By now, you’ve heard the story, or at least pieces of it. You probably haven’t read the police report. You probably haven’t put it all together to realize that he was sexually abusing his 4-5 year old sister while he was roughly 14, and that it happened to multiple little girls, time and time again.
Because if you knew all that, you likely wouldn’t be saying things like,
“It was a mistake!”
“It was 12 years ago!!”
“Get over it!”
In general, a mistake implies accident, or at least a one time thing. He did not trip and fall onto their genitals, here. He repeatedly molested his little sisters! These are not simply actions of a confused teenage boy. This is criminal behavior and should be acknowledged as such. Did his strict upbringing contribute to these deviant actions? Most likely, but the fact that he sexually abused 5 girls, over a period of time, multiple times (and in their sleep) leads me to believe he has sociopathic tendencies- the kind that make up the vast majority of the repeat offenders.
This was not a mistake. We should not get over it. I hate to speak for his victims, but as a victim myself, I can pretty much guarantee they are not over it.
Of course, the “Christian” blogger Matt Walsh had to get his digs in, saying everyone around him is a hypocrite. He goes onto accuse those who are criticizing the Duggar family of not even being upset about the victims. Sure, maybe there are some people who care more about the Duggar’s losing their credibility than the well being of the victims, but let me assure you, that is not the case for most. See, many of us are upset because we have been victims ourselves. We know first hand the pain and suffering- physical, emotional, psychological and spiritual those who are left in the wake endure- for a lifetime. We are now coming out of the woodwork because old wounds have been ripped open in light of this information, and the subsequent defense of the criminal behavior. We should not simply get over it, Matt. We can’t. We have been through counseling, both Christian and traditional, we have worked our entire lives to get put back together, and you know what, we are still not over it. We are not whole, we may never be. And you sit on your high horse trivializing this by calling it a mistake and saying we ought to forgive. NO WE SHOULDN’T. We should speak out. We should fight to change the laws- so often, these crimes aren’t reported and the offender walks free based on the statute of limitations. But given the culture of abuse, the victim is often too ashamed to speak out in time, or her family is too afraid or simply too stupid to go to the police.
Read the stories, Matt. Read them here and here and here and here! Read the accounts of these victims, and the shame they carry around. How can you continue to defend him? You may think you aren’t defending him because you so selflessly admitted his actions were evil. But, by trivializing the magnitude of the felony, plus calling us hypocrites AND saying we should forgive him, which is another way of telling us to forgive our own attackers, you are defending this behavior.
And the hypocrisy! Oh my! Because not everyone thinks Michael Brown deserved to die for his crimes, we are hypocrites?! For what, for calling for justice for Josh Duggar’s victims!?! As far as I know, no one wants Josh Duggar to be killed in the street. Though, as a culture, we are less forgiving of those who destroy the innocence of children than other criminals. Wanting justice, not counseling that is truly nothing more than victim blaming, does not make one a hypocrite. What makes you a hypocrite is saying that an entire subset of the population is a danger to children while you yourself have molested at least 5 girls. That, my friends, is the definition of a hypocrite. Expecting others to adhere to values which you cannot. And by values, we mean keeping your hands off children’s genitals!
I also think it interesting that nowhere in Matt’s diatribe against liberals did he once call Josh’s actions illegal (which, by the way, Matt, I’m a libertarian, and a Christian- so stop trying to put us all in a box!). Even though it was a felony. A felony, that if it had been handled appropriately and brought to law enforcement in a timely manner, would have meant formal charges against Josh Duggar on several counts of CHILD MOLESTATION. Stop calling it a terrible mistake, Matt. Call it what it is. Imagine a teenage boy “fondling” your children’s genitals, and then tell me how much you forgive the person and are okay with them walking free.
I know, I know, they brought him to a police officer. A police officer who is currently spending 56 years in jail for child pornography doesn’t count though. It also raises the question, why him and how deep does this go? They claim he was a family friend. Now, no doubt any of us could be unknowingly friends with someone who has child pornography, but the fact that he brought his son to this man definitely makes me wonder if there is something much more sinister going on here. Time will tell, and truly, I hope I am wrong.
This whole case has brought to light things many people would rather stay in the dark. But you know what, maybe now, maybe because of his actions more people will stand up for themselves, call out their attackers, and get the help they need to heal as much as possible, and regain some of the innocence that was taken from them. From me. From so many of us. We do not have to remain silent. And no, we do not have to forgive. Yes, I said it. We can forgive our attackers in order to help us heal, but we never have to simply accept or minimize what was done to us. We are not responsible in any way, shape or form for what happened. Let’s stop the victim blaming and shaming, and let us rise up and hopefully prevent future attacks.
Hear this well, church. It is YOUR responsibility to change the culture of abuse within your walls. Your followers should not be defending and minimizing this behavior. If you are made aware of sexual abuse in your church, bring it to the authorities who can handle it properly. Criminal actions are not to be dealt with “in house”; do not “keep a lid” on it (I’m looking at you, Village Church in Dallas).