Top 10 posts of 2014

Here are my top ten posts from 2014. One thing I realized while compiling this list is that I really need to blog more, so here’s to a more productive 2015. 10. #DefendTheDuggars (Sort of) I’ve said it before on social media and I’ll say it again here. The mocking of Duggar children is not something I can get behind. Criticize the Duggar parents for what they’re doing to their children, criticize Jim Bob, Michelle, and Josh for their anti-LGBT activism, that’s fair game. Mocking the kids isn’t. Kids like the Duggars, who aren’t being given a real education (you don’t get a real education from ATI Wisdom Booklets), who aren’t allowed college, and who aren’t even allowed a single private conversation with someone of the opposite sex until they’re married, are the ones I’m trying to help.  9. “You went to a Christian college, what did you expect?” The[…]

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#DefendTheDuggars (Sort of)

I’ve said it before on social media and I’ll say it again here. The mocking of Duggar children is not something I can get behind. Criticize the Duggar parents for what they’re doing to their children, criticize Jim Bob, Michelle, and Josh for their anti-LGBT activism, that’s fair game. Mocking the kids isn’t. Kids like the Duggars, who aren’t being given a real education (you don’t get a real education from ATI Wisdom Booklets), who aren’t allowed college, and who aren’t even allowed a single private conversation with someone of the opposite sex until they’re married, are the ones I’m trying to help.  TLC may put a pretty face on it, but make no mistake, the Duggars are part of a high-control, authoritarian cult. ATI creates an alternate reality, complete with their own version of history and science, and a theology that seems, on the surface, to be orthodox Christianity[…]

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Please help support the Coalition for Responsible Home Education

The organization I’m a part of, the Coalition for Responsible Home Education, launched our fund drive today. Until CRHE launched last year, there was no organization dedicated to advocating for the interests of homeschooled children. With a board made up of homeschool alumni we are in a unique position to understand the needs and challenges that homeschool children face.  Every homeschool child deserves a quality education in a safe, nurturing home environment. Unfortunately, some children fall through the cracks and the current legal environment lacks adequate mechanisms to protect those children.  Please consider partnering with us and donating to CRHE. With your help we’ll be able to conduct research and continue advocating for homeschool children. Many thanks in advance.

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Malala and Me

I sat here crying as I watched Malala Yousafzai talk about wanting to get an education and follow her dreams. She talks about how she decided to speak up against the Taliban because she didn’t want to be locked away in her house with no education, forced to marry at 13 or 14, and I can’t help but cry because it hits too close to home. I know what it feels like to fight for an education in a culture that thinks girls shouldn’t get one. That believes girls should be married off young with no skills and little education beyond primary school. I know what it feels like to want more and to feel the weight of everyone around you writing off your dreams as a silly fantasy. No, I didn’t have the Taliban forcing me home, and like Malala, my parents made sure that I had an education[…]

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In which we live tweet a Kevin Swanson radio show rant about homeschooling and World Magazine

Have fun reading this. Or not. In any case, it’s a whole lot of ridiculous strawmen and a whole lot of attacks on homeschool alumni. Also, WORLD Magazine may be harboring socialists. He hopes not, but it’s possible. The storified version of the tweets is after the jump. Embedded Storify stories don’t show up right if you’re viewing this in Tumblr, so here’s the link to the story.

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Michelle Duggar’s anti-trans* robocalls and #DuggarHypocrisy

I haven’t really written about the Duggar family before because I feel for their kids still at home. They had no say about being thrust into the national spotlight, and invariably criticism of Jim Bob and Michelle turns into snark about the kids, and I don’t want that. Before I go any farther, let me say that any attacks on the Duggar children in the comments will be deleted. They didn’t ask for this, and with the exception of Josh, who has chosen to become a professional activist with hate group FRC Action, they need to be off limits. That aside, the reason I’ve broken my self-imposed “No Duggars” rule is because of Michelle Duggar’s robocalls against Fayetteville, AR’s proposed LGBT non-discrimination ordinance. I’ve embedded the audio Jeremy Hooper provided on GoodAsYou after the cut. Be warned, it’s a rather disturbing anti-trans diatribe about how transwomen are men who are trying to[…]

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We’re Here, We’re Queer (and patriarchy had nothing to do with it)

I’m not sure if two examples counts as a trend, but over the last few weeks both HSLDA founder and Patrick Henry College chancellor Michael Farris and well-known homeschool mommy blogger Karen “that mom” Campbell have both suggested that the blame, as it were, for LGBT homeschoolers lies at the feet of patriarchy. Under this narrative, patriarchy has so harmed and broken us that we have not only rejected patriarchy itself, but have fallen off into a morass of sin and depravity. Farris’ version of the story, as given in his May 2014 keynote address at the Florida Parent-Educators Association (FPEA) Leaders Forum, is that homeschool alumni critics of homeschooling are almost all victims of patriarchy, and in rejecting that we’ve also rejected God and some of us have become “open homosexuals.” It’s all very Romans 1 of him. Transcript: “But the majority, I think, are walking with God. A[…]

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Yesterday was my last class ever as a student. I thought it was fitting to post this photo from one of my first days of school. Back then I wanted to be an astronaut, I dreamed of being the first person on Mars. Funny how the dream seemed so much more attainable in the ’80s than it does now, and not just because 5 year old me liked visiting NASA better than Disney. It wasn’t that long after this picture was taken that the lightbulb went off in my head and I started reading everything I could get my hands on. I especially loved reading books about things like black holes, the idea that there were things out there that were so dense that nothing could escape blew my mind. My nerdery started early. I look at this picture with me sitting there, pencil poised, wearing my birthstone ring that[…]

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Franklin Graham wants you to think he cares about child exploitation

Franklin Graham wants you to think he cares about child exploitation He doesn’t. Franklin Graham is busy pretending he cares about child exploitation and that’s why he doesn’t want to let gay people adopt. He thinks gay people recruit children. Aside from pointing out the utter absurdity of this idea, I have one thing to say to Franklin Graham. Speak out against the abuse in the church. If you really care about children being harmed, then use your voice and your famous name to do something about the abuse and exploitation of children in evangelical and fundamentalist churches and institutions. Speak out against the way churches protect child molesters while shaming their victims. Speak up for the children. Condemn the Bill Gothards, the Doug Phillipses, the Sovereign Grace Ministries, the Christian colleges that refuse to do anything about sexual harassment and assault and punish the victims. Speak against the system[…]

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Are Women Safe at Patrick Henry College?

I’ve been following stories about how college and universities handle sexual harassment and assault allegations ever since I researched the heck out of Title IX in undergrad (the story behind that isn’t mine to tell, other than to say that for all its issues, Covenant seems to be one of the few Christian colleges even remotely in Title IX compliance–funny how quickly people shape up when it’s pointed out that their federal funding is at risk). Anyway, colleges and universities are, across the board, not very good at handling incidences of sexual harassment and assault.  Patrick Henry College, a.k.a. “God’s Harvard” or the “Homeschool Harvard,” Michael Farris’ institution to train conservative Christian young people to win the culture wars, is especially bad at how it handles sexual assault cases.  From yesterday’s New Republic story, “Sexual Assault at God’s Harvard”: In late November 2006, four years before Claire’s experience, another young woman[…]

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