Friday, December 19, 2008

Woman gives birth to 18th child

Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar of Tontitown, Ark., had their eighteenth child Thursday –Jordyn-Grace Makiya, who joins the rest of her J-named siblings. (A dude from Arkansas named Jim Bob - there's a shocker.)

"Mother and baby are resting and doing well," says a rep for the Duggar family, whose crowded house is featured on the TLC network show 17 Kids & Counting. Hmmm... more kids = better television ratings. Now I'm starting to understand.

The newest Duggar has a lot of names to keep straight. The other kids – who range in age from 20 years to 17 months – are Joshua, twins John-David and Jana, Jill, Jessa, Jinger, Joseph, Josiah, Joy-Anna, twins Jeremiah and Jedidiah, Jason, James, Justin, Jackson, Johannah and Jennifer. Something tells me that Jinger, Josiah, Jeremiah, and Jedidiah are going to grow up with serious chips on their shoulders. 14 normal names and you had to go and name us this? Thanks a lot for nothing Mom & Dad.

The Duggar parents married when Michelle was 17 and Jim Bob was 19. (Her mother had to officially sign permission - which is apparently common practice in the state of Arkansas - another shocker I know) After birth-control pills were blamed for a miscarriage, the couple decided to throw them out. They had their first baby when Michelle was 21, she's now 42. This means that Mrs. Duggar pushes out a new baby every 14 months on the dot (to be fair she has had two sets of twins so this math isn't entirely accurate). Here's some math that is accurate though: 16 pregnancies x 9 months = 12 years of being pregnant in a span of 21 years, which means Mrs. Duggar has spent approximately 57% of her adult life being knocked up. Damn - I sure would hate to have to see what she looks like naked. I'm gonna go out on a limb here and guess that Jim Bob really likes his booze (can anyone say beer goggles?).

Here is perhaps the worst part of this story: Mr. Duggar says the newborn may not be the last for him and his 42-year-old wife. "We both would love to have more," he told the Associated Press. Dude - enough with the babies already. We get it Jim Bob - you're a very fertile man - now give it a rest while you can still fit your family into a single zip code.

After reading this story I was curious as to why a family would decide to have 18 children so I did a little reseach on the Duggars. Turns out they are conservative Baptists who endorse the "Quiverfull" movement and the teachings of Bill Gothard.

The "Quiverfull" is a movement among conservative evangelical Protestant Christian couples chiefly in the United States (more specifically in the southern United States - I know another shocker), and its viewpoint is to eagerly receive children as blessings from God, eschewing all forms of birth control, including natural family planning and sterilization. Well there's a responsible movement. Let's fuck like rabbits all the time with no regard for anything and if you get pregnant that's cool - it'll just be another gift from God. Not surprisingly the Duggars raise their children using the buddy system, in which an older sibling assists the younger sibling in daily tasks. In other words the Duggar parents spend their days locked in the bedroom while their 18 children basically fend for themselves.

As for the teachings of Bill Gothard here's where things start to get really wacky. William W. Gothard is an American speaker and writer who founded the Institute in Basic Life Principles (IBLP) in 1961 to promote his Christian teachings. On his website he states "the goal of my teaching is to provide Biblical principles and concepts of life to guide people in their choices." Among other things Gothard discourages listening to any "un-Christian" music, including all popular and contemporary Christian music, encourages homeschooling; IBLP publishes its own homeschool material; and claims borrowing money for any reason, even a home mortgage, is wrong. Gothard has also discouraged the use of any kind of contraceptives or other family planning. So let me get this straight. Listening to mainstream music, attending school outside of the house, and taking on any form of debt are sinful activities. But fucking willy nilly and popping out insane amounts of offspring are completely acceptable behaviors. Solid principles nut job. Let me ask you this Bill: If you don't get a proper education you won't be able to make much money, and if you're not allowed to take on any debt how the hell are you supposed to support 18 children? Sounds to me like you've got a few holes in your master plan. Not surprisingly critics of the IBLP say Gothard and his followers exhibit a "cult-like" mentality. Gee - ya think? Gothard has also been accused by some of being hypocritical for not practicing what he preaches with regard to his "Quiverfull" teachings, given that Gothard himself is unmarried and childless, even into his 70s. Memo to brainwashed Gothard cult members - you might want to seriously consider keeping your kids away from this creepy, old pervert.

This next part's really cute. When asked what they want to be when they grow up the elder Duggar children came back with the following responses: midwife, missionary, mom, chef, carpenter, Quiverfull mother (yes - one of them actually said this), nurse, father, artist, fireman, policeman, and construction worker. Glad to see the brain washing is paying off. Sounds to me like the Duggar children are preparing to start their own Duggar village - let the inbreeding begin.

Like me you're probably wondering - what do the Duggars do for money anyway? Must be pretty expensive feeding 21 mouths every month, not to mention clothing, toys, toiletries, etc. Mr. Duggar must have a pretty good job, right? Wrong - even though Jim Bob and Michelle are both licensed real estate agents neither one of them is currently employed. They say their income is derived from the commercial properties they own. They also claim to live debt-free which Jim Bob has said is “the fruit of Jim Sammons' Financial Freedom Seminar” he attended years ago. (Can't these people ever think for themselves?) The last real job for either of the Duggars came in 1999 - 2002, when Mr. Duggar was a state legislator who served in the Arkansas House of Representatives. Hey Arkansas - not sure if there were any budget shortfalls in the late 90's or early 2000's but you might want to check your books from 1999-2002, given that the Duggars reportedly spend $4300 a month on food, live in a 7000 square foot mansion with no mortgage, and currently don't work. I'm not saying the Duggars are crooks but something smells a little rotten in Denmark, don't ya think?

So here I've gone and turned a heart-warming story about a loving family who's just welcomed their 21st family member into the world, into a seedy tale about corporate greed, alcoholism, wacky religious principles, sex addiction, cult worship, child molestation, inbreeding, and political corruption. What can I say? It's a gift - you're welcome.

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