Saturday, June 6, 2015

In defense of the Duggars

Now there’s a title post I never thought I’d be writing… no, I’m not a fan; I’ve never watched their show and have no desire to start.  Truth be told the whole idea of 19 kids sort of makes me nauseous… and I’ve had more than one inappropriate thought about what should be done with Jim Bob’s active organ.  (Currently, I'm torn between either a date with Lorena Bobbitt or a pay per view vasectomy...ok, maybe Lorena Bobbitt performing the pay per view vasectomy).  Among my unlikely heroes this year is Eddie Murphy who refused to take a poke at Bill Cosby – citing the age old prohibition of kicking someone when they’re down.  And so it is with the Duggar clan.  As with Cosby, we spectators can watch as all those who rode the wave suddenly run for the shore.

By no means do I want to trivialize sex abuse; it’s a terrible thing.  I do struggle with agreeing over what is sex abuse and where do we draw the line between adolescent impulses, normal exploration and criminal behavior.  In my old fart generation you would hear reference to kids “playing doctor”.  It usually involved someone getting naked and minimally a good look and maybe a closer look.  I don’t know if there is any nice, politically correct way to say it, but 15 year old boys tend to be horny and at this age impulse control may not be all that society would want it to be.  Our society tends to be closed minded in regards to matters of sex and sexual expression; I doubt that Josh was ever encouraged to take a masturbation break as needed.  Unfortunately, the Duggar household may have been the perfect storm for such an occurrence where poor impulse control is paired with a full house of opportunity.

I feel for the “victims”.  Undoubtedly, there were likely feelings of shame, embarrassment and maybe even guilt at the time of the incidents.  Sadly, that past trauma might be less than the re-victimization that is currently being meted out by the yellow press.  I don’t profess to know the right thing, but sometimes it is easy to spot the wrong thing and dragging these victims through a second dose of trauma feels wrong to me.  

I do believe there is such a thing as forgiveness and hope that all are able to find peace with themselves and others.  I would also wish for the Duggars' privacy but in that regard I think they have found that if you live by the sword, you may die by the sword and likewise perhaps their flirtation with the media has come back to roost.