The recent news about Josh Duggar allegedly sexually molesting five minors, including his own sisters seemed to have been a shock for everyone. I read the police report to get at least an idea of the ages of the victims, some seem very young based on the description they gave to the police as well as the methodology used to conduct the interviews.
So we have here a young man who at the age of 14 allegedly touched his own sisters (As well as others) inappropriately, several times while they slept as well as when they were awake. Some of the things he did were felonies. Very serious things. My blog post isn’t going to deal with how the parents of Josh Duggar handled the entire situation but about the reactions of Mormons online and offline about it.
You see, I talk with a lot of people and the issues such as the ones described about the Duggar family are quite common in my work field, more common than I would like it to be. Mind you, just because it is something I am quite used to hearing about doesn’t mean that it takes away the seriousness of the offense. What allegedly happened is HORRIBLE. Full stop. But I noticed since the news broke, that a few Mormons do not seem to display the same outrage about this particular case compared to other similar cases. I mean, they admit he was wrong but the underlined tone seem to throw blame at the media for unveiling all of this after so many years instead of asking if the alleged victims got any professional counseling.
Oh wait, do you think that a young girl who was sexually molested by no other than her own brother is not going to be marked for life? Let me tell you, if you think that you have no idea. Yes, they could have forgiven him as the media news reports but forgiving doesn’t come with an automatic eraser that allows you to wipe off memories neither prevent scars. This isn’t just the act of a “curious and concupiscent teenager”. This was sexual molestation and the impact it will have in the victims will be permanent. Libidinous teenagers watch porn or have sex. They do not touch the private parts of their little sisters while they sleep.
And yet, a few of us are trivializing it. From “teenagers being teenagers and messing around” to Mormon women saying that well, it wasn’t really molestation, he just touched their private parts and the media is blowing it out of proportion. Really? I am scared to think that any of these people are parents and I can only imagine how they would react if their own child comes to them telling them a close relative touched them inappropriately. “Oh, don’t worry. Your brother is just being a teenager. Did you do something to make him do that?” Madness.
So there you have it. I think some of us are having double standards and we are too darn proud to admit it. Let’s face it, if Josh Duggar wasn’t a Republican and Christian conservative the story and the reaction of Mormons would have been very different. Can you imagine the same scenario but a gay brother or sister doing that to their siblings? They would be horrified and ready to cut them off in little pieces but because the person in question is a Christian-Republican who happens to be against Gay Marriage, suddenly the horrible crime he committed isn’t a big deal at all and we shouldn’t be talking about it after all, it happened when he was 14 and he asked for forgiveness already right?, the nerve of some people!
It is disappointing to say the least but again, not surprised. We aren’t that smart as we think we are, we just don’t seem to know when to separate the actions of an individual from our support to whatever they stand for. Wrong is wrong, regardless of how I feel about your beliefs. And I can support you and applaud your work, but it doesn’t mean that I won’t call a spade a spade and tell you as it is. Now, don’t get me wrong. This isn’t about Josh Duggar. This is about the millions of victims of sexual abuse ALL over the world, in a lot of cases, in very similar scenarios.
Sexual molestation is VERY REAL. Please do not downplay it.