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Free Jinger Blog

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The IBLP Lawsuit

Curious

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If you have spent any time on Free Jinger, you will likely recognize the acronyms ATI and IBLP.  This is the fundamentalist ministry created by Bill Gothard, an unmarried man who  believes such things as:

...teaches that children can never leave home till they are married, that married men are still under the authority of their fathers, women can't work outside the home, adoption is bad, mental illness doesn't exist, circumcision is great, rock music is like crack, and a whole bunch of other crazy stuff.

~From our Family Summary

 There has long been talk about both Bill Gothard and his brother committing acts of sexual misconduct with female employees and interns.  As long ago as 1980, Gothard admitted to "moral failures" with some of the staff.   We at FJ have long awaited some kind of action to be taken against this unmarried man who had unlimited access to vulnerable women who are taught from birth that if a man "stumbles" it is the woman's fault.

On around October 21, 2015, we became aware that a civil lawsuit had finally been filed against IBLP and all the members of the Board.  Bill Gothard is no longer part of the organization, having been forced to resign after another round of accusations in 2014.

The board members named in the lawsuit are: John Stancil, Anthony Burrus, Gil Bates, Timothy Levendusky, Charles Stephen Paine, Jr., and David York.

From Recovering Grace:

The lawsuit specifically alleges that IBLP was negligent and allowed unlawful conduct to continue by:

  • failing to train and/or supervise their staff and management or have appropriate policies and procedures in place to detect and deter sexual abuse, harassment, or inappropriate touching of young female interns, employees, or participants in IBLP programs;
  • failing to report known allegations of sexual abuse and sexual harassment committed against adult and minor IBLP participants, employees, and interns to the appropriate law enforcement agencies;
  • failing to conduct reasonable investigation into credible allegations of sexual abuse, harassment, and inappropriate touching, despite decades of ongoing conduct;
  • conducting a sham investigation once the IBLP Board did eventually conduct an investigation;
  • concealing allegations of sexual abuse and harassment from law enforcement;
  • conducting an unreasonable investigation into the allegations of sexual abuse and harassment; and
  • engaging in careless or negligent supervision of staff, directors, agents, and employees.

  The Complain in it's entirety can be found at the Chicago Tribune  Each of the 5 Plaintiffs are asking for $50,000.

Once a leader in the homeschooling movement, Gothard's ministry has managed to largely fly under the radar of the general public, despite having some rather high profile adherents.   Recently, Rep. Daniel Webster (R -FL) was considering a run for Speaker of the House, following John Boehner's resignation.

Arguably the most famous followers are The Duggar family of TLC's 19 Kids and Counting, which was cancelled after several scandals related to the oldest Duggar child, Josh.   In May, 2015, In Touch magazine dropped the bombshell that when Josh Duggar was a teenager he sexually abused at least 5 girls, including several of his siblings.   In August, it was revealed that Josh had not one, but two accounts at Ashley Madison, a website which has the tagline "Life is short. Have an affair."

For some 10 seasons, the Duggars have been promoted by TLC as a (very) large, happy Christian family.  They have shown the Duggars on the campaign trail for politicians such a Mike Huckabee and RIck Santorum. While claiming to be a shiny, happy Christian family, the Duggars have spoken out against the gay community and abortion.   Josh was hired by the Family Research Council and moved to Washington, DC, which was also documented on 19 Kids and Counting.

Recently, Gothard and his ministry have gotten more mainstream attention thanks to Josh Duggars misconduct and hypocrisy coming to light.   While the Duggar family show, 19 Kids and Counting was cancelled by TLC, they have recently announced that they plan to do several "special episodes" of a show starring the newly married Duggar children, Jill Dillard and Jessa Sewald.

What some people may not know is that another high profile Gothard adherent also has a TV show.   Gil Bates and his family have a show titled Bringing Up Bates on the UP network.   The Bateses are often seen as a less strict, more fun version of the Duggars.  They also have 19 kids and in the last several years have married off 4 children, some of which were shown on either 19 Kids and Counting or Bringing up Bates.   In fact, one of the Bates children married the son of  Rep. Daniel Webster (R-FL) 

You might recognize the name Gil Bates from earlier in this post.  That's right, he is a member of the Board of IBLP and was named in the lawsuit.  The general public may have the Duggar's number thanks to Josh, but there is still a high profile IBLP member that has a platform to show off these dangerous beliefs on TV and he seems to be slipping under the radar, just like the Duggars did for many years.

Please join us for discussion here: http://www.freejinger.org/topic/24484-negligence-lawsuit-filed-against-iblp/#top

Further reading:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/acts-of-faith/wp/2015/10/22/five-women-sue-bill-gothards-ministry-that-has-ties-to-the-duggars/

http://www.slate.com/blogs/xx_factor/2015/10/23/fundamentalist_duggar_connected_ministry_is_sued_for_sex_abuse_cover_up.html

http://www.salon.com/2015/10/23/the_cult_of_duggar_worship_must_be_stopped_theres_nothing_glamorous_about_the_familys_ongoing_hypocrisy/

 

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  • Posts

    • Eponine

      Posted

      I agree that from my perspective it seems like fundie culture is changing, and has changed a lot in the last decade or so. And as many have pointed out, I think it's mainly to present it in a prettier, more relatable package to have a wider appeal.

      It makes me wonder, though, whether there will soon be another backlash that will make some fundie groups dive back into the isolationism that characterized them in the 1990s-early 2000s. At that time, it was a point of pride for many fundies that they stood out from the rest of society - that they were visibly and defiantly different in ways that many no longer are. We often see that many fundies get a self-righteous pleasure in obviously not "belonging" to modern society. That kind of clear difference also feeds their persecution complex.

      I could see this gradual trend of assimilating into the larger culture pushing some subsets farther away, and I wonder if there is going to be an ongoing cycle of isolationism-assimilation-isolationism, etc.

      I don't really have any backup for that, but I'm not convinced this is a permanent shift in culture.

    • nausicaa

      Posted

      1 hour ago, Cleopatra7 said:

      Mormons also have a very WASPy aesthetic, which is probably very appealing to those Protestant fundamentalists who still get nervous at media that show superficial diversity.

      Do you mean white suburban or WASPy? Cause most Utah Mormons aren't at all like your stereotypical New England WASP. The tryndy names, the fast fashion, the huge families, and over sentimentality is very out of place among traditional old mainline types. 

      The average WASP would have a heart attack at a Mormon no-RSVP free-for-all wedding reception. My snooty East Coast ass had enough trouble adjusting to my Mormon's friend's wedding when I was a bridesmaid in it. 

    • nausicaa

      Posted

      14 hours ago, princessmahina said:

      ”you sure there’s no meat?”

      *eye roll* “bacon grease doesn’t count as meat.”

      yes, ma’am, it does 🙄🤢

      To be fair, I can see how a lifelong meat eater not exposed to many vegetarians wouldn't think much about the ingredients in the cooking process and just look to see if there's visible chunks of meat in the finished product. My Irish grandmother would have 100% done this without trying to be difficult.

      However, the "I will sneak meat into your food on purpose" people are weird and I've never understood what their problem is. (And I'm saying this as a meat eater.) 

      Or acting as if every dish that is vegan is automatically disgusting. I was once tasked with bringing a vegetable to my extended family's picnic so I made an edamame/bean dish that was vegan so it could sit out in the sun with no worries. When I informed my aunt that it didn't need to go in the fridge for this reason, the entire room recoiled. Again, I was tasked with a freaking vegetable dish!

      For the vegetarians/vegans, what do you do about your iron levels? When I experimented with it, my iron dropped precipitously and I was tired all the time (and my period was a mess). I was eating a balanced diet as well, not just mainlining Oreos. 

    • nausicaa

      Posted (edited)

      On 12/6/2019 at 8:15 AM, lumpentheologie said:

      I could never go home for Easter in college but many of us who stayed hunted for cans of beer in the library. 😂

      Wineries in my area have begun to do adult Easter egg hunts, with slips of paper redeemable for beer flights/meals/manicures in the eggs. They're really fun! (But a bit embarrassing when a woman is complaining to her friend about not getting anything and you and your friend have to walk by with your stuffed bucket and your chin holding your additional eggs in place... Never said I wasn't competitive. :kitty-shifty: )

      And yes, if you're wondering, the starting call at an adult Easter egg hunt is the same Saving Private Ryan level every-man-for-himself pandemonium as it is at a kids' Easter egg hunt. Including a couple people crying with empty buckets in the back because they "weren't ready."

      Edited by nausicaa
      • Upvote 4
    • danvillebelle

      Posted

      It irks me that one of those images is an Orthodox woman, when this chick probably wouldn't even consider her a "real" Christian.



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