilities speaks well for Jones.

2. Stanley Hauerwas' example: Since when does *mentally ill* qualify as a good reason for divorce? 

Recently, I read Stanley Hauerwas' autobiography Hannah's Child: A Theologian's Memoir. Here is how Amazon describes the book.

With genuine humility, he describes his intellectual struggles with faith, how he has dealt with the complex reality of marriage to a mentally ill partner, and the gift of friendships that have influenced his character. 

Hauerwas is considered one of the greatest theologians in America. He tips progressive but manages to miff off all sides of the theological debate. From Wikipedia

 Hauerwas is known for his outspoken advocacy of pacifism, as well of his fierce criticism of liberal democracy, capitalism, and militarism. He is also a critic of both Christian fundamentalism and liberal Christianity and American civil religion. Among his most important contributions to modern theology are his advocacy of and work related to virtue ethics and post-liberal theology.

The most poignant sections of the book dealt with his mentally ill wife. Her behavior was deeply troubling and, at times, profoundly embarrassing. However, Hauerwas stayed by her side and helped raise his young son. He adamantly refused to divorce her, even when his BFFs thought it might be appropriate. They only divorced when his wife insisted on the divorce. Then, he spent a great deal of money hiring her an excellent attorney to make sure that she received a fair and just settlement. He later remarried a wonderful woman and has had a successful and happy marriage along with a close and loving relationship with his adult son.

Hauerwas exhibited the Christian qualities of long suffering and humility. I think a lot of that is lacking in the Tony Jones story.

3. Progressives can play theological games just like conservatives.

I know that progressives, moderates and conservatives disagree on lots of theology. However, all three groups are equally capable of making up theology to justify bad behavior. At this point, it is not a theological argument. It has become a game of rationalization. You know the old saw. "Did God really say….?"

Here's the deal for me. That spiritual™ wife stuff was absolute codswallop! And anyone who played that game ought to be ashamed of themselves. Emergents are not the only ones who can call out baloney.

4. The Calvinistas aren't the only ones who protect their own.

We are all aware of the circling of the wagons that occurred when Sovereign Grace Ministries and CJ Mahaney were under the gun. Frankly, it is human nature to want to protect our friends. However, those of us who understand grace know that even our friends can disappoint us. I still remember a seminary professor going after the Deebs a few years ago for our concerns about SGM, Mark Driscoll and Gary Ezzo. His justification? Well known celebrity seminarians (himself included, of course) and pastors loved those guys. Since we were not theologically trained™ as they were, we were obviously wrong. Wonder what they think now?

 5. We are positionally holy but functionally sinners.

This means we can all be wrong in our judgments of others and wrong in our behavior at times. Christians, above all, should be well aware that our heroes, as well as we, can hide our foibles. Why is it when the police finally catch the serial killer in a neighborhood, the neighbors will often say "He was a nice guy." "He shoveled our driveway." "He always came to the neighborhood pot luck." We are sometimes really screwed up in our judgements.

6. I tend to believe those who say they are abused which includes Julie.

This does not mean that I am always right. However, it is well known that most people find it terribly difficult to discuss their abuse in public. The vast majority of reports are true. I always consider the other side. But the other side is difficult to find when abusive behavior happens behind closed doors without witnesses. 

7. Libel

Libel is a deliberate telling of a lie in order to harm the good character of another person. A person making false claims can be sued for such behavior. Most people will not risk making false accusations on a large public forum.

Why I tend to believe Julie at this point.

The spiritual™ wife stuff was such poppycock that it leads me to mistrust Tony Jones and his friends. If they are willing to make that up, they are probably willing to make up more stuff. Also, I believe that a good father( or mother) would not leave their kids in the hands of a mentally deranged individual. 

Sometimes, a parody can say it better. Here are links to Twitter and Tony Parody Jones and The JoParody Group.

And now, I shall go curl up in a fetal position and wait for the spiritual™ input to begin…

Lydia's Corner: Exodus 13:17-15:18 Matthew 21:23-46 Psalm 26:1-12 Proverbs 6:16-19

Comments

What Tony Jones Should Learn From Stanley Hauerwas About Marriage — 1,063 Comments

  1. dee wrote:

    @ John Brost:
    Dearest John
    I have always wanted to have a blog post that had 1,000 comments. Due to your rather insistent ramblings, you have made my dreams come true. And I am commenter 1,000! Yay me and thank you, thank you, thank you John.

    dee wrote:

    @ John Brost:
    Dearest John
    I have always wanted to have a blog post that had 1,000 comments. Due to your rather insistent ramblings, you have made my dreams come true. And I am commenter 1,000! Yay me and thank you, thank you, thank you John.

    Yowza, Dee! It’s time for all of us to celebrate with Sacred Cow Sundaes, a delicious dessert invented by our own Gram3 just a few weekends ago!

  2. Nick or OldJohnJ will correct my math, but I think you need another comment to make it to 1,000. So here it is!

  3. Gram3 wrote:

    Nick or OldJohnJ will correct my math, but I think you need another comment to make it to 1,000. So here it is!

    Michaela beat me. Bummer.

  4. Gram3 wrote:

    Gram3 wrote:

    Nick or OldJohnJ will correct my math, but I think you need another comment to make it to 1,000. So here it is!

    Ohhh, nooooo, Gram3. Then I’m buying you and Gramps3 Sacred Cow Sundaes!

    Michaela beat me. Bummer.

  5. @ John Brost:

    Did I have to know Bill Clinton personally to have a problem with his behavior? A lot of people tried to convince me of that, ironically.

    that sort of bizarre standard is often used by many in the public eye whether the mega church pastor, politician or even movie stars. There is always the charge that you don’t know them personally so cannot comment on their public behavior and how that affects the brand image they have been selling.

    Personally, I thought “theological provocatuer” was bad enough before all this came out. It really is upsetting the apple cart that a single mom without a public platform told her side of things. As one who used to dabble in murkey world of brand management for mega churches, the progressives would have been much better off if they had lost their keyboards. The bizarre responses (deleting, blocking, threatening lawsuits, etc) simply convinced me they had a huge problem and they knew it. It has been all about saving the “brand”.

  6. Lydia wrote:

    Did I have to know Bill Clinton personally to have a problem with his behavior?

    Weren’t the Clintons simply unbelievers behaving like unbelievers? I remember reading on a now defunct discernment site that the sexual goings on were the least of their evils, and that they were classic examples of the old adage ‘power tends to corrupt …’.

  7. John Brost wrote:

    Graham 3. If you see fit to post on this blog about this matter, why wouldn’t you reveal your name?

    I see your perception of this bloggers name is incorrect. I’m assuming that some of your other perceptions about this topic may be incorrect as well.

  8. John Brost wrote:

    Graham….did the attorney follow through? What is your name…your full legal name?

    “White man wants everything in writing, and that’s only so he can use it against you in court.”
    — Billy Jack

  9. The same people who let loose against Mahaney and Driscoll are now clamping down on info about this Tony Jones? Ugh. Another year, another Christian voice I thought was above silencing victims proves they are no better than the rest.
    At this rate who’s next? Dave Hayward? Will we find him pulling a Cosby on some buddy of his like RHE is doing with Jones? I respect him quite a bit but with the way things are going in Christendom these days…

  10. I am completely unfamiliar with this situation. This is the first time I’ve read about it.

    I am so angry at these “progressive” bullies I could spit nails. Yes, gaslighting is real. And yes, the abused are denied a voice when their tormentor has power and influence.

    As for all that crap about “spiritual” marriage, don’t even get me started.

  11. Pingback: Church: You Make it Impossible to Love You | Mind Squirrels UNITED STATES

  12. Justin Hanvey wrote:

    @ Ragnarok:
    As for actions a year ago I was a stalker. That is a more apt word than clingy.

    I am retracting this comment since it is now being used to harass me. I made this comment in duress when I felt bullied by members to SCCL to make it. I wish to retract it now.

  13. @ dee:

    I dunno what you can do now…I’d say delete my comments on here, but they’ve already been screenshotted and used to harass me so I’m not sure what can be done now. Thank you for asking though.

  14. Justin Hanvey wrote:

    Justin Hanvey wrote:
    @ Ragnarok:
    As for actions a year ago I was a stalker. That is a more apt word than clingy.
    I am retracting this comment since it is now being used to harass me. I made this comment in duress when I felt bullied by members to SCCL to make it. I wish to retract it now.

    You’re retroactively claiming that you were never a stalker because you felt bullied by me pointing out that your actions weren’t merely inappropriate, Justin? It’s not as though I hounded you here or contacted you through other means to attempt to compel you to make a statement you were otherwise reluctant to make

  15. Justin Hanvey wrote:

    Justin Hanvey wrote:
    @ Ragnarok:
    As for actions a year ago I was a stalker. That is a more apt word than clingy.
    I am retracting this comment since it is now being used to harass me. I made this comment in duress when I felt bullied by members to SCCL to make it. I wish to retract it now.

    Apologies for the second comment. I accidentally posted my previous (thank you iPad). Continuing…

    I did contact you later when I learned that you were accusing a mutual acquaintance of posting under my online moniker to inform you that that was not the case, and I included in that correspondence a message from another person whom you had previously agreed not to contact or include in your efforts to reestablish contact with the person whom you had been harassing in the first place that you were to desist in your then-renewed efforts to do what you had agreed not to do lest you face the consequences. No one wants you to face those consequences, least of all me, but it’s only right to warn you that they’re coming if you don’t stop. You may consider those efforts harassment, but I doubt any otherwise reasonable person would do so. Your response to our correspondence then was unduly defensive insofar as you accused me of attempting to intimidate you, but when you asked that I stop contacting you I did so. (Something, I would add, that you have consistenly failed to do for others who have made the same request of you.) I even refused via inaction to respond to your subsequent messages regarding the matter. If you doubt any of the preceding, I still have that correspondence.

    Now, however, you have appeared once more (even assuming a false guise on FB to offer support for your case) not only to attempt to reestablish contact with Shade Ardent but also to attempt to paint them a liar for telling the truth on SCCL regarding your actions. You reportedly went so far as to accuse people you considered friends of being unsafe for advising you against what you were doing, and then you unfriended and/or blocked them. These were people who were attempting only to promote your own well-being, and who also had no intention of supporting any of the supposed harassement you claimed to be enduring. It’s telling that you would heap the same accusations upon those people that you insist on heaping on those of us who are attempting to protect others from you.

    I have no intention of allowing you to go unchallenged in what you did last week. It’s truly unfortunate that you made the decision to do the things you did, and I have no good explanation for what led you to do them other than you feel compelled in some way you have difficulty resisting. I stated on SCCL last week, and I state again here, that you need to seek help for whatever is driving you to do these things. I state again here that I do not say you need help in order to diminish your basic humanity, and that I also need help. There’s no shame in that fact, and I entreat you sincerely not to hold that to be the case. Whatever may be happening is something you can overcome if you seek the help you need, and if there is any way I can aid you in finding that help then I will gladly do so.

    I don’t believe you’re a bad person, Justin. Truly, I don’t. You’re just fighting something you can’t seem to manage on your own. Please find help. I would consider it a real benefit for the world if you found a way to manage whatever is driving you and were able to lead a life without that torment. I have managed to overcome the worst of my bipolar disorder and my OCD, but it has taken many years, a great deal of love and support, and professional care to do it. The thing that I would wish for you to take away from this comment, if nothing else, is that if I can do it then you can do it, too. It’s possible not to live in constant torment from your own mind. But treatment by professionals is absolutely essential to the process of learning how. Please get it. I implore you.

  16. @ Ragnarok:

    Dee, Justin harassed and stalked a member of SCCL a year ago and there was a huge thread about it a few days ago (if you want to see, pop on over to SCCL, but he’s deleted the ghost profile he created to defend himself with, so it probably won’t make as much sense as it would if you had followed along in real time). He’s been told that if he contacts certain members of SCCL he will be served a restraining order. It is interesting to me that Justin came over here to continue the drama, but it is honestly pretty par for the course for those of us who have known him for a while. He won’t just let it drop.

  17. And I want to say that I will not be engaging Justin here on TWW, since it was all hashed out over on SCCL, and I will not be party to again swinging the focus away from Tony Jones and onto Justin Hanvey. Dee, you have my email if you’d like to ask any questions. Justin, I sincerely hope you get help.

  18. @Dee

    You likewise have my email address. If you need to see any verification of the things Danica and I have said here then I have a collection of screen captures and email notifications you need only ask to see. I also believe Danica is correct in her refusal to participate in moving the focus from Tony Jones to Justin Hanvey. I am at your disposal via email.

  19. @ Ragnarok:
    @ Danica:

    I have just returned from a trip and have a board meeting at my house today. For the last two days I was on the road and I am so far behind it is scaring me.

    Give me until tomorrow to get this figured out. I will send you all emails in the next day.

  20. @ Dee

    There’s no rush at all, and, for the record, I have no doubt at all that you remain a supporter of Julie. So far as I’m concerned, this matter is tangential to the point of barely being connected to her, and what connection exists is only there because Justin has persisted in making and maintaining it.

  21. Ragnarok wrote:

    @ Dee
    There’s no rush at all, and, for the record, I have no doubt at all that you remain a supporter of Julie. So far as I’m concerned, this matter is tangential to the point of barely being connected to her, and what connection exists is only there because Justin has persisted in making and maintaining it.

    I was not the first one to make the connection here, a friend of mine mentioned me being in correspondence with Rachel about Julie, and Banannie and Danica both took that as a chance to mention my past actions and how I am not trustworthy. I only came here to speak in my own defense. I do not think there is any connection between my past actions and Julie to maintain.

    If anything compels me it is simply that I have a right to speak up on my own behalf, so I do when I see people saying things that are misconstrued about me. I endured enough verbal abuse and shaming from my father growing up and I will not allow some Facebook page/group to speak of me in such a way without speaking up for myself. I had gone for almost a whole year without coming to SCCL, til I was informed of people talking about me here. That is when I was “compelled” to speakk for myself again.

  22. Justin Hanvey wrote:

    I was not the first one to make the connection here, a friend of mine mentioned me being in correspondence with Rachel about Julie, and Banannie and Danica both took that as a chance to mention my past actions and how I am not trustworthy.

    I can’t speak to the circumstances surrounding how, when, or by whom your reported correspondence with RHE was first mentioned here. However it came to be reported is not particularly relevant to the questions of who initiated it and why. Nor is it the point under discussion. What happened on the SCCL Facebook page last week, and the incident which preceded it to the degree it is currently applicable, is.

    Your past actions are what make many, including me, conclude that you are not trustworthy, and your recent attempts to rewrite history and shift blame have only served to confirm that conclusion further. It is not the case that you are irredeemably untrustworthy, Justin, but before you can begin to reestablish trust you must first own the actions which led to others losing their trust in you. And you must be honest when discussing those actions. The entire purpose of my originally calling your characterization of your previous actions into question on this thread was to point out that if you hope to be of any use to anyone else when trust is required then you must be honest about questionable actions in your past.

    In response to my challenge, you admitted that you had stalked Shade Ardent (although you didn’t mention them by name in accordance with your agreement). At the time, I viewed this as a positive step, and that is why I didn’t continue to pursue the matter. I wanted you to be honest and open. You were. The events of last week, along with your reappearance here to recant, present a significant setback, unfortunately.

    No one wants to own behavior as egregious as you have demonstrated both originally and this past week, and I hardly blame you for wanting to fight being labeled a stalker. I wouldn’t want to own that behavior either, but if any of us hope to heal and grow then we must be honest. Honesty is sometimes hard, and in situations such as this one it is also painful. Even more painful is the desire to make things right when one is unable to act upon that desire, but part of life is sometimes not being able to make right what we’ve done wrong. Bad things done cannot be undone. Those we’ve wronged may choose on their own to forgive us, and they may even choose to reach out to us to let us know if we’re extremely fortunate. However, forgiveness isn’t always forthcoming, and forcing oneself upon another even for what we are convinced is a noble reason (such as apologizing) only revisits trauma upon others. It compounds the wrong.

    Last week, you showed up on SCCL after having openly criticized SCCL—none too kindly and some would say unfairly—on your blog. You, of course, have every right to your views and to express them openly, but you seem unwilling to allow the objects of your criticism to defend themselves without crying persecution in your turn. You were full of recriminations from the start, and once you were predictably challenged by your erstwhile critics on that page things began to deteriorate quickly. Once you made the decision to assume a false identity (and please don’t bother to repeat denials since at one point “Bill Thornton” began to speak of Justin in the first person) in order to be able to argue with those whom you had previously agreed not to contact, the wheels had well and truly come off the metaphorical bus.

    These are things you simply must not permit yourself to do, Justin. It’s difficult by any measure to accept how badly things have gone for you, and after last week it cannot have become any easier. I urge you to listen to those around you when they advise you against these sorts of actions.

  23. John,

    First off I wanna thank you for at the least trying to speak as kindly as possible. I could see many earlier conversations having gone far better for the attempt on many people’s parts. I note Annie Dote’s last comment to me (via Bill) as well.

    That said, it feels a little too little too late. And since the allegations of stalker and creep and harasser are still continuing to be thrown at me come off a little disingenuous. Just tell me what you really think of me and be done with it.

    What you have referred to as stalking, well, what others have referred to as stalking and what you by your own admission expect me to refer to it as well (and I knew that even if you didn’t come out and say it which is why I said it hoping it’d get ya’ll off my back) was a misunderstanding. A mistake. A fluke of personality for me. It was not normal for me nor has it ever been. What I have tried to continue to say over and over is that at the time Shade Ardent unfriended me (to which she nor anyone has ever told me why) my reactions, while wrong and inexcusable, came from a moment of deep insecurity that I was experiencing at the time. My messages to her requesting explanation for the unfriending were regrettably handled wrongly on my part…and yet there were no threats, and no cussing that I remember, nothing that any reasonable person would consider threatening. Why do I know that? Because I have received such messages many times in my life (including from Stephanie Drury) and I never considered them harassing. A disrespect of my boundaries to be sure, and a swift blocking made those boundaries clear, but nothing that I would consider stalking or harassment. It is true that once I was blocked by Shade my curiousity continue to be piqued, and knowing her and knowing how deeply she’d been abused in her past I was truly freaked out that I had done or said something horrible. So I sought information from her friends, trying to figure out what had been done wrong on my part, or whether there was more to the story I did not know. I do not consider this stalking, as it was done out of concern. Guess what, Stephanie did the same thing to me as well in contacting my wife after I had blocked her to ask about me. This was done out of concern, and frustration, and I still do not consider it stalking nor harassment, but I do consider it once again continued disrespect of my boundaries and asking her to leave me alone. And that is what I did as well.

    You have called it inappropriate and I own that.

    I have never spoken of those actions with anything but regret, but to call them stalking and harassment is to make a situation deeply overblown out of proportion, and to disrespect deeply the many women and others who are truly stalked daily by Gamergaters, abusive ex husbands etc.

    The fact that I have never sought contact again with Shade since then continues to be proof as well.

    The poem i wrote about my feelings after the breakup of friendship is neither here nor there since it was never written to be seen by anyone. I regret that my friend informed Danica of it, and I wish Danica had kept its existence to herself. Shade need never have seen that poem.

    I have spent the last year trying to respect Shade’s not wanting me to speak of her or the situation as much as I can. Sometimes I have referred to it in regret, and telling people who are talking about boundaries as what not to do.

    This situation resurfaced after I was informed of the actions being spoken of (despite Shade not wanting them to) by Danica and Banannie here, and by Reuben to Julie and my friend Amy later in some secret group they were part of. So once again I set off to defend myself, as is my right, while trying to own as much of the fault as I can.

    I have lost many friends during these last couple weeks. I have had my own psyche undergo an incredible amount of stress. I have reacted wrongly in some ways, and I truly don’t know what to say anymore. I don’t seek reconciliation and I’m not sure I’d take it even if it was offered. I don’t trust people at SCCL anymore, and after my friend shared with me Shade’s words about me I don’t trust her either. She is telling some stuff about me that is simply not true. I don’t know whether she’s doing that on purpose or whether that’s the narrative she’s come to believe. Honestly I don’t care.

    I stayed away from SCCL, and felt perfectly fine with ya’ll continuing to believe whatever you wanted to believe about me. I knew the truth of my actions. That’s all I needed to know, but it was when you were turning Julie against me (something I’m thankful didn’t last as I am glad to be a supporter of hers and for her to be encouraged by my support), trying to turn people at Wartburg Watch against me, and turning friends who I’d come to really rely on against me in this recent thread that I began to feel as if I needed to speak for myself again…

    What has ensued is accusations of stalking again whenever I spoke up for myself, and warnings of legal repercussions. I continue to be blown away by the deep vitriol being spewed over a few wrongly chosen words uttered a whole year ago. And I have continued to be blown away by the fact that any time I came to SCCL to stand up for myself I was driven off with all manner of verbal abuse. If I had been Bill it would almost make sense as I would feel maybe people will listen to me if I used another voice other than my own.

    I don’t deny that Shade probably felt stalked. I don’t deny that she has ptsd from past experiences of abuse by her former churches and that my actions probably triggered that ptsd, and I truly regret that, as i did not realize the extent of them til too late. I will continue to deny that my actions were stalking though, or harassment, or being a creep or whatever. All I have ever done since is seek to speak for myself. i will not allow threats of legal repercussions dictate to me what I am allowed and not allowed to say in my defense.

    As for what will be done in the future, I am choosing to not go to SCCL anymore, and I am choosing to not engage with any comments about me there anymore. In any fashion.

    My post had nothing to do with my past and everything to do with confronting Rachel and Richard Beck on their thoughts about purity culture in progressive christianity. I had began to wonder if Rachel might have responded better if she had not experienced some of the more abusive feedback that often comes from SCCL (which I am not the only one that attests to that), and so I sought to write a post where I spoke of what I considered good (and harsh and needed) public critique, and what I considered public bullying. I could consider Stephanie’s having posted my blog post at her page just so I could once again undergo continued hatred from members of SCCL as once again violation of my asking her to leave me alone, but I will not.

    I am tired John, I don’t want to do this anymore. I don’t ask for ya’ll to change your opinions of me, and I doubt I can stop ya’ll from poisoning people against me, and honestly I don’t know if half of what I am saying is even coming out right or sounding like Tony Jones talking to Julie (some of it probably does) and I don’t wanna be that guy either. If it was just Shade going around saying I stalked her, and explaining why she felt that way, and people validating her feelings while understanding that calling those actions stalking when talking to others would be wrong and without context giving them a much worse idea of me than is true then I’d have never spoken up. Believe the victim, don’t gaslight, all that…I still believe it. Which is why I’m not even sure I should be defending myself. And I don’t see my situation as prescriptive in any way.

    What I really want is to just be left alone, and to move on from this…I’ve tried to move on. I had moved on for almost a whole year til it came back up again. I have never been accused of this by anyone else, and I’ve never messed up in the way I did with Shade with anyone else. That was a totally abnormal thing for me and I’d appreciate if that was acknowledged. I’d also appreciate if the allegation that I ingratiate myself with powerful women be ceased as well. This is the kinda stuff that I feel the need to defend myself against, thus repeating this cycle.

    I do not deserve this level of attack. I do not deserve the things said about me by Chris Rose, by Danica, by Annie, by you…

    I have done wrong, I own that. Please let that be enough and let me move on and try to move past guilt to changing my praxis, please stop holding actions I did a year ago over my head like burning coals. You don’t have to forgive me, or reconcile with me, but just…please…leave me alone.

  24. @ Justin Hanvey:
    Well you do sound like Tony Jones inasmuch as you keep trying to convince yourself and everyone else that Shade’s experience with you should be dismissed on account of her diagnosis of PTSD (per you, she has PTSD. I’d like to point out that you are the one who has now, if that’s true, just divulged someone’s private mental health information. Someone who has asked you to leave them alone.)

    So let me be an ableist too and help you out, I do not have PTSD. Or any other mental health diagnosis. I was there, I watched what went down. I am watching what you are still doing. I agree 100% with Shade’s characterization of your behavior.

    Go re-read John’s posts, follow his advice.

  25. I continue to be amazed at how easily people deploy the insinuations about mental health of their opponent when they want to skew a narrative to be favorable their side.

  26. As someone who has bern stalked and who has seen some of the things that the stalker wrote in an attempt to dismiss his own behavior and discredit me, all i can say is that i believe Shade was indeed stalked. It is a frightening experience and i will not play along with anyone’s attempt to explain it away.

    I have not read/posted much at SCCL for the past 4+ years, but i used to be a regular and am aware that there have bern some extremely tense situations, where women who post there said they were being stalked or otherwise harassed.

    Until a person has been on the receiving end of it, ig is hard to understand how devadtating it can be.

  27. Then I really need someone to define stalking to me.

    Person A unfriends person B, person B proceeds to message Person A asking Person A why they unfriended. Person A says they wish to not speak anymore, and to leave them alone. Person B proceeds to (wrongly) freak out a bit, trying to understand what went wrong, and yet never threatens Person A, or anything. Person A blocks Person B. Person B then in concern and worry over Person A, as well as a little frustrated with being ignored tries to talk to Person A’s friends, to see if they have talked to Person A and found out what is going on.

    When these friends do not or cannot answer Person B’s questions he finally lets it go, especially since they have proceeded to frame him as a stalker, and he does not wish to be seen as such. For a year almost he does not contact anyone. And he never attempts contact with Person A again, directly or indirectly (which would have to be done to merit the accusation of stalking).

    If contacting someone when they have unfriended you, and contacting their friends after they have blocked you, and ceasing after those friends have asked you to cease is stalking then Stephanie Drury stalked me. Hell, many people have stalked me if that is true. You’re using the most asinine definition of stalking I have ever seen. The only way such an asinine definition even makes sense is if someone who is easily triggered by conflict felt cornered by me pushing for an answer to why the unfriending and I have continually apologized for that.

    The knowledge of Shade’s ptsd and triggers is public knowledge, she has spoken of it many times on SCCL, and in her blog.

  28. *continually apologized and expressed deep regret for, as I did not realize the extent to which my actions had affected til long after the blocking and getting a phone call from a friend of hers. I have tried to respect the boundary since then, and have done so for over a year. In fact I’ve never stopped respecting it, and have only spoken of what happened in public when others began making it public. And that only to contest the word stalking, not to contest saying that my actions were inappropriate, hurtful, and wrong, and I have said over and over how truly sorry for them I am. I would like to now take that guilt and move on, remembering this as a lesson in how not to treat people, and I have for the most part I believe been learning that lesson and have not reacted in the way I did with Shade with anyone else since. So really, continuing to argue over this word is to me a completely absurd argument since every act I have owned, apologized for, etc. adds up your weird definition of stalking, and while I will not own that word, I have and always will own the actions themselves as wrong and hurtful and I have tried to learn and grow from them.

  29. Justin Hanvey. If you were truly sorry you would stop casting salt on wounds you made. But you just keep talking on and on, so I think you are not truly sorry. You are only needing more attention to yourself or your image and not those you have hurt.

    If you truly regret pain done, you only must stop. But I think you will not stop. I think your unapologetic words words words show only that you are more important than any one’s pain, no matter what.

    (I am sorry to continue this distraction that this person has made.)

  30. Yevska wrote:

    (I am sorry to continue this distraction that this person has made.)

    This goes for me as well. I would hate to see this whole mess continuing over here, where it is not relevant and where it is, at best, a distraction from the posts and comments on the posts.

    It really upsets me when people try to restart personal conflicts from other forums and online communities on website that have nothing to do with the people in question, let alone the conflicts. It is also innately disrespectful to the owners of this site, and all of the commenters. (Note: this is for JH, not the others who, like me, have weighed in on his recent comments here. That said, I am out, because I don’t want to encourage this to continue…)

  31. Hey folks as I have continually said I did not bring the conversation over to here. It was started by members of SCCL and I came in to speak on my behalf. I have no wish to distract from any ongoing discussions and I have no desire to run salt on wounds. You just cannot go around calling someone a stalker willy nilly tho. Dee has told me I am allowed to tell my story here and I am thankful to her for allowing me this.

  32. Justin
    So glad you get to tell your story on Wartburg Watch. Looking forward to reading it. Sorry that people will not accept your apology. At times I see group think happening. One person says something and everyone jumps on board. Critical thinking is lacking and shaming people is popular. When responding to what a person has written it needs to be on what the person has said not on attacking or shaming the personhood. Wishing you all the best.

  33. Justin Hanvey. You came out of the sky and posted about another place. You did. No one else.

    I knew you would not stop.

    numo. You are right. This, I should have ignored. I will do so from now on regarding this topic.

  34. @ Margaret:
    You are assuming a lack of critical thinking and a popular enjoyment of shaming. In fact, you are witnessing informed discernment.

  35. Have you listened to Monica Lewinsky on Ted Talks? One quote

    Lewinsky asks that every person become an “upstander” instead of a bystander when it comes to public humiliation. “I’ve seen some very dark days in my life. It was empathy and compassion from friends, family, coworkers, even strangers that saved me. Empathy from one person can make a difference,” she says. “Compassionate comments help abate the negativity.”

    “The Internet is the superhighway for the id,” she says, “but online showing empathy to others benefits us all … Just imagine walking a mile in someone else’s headline.”

  36. @ Margaret: Actually I really appreciated Lewinsky’s Ted talk and the articles I read discussing it.

    I don’t believe it applies to this situation. I haven’t said anything insulting or mocking of JH, and I have primarily commented on his actions both past and present.

    Can you describe what you think would be an appropriate response, online, to someone one believes is neither sincere nor safe?

  37. What can Justin do that would help you to begin to trust him again. Do you need him to apologize again? Not sure how this could be made acceptable.

  38. Yevska wrote:

    Justin Hanvey. You came out of the sky and posted about another place. You did. No one else.

    I knew you would not stop.

    numo. You are right. This, I should have ignored. I will do so from now on regarding this topic.

    I’m sorry but you have apparently missed a whole bunch in this thread. I was not the first to post of myself or the issues I have with SCCL here.

  39. Banannie wrote:

    @ Margaret: Actually I really appreciated Lewinsky’s Ted talk and the articles I read discussing it.

    I don’t believe it applies to this situation. I haven’t said anything insulting or mocking of JH, and I have primarily commented on his actions both past and present.

    Can you describe what you think would be an appropriate response, online, to someone one believes is neither sincere nor safe?

    you have been unmoving here I will give you that but you and Chris Rose and Danica and others have been nothing but mocking of me before at SCCL. Your words have often been incredibly verbally abusive.

    I have apologized over and over. I don’t know what else I can do? I have stayed away from SCCL and have never tried to contact Shade since she blocked me. When y’all start talking about me, usually very mockingly. I start defending myself and y’all tell me I’m stalking by doing that.

    Maybe I’m just making it worse but I really don’t enjoy that SCCL seems bent on making every person they come across believe I am a stalker and harass women and usually say this without any context of what happened so that people will likely form the worst impression like I tried to doxx people and made rape or death threats or something. It’s incredibly disrespectful to the many people who have been attacked and stalked online given death and rape threats and endured all manner of abuse. To equate what I did with them just seems to me unethical in the extreme.

    Now what I did was hurtful and wrong and whatever state of mind I was in or Shade was in does not excuse me at all.

    What I think ya’llat SCCL want is free rein to speak as abusively, mockingly, disparagingly, etc. of me as you want to anyone and everyone who will listen and silence me from any self defense by characterizing anything I say as continued stalking behavior.

    And I’m beginning to think there is nothing I can do about that

  40. @ Margaret:
    Oh. I see. Answering my question with an unrelated question.

    This is not something that I have any interest in. I have truly said everything I have to say on the subject, and I think my views and concerns have been made abundantly clear, and I do not see a value in rehashing that again.

    I was curious if you had a suggestion for following Miss Lewinsky’s admonitions while dealing with someone you believe to be unsafe.

  41. Justin Hanvey wrote:

    Now what I did was hurtful and wrong and whatever state of mind I was in or Shade was in does not excuse me at all.

    Jusin Hanvey knows “what [he] did was hurtful” but will not stop telling us he willfully hurt others. More and more this make my heart sick. He is actively continuing or attempting to continue to harm. Why does one who knows this, not stop this? Ego? Sickness? Because only his feelings of wrong is important no matter what?

  42. Yevska wrote:

    Justin Hanvey wrote:

    Now what I did was hurtful and wrong and whatever state of mind I was in or Shade was in does not excuse me at all.

    Jusin Hanvey knows “what [he] did was hurtful” but will not stop telling us he willfully hurt others. More and more this make my heart sick. He is actively continuing or attempting to continue to harm. Why does one who knows this, not stop this? Ego? Sickness? Because only his feelings of wrong is important no matter what?

    Willfully is absolutely not true. And this is why I continue to speak here. I am trying to own my wrongs while pointing out that how I am being portrayed is wrong.

    I have never tried to harm anyone. I deeply regret that I inadvertently did and I should have known better and made better choices at the time.

  43. Margaret wrote:

    Justin
    So glad you get to tell your story on Wartburg Watch. Looking forward to reading it. Sorry that people will not accept your apology. At times I see group think happening. One person says something and everyone jumps on board. Critical thinking is lacking and shaming people is popular. When responding to what a person has written it needs to be on what the person has said not on attacking or shaming the personhood. Wishing you all the best.

    just wanted to say thanks for your comment and encouragement. I will post up some official statement or whatever tomorrow. Most of it has already been said but not all.

  44. Justin Hanvey wrote:Yevska wrote:

    Justin Hanvey wrote:
    Now what I did was hurtful and wrong and whatever state of mind I was in or Shade was in does not excuse me at all.

    Justin Hanvey wrote:

    Margaret wrote:
    Justin
    So glad you get to tell your story on Wartburg Watch. Looking forward to reading it. Sorry that people will not accept your apology. At times I see group think happening. One person says something and everyone jumps on board. Critical thinking is lacking and shaming people is popular. When responding to what a person has written it needs to be on what the person has said not on attacking or shaming the personhood. Wishing you all the best.

    just wanted to say thanks for your comment and encouragement. I will post up some official statement or whatever tomorrow. Most of it has already been said but not all.

    Justin Hanvey wrote:

    Yevska wrote:
    Justin Hanvey wrote:
    Now what I did was hurtful and wrong and whatever state of mind I was in or Shade was in does not excuse me at all.
    Jusin Hanvey knows “what [he] did was hurtful” but will not stop telling us he willfully hurt others. More and more this make my heart sick. He is actively continuing or attempting to continue to harm. Why does one who knows this, not stop this? Ego? Sickness? Because only his feelings of wrong is important no matter what?

    Willfully is absolutely not true. And this is why I continue to speak here. I am trying to own my wrongs while pointing out that how I am being portrayed is wrong.
    I have never tried to harm anyone. I deeply regret that I inadvertently did and I should have known better and made better choices at the time.

    Justin Havney says he was hurtful, and yet does not acknowledge his own words that what he did was hurtful and will not stop reminding his victim of his harmful words or actions. How can this be both?

  45. Banannie wrote:

    @ Margaret:
    Oh. I see. Answering my question with an unrelated question.
    This is not something that I have any interest in. I have truly said everything I have to say on the subject, and I think my views and concerns have been made abundantly clear, and I do not see a value in rehashing that again.
    I was curious if you had a suggestion for following Miss Lewinsky’s admonitions while dealing with someone you believe to be unsafe.

    With Monica Lewinsky I laughed at all the jokes made about her. I formed opinions about her based on media and popular beliefs about who she was. Her story spoke to me because I realized I had never thought how the media had impacted her life. Now I realize there is a place for empathy, there is a need to listen to how people are hurt and abused when vilified on the Internet and social media.
    I didn’t respond to your question because I don’t know all the details about what Justin did. I only know what has been written on this thread. You also chose not to answer my question. Is there anything that Justin could do that would make you believe he is no longer an unsafe person?

  46. Justin Havney has more words words words. And Margaret continues this distraction and admitted stalker. Why? Remember when this was about a wronged wife and mother and not Justin Hanvey? I do. So very sad, this posturing ego.

  47. To everyone who is concerned about Justin Hanvey

    I am glad that Justin came to TWW. There are some people within this community that can talk to the concerns behind the scenes. I have put Justin in touch with these folks and believe that the discussion will be helpful.

    I have been informed of the previous situation by some folks from SCCL and I am grateful for the communication.

    We do not believe in deleting comments unless they become way out of line. The Deebs get to decide what that means. What I would ask of everyone is this. Please allow some time for stuff going on behind the scenes. As most readers know, we are strong supporters of all victims and go out on the limb for them frequently. That hasn’t changed.

  48. @ numo:

    I think it is good that Justin came over here. We have a unique resource to help him behind the scenes. People have now been put in touch with one another.

  49. @ Margaret:
    I apologize for being unclear. Creating trust with JH is something I have no interest in or need for. I will offer a caution, based on my experiences and observations, to anyone I think may be at risk- especially someone I care about. Being grownups, they are then free to make their own decisions based on their own experience, and I certainly won’t hold their different view against them.

    I think the bigger question of having compassion for people, even people I believe to be unsafe, an interesting one. I think it can be discussed without reference to JH.

  50. @ Yevska:
    The person I non willfully, and unintentionally hurt is not here. That I know of. I have not tried to contact them at any point in time since they blocked me over a year ago. This is about vindicating myself of the accusation of stalker and harasser. i believe such is a false accusation.

  51. Justin Hanvey wrote:

    I’m gonna hold off on any statement til I talk to “unique resource”

    I believe this person is truly in a great position to help you. I truly believe it is the providence of God that brought you here so that you could talk with said person.

  52. I’ve been thinking about this, my defensiveness in this matter, and something just has not been sitting well with me this whole time. Well, maybe not this whole time, but more and more as I’ve said more and more defensive stuff.

    Women like Julie McMahon and Shade, they’ve been systematically silenced by the church that was supposed to be there for them. In Julie’s case, Tony Jones has been the linchpin of silencing that is surrounded by his friends, and cohorts doing it to her. In Shade’s case it was IFB and I guess now…me.

    Whether I intended to make Shade feel stalked or harassed doesn’t matter. She felt stalked and harassed. My defensiveness has felt to me more and more Tony-like. I look at it and I feel just a bit disappointed in me. This isn’t some job thing where I could lose a job, this is accusations of cyberstalking that means I lose a few friends (that maybe I wouldn’t have lost if I hadn’t been so defensive).

    And I think about all the women in the world who feel silenced by men in their lives. I don’t wanna be that guy. I am being that guy lately though. And it’s really shitty of me.

    Shade deserves the voice she has, and she deserves to have her experience of what happened between me and her heard, even if it means I come off looking bad. I can live with that. What I did was wrong…and while I’ve learned from it and moved on doesn’t make it any less wrong.

    But more than that I want to set a precedent, I want to be a guy that puts women and their experience above himself and his defensiveness. There are too many Julies in the world, too many Shades. I don’t want to perpetuate that, and maybe my example of backing down here and letting her experience be the dominant story will inspire other men to not be silencers too.

    I am sorry.

    I guess you can consider this my official statement. The rest of the story doesn’t really matter. I am sorry for taking up the time of people here who were doing more important things. And I’m not saying men don’t sometimes get falsely accused. I’m just saying that I don’t feel right being defensive and asserting my experience over Shade’s about this particular situation anymore. It was kinda messed up of me to do so. I am going to step down now. Thanks again Dee for putting me in touch with your friend, and I hope he can help me on the dealing with my personal feelings end.

    Alright, that’s all.

  53. Justin Hanvey wrote:

    The rest of the story doesn’t really matter. I am sorry for taking up the time of people here who were doing more important things

    Justin
    Believe it or not, your coming here was an important thing. Thank you for this comment. Please know that I will be praying for you.

  54. Yes. This appearance by this Justin Hanvey was very telling. If thou will pray for him, I will pray for all those his sad life touches.