Friday, April 17, 2009

Getting to Know James White

Christian apologist James White recently posted a youtube clip where he responded to some things his sister, Patty Bonds, had said.

I suppose there's a sense that maybe that one thing that could come out of this that would be good would be people to see just how crippled she has become because she just lives in this realm of victimhood and everything is defined by that. And there are so many people who have bought in to that. It is one of the most debilitating aspects of our modern society, that you blame your parents, you blame the people that you grew up with, you blame your circumstances, you blame events from 150 years ago anymore as if you know I just could never be a success in life because of X, Y, and Z. Thankfully I've never bought into that. Everyone's parents are fallible. I think of myself as a parent and I think of each of my young people and I could have been there for them, I could have been this better. I think every parent, hopefully every parent, every Christian parent anyway, sits back and thinks about these things. But you know I've never passed on to my kids this idea of a victim mentality. You are responsible before God for who you are. You stand before God for the decisions you make. Blaming other people is just, it's pathetic, and it shows a tremendous lack of maturity.

Generally that sounds reasonable. No parent is perfect. All have made mistakes. Any person that wants to blame their current situation on their parents mistakes from the past would have grounds to do so since every parent has erred in some way. You can't let that be an excuse for failure.

But what does James White have in mind here? What is it that really defines Patty Bond's victimhood? What is she upset with her parents about? Was it that her Dad wasn't there for her? No. Was it that there were things that he could have done better? Yeah, that's getting closer. He'd have been doing much better if he had abstained from raping her continuously for 10 straight years from the time she was 10 years old. That's her claim, and it looks credible to me.

What could her mother have done better? Maybe some protection rather than knowingly permitting her father's nightly visits to her bedroom? Maybe not grilling her and yelling at her for the situation? Maybe not threatening her with a gun for discussing the situation?

Maybe I'm not getting James White here. I'm sure he'd say she's lying about the whole thing anyway. But the quote above seems to say even if it's true, so what? Get over it. Stop whining. No parent is perfect. Stop blaming our parents. You're a professional victim. His criticism is not for his father, or his mother. It is for a woman raped at the age of 10 continuously. Am I missing it here? Did I misunderstand? He can't be this big of a monster. Can he? Someone help me out here.

1 comment:

Vinny said...

Fascinating stuff.

I really did not have much familiarity with White prior to his debate with Bart Ehrman, but I find it incredibly ironic that he is criticizing someone else's victim mentality considering how much he whines about being misunderstood and ill-used by anyone who dares to suggest that he is not as smart as he thinks he is.