Friday, October 14, 2016


I've heard from a number of people who are shocked - SHOCKED - that Jerry Falwell Jr. has said he will continue to support Trump even in the face of allegations of sexual assault. And Falwell's continued support is a number of thing, but it's not shocking. Falwell comes from a culture where it's very common to support men who are accused of abusing their power to engage in sexual relationships with adult women where there's a huge power imbalance, bringing the question of consent and coercion into play, and in cases where men have sexually abused children. This response is pretty standard in that culture.

There's a script. First the accusation comes out. Then the question of whether or not the victim is believable is raised, and discussed openly and repeatedly. Then the redemption narrative begins. He's a changed man. Our God is a powerful God and can bring about instant change in the heart of the man that has gone astray. And finally the victim is pressured to show a forgiving spirit and look for the sin in her own heart that caused the abuse. He hasn't quite gotten to the last piece of the script, but he hit the first part perfectly in stride.

It's not at all surprising.