Christianity Today Publishes a Rapists’ Story

Remember when the Good Man Project posted an article by an unrepentant rapist, supposedly as an example of things to avoid? Well, Christianity Today recently posted an article by a youth pastor who had sex with one of his students and is supposedly repentant—but doesn’t really sound that way. In this article, the unnamed jailed former youth pastor, whom we will call Tim for the sake of ease, describes his offense as an “extramarital affair” and assigns as much guilt to his victim as he accepts himself. She sinned, you see. Read more

Talking to Kids about Social Services, part II

I wrote yesterday about the fear of social services I received from my parents and from the wider homeschooling community. Once I grew up I realized that this fear was both irrational and counterproductive. Social services was not the enemy, and social workers do important work protecting children from abuse and neglect. Sure, social services isn’t perfect, and they sometimes make mistakes. But what good does teaching children to be afraid of social services do? Absolutely none at all. When I had children of my own, then, I determined to do things differently. I wanted Sally and Bobby to see social services not as an enemy but as a friend. Read more

Kevin Swanson Outdoes Himself Advertising for His Book

In a trailer for his book, Apostate, evangelical pastor and Christian homeschool leader Kevin Swanson playacts a dystopian future in which he is in jail for being anti-gay. Seriously. Watch it. It’s amazing. Yes, evangelicals like Swanson really do think they’re going to wind up in jail for being anti-gay. Because we put people in jail for being racist, right? Oh wait. We don’t. Read more

Talking to Kids about Social Services, part I

I grew up afraid of social services. Social workers were something of a bogeyman in the homeschooling community, and my parents bought into it completely. In fact, in a recent conversation on the topic with my mother, she insisted that social workers today do in fact take children away from their parents for nothing more than homeschooling. That she still says this today says a lot about just how high fear of social workers was in our home when I was a child. Read more

CTBHHM: The Question of Birth Control

I know we haven’t gotten there yet, but Debi is going to tell Diana that she should have obeyed her husband. Obeying her husband would have meant having only two children. Why, then, include this part praising the benefit of having five, eight, or more children? Debi’s basically telling Diana that having a large family is wonderful, but that too bad she shouldn’t have because her husband said not to. That does not seem very compassionate to me. Read more

Life. It’s Weird Like That.

My husband Sean was raised in a religious home, so I think sometimes I can forget how different our upbringings really were. This evening I was talking to Sean about the movie Frozen, which come to find out is the top grossing animated film of all time. I reminded Sean of his skepticism on seeing a commercial last fall promoting Frozen as this generation’s Lion King. Sean laughed and admitted that his skepticism had been misplaced—but then he went on. Read more

Does He Treat You Right?

I actually have some fairly strong memories of how it felt to be on the receiving end of this messaging vis a vis young men. As a teen, I was told that the boys around me only ever thought about one thing and were only ever after one thing. The problem was, I had no idea what this “one thing” was, my sex education was so bad. The result was that I viewed guys my age with trepidation and fear. I remember wondering what this thing was, this “one thing” that made the guys around me so dangerous and explosive that my father would speak of them the way he did. Read more

Dads, Daughters, and Dating

I’m sick and tired of living in a culture that not only displays a profound distrust of young women and a strong need to control young women’s sexuality but is also incredibly flippant about the use of gun violence against other males. Is it that hard to empower young women to make their own choices and give them the tools they need to back those choices up? Read more

I. Don’t. Think. He’s. There.

Okay, so here’s the thing: I don’t think there is a Jesus out there. It’s not that I don’t think God is who he says he is (I don’t think he exists, so there’s no he to say anything), and it’s not that I think Jesus is someone that he’s not. I really don’t think there is a supernatural being named Jesus, or a supernatural being at all. I’m really not sure how many different ways I can say this. Read more

The Rambo and Seattle Shooters Were Homeschooled

Oh yes, I know, lots of kids who go to public school pull off mass shootings too. I get it. But I’m sitting here, as a homeschool alumna, remembering everything I was told about homeschooling growing up, and suddenly it seems very hollow. I was told that homeschoolers grow up to become model citizens, that public schools produce violent criminals but homeschools do not. Public schools produce mass shooters, after all, but who has ever heard of a homeschooler pulling off a mass shooting? Or so I was told. Read more

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