Monday, November 6, 2023

A Critical Review of Quiverfull Families, a book by Emily Hunter McGowin

Quiverfull Families: The Quiverfull Movement and Evangelical Theology of the Family offers a favorably biased assessment of the Evangelical Protestant Quiverfull Movement, including interviews with a minister apologist and two-year longitudinal interviews with three mothers who discuss their lifestyle. The now-Anglican author, a former Evangelical and graduate of Baylor's Truett Seminary, offers us her doctoral dissertation developed during her study at a Catholic university. I found the book's title misleading, as it suggests a much broader focus on families instead of its tapered focus primarily limited to the self-reported data of three subjects: mothers who exemplified the Quiverfull ideal during the study. The author's compassionate ethnographic glimpse into the lives of these courageous and transparently candid mothers shines as the most valuable element of the book.

In keeping with the adage of considering the source, I read the book from the perspective of a former Christian Reconstructionist who abandoned that position but remained an Evangelical. I spent a decade of my childbearing years as a wife in the Quiverfull Movement (QF), including four years as a church member who followed Bill Gothard's teachings. Eventually, I became a vocal critic from both Christian Counter-Cult and Thought Reform perspectives, and my presuppositional views about the nature of QF theology differ significantly from the author's own.  While I was overwhelmed with the aftermath of QF in my own life and the lives of my loved ones who suffered so much, please note that the author's introduction to and experience with the sect differed profoundly from mine.

For the reader who seeks only to understand the mindset of QF mothers in good standing, the book offers a glimpse into the concerns and beliefs of those mothers. However, the former follower who experienced emotional/psychological abuse, domestic violence, a broken marriage, estrangement from family, ostracizing within their QF community, shunning for leaving QF, expulsion, educational neglect as a child, gender abuse, spiritual abuse, or pronouncement of their eternal damnation will find the book's assessment of QF difficult. For example, I found the descriptions of “Titus 2 encouragement” problematic. Perhaps the author's limited pool of model-citizen subjects lacked the painful experience of stress created by the milieu management practice, though QF trains followers to speak of it in glowing terms only as one of its sacred systems. Underachieving members, outliers within QF, and former members know well the policing and chatter of women peers concerning their compliance and punishment by elder enforcers who demand submission. (QF adapted the well-practiced, high demand mentoring system from prior waves of Shepherding/Discipleship in spiritually abusive Evangelicalism.)

Limitations of Ethnography or the Nature of the Subject?

My criticisms of the book may concern the limitations of ethnography for this particular religious group, given its convoluted hidden curriculum and broad demographic across different denominations. I was disappointed that the author did not include the battery of questions prepared for subjects in her dissertation which prevents the reader from understanding more about the research and the veracity of its focus. While much material in the book discusses the benefits of ethnography in a theoretical sense which seemed worthy of a separate book, I found it necessary to consult many other sources to ensure that I was fairly evaluating the work rather than the research modality. As someone experienced in academic research, I found these elements to pose an unfair burden to the general reader. 

McGowin defines QF families as those who practice the intersection of three ideals: homeschooling, gender hierarchy, and pronatalism. These converging interests are not the distinctions that define the ideology as expressly QF. Evangelicals have historically and ubiquitously embraced the values of family, pronatalism (also a necessity for pioneering agrarian culture), the home education of children, the domesticity movement, along with those denominations that long pursued patriarchyChristian Reconstruction became the catalyst that caused the much smaller subculture of QF to coalesce. I assert that the control mechanisms of manipulation and systems of control set QF followers apart from other Evangelicals as illustrated by personal testimony and decades of conflict which the book does not mention (e.g., ecclesial courtslawsuitsexclusivism, Etc.).

The author notes her aversion to criticism of the QF belief system and thus rejects consideration of many critical assessments of QF in her disseration, qualifying different varieties of critics by assigning all to a single strawman category of misinformed people who denigrate QF adherents. (To the contrary, research from these neglected sources shows that people join high demand ideological sects like QF not because they are deficient in some way but because they are ethical, responsible, discerning and intelligent.)

While the ethnographic method may have prevented extensive exploration of critical sources, I'm disappointed that the author deems the disciplines that study high demand, spiritually abusive, or aberrant Christian organizations illegitimate, excluding their mention. The study ignores this literature from Christian counter-cult apologetics (a Protestant Christian discipline that evaluates theological orthodoxy/praxy of Bible-based religion), cult education organizations, and decades of peer-reviewed research by men like Paul Martin and Larry Pile (both of whom were former members of The Great Commission, a Bible-based sect that differed little from and shared “visionaries” with QF). References to A Matter of Basic Principles, the watershed Biblical critique of Gothard's program by Don Veinot and Ron Henzel (now in its second edition), and decades of their Midwest Christian Outreach critiques of Gothard and Vision Forum are also notably absent from the book. (If the ethnographic theological study design precluded citation of this material, a qualifying statement could have clarified that for the reader.)

Critical Engagement

I share far more common ideas about QF with the author than disparagements which she elucidates in her personal summary. She uses the term "family blueprint" to describe QF's formulaic cookie-cutter preference for uniformity. I also found the Eclipse of the Church section very astute and well-reasoned. The section noting the pitfalls of"privatization" of the family leading to isolation points out how families' most vulnerable members may become predisposed to domestic violence. I'm grateful for the inclusion of these insights, as they provide balance which does speak to the subject of families.

The author concludes by stating, “Despite their lofty goals, however, the Quiverfull movement produces an idealization of the family that leads to social isolation, the eclipse of the church, and in some caes, the cover-up of sin.” While I agree, this statement is a weak assessment, failing to do proper justice to those who have suffered devastating harm while practicing the lifestyle. While "the map is not the territory in any such survey, I believe the reader merited a more thorough, well-defined map concerning decades of practice and belief that go unmarked in the book and one from a broader theological Evangelical perspective.

I cannot get past the author's statement near the end of the work which declares that QF's “religious practice exposes important weaknesses in evangelical theology. [ . . .] My subject position leads me to contexualize Quiverfull within evangelicalism and offer observations on its continuity and discontinuity with what I understand to be American evangelical norms.” 

Though from a different set of Evangelical roots within a smaller subset of Evangelicalism than the author, I arrive at a different conclusion. While perhaps intentionally vague because of the limitations of ethnography, I cannot determine if the author views QF as a fair exemplar or perhaps a microcosm of all Evangelicalism. I don't know whether she's aware that informed Evangelical Counter Cult apologists reject QF as a pagan belief system, even if she personally rejects them as unhelpful. Such a strong statement deserves a robustly defended thesis from a theological perspective, but the author offers what I found to be more personal generalizations about the culture to vet the statement. I wish the author had been more specific about her meaning and the rationales, though perhaps the generalizations were meant to be charitable.

May the varieties of our religious experiences concerning the Quiverfull Movement continue in ongoing discussion and through expanding research. As our One God and One Mediator saves us and brings us together into the knowledge of the truth as fellow Christians, may we all find the hope and healing we need. May we also endeavor to find that greater understanding and compassion for one another with God's help (1 Tim 2:1-7).

Monday, October 30, 2023

On "Ghosts" and Other Undue Influences

Some Evangelical Christians talk more than others about evil influences in the spiritual realm, and different denominations believe different things about evil spirits. Some believe that people and even Christians can actually be “possessed,” while others think that demons can only create oppression and opposition that impede an individual Christian's efforts. There are many different ideas about how to resist and overcome all of that.

My husband who grew up in a liturgical church would add some balance to some of these ideas by saying that the spirit of man and human nature usually give us plenty of cause and a means of explaining most problems. We often don't need any supernatural creatures to serve as our scapegoats.

Job said that man was made for trouble.

As my clock approaches midnight on October 30th, I found myself thinking about the many kinds of would-be ghosts we face in life. I like the following description that Henrik Ibsen offers in his 1881 play better than most ideas.  

A quote from "Ghosts":

“I am half inclined to think we are all ghosts…it is not only what we have inherited from our fathers and mothers that exists again in us, but all sorts of old dead ideas and all kinds of old dead beliefs and things of that kind. 

They are not actually alive in us; but there they are dormant all the same, and we can never be rid of them. Whenever I take up a newspaper and read it, I fancy I see ghosts creeping between the lines. There must be ghosts all over the world. They must be as countless as the grains of the sands, it seems to me. And we are so miserably afraid of the light, all of us.”

May we find all the courage, strength, support, and hope 

that we all need  to help us step into the light.

Saturday, October 28, 2023

Always Growing

 The more things change, the more they seem to stay the same.  😊  A good life of growth always requires commitment, courage, discernment, honesty, and hard work.

From a post originally published in January of 2016:

Tuesday, July 4, 2023

A Pause for Respite and Recollection

I fully intended to delve right back into writing about Bruce Ware's infamous 2008 sermon at Denton Bible Church when I returned from a short break away from home with my husband. We left for it a few hours after I put the previous post online, so very focused on the many things yet to say about it all and why it's still important. Had it not been for the little getaway, I'd likely write every day.

But a remarkable thing happened.

We drove to the Lower Florida Keys where I found a most affordable place to stay on a docked houseboat. It was beautiful there and felt very private. It was so nice to have a kitchen, but the best thing was the outdoor deck that opened up onto the water. It also looked out over a patch of many mangroves – the water inches from where we sat. Inside in the coolness of air conditoning, we could still enjoy the view through the patio doors while seated snugly on the sofa.

On the first night, my husband and I awakened in the still of the night (as we usually do and have done so for most of our 33 years together). We usually spend at least twenty minutes in the middle of most nights talking about obscure and fascinating things like the nerd-geeks that we are, and then we go back to sleep (on the good nights). We jokingly call it our liguis obscurus. Sitting out on the deck in the middle of the night, inches away from the still, watching the calm water filled us with awe, wonder, and gratitude to share such beauty. Though we didn't see any dolphins or manatees swim by, it was still amazing to think they might. 

Even with the lights from the marina and the many boats, I could still see the stars in the clear sky. Most of the world slept, and we sat and watched the stars in the sky circling over us. It always makes me think of the Genesis creation account, and I imagine that I can sense the Spirit of God hovering over the surface of the deep. Though it was still that night, the surface of the water still seemed to emanate the energy of life. I felt a new and different sense of being "kept" by God who neither slumbers nor sleeps. We were awake to witness it and drink it in.

We then stayed two nights in a nice hotel in a different town on the southern side of the Keys, looking out on a little bay-like area facing the Straights of Florida. Though there was incidental light there, too, I awakened early on our last night there and watched Jupiter rise over the eastern sky. I could hear the hum of the air conditioner while out on the beautiful balcony while the world (and my husband) slept. I regretted not bringing a scope that might have allowed me to see Jupiter's moons because it was shining so brightly with an orange glint when it first made its debut.

I watched the lights on buildings on the other side of the inlet glisten and scintillate on the water like the stars did in the inky sky. I was held. I was kept. I felt peaceful, held above the water and under the heavens, safe in God's holy presence as I enjoyed a moment of awe watching Jupiter shine so brightly as she migrated up over the horizon and across the sky on the first day of summer.

I wasn't ready to leave that place of holiness when I returned, and I haven't wanted to think about violence, deception, or cruelty. I needed time to remember that amidst it all and even in our trials, we are kept and held by God. My name is inscribed on His palm, my times are in His hands, and I am held by Him.

I've also thought lately that people like Bruce Ware and his message are passing away like all of us. I tend to fear with urgency to spare Christian women from the harm that some suffer in the gender war when I see little change. Tim Keller died only a few weeks ago. Time slips into the future -- us with it while our times rest in His hands. This present world is passing away, and a new time will come as we pass out of this life. There will be new sermons and new victories. There will be new still nights of awe and some with new terror. New arrows, different from these today, will fly by day. Yet we are kept and held and borne up as God.

I'm not yet done bathing in and exhaling after much-needed rest in peace and joy. I needed to remember so that tomorrow, I will not forget.

Sunday, June 18, 2023

Following Bruce Ware's Primrose Path to Domestic Abuse (Part III: CBMW and Bruce Ware are no different than Shiny Happy People)

We've considered when Gender Role Evangelist Bruce Ware relied on cruelty to win ideological debates. 

All's fair in Christian love and culture war these days, right? 

Some of that I understand in light of the dominating milieu that CBMW created to help them win their war. We've also considered some possible negative progressions and consequences that stem from his definition of women as the indirect image of God. 

Saturday, June 17, 2023

Following Bruce Ware's Primrose Path to Domestic Abuse (Part II: Turing Violence Against Women into God's Gender Justice )

Wife beating became the last straw issue that drove me out of the #ShinyHappyPeople Church (#SHPC) I'd once attended. I had no idea who Gothard was when we joined, but I knew when we left.

Over time, I would learn that the ideology demanded that:

  • Wives obediently submit with a quiet and gentle spirit to any maltreatment their husbands dished out

    • The same went for sex, too. Whatever, whenever he wanted.

  • All marital discord be assigned to the wife as the root cause.

  • tWife beating always be considered a breach of duty or neglect on the part of the wife

  • Wives "just let love cover her husband's sin against her" so that her properly yielded submission could magically convict/cure/rehabilitate her husband. (That's the wonder-working power of submission if you get it right. If you didn't get results, you weren't doing it right.)

  • Husbands were never held accountable because if a wife does her job right (sex and submission and supper), the Bible (per Bill Gothard) guarantees the system to work.

Following Bruce Ware's Primrose Path to Domestic Abuse (Part I: Ideas that fed those Shiny Happy People)

When the reporter, Peter Smith, contacted me to ask questions about my relationships with Bruce Ware and Russell Moore and my thoughts about them, I told him that I had no reason to believe that either of them had any clue about who I was. (Earlier that year, I'd earned the badge of honor through a dishonest public denouncement for criticizing their teachings in a lecture earlier in 2008.) 

He assured me that both men "knew exactly who I was," sharing deeply personal insults about me that were too derogatory for him to repeat. He was sure that one of them knew me in real life because of the nature of his comments. I assured him I'd only ever reviewed their teachings and had never met either man.

Thursday, June 15, 2023

Concerning Shiny Happy People, Two Weeks Later

I started watching the Amazon docuseries about the Duggar Family entitled Shiny Happy People two weeks ago today. 

I could not get through the second episode in one sitting, wept, and had to come bad to it the next day. I then spent the better part of the next two days bursting into tears multiple times, and I could barely function because of it. 

Monday, April 3, 2023

Mess with the Bull and You'll Get the Horns: The Dominating Behavioral Context of CBMW

(Complementarianism) Patriarchy is about Power
On the 15th Anniversary of my Cancelling

Thirty years ago, I joined a Quiverfull Movement church without even knowing that there was such a thing because it seemed like a regular Evangelical church. Young Evangelical women today face even more pressure to conform to Quiverfull standards than I did, and I get frustrated that people think it’s all about babies. The lifestyle undoubtedly involves children, but it focuses on ways of controlling people and circumstances. I grieve today because I’d hoped to be a better agent of more potent, meaningful change. 

Complicated Forgiveness: Colliding with Organizations that Cancel You

On the Fifteenth Anniversary of my Cancelling

A Companion Post to Mess with the Bulls and You'll Get the Horns: The Dominating Behavioral Context of CBMW

I remember my exit counselor talking to me after a month to consider that many of the leaders in cults like the one I'd left are trapped and bound in the system more deeply than I ever was. I bristled at the suggestion at the time, but in time, it would help me get past the trauma and see my former leaders with compassion. (Read more on this much-misunderstood topic HERE.)

Thursday, March 16, 2023

Might "Social Justice" Look Like This?

I believe that God gave me the most precious and powerful gifts of kindness, life, liberty, and love.  Because they were so freely given to me, I want to share that bounty and blessing with others.  We are fallible creatures in an unfair world, and I want to comfort others with the same comfort that God showed to me through so many people, Christian and otherwise.  There is plenty of God's great love to go around for all of us.

Monday, March 13, 2023

Another (Non-Theobro) Christian Scholar on Social Justice

When I read the new 2022 Frankfurt Declaration last week, I could not help but think back to this essay I read almost three years ago. As I noted in an earlier post, I am not a student of the areas of study that concern themselves with Critical Race Theory, so I am grateful that Kelly Hamren agreed to allow me to repost her commentary here. She was homeschooled and went on to eventually become a graduate student at Liberty University. After completing her studies, she served for eleven years in the English Department at Liberty, moving from Instructor to Assistant Professor. She later earned a PhD in Literature and Criticism from Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

Sunday, March 12, 2023

The Piety of the Theobros and the Bully Pulpit of 2022 Frankfurt Declaration

A few days ago, I took notice of a new term used to describe today's Alpha Males of Calvinism:  Theobros. They're a special breed of New Calvinist who spends a lot of time on Twitter, telling women, men, and the rest of us lesser life forms that we aren't the right kind of Christian as if they are the New Gnostics. Sometimes, I feel betrayed because the late RC Sproul, Sr's work helped me profoundly on my thirty-three-year-long journey out of the cruel madness of Word of Faith. Little did I know that he was a rare example of loving grace and compassion amongst the larger group of New Calvinists (in both the media and in churches). 

Saturday, March 11, 2023

The Equivocation Problem with Social Justice that the Theobros Make Worse

Featuring Rosato's Harriet Tubman Mural
Most regular people understand the term "social justice" in terms of common vernacular in the US -- through the simple meaning of the words themselves. In society, especially in America, our government aspires to grant each citizen rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. We've spent our whole history working to make those liberties equally available to all her citizens. To most people, most Christians included, "social justice" means just that. It is the aspiration to see all people in society treated fairly and justly. Unless someone's taken particular classes in college or read specific literature that offers a different definition, most people understand these simple words in only that context. 

Friday, March 10, 2023

Answering Scot McKnight's Question: "What Made Josh Butler's TGC Article Different?"

This week, I listened to two podcasts about the controversy that ensued concerning Josh Butler's book excerpt that appeared on The Gospel Coalition (TGC) website on March 1.  A friend gave me a link to the Preventing Grace Podcast, claiming that they expressed some of the same ideas that I did, asking that people would extend mercy to the author.  While I did not find Butler's material to be that difficult in light of other teachings, I became quite triggered by the hosts' straw man mischaracterizations of Butler's critics, along with their claims that his writing was beautiful.  (Apparently, we prudish, small-minded people who cry "misogyny" at every turn only look for material to use to destroy those with a different view.)  The following day, I listened to a podcast that posed questions I'd already been thinking about because of my thoughts from the previous day.

Saturday, March 4, 2023

Sex is not a Hermeneutic & A Prayer for Truth and Unity: (Reflecting on The Gospel Coalition This Week)

I thought I'd mention some positive follow-up after my bombastically titled blog post a few days ago that spoke to problematic statements in a blog post at The Gospel Coalition (TGC) website. 

Thursday, March 2, 2023

The Spermeneutics of Spread Your Legs Theology

11Mar23 EDIT:
At this late date, I'd rather that people read my personal reaction to the article which took me nearly a week to process.

Well, the Gender Agenda folks just continue to get weirder.  We already know about Tim Keller's sex orgy with God, and yesterday, The Gospel Coalition published an excerpt from a new book by the Fellow at the Tim Keller Center for Cultural Apologetics.  Read more HERE.  I didn't even include the stuff in my meme about how a woman's readiness for sex is a show of “hospitality.”

Someone asked me why these people like the Theobros make everything so weird. Well, let's break it down. We've used good hermeneutics to study good theology. Now, you'll hear some spermeneutics to learn about Spread Your Legs Theology. (Shirley Taylor gets credit for naming this theology. It's like a sanitized version of the Kinder, Küche, and Kirche, but it's remade to be Biblical for Christians.)

Friday, February 10, 2023

Powerful Books and Marriage Minutes

When I started writing this blog, I hoped to change the problem of spiritual and related domestic abuse in certain Evangelical churches. I didn't think I'd manage to do much. Still, I felt responsible for doing what I could to voice my experiences and offer some good reasons and resources to help people reconsider allegedly Christian ideas that both actively and passively facilitated these abuses. 

Friday, December 2, 2022

Shirley Taylor on Advent Hope: It's Groundhog Day All Over Again

Shirley Taylor on Advent Hope:  It's Groundhog Day All Over Again

Each year the liturgical calendar gets reset and we begin again with where it began. We know what is going to happen to Jesus at Easter, but each November we begin by retelling the story from the beginning, all over again.  We get a new chance like Phil the weatherman did in the movie Groundhog Day. We hope this year we get it right.

Wednesday, December 22, 2021

The First Step Towards Understanding Jill and Jessa Duggar’s Fox Interview: Second Generation Adults in Cultic/High Demand Religion

Originally published 07Jun2015

A host of resources exist exploring the characteristics of the subculture of the Quiverfull Movement (which is often synonymous with Patriarchy within evangelical Christian homeschooling circles).  As the new generation that this movement produced finds their voice, there appears to be little information about the process of how this group in particular has affected the development of the now adult “arrows” of their parents’ quivers , especially for those who remain within their religious culture of origin.

Monday, December 13, 2021

Michelle Duggar's Thousand Yard Stare of Dissociation?

Photo from 1994 with Dr Derechinsky
I remember showing someone a photo of my husband and me that was taken at the big Word of Faith church that I attended when I lived in the Bible Belt. It was the first Valentine's Day during our first year of marriage, and had a dinner at a nice restaurant. They hired Zig Ziggler to speak, and a professional photographer who attended the church took beautiful photos. I bought a bunch of wallet sized ones to send to relatives. A year or two later, I looked through my wallet for a certification card, and I pulled out the picture to show to a coworker. I would not realize what she meant for a number of years later, and I felt odd that she thought that I looked "scared."

Saturday, December 11, 2021

Why Anna Duggar Stays: The Bounded Choice of a Second Generation Adult in a Cultic Sect

This excellent, real-world description of the Bounded Choice of a Second Generation Adult (SGA) in a spiritually abusive or cultic church (what some call sects or cults) by LJ  (Melissa) Stewart on Tik-Tok may help me write my shortest definitions of these terms ever.  I find only one tiny flaw in her presentation.  (Read more about it HERE.)

She rightly states that Bill Gothard's Independent Baptist (IFB) derived-system teaches that Anna's sins are no worse than Josh's crimes.  

She neglects to note that the Duggars are also very personally connected to IFB family and marriage experts Ron Williams and SM Davis. Those men teach that Anna's marital sex with Josh and her submission to him as a wife held the power to cure and fix Josh, so any sexual sins or crimes he committed after their wedding night fall entirely on her shoulders

One Tiny Thing that I Think Stewart Got Wrong: The Theology Says Anna Duggar's to Blame

In a previous post, I note that Lisa J.(Melissa) Stewart did an excellent job via TikTok of explaining the issues of Bounded Choice faced by Second Generation Adults in Cultic Religious Sects like the one followed by the Duggars.  The discussion has arisen because people outside of this fringe subculture do not understand why Anna Duggar does not just leave her husband Josh after so many successive problems with disturbing sexual exploits which have now culminated in his conviction this week for possession of child pornography.

As previously noted, she rightly states that Bill Gothard's Independent Baptist (IFB) derived-system teaches that Anna's sins are no worse than Josh's crimesbut she neglects to note that the Duggars are also very personally and directly connected to IFB family and marriage experts Ron Williams and SM Davis. Those men teach that Anna's marital sex with Josh and her submission to him as a wife held the power to cure and fix Josh, so any sexual sins or crimes he committed after their wedding night fall entirely on her shoulders.   Luckily, tabloids currently claim that Josh's parents are pledging their support to Anna, but I know that IFB pastors have blamed innocent wives for acts far worse than Josh's crimes and held the wife as the primary cause and fault for their husband's behaviors.

Friday, December 10, 2021

Religious Sects Often Oppose Extended Family Adoptions to Save the Souls of Surviving Minors

David Henke identified that Spiritually Abusive Christian groups believe that their particular sect is far more special to God than all other Christians. They have a special corner on truth that makes them better or more holy than other people, and their group alone ensures the best future. Hand in hand with this, groups retain members with the flipside of their elite status by fostering the belief that life outside of their group is evil, and those who exit will be in danger of eternal damnation.

As the recent documentary about Gwen Shamblin's Remnant Fellowship church points out so well, commitment to the group overshadows and overrides any commitment that their non-member family members have with their group. If families urge their loved ones to leave, in order to maintain good standing with the group, they are expected by the church (and bullied by them) to shun these critical family members.

Contemplating Josh Duggar's Guilty Verdict

I cried for the better part of an hour today after someone phoned and told me about the guilty verdict in the Josh Duggar case. (He will be sentenced in four weeks.) Since that friend and I talked it through, it's been a slow, irregular leaking of tears ever since. I'm ready to put my head on my pillow to get much-needed rest.

Some of my tears were a release, knowing that for those who have suffered harm because of this religious system or even just abuse and loss that is similar to each of the players in the events concerning the Duggars, it is a vindication for them. We all need that, I think. Justice is healing for us all.

But it struck me that, to put it concisely when horrible things happen and when people do horrible things, the consequences are lousy and sad if not horrible all around. The collateral damage has been so high for so long. The ramifications of this range from sad for some to tragic for others. So I feel quite melancholy this evening but satisfied at the same time.