Friday, May 22, 2015

Fuck You, Faceless Victims. God Forgave Us: The Josh Duggar Saga, Part Deux

Josh's wife, Anna, has released a statement. More of the same navel gazing, only caring about the aggressor, Josh, and having not a care in the world for the victims, except to note that Josh 'sought their forgiveness'.
I can imagine the shock many of you are going through reading this. I remember feeling that same shock. It was not at the point of engagement, or after we were married - it was two years before Josh asked me to marry him. When my family and I first visited the Duggar Home, Josh shared his past teenage mistakes. I was surprised at his openness and humility and at the same time didn't know why he was sharing it. For Josh he wanted not just me but my parents to know who he really was -- even every difficult past mistakes. At that point and over the next two years, Josh shared how the counseling he received changed his life as he continued to do what he was taught. And when you, our sweet fans, first met me when Josh asked me to marry him... I was able to say, "Yes" knowing who Josh really is - someone who had gone down a wrong path and had humbled himself before God and those whom he had offended. Someone who had received the help needed to change the direction of his life and do what is right. I want to say thank you to those who took time over a decade ago to help Josh in a time of crisis. Your investment changed his life from going down the wrong path to doing what is right. If it weren't for your help I would not be here as his wife — celebrating 6 1/2 years of marriage to a man who knows how to be a gentleman and treat a girl right. Thank you to all of you who tirelessly work with children in crisis, you are changing lives and I am forever grateful for all of you.
I highlighted the important parts that truly show the focus of Anna. Her greatest concern is how her 'sweet fans' view her husband.  While I don't disparage that, and actually think that it is a necessary step in any relationship (openness, honesty, love, and forgiveness for past behaviors), three things become clear in her words.
  1. Her statement is directed toward her 'sweet fans,' making it seem clear that this is a celebrity driven statement.
  2. The only mention of the victims is through the eyes of Josh, the aggressor, where she mentions that he 'humbled himself' before them.
  3. Sexually violating minors, including your sisters, multiple times, cannot be dismissed as a mistake.
Seriously, Duggars. You know the drill. I was you once. We knew what sin was. You were supposed to flog yourself for your entire life over it. Sexual sins were the worst kind. In fact, most fundamentalist churches didn't let you serve in a position of leadership if you had been divorced previously. My church nearly kicked me out because I had premarital sex.

Sin is a BIG DEAL in that culture! We never called sin "a mistake." Where is this rhetoric coming from? Is it because Josh was a child (teen) when this happened?  Or is it because of the money and spotless image that you're going to lose.

Why can't you talk about the subject in the vile terms that it actually was?

And it isn't a mistake when your daddy fights to keep it under wraps, by hiring a lawyer. It isn't a mistake when your daddy waits for a year to report the incidents. It just isn't a mistake.

And the victims. Your own sisters-in-law, among others, potentially more. How would it make you feel, Anna, if all the public statements about a filthy young man, who violated you, destroying the innocence of your childhood, focused on HIS humility, and how God forgave HIM! And summarily dismissed your feelings, because, after all, they don't really matter. By gosh, Josh humbled himself before you, and God forgave him.

Also, keep this very key thought in your mind:

Your culture teaches you that it is up to the woman to not cause a man to stumble. So was it the little girls' fault? Were they dressed provocatively? Did they lead Josh on?

Try again with the public statement.


I. C.

1 comment:

  1. I wrote a post about this on Tumblr today. I'm getting eaten alive. Because I'm wanting to focus on why a teenage boy would molest his sisters, not castigating him for doing it. Not that he doesn't deserve all the moral outrage; he totally does.

    But as someone who sees a truly staggering amount of parallels between my family and his, I want to focus on the parents. THEY were the ones that raised both Josh and his sisters that taught him that he was more important than them. They are the ones that swept this under the rug and covered it up. They are the ones that ignored the needs of their children in favor of maintaining their oh-so-precious reputation. They are the ones who, actively or passively, taught their daughters, who had already been victimized once, that they were not worth protecting. Josh Duggar was a child whose parents practically raised him to be an abuser. Does that excuse him? Not at all. He was plenty old enough to know what he was doing was wrong. But it doesn't excuse his parents, either.