“Christianity is not about being perfect:” Duggar Family Defends Son in Interview After Molestation Reports
- By Alison Lesley --
- 08 Jun 2015 --
The popular Christian family of the TLC show 19 Kids and Counting defended son Josh Duggar in a Fox interview after reports that he molested his sisters.
The Duggars, stars of the reality TV show 19 Kids and Counting, went on Fox to speak publicly for the first time about the sexual molestation scandal surrounding their eldest son Josh. In an exclusive interview with Fox’s Megan Kelly, the parents Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar said they were “shocked and devastated” when they learned about their son’s actions through his confession.
Entertainment magazine In Touch Weekly reported that in 2002 – 03 Josh Duggar had, according to a police report, molested five underage girls on several occasions by fondling them. Four of the victims were his own siblings. After the news broke, Josh Duggar resigned his position at the Family Research Council and issued a statement, in which he said that he “acted inexcusably” as a teen and that he was “deeply sorry.” Cable channel TLC quickly suspended the Duggars’ TV show.
Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar told Fox’s Megan Kelly that they are fine whether the TV show continues or not. “We’re going to go on and live life. We’re going to go and serve God and make a difference in the world,” Jim Bob Duggar said, adding that “Christianity is not about being perfect or about being a perfect family, but it’s actually about being forgiven” as a response to the media storm the family has been facing.
Josh Duggar’s sisters and molestation victims Jill Dillard and Jessa Seewald also appeared on “The Kelly File,” defending their brother. “We’re victims. They can’t do this to us,” Dillard said of the media attention. Seewald told Megan Kelly that calling her brother a child molester, a pedophile, or a rapist “is so overboard and a lie really,” adding that “people get mad at me for saying that, but I can say this because I was one of the victims.”
Christian public relations expert Hunter Frederick claimed the Duggars’ and Josh’s apology isn’t enough and that he needs to pay his debt back to society somehow, underlining that “the majority of people that are against the Duggars want some kind of legal punishment, which can’t happen because of our country’s statute of limitations law.”
The Arkansas-based Duggars are Independent Baptists and have altogether 19 children, all of whose names begin with the letter “J.” The reality show 19 Kids and Counting began in 2008 and concluded its tenth season in May.