July 16, 2015

Good news: TLC has cancelled “19 Kids and Counting,” the obnoxious reality television show that celebrated conservative Christian values while protecting a child molester.

TLC cancelled the program after a large public outcry in the wake of damning revelations that Josh Duggar, the oldest son of Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar, sexually assaulted four of his underage sisters plus an additional underage female victim.

Compounding and contributing to the crime, a “conspiracy to “forgive and forget” forged by the Duggar parents and church leaders allowed Josh Duggar to escape criminal prosecution for sexually assaulting his underage victims.

The disgraced Josh Duggar now admits to what police reports confirm: the oldest son of Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar forcibly fondled and sexually assaulted at least five underage girls, including four of his sisters, on multiple occasions, over the span of several years, while he was a teenager.

Josh Duggar was never prosecuted for his crimes, and Jim Bob Duggar waited over one year to alert police to the fact that his son was sexually abusing his daughters, despite the fact that both Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar were aware that multiple incidents of sexual abuse in their home had occurred.

In 2006 multiple underage victims testified to police that Josh Duggar had sexually molested them. However, Josh was never prosecuted for his crimes, and the statute of limitations has since passed.

According to reports, Josh Duggar apologized to the girls he had sexually assaulted, and family members told police that the girls had “forgiven” him.

The Duggars are part of a radical Christian lifestyle known as the Quiverfull movement, a movement where children are considered canon fodder in the Lord’s army: culture warriors bred to promote an ugly, intolerant, sexist, and homophobic brand of Christian extremism.

Last month, speaking with Megyn Kelly on Fox News, Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar denied their son Josh was a pedophile and blamed the media for targeting the family in an anti-Christian conspiracy.

Compounding the family’s troubles, reports issued earlier this month indicate serial child molester Josh Duggar is facing a lawsuit from one of his underage victims who is not a member of the Duggar family.

(Portions of this article were previously published here)

duggarlarge buhbye

May 26, 2015

As a candidate for the U.S. Senate Jim Bob Duggar argued those guilty of incest deserved the death penalty.

Before he was the star of 19 Kids and Counting, Jim Bob Duggar was a prominent political figure in Arkansas, serving as a member of the state’s House of Representatives before running for the U.S. Senate in 2002.

Duggar lost his 2002 bid to be the GOP nominee for the U.S. Senate, however, he did take positions as a candidate. While trying to justify his anti-choice, anti-abortion stance, U.S. Senate candidate Jim Bob Duggar stated forcefully and clearly that those guilty of rape and incest should be put to death.

The following appeared on Duggar’s campaign website:

Q. What is your abortion position, and specifically, where do you stand on rape, incest, and threat to the mother’s health?

A. If a woman is raped, the rapist should be executed instead of the innocent unborn baby. Adoption is an option. Many couples would love to adopt and are waiting for a baby. Abortion has been and always will be the destruction of an innocent child. Rape and incest represent heinous crimes and as such should be treated as capital crimes. The developing infant committed no crime and should be allowed to live. In the unlikely event that the life of both mother and baby would both be lost (for example, a tubal pregnancy) all should be done to save the life of the mother.

Rape and incest represent heinous crimes and as such should be treated as capital crimes.

However, Jim Bob failed to hold his son Josh accountable for sexually assaulting four of his underage sisters (Jim Bob’s daughters) plus an additional underage female victim. In fact, Jim Bob covered up his son’s crime for over a year, and consequently Josh was never prosecuted for his incestuous crimes, faced no legal consequences, and apparently received no treatment for his clearly deranged behavior.

A conspiracy to “forgive and forget” allowed Josh Duggar, the oldest son of “19 Kids and Counting” Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar, to escape criminal prosecution for sexually assaulting his underage sisters plus an additional underage female victim.

Alas, Jim Bob Duggar’s hypocrisy is not surprising, and is but a footnote to this disturbing and ugly tragedy.

(Image via Screen Grab)
(Image via Screen Grab)
May 22, 2015

Good news: TLC has removed “19 Kids and Counting” from its schedule in the wake of accusations that star Josh Duggar, the oldest son of Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar, sexually assaulted four of his underage sisters plus an additional underage female victim.

Compounding and contributing to the crime, a conspiracy to “forgive and forget” forged by parents and church leaders allowed Josh Duggar to escape criminal prosecution for sexually assaulting his underage victims.

Time reports:

TLC refused to comment on the incident Thursday, but the network sparked outrage later that evening when it ran a 19 Kids and Counting marathon. As of early Friday, the show had been scheduled to air on the morning of May 27, but it has since been taken off the schedule.

TMZ reports on TLC’s decision to yank the Duggar’s popular reality show:

Sources familiar with the situation tell TMZ, the fate of the show is uncertain, but there’s now so much heat in the wake of Josh Duggar’s molestation confession … the network had to make the decision.

We’re told they absolutely have not made a long-term decision, but it’s clearly a bad sign for the show.

And there’s this … a rep for General Mills tells TMZ, they have already blacklisted the show and removed it from their company’s current advertising schedule.

The disgraced Josh Duggar now admits to what police reports confirm: the oldest son of Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar forcibly fondled and sexually assaulted at least five underage girls, including four of his sisters, on multiple occasions, over the span of several years, while he was a teenager.

Josh Duggar was never prosecuted for his crimes, and Jim Bob Duggar waited over 1 year to alert police to the fact that his son was sexually abusing his daughters, despite the fact that both Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar were aware that multiple incidents of sexual abuse in their home had occurred.

In 2006 multiple underage victims testified to police that Josh Duggar had sexually molested them. However, Josh was never prosecuted for his crimes, and the statute of limitations has since passed.

According to reports, Josh Duggar apologized to the girls he had sexually assaulted, and family members told police that the girls had “forgiven” him.

The Duggars are part of a radical Christian lifestyle known as the Quiverfull movement, a movement where children are considered canon fodder in the Lord’s army: culture warriors bred to promote an ugly, intolerant, sexist, and homophobic brand of Christian extremism.

UPDATE: TLC has released a statement confirming they have pulled all episodes of 19 Kids and Counting from their schedule:

Effective immediately, TLC has pulled all episodes of 19 Kids and Counting currently from the air. We are deeply saddened and troubled by this heartbreaking situation, and our thoughts and prayers are with the family and victims at this difficult time.

Maybe instead of “thoughts and prayers” TLC could provide some much needed counseling for this troubled family, in particular, counseling for the children. After all, the children never asked if they could be circus freaks to be publicly exploited in the service of Jesus Christ and television ratings.

(Portions of this post were previously published here and here.)

(Image via YouTube)

 

May 14, 2015

Reality TV stars Jessa Duggar and her husband Ben Seewald visited the Institute for Creation Research in Texas where they promoted the false idea that atheists really do not exist and that science proves Biblical creationism.

Jessa Duggar, reality TV star and victim of the radical Christian extremist movement known as Quiverfull, recently married Seewald in a tabloid extravaganza featured on 19 Kids and Counting, the wildly popular reality show that glamorizes the dark life of a family dedicated to promoting a dangerous and radical brand of Christian extremism.

Using their media platform Jessa and Ben went to the Institute for Creation Research in Texas to promote the ridiculous claims that atheists really do not exist and that science proves Biblical creationism.

The Institute for Creation Research is similar to Ken Ham’s Creation Museum, both promote the naive notion that God created the universe, and that the “first human beings did not evolve from an animal ancestry, but were specially created in fully human form from the start.”

At the Institute, Ben interviewed  Dr. Jason Lisle, the Institute’s Director of Research, and asked how one could prove to atheists that God exists. Lisle explained that “God has revealed himself to everyone” and that atheists say there’s no God “because they’re suppressing the truth in unrighteousness.”

Wonkette provides a partial transcript of Lisle’s remarks:

The evidence of God is ubiquitous. It’s everywhere. And, in fact, Romans 1 tells us that God has revealed himself to everyone. And what that means is there really is no such thing as an atheist. There are those people who profess to be atheists, but in their heart of hearts, they know that there’s God because God has revealed himself to everyone. He’s hardwired us to know that he exists. And he’s hardwired us in such a way that when we look into the universe, we immediately recognize it’s the handiwork of God. And not just a god, the God. We recognize God.

So I don’t really have to give new evidence to a professing atheist. All I have to do is expose his suppressed knowledge of God, because you see, in Romans I again, it tells us that the reason that unbelievers profess, you know, they say there’s no God, et cetera et cetera, it’s not because they don’t know Him, it’s because they’re suppressing the truth in unrighteousness. The Bible says.

While Ben interviewed this so-called expert, Jessa shared the video on her YouTube account.

This is not the first time Jessa Duggar has used her platform to spread absurd, misleading, and false information in the service of her extreme Christian beliefs. Earlier this year Duggar used her Facebook page to tell liberals they will burn in hell, while last year Duggar blamed the Holocaust on the theory of evolution.

Indeed, the Duggar family has come to be a symbol of the ignorance and hatred associated with conservative Christian extremism.

Jessa’s brother, Josh, claims his Christian love for gays forces him to fight against rights for LGBT people, and he is currently the policy director at the Family Research Council, which has been classified as a hate group for making false claims about the LGBT community based on discredited research and junk science with the intention to denigrate LGBT people.

Particularly odious, Duggar family matriarch Michelle Duggar participated in a series of robocalls in which she urged voters to not support a municipal non-discrimination law that would prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual and gender orientation.

In the calls, Michelle Duggar described LGBT people as “child predators,” and said that trans women are actually male sex offenders who want access to women’s locker rooms and bathrooms.

In short. the family advocates for ignorance, hatred, and bigotry, all under the banner of Christ.

The Duggars are part of a radical Christian lifestyle known as the Quiverfull movement, a movement where children are considered canon fodder in the Lord’s army: culture warriors bred to promote an ugly, intolerant, sexist, and homophobic brand of Christian extremism.

Ultimately Jessa Duggar is a victim: a victim of Christian patriarchy, and a victim of Christian homeschooling. As a product of the Quiverfull movement, Jessa was raised to be cannon fodder in a Christian Holy War. As such, she should have our sympathy.

Watch Dr Lisle explain that atheists really do not exist and that science proves Biblical creationism:

(image via Facebook)
(image via Facebook)

 

February 26, 2015

Christian love: In an obnoxious Facebook rant, Jessa Duggar, reality TV star and victim of the radical Christian extremist movement known as Quiverfull, tells liberals they will burn in hell.

The 22-year-old 19 Kids and Counting star addressed her thousands of followers via Facebook Wednesday in order to share a “hard truth” – hell is for real, and if you don’t do as she says God says, you will fry for an eternity.

Jessa writes:

I will speak to you a hard truth. I do not write this because I think that it will bring me popularity. It won’t. But it is Truth from the Word of God: the Bible. To not tell people this is to hide the truth from them. To keep silent is to not care for their eternal destiny! I care about you, and this is why I am speaking out!

The irony of this deluded victim of religious indoctrination speaking of “truth” is painful.

No doubt Jessa is sincere, but there is always something deeply disturbing about some religious extremist “bravely” condemning others to an eternity in hell because they don’t happen to embrace some cherished religious superstition.

In fact, Jessa wants to judge; but she doesn’t want to be judged for judging others. Jessa writes:

Whenever someone speaks out against something that God calls sin, ‘Don’t judge!’ can be heard coming from a thousand lips. People don’t like to have other people disapprove of the way they’re choosing to live their life.

People are content to live on in lying, cursing, pride, anger, bitterness, disrespecting of parents, lust, pornography, fornication, adultery, and other sexual sins — and if anyone tries to confront them, their attitude and response is, ‘You live your life, I’ll live mine. Don’t you tell me what to do! Only God can judge me!’

And Jessa seems to revel in her God of Hellfire:

God’s judgement isn’t something to be taken lightly! It should scare you! Man’s ‘judgement; is a 1000x lighter… usually just a voicing of disapproval. But when unbelieving, sinful men die and stand before God, He justly condemns them to hell.

Jessa’s imaginary god is a moral monster to be feared, a nightmare of reason that would punish some supposed temporal and finite failing with eternal and infinite punishment.

Yet reading her post, one gets the distinct feeling that Jessa enjoys this irrational drama immensely.

Indeed, the Duggar family has come to be a symbol of the ignorance and hatred associated with conservative Christian extremism.

Jessa’s brother, Josh, claims his Christian love for gays forces him to fight against rights for LGBT people, and he is currently policy director at the Family Research Council, which has been classified as a hate group for making false claims about the LGBT community based on discredited research and junk science with the intention to denigrate LGBT people.

Particularly odious, Duggar family matriarch Michelle Duggar participated in a series of robocalls in which Duggar urged voters to not support a municipal non-discrimination law that would prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual and gender orientation.

In the calls, Michelle Duggar described LGBT people as “child predators,” and said that trans women are actually male sex offenders who want access to women’s locker rooms and bathrooms.

In short. the family advocates for ignorance, hatred, and bigotry, all under the banner of Christ.

The Duggars are part of a radical Christian lifestyle known as the Quiverfull movement, a movement where children are considered canon fodder in the Lord’s army: culture warriors bred to promote an ugly, intolerant, sexist, and homophobic brand of Christian extremism.

Ultimately Jessa is a victim: a victim of Christian patriarchy, a victim of Christian homeschooling. As a product of the Quiverfull movement, Jessa was raised to be cannon fodder in a Christian Holy War. As such, she should have our sympathy.

Jessa Duggar (Image via Facebook)
Jessa Duggar (Image via Facebook)
December 16, 2014

Josh “my mom’s vagina is a clown car” Duggar claims his Christian love for gays forces him to fight against rights for LGBT people.

Duggar, the oldest son of “Quiverfull” parents Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar, and policy director at the Family Research Council (FRC), said that his and his family’s efforts to successfully overturn a non-discrimination law in Fayetteville, Arkansas were an act of love toward the LGBT community.

While guest-hosting the FRC’s Washington Watch radio show on Monday Duggar explained that his and his family’s efforts to repeal the LGBT non-discrimination law in Fayetteville were actually a favor to the gay community.

Recently the prodigious baby-making Duggars used their wealth and celebrity to help overturn an ordinance outlawing discrimination against people on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity in Fayetteville, Arkansas.

As a consequence of the Duggar’s anti-gay efforts, which included describing LGBT people as “child predators” and expressing other ugly sentiments motivated by their Christian extremism, over a 180,000 people have signed a Change.org petition calling for the cancellation of the Duggars’ TLC series “19 Kids and Counting.”

Particularly odious, Duggar family matriarch Michelle Duggar participated in a series of robocalls in which Duggar urged voters to not support the municipal non-discrimination law that would prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual and gender orientation.

In the calls, Michelle Duggar described LGBT people as “child predators,” and said that trans women are actually male sex offenders who want access to women’s locker rooms and bathrooms.

Josh Duggar’s employer, the Family Research Council, has been classified as a hate group for making false claims about the LGBT community based on discredited research and junk science with the intention to denigrate LGBT people.

The Duggars are part of a radical Christian lifestyle known as the Quiverfull movement, a movement where children are considered canon fodder in the Lord’s army: culture warriors bred to promote an ugly, intolerant, sexist, and homophobic brand of Christian extremism.

The Duggars: Too much Jesus – Too many kids
July 13, 2017

Toby Willis, the father on TLC’s Christian reality show “The Willis Family” is sentenced to 40 years in prison for child rape.

Willis, father of 12 children, pleaded guilty to four counts of child rape on Tuesday. Before being arrested and charged last September with the rape of a young girl Willis starred in the TLC reality show “The Willis Family.”

Commenting on the story, Joe.My.God. reports:

Willis and his wife Brenda — like Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar — are Quiverfull parents, adherents to a Christian dominionist sect that encourages married couples to produce as many offspring as possible in order to raise an army of believers.

The word “Quiverfull” comes from the Old Testament Psalms of the Christian Bible. Psalm 127 says, “Children are a blessing from the Lord…happy is the man who has his quiver full of them.”

Indeed, before being pulled off the air, the TLC program about the Willis family was promoting the radical conservative Christian movement known as  Quiverfull, a movement where children are raised to be cannon fodder in the Lord’s army: culture warriors bred to promote an ugly, intolerant, sexist, and homophobic brand of Christian extremism.

HuffPost reports on the family’s background and rise to stardom in the world of Christian entertainment:

Willis, his wife, Brenda, and their 12 musically-inclined children became household names after they appeared on Season 9 of “America’s Got Talent” in 2014. The parents and their kids, then ranging in ages from 5 to 24, performed under the name The Willis Clan and were frequently compared to a “modern-day Partridge family.” The clan eventually landed their own show on TLC…

HuffPost goes on to note that since the criminal complaints were raised against the family patriarch, TLC has tried to erase their connection with the family:

“The Willis Family” has since been removed from all digital and social platforms on TLC.

Previously TLC cancelled “19 Kids and Counting,” another Christian reality show that promoted the Quiverfull movement, after it was revealed that Josh Duggar sexually assaulted four of his underage sisters plus an additional underage female victim.

People reports on the details of the sentencing for Willis:

Willis received 25-year sentences on two of the rape counts and 40-year sentences on the other two counts, according to Julie Hibbs, the circuit court clerk in Cheatham County, Tennessee.

Hibbs tells PEOPLE the four sentences will run concurrently and be served in their entirety — meaning Willis, a 47-year-old father of 12, will be in prison for 40 years.

Bottom line: Christian reality show star Toby Willis is sentenced to 40 Years for child rape. A man who was valorized by conservative Christians as a model father and a credit to the faith winds up being a sexual predator and a child rapist. Tragic, but not surprising. And, as always, it is the children who suffer.

Christian Reality Show Star Toby Willis (Image via TBI)
Christian Reality Show Star Toby Willis (Image via TBI)

 

July 7, 2016

Atheist Aron Ra schools leading creationist Eric Hovind at a protest outside Ken Ham’s Ark Encounter.

A video posted by Friendly Atheist and reported on by Raw Story shows creationist Eric Hovind getting into a debate about evolution with atheist Aron Ra.

At one point in the heated exchange Hovind asks Ra:

Do you believe we came from an ape-like ancestor?

An obviously annoyed Ra replied:

Yes. Apes don’t have tails — learn taxonomy! So yes, you are an ape, by definition.

However, Ra’s remarks apparently sailed over the head of the uninformed Hovind, who goes on to accuse Ra of making an ad hominem attack, failing to understand that human beings are considered apes from a scientific standpoint.

The conversation degenerates even further as Hovind’s companion then accuses Ra of sounding like Adolf Hitler, which is, as Raw Story notes, a surefire way to signal that you’ve lost an argument.

This is not the first time Hovind has embarrassed himself in public. Last year the leading creationist defended child molester Josh Duggar by arguing that if evolution is true, it wasn’t wrong for Josh Duggar to sexually assault little girls, “because what one evolved bag of molecules does to another bag of molecules just doesn’t really matter.”

As for Aron Ra, he is the Texas state-director of the American Atheists, co-host of the Ra-Men Podcast, a public speaker, a video producer, and a blogger at Patheos.

Watch the exchange between Ra and Hovind below:

(Image via Screen Grab)
(Image via Screen Grab)
October 27, 2015

Creationist Ken Ham argues that people will abandon clothing if a literal interpretation of the Bible is rejected and same-sex marriage is accepted as the law of the land.

Right Wing Watch reports Ham joined the Point of View radio program last week to discuss his worries that younger generations of Christians no longer believe in a literal interpretation of the Bible.

Ham warned that losing a literal interpretation of the Bible could threaten not just Creationism but also the concept of marriage as exclusively between a man and a woman, and even the wearing of clothing.

Ham wants pastors and others to drop the phrase “Bible story” and instead “emphasize that it’s a book of history because Christianity is based in real history, it’s a history you can trust.”

Ham said:

The doctrine of marriage is based there upon the literal history of Genesis. But if that history is not true, if there was no literal Adam and Eve, then what is marriage, why is it to be a man and a woman? It’s only a man and a woman because God invented marriage, and he invented marriage when he made the first marriage, Adam and Eve.

Ham added that “the origin of clothing is right there in Genesis,” so “if you abandon Genesis’ literal history of marriage and say marriage can be two men or two women or whatever you want, well why not abandon clothing?”

Ham’s reasoning makes no sense, but that is nothing new. Previously the confused and sometimes perverse creationist argued that without God, he would feel no moral prohibition against raping animals or children.

Indeed, for Ham it seems the only thing that prevents him from raping children and farm animal while running around naked is a literal interpretation of the Bible.

This strange and perverse idea that if creationism and a literal interpretation of the Bible is false, then everything and anything is morally permissible, including the rape of animals and children, is a common theme among Christian creationists and other Christian fundamentalists.

For example, recently, another leading Christian creationist, Eric Hovind, argued that if evolution is true, it wasn’t wrong for Josh Duggar to sexually assault little girls, “because what one evolved bag of molecules does to another bag of molecules just doesn’t really matter.”

The simple minded moral arguments (if they can be called arguments at all) made by creationists like Ham and Hovind are absurd obscenities that reveal a profound poverty of both intellect and character.

Bottom line: There is nothing wrong with being a nudist. However, there is something wrong about suggesting that nudism will follow if a literal interpretation of the Bible is rejected. Such assertions reflect a much deeper problem concerning the moral reasoning of Ham and other Biblical literalists.

(H/T Right Wing Watch)

Listen to the conversation below:

(Image via Facebook)
The Devolution of Ken Ham (Image via Facebook)
August 28, 2015

Experts report as many as 400 pastors, deacons, elders and church staff members will resign this Sunday after their names surfaced on the list of users revealed in the Ashley Madison hack.

Writing for Christianity Today, Ed Stetzer, the executive director of LifeWay Research, and a well-regarded expert on church leadership, reports:

Based on my conversations with leaders from several denominations in the U.S. and Canada, I estimate that at least 400 church leaders (pastors, elders, staff, deacons, etc.) will be resigning Sunday. This is a significant moment of embarrassment for the church—and it should be.

The fallout from the Ashley Madison hack has been troubling for many users, particularly religious conservatives.

Family values advocate and serial child molester Josh Duggar was but one high-profile conservative Christian exposed as a user of the infamous website for individuals interested in arranging extramarital affairs.

In addition to Duggar, another high profile conservative Christian caught in the Ashley Madison storm was Christian YouTube star Sam Rader.

However, the shame of hypocrisy is not reserved for Christian conservatives only. Friendly Atheist reports Hamza Tzortzis, a Muslim apologist and lecturer for the Islamic Education and Research Academy was also a user of the Ashley Madison site.

While there is a great deal of schadenfreude in seeing pompous “holier than thou” religious figures being exposed as hypocrites, we must not lose sight of the fact that the Ashley Madison hack was a crime placing many private citizens at risk.

The hack and release of such sensitive and personal information raises real concerns about the right to privacy, and the morality of “outing” individuals for their private behavior in the bedroom.

Former congressman Barney Frank, speaking with Bill Maher on Real Time about the the right to privacy in the context of outing of gay politicians, made the following comment:

There’s a right to privacy. But the right to privacy should not be a right to hypocrisy. People who want to demonize other people shouldn’t then be able to go home and close the door, and do it themselves.

Frank’s analysis seems fair and just. People who are paid to stand up every Sunday and preach to the flock that adultery is a sin, while at the same time using a web site to cheat on their spouse, are hypocrites and legitimate targets for outing, and probably should resign.

Bottom line: Practice what you preach. Or better yet, don’t preach at all.

(H/T WWJTD)

(Image via Wikimedia)
(Image via Wikimedia)



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