The Fault In Ourselves

duggars

If you care about these types of things, then I am sure you already know that one of TV’s famous Duggars has admitted to sexually assaulting a number of underage girls including, apparently, some of his siblings while he was a teenager. There’s a great deal that one can make of this case, including the Duggars’ link to über-creep, Bill Gothard and his disturbing approaches to sexual abuse. There’s also Benjamin Corey’s very salient point that when church leaders encounter sexual abuse, it’s their moral – and sometimes legal –  duty to report it to the police. Apparently the Duggars did this at one point (only to result in a stern talking-to by a man now serving jail time for child pornography), but then actively resisted further investigation when Oprah, of all people, notified the authorities.

I think this scandal demonstrates the futility of believing that one can somehow insulate oneself or one’s family from this or that kind of immorality. This happened to a family that homeschooled their kids in a rural environment hours from a major city with no TV and no and internet while enforcing a strict dress code (particularly on the female members). I don’t know how much further a family can be separated from the wider world, and yet somehow building these types of alleged protections does not keep sexual abuse at bay. It calls to mind the sort of horror film trope where the protagonists do everything to barricade themselves away from the monster, only to realize that in the process, they’ve locked themselves in with the monster.

The fault, dear Duggars is not in our television/social media/education system, but in ourselves, that we are human.