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April 27-August 16, 2013 ~ #13 ~ Sincerity Winner



blog-mos-13-sincerity.jpgPost of the Week ~ 13 ~ Sincerity Winner


Congratulations Oddeverything


Oddeverything's post nominated by gilora



Here's the list of the things that raised my suspicions about Razing Ruth.

Before I begin, here are some links that hopefully will help those who have had difficulty navigating TWoP (which is hard - their search function is a mess and you have to be a member there to have access to that mess). These links are to my own Flickr account, and, interestingly, by using my own Flickr account, I am outing myself, which I have no problem with. I run two sites that cause controversy from time to time and I do it under my real name, so who cares if everyone now knows who I am. And I also I see no reason to break these links.

(redacted broken link) - The bottom comment shows where ofduggar links to razingruth.com and essentially outs herself as the person behind that identity. She claims razingruth is her blog. This comment shows definitively that ofduggar is the person behind Razing Ruth.

(redacted broken link) - This is the comment wherein Ruth reveals she had a baby of her own.

(redacted broken link)

(redacted broken link)

These are two very long screenshots that I just took of some of Ruth's comments in the event that anyone wants to read them and to save them in the event that they get deleted.

Here are some of the red flags for me:

1) The job in Chicago. I am friends with people who have MLIS degrees, meaning they have a Master's Degree in Library and Information Sciences, and they cannot find work. My own husband quit this program at UT because the job market, back in 1998, was cut throat and it has not gotten any better. I find it very hard to believe anyone can be offered a job today in any professional field without a face to face interview. I find it all the more unbelievable that anyone hired to be a research librarian would be hired without a face to face interview because such a person will work directly with professors, scientists and other highly specialized professionals. Those people will want to know who they are working with before that person is hired. By way example, my husband was a library intern at a microchip research consortium. People were flown in from all over the country for interviews for jobs. And no one with a Bachelor's degree is getting that job, no matter how junior the position. Ruth has a Bachelor's degree, little experience, no connections and she was offered a job across the country, sight unseen, over the dozens of MLIS candidates with experience and references that such a job would attract? That makes zero sense and reads like a lie.

2) The baby. The second Flickr link above describes an entry wherein Ruth says in unambiguous verbiage that she was pregnant with a baby that she gave birth to. This is information she felt okay enough about sharing in a community wherein she had directed people to her blog. It's not like it was information she felt she needed to hide for her personal safety as Razing Ruth. Yet no where in any of her discussions as Razing Ruth in her blog or on NLQ does she ever mention having a baby, losing a baby, adopting out her baby, etc. Some may think that discussing a baby could have revealed her identity, but she openly discussed her sister who got pregnant, adopted the baby to a family of lesbians, went back home to and married a widower. That is a lot of detail and fear of too much detail cannot be a reason why Ruth would hide having her own child. I do not think that if Ruth exists in any real form wherein she has a child. I think that comment was part of a person trying on an identity and seeing how it floated to others and then forgetting about it when the persona was later refined.

3) Her identity. I can understand that she wants privacy and if she is who she says she is, she wants that privacy because she wants to one day have access to her brothers and sisters. But at this point, her family is aware of the blog. She is not hiding from them. She is hiding from us. Which is her right. And if anyone knows her identity, I do hope it is not revealed here. That is not what this is about. But this is problematic. The ATI/Gothardite community is not so large that no one would know who this family is. Despite all the voluminous detail out there about her family - college educated mother, sister left pregnant and disgraced and returned and married a widower, connections to the Duggars, one daughter fled and never came back, patriarch recently died - and no one knows who her family is? And they had no obituary because of Ruth's blog? The blog where she has never mentioned any of them by real name and protects their identity? None of this makes sense and I posit that is because the family does not exist, or at least it does not exist in the form Ruth has presented. We know too many people who are refugees from that community and none of them have any idea who Ruth is? That seems odd.

4) The pregnant sister. It was about here that I began to doubt Ruth, having defended her myself in the past. Ruth's sister gets pregnant and leaves and places the baby in a lesbian family. Okay. That could happen, however unlikely it sounds. But let's think about the details. Her sister got pregnant at an ATI conference? Does this have the ring of truth to anyone that a patriarch so involved in his daughters' sexual natures that he charted periods and lost his mind when Ruth started menstruating because he was sure the blood on her bed meant she had been fornicating, would really permit his daughter that much freedom away from him at a conference? Especially since one daughter had already left? Wouldn't everyone else there at the ATI conference have noticed that a betrothed couple had stolen away for time together? The entire story of how her sister got pregnant has nary a single ring of truth to it. AND if Ruth indeed had a baby of her own, then that means her father, the intrusive lunatic she described in such depth, let two daughters get pregnant on his patriarchical watch. Unless Ruth got pregnant after she ran away, which of course is a whole other set of questions.

5) The trials of Job. I know people have hard lives and at times have very dramatic lives. I myself have gone through such a time. But I have never met someone who has had as many problems as Ruth. She never stumbles but breaks a leg. She gets a job as a caretaker on some land so she can live there free in her trailer but gets called a thief, is run off the property and sold the trailer for pennies on the dollar. Her fiance is a sad little mama's boy. She gets stiffed all the time at her restaurant job. She can't get to her new job. She has no clothes for her new job. She needs help and can't ever get it. People stalk her in real life. She's been in the hospital more than my terminally ill mother. That's just off the top of my head.

5a) The number of problems she has allows Ruth to collect a lot of money via tip jars or actual fundraising. Because Ruth is so beloved to so many people, when she falls on hard times, often people suggest she put up a PayPal link, and that gives Ruth plausible deniability because she can say that she didn't suggest it - others did and she just listened to them. But there have been plenty of times Ruth has actively solicited money. I counted five specific times when I stopped counting but it would be interesting to see the number of times Ruth has sought money in total.

6) She follows a script that is familiar to anyone who has read Marc Feldman or read blogs like Warrior Eli. She has a past wherein she cannot reveal who she really is. When people question her, she becomes ill or she has an outrageous event happen that distracts from the questioning. When many people asked about her hospitalization, very soon after Ruth posted a story about a woman who came to her work, a woman who made her cry, and that claim caused arguments here and for people to circle the wagons around poor beleaguered Ruth. But that story fits the pattern of every other person who has used this tactic.

So the library has a sign-in system and this woman refused to use it and leave proof of her identity? Check.

Ruth, who has guarded her name closely, so closely no one really knows who she is, willingly let an aggressive stranger see her drivers license? Check.

She was so emotionally devastated she cried? Check.

She wrote a long wall of text entry that caused people to shout "YOU GO GIRL!" and effectively ending the conversation about her strange hospitalization story? Check.

7) Her facts are odd. Between all of the places she has posted online, she has made claims variously that she lived in Arkansas in Duggar country in the 70s and 80s, but then later claimed she was born in 1984. She claimed she attended CSU on her now deleted Facebook page but that college offers no LIS degree. There are more but unfortunately information I needed has been deleted and Ruth installed a robots.txt file that prevents certain entries from being indexed on Wayback and Google. Interesting...

(ETA: Ruth may not have a degree in LIS, which would eliminate this as a factual inconsistency but does raise even more questions as to how it is a person without even an LIS degree could get a job that people with MLIS degrees would kill to have.)

Anyway, these are the holes and problems I have found in the Razing Ruth story. These are things I investigated myself so if anyone wants me to add a similar problem to this list, let me know and I will look into it and add it, too.

I need to repeat these things again:

I do not want to see Ruth or whomever is behind this come to any harm. I simply want the people on this site to know what there are many problems with the Razing Ruth narrative even though she has a lot of credibility because of her participation on this site and the love many here have for her.

I do not want to cause FJ any liability so if anything here crosses a line, I apologize but I have endeavored to make sure that anything I say here is something that I label my opinion or have textual information to back it up.


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