In the comments on my recent post about Jamin Wight, who sexually molested a young girl from age 13 through age 16, several readers pointed to similarities between the story of his victim, Natalie Greenfield, and the story of Maranatha Chapman. And they were right—the similarities are almost uncanny. In this post I want to tease out both the similarities and the differences and hit on some themes and underlying problems. Read more

From time to time I find the need to step in and remind commenters about my comment policy. This time, it has come to my attention that a number of my commenters have slipped into using ableist slurs. I slip in this area myself sometimes, and not long ago I had to edit a post because I’d accidentally used one here on the blog. This post is not a condemnation but rather a call to do better—and a reminder that ableist slurs are banned by my blog’s comment policy. Read more

Oh boy. So I’ve written before about Doug Wilson’s excuse-making for serial child molester Steven Sitler, but I haven’t written much about the other child abuser in Doug Wilson’s closet—Jamin Wight. Long story short, while Jamin was a student at Doug Wilson’s seminary and boarding with a Christ Church family, he sexually (and psychologically) abused the family’s daughter, Natalie, for years, beginning when she was 13 years old. Jamin was ten years the girl’s senior. Read more

When I was in middle school, I briefly tried out the youth group at my family’s evangelical megachurch. I was homeschooled, and wasn’t used to being around so many public schooled kids, and I had no idea how to fit in or even identify with any of the kids there. But the real problem I ran into had to do with the youth group leader. See, he wanted the kids in youth group to call him Andy*. My parents forbade… Read more

What with the news about homo naledi, a new hominin species, it’s probably time to revisit young earth creationist interpretations of such skeletons. Given that young earth creationists start with the Bible and only then look at the scientific evidence, it shouldn’t be surprising that they tend to argue that species like Homo Naledi or Neanderthal are either human or ape. Over the weekend, Answers in Genesis declared homo naledi an ape. Several years ago, Answers in Genesis declared homo floresiensis human. Read more

It’s time for another chatter thread! Read more

I’ve been an atheist for over half a decade now, but I still haven’t told my evangelical mother. Oh, I’ve told her that I attend a UU church, and she knows I don’t believe in young earth creationism or read the Bible every day the way she does. But I’ve never actually told her I’m an atheist. I’m in a bit of a different position than most—I grew up as the oldest of a large evangelical homeschooling family, and half a dozen of my siblings are still under 18. My ability to see my siblings is in some sense contingent on my not rocking the boat further than I already have. It’s an unspoken agreement of sorts. Read more

And you know what? Gwen’s lawyer, Peter, ought to have told her all of this. And maybe he would have, if he weren’t so busy telling her that he’ll never let them take Casey from her again—which yes, is a thing he told her. Great lawyer, that. Read more

I may have come to the end of the post, but I haven’t found the answers I was hoping I would while writing my thoughts out. How can we value the feminine without pushing girls into gendered tracks? Read more

And frankly, the Duggars had the same problem in all of their justifications for how they handled their son Josh’s actions—it wasn’t like he raped his sisters, so why were people so upset? This whole “it wasn’t rape” defense for individuals who molest children really needs to be discontinued. There is more to sexual abuse than rape. At its core, these sorts of justifications betray a fundamental lack of understanding of sexual abuse, and how it works. Read more

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