Pearl’s Reaction To the Duggar Debacle

Pearl’s reaction to the problems the Duggars have faced fits his M.O. perfectly. He continues to give the same advice that the Duggars were already following and insists that it works, in spite of it not working for them. I don’t doubt that in his mind, the fact that it didn’t work is proof that they did not follow it correctly.  It appears that he cannot or will not consider the possibility that his methods don’t work.

There’s More To This Than Meets The Eye

Perhaps you have heard of Rachel Dolezal, she has been in the media a lot lately. She recently resigned from her posistion as NAACP leader after her parents informed the media that she was white. I had a feeling that there was something behind this all that we didn’t know, so I was not very surprised to find out that her parents trained her using the book, To Train Up A Child by Michael and Debi Pearl. Here is the article from Homeschoolers Anonymous:

THE MEDIA IS DOING EXACTLY WHAT RACHEL DOLEZAL’S ABUSIVE HOMESCHOOLING PARENTS WANT

Speaking of “more than meets the eye,” I have not been posting much and I missed sharing a blog post which discusses a study about the damange corporal punishment does to a child’s brain.

And while I’m sharing things which went out through my Facebook Feed, but not here, some of you might be interested in these Tips for getting toddlers to cooperate while shopping from Purple Puzzle Place.

“To Train Up A Child” in New Zealand News

Eileen Joy and her petition have made the mainstream news in New Zealand after reaching 100,000 signatures.

Here is an article in the New Zealand Herald.

Here is an article from Auckland Now. (Sunday Star Times)

Here is an article from 3 News

There is also debate about this on Facebook.  I found a some on this pages:

The Children’s Bookshop

Here are some Op Ed pieces:

Shelley Bridgeman: ‘Child abuse’ book stays in the New Zealand Herald

ROSEMARY MCLEOD: Parenting wrongs can create a lasting, painful legacy in the Dominion Post

Update: I see in the following piece that the book has been submitted to the censor’s office.
Peter Calder: Classics that fail public taste test in the New Zealand Herald

Petition to Auckland Libraries

Eileen Joy has started a petition at Change.org asking the Auckland Public Library system to remove the newly aquired book, To Train Up A Child from their system.  The library claims that to remove it would be censorship, even though the book advocates for corporal punishment which is illegal in New Zealand.

Discussing the new chapter of TTUAC

The Gentle Christian Mothers are discussing NGJ’s New Addition to “To Train Up a Child.”  It seems that for their 21st anniversary edition, No Greater Joy has added a new chapter to the book which attempts to refute studies which showing spanking to be detrimental to children.  Of course, the moms at Gentle Christian Mothers have found a few flaws in his logic.

If you like this, you might also be interested in this list I complied of Selected posts from The Gentle Christian Mothers Forum.

He Makes Pearl’s Teachings Seem Gentle

R.L. Stollar has an in depth analysis of Voddie Baucham’s teachings in The Child As Viper: How Voddie Baucham’s Theology of Children Promotes Abuse.  In it, Voddie Baucham’s teachings are compared to Michael Pearl’s teachings with this conclusion:

Baucham’s system thus ends up being more authoritarian than Pearl’s, and that is caused by the fact that Baucham not only believes in original sin (as does Pearl), but also total depravity. How Baucham applies his belief in the latter (total depravity) makes Pearl’s child training system appear gentle and weak in comparison.

This is a very long examination of Voddie Baucham’s theology followed by 3 detailed critiques:

Critique #1: Baucham’s Theology of Children is Unbiblical
Critique #2: Baucham’s Theology of Children Encourages Contempt for Children
Critique #3: Baucham’s Theology of Children Promotes Abuse

While long, it is well worth reading all the way through to the conclusion.

Child Abuse in Germany

Jennifer Stahl has been explaining about child abuse going on in German churches on her Blog, Yeshua Hineni. In this post she writes about the Pearl’s book To Train Up A Child which, while not being sold, is available “under the table.”  She Translates and transcribes a video about the concerns one woman has for her brother’s children being raised by this method.

I would also like to mention that Jennifer has been reporting on a very serious abuse case called, The Twelve Tribes in Germany. She has put a lot of work into this, tirelessly translating and transcribing from German, for the English speaking world to read.

Here is what she has so far:  part 1part 2 part 3part 4part 5part 6, part 7part 8part 9,part 10,  part 11part 12, part 13part 14 and part 15.

 

The Christian Post Looks At The Petition To Amazon

The Christian Post reports that the Change.org petition (asking Amazon to stop selling the controversial book, To Train Up A Child) is closing in on 100,000 signatures. They then take a closer look at the Pearls’ teachings and the controversy surrounding them.

Did Batman Follow Pearl’s Teachings?

Chris Gavaler compares Michael Pearl to Batman as he reviews his Comic Book Bible in The Good And Evil Guide To Parenting.

An Interview With Michael Pearl’s Nephew

Alicia Bayer has an interview with Michael Bailey who is Michael Pearl’s nephew.  He discusses his childhood, Michael Pearl and the book he is writing to refute his teachings in, Michael Pearl’s nephew speaks out on God, beatings and To Train Up a Child.

Also, today Margot Peppers has an article about the Pearls and their book, To Train Up A Child, in the Mail Online: Inside the extreme child-rearing guide that advocates whipping children with belts and branches. . . and has been linked to three deaths in seven years.

Michael Pearl and Elizabeth Esther on BBC Radio

Yesterday the BBC had Michael Pearl and Elizabeth Esther on their radio talk show, World Have Your Say.  The segment about Michael Pearl and his teachings begins at 27:16.  They also have a few other guests discussing the teachings after Elizabeth Esther and Michael Pearl have their discussion/debate.

I am encouraged that Mr. Pearl has started back pedaling a bit and even said to stop hitting a 9 month old’s knuckles after 3 strikes with a spatula because it is clearly not working.  Of course, he qualifies it that the parent is not doing something right and must regroup and start over, but I am so thankful that he is starting to admit that it might not be working and that one should stop.   It would be great if he would admit that his method will not work for every child and even better if he would decide that there are better ways of getting the attention of a 9 month old than inflicting physical pain and that conditioning children is very unhealthy for them, but I must rejoice in any improvement.  When Elizabeth pointed out  that he was contradicting his book, he just brushed her off.   Hopefully, he will continue to promote guidelines of when things are not working and make sure that all his followers hear it.

The BBC Looks At The Pearls’ Training Book

Aiden Lewis of The BBC has a well researched article about the book, To Train Up A Child by Michael and Debi Pearl as well as the controversy which surrounds it.

Amazon Boycott

According to this tweet, Amazon has decided to not stop selling the controversial book, To Train Up A Child, by Michael and Debi Pearl.

Because of that, the petition drive has escalated into a boycott until Amazon removes To Train Up A Child in all formats.

More information can be found at the Facebook group Online retailers – we urge you to stop selling To Train Up A Child and the Twitter Account @BoycottAmazon1.

Meanwhile there is also a new petition to the UK Government, asking them to make it illegal to sell the book in the UK.  Of course, this petition may only be signed by British citizens and UK residents.  You can find more petitions at the bottom of this post.

Anderson Cooper 360 Takes Another Look At The Pearls

Andersoon Cooper 360 has taken their old footage from the interview Gary Tuchman did with Pearls back in Oct 2011 and the stories they did about the death of Lydia Schatz and remixed it with new footage about Hana “Williams,” in this new episode of Godly Discipline. They then discuss the Pearls’ culpability or lack of it, in the deaths. You will find both parts of this show (in 2 videos) on this page. You will find the transcript here. The segment in question starts about 2/3 of the way down. The easiest way to find it would be to use the find feature and search for “To Train Up A Child.”

Note: Here is more information about the Find Feature.

In case anyone is wondering, I am not in favor of holding the Pearls legally accountable.  The parents are to blame for following man instead of God.  Yes, the Bible does say that teachers bear a greater responsibility and God’s judgement will be fair.  I do believe that the teachings are dangerous and do my best to convince parents not to follow them and bookstores not to sell them. However, I am not trying to get the book banned, nor to harm the Pearls in any way.

 

Hana and Pearl Are All Over The Internet

There has been a lot of attention being given lately to the Pearls and the part their book, To Train Up A Child, played in the death of Hana Aleumu “Williams.” So much attention in fact, that my blog could not handle the traffic generated by Google searches and was taken offline from the 19th until today as explained here. So, here is a rundown of the posts and articles I missed posting during that time.

It started with this article on Nov 15: Another couple found guilty of murder for parenting by “To Train Up a Child” by Alicia Bayer of the Mankato Attachment Parenting Examiner. [Read more…]

To Train Up A Child Being Pulled?

It looks like Amazon has decided to keep selling the controversial book, To Train Up A Child, by Michael and Debi Pearl.  It is being offered as usual on both the USA site and the UK site.

However, Lulastic tells us that some other online retailers have decided to pull the book.  She also discusses her reasons for trying to get the book pulled and gives us some ideas for how to help.

I would like to remind people that this is not a campaign to ban a book.  The book will still be legal to sell.  Any book seller who wishes to is free to sell it.  The public is also free to boycott anyone who chooses to sell it and to put pressure on them to stop.  The book will always be available to buy directly from the publisher, No Greater Joy.  Because of this, I don’t see the point of equating asking Amazon to stop profiting from the sales of a dangerous parenting guide with book banning.

If you would like to sign the petition to Amazon.co.uk, here it is.

Update: here is the latest from @ADadCalledSpen.

Mr. Pearl Responds To British Parliament’s Efforts to Stop Sales Of TTUAC

ITV News reports that Mr. Pearl is Delighted Over Calls to Ban His Parenting Book.

Mr Pearl told the radio station: “I was delighted to hear that Parliament might ban my book, if they do, I will immediately advertise it as ‘the book banned in the UK’ and…we will end up selling another 100,000 books directly to the UK.”

Now, to clarify, the book would only be banned on the Amazon.co.uk website. I have not heard anything about making it illegal to sell the book in the UK. However, if it is banned on a UK website, it is technically “banned in the UK,” at least in one small part of it. Therefore, he apparently does not feel that it would be misleading to promote the book at “banned in the UK.”

@ADadCalledSpen writes More On To Train Up A Child and has some questions. (Disclaimer: some language on that site)

How, can a book sell more if it’s banned from sale? How can you sell something that can’t be sold? That would be illegals[sic].

[Read more…]

British Parliament Wants Amazon to Stop Selling TTUAC

Nadine Dorries, a member of the British Parliament, is insisting that Amazon.co.uk stop selling Michael and Debi Pearl’s book, To Train Up A Child, according to an article by Jessica Elgot in the Huffington Post.

The story was then picked up by Parentdish who wrote quite a long article about the story as well as the book in question.

Also, there is a new petition on Change.com asking Amazon.co.uk to stop selling To Train Up A Child.   This petition is only about To Train Up A Child, unlike the old petition which asked Amazon to “refuse to carry books which advocate the physical abuse of children,” including, Shepherding a Child’s Heart by Tedd Tripp; and Don’t Make Me Count to Three by Ginger Plowman.

On top of that, @ADadCalledSpen has An Open Letter to Jeff Bezos and All @Amazon About To Train Up A Child going around Twitter.

Samuel Martin Explains About Biblical Times

Samuel Martin is trying to help people understand the difference in how people thought in Biblical times and now because this is crucial to understanding the Bible.

He discusses Michael’s book, To Train Up A Child in Should we preach? publish?, or proclaim the Gospel – Yes? No? Maybe?

He also has a post on Dara Stoltzfus’ blog about Gender Space in Biblical Times which I believe you will find interesting.

 

How Could They?

Under Much Grace looks at how parents find themselves falling into abusive teachings in A Film that Helps Us Understand Why Pearl Becomes Appealing: How do parents get caught up in extreme practices?

Also of interest, she reflects on the Williams Trial in Homeschooling, Hana Williams and the “Rod of Man.”

 

Turning Loving Parents Into Monsters Since 1994

Forgedimagination explains exactly how the Pearls’ teachings turn  loving parents into monsters in Raised To Be A Monster.

To Break Down A Child – Stories Of Life Under Pearl’s Teachings

Last Week, I mentioned that Homeschoolers Anonymous was collecting stories and testimonies from those who were affected by Pearl’s teachings.   Well, their “Pearl-Style Discipline Week” is over, so I thought I would link to their collection of tragic stories.  This series is not for the sensitive and/or easily triggered. 

I especially want to highlight ExPearlSwine’s testimony in which a former Pearl follower  explains how she followed Pearl’s teachings to the letter  and exactly how and why those teachings are dangerous.

The Pearls’ defenders will say, “Oh, they took it to an extreme and should have known better.” If anyone knows better than to keep inflicting more severe discipline on an intractable child, they can only apply that knowledge by scuttling the Pearls’ sadistic teaching and being more reasonable.

 

Do The Duggars Promote The Pearls’ Teachings?

I was recently told that it is unfair of us to group the lovely Duggar Family with the likes of the Pearls and the Quiverfull Movement. I always try to be fair so I have done some research.

On this page you will find Proof that the Duggars Promote the Pearls’ Teachings.  You can use CTRL F to find “nogreaterjoy” or you can scroll down past the highlighted yellow box, into the white area to find the link to the Pearls’ website,  No Greater Joy, and the Duggars’ endorsement.  On that same page they also link to the  businesses of the Pearls’ adult children, The Bulk Herb Store, Cane Creek Coffee and a book by Shoshanna Easling.

While it’s true that in their 2012 book, “A Love that Multiplies ” the Dugars deny being a part of the Quiverfull Movement, they embrace the same ideals and appear to be  friendly with those in the movement, especially with  Gothard and ATI.  Here is a list of blogs and articles which back this up.

So, while they appear to be “guilty by association,” I can see why many want to give them the benefit of the doubt.  That is all fine and good, but I cannot help but be very leery of anyone who  promotes No Greater Joy as, “some of the finest in family-friendly, value-based books, audios, videos, and articles on parenting, husband and wife relationships, ministry and more!” but maybe that’s just me.

Edited to add:  It has just come to my attention that the person who handles the Duggar Book promotions, Mel Cohen, is the same person who handles the book promotions for the Pearls.  This explains a lot and leaves it up in the air as to whether or not the Duggars actually promote the Pearls teachings.  I still believe that they should be held accountable for what is published under their name.  They must be aware by now that their name is being linked to the Pearls because of this promotion and can have it changed at any time, but they have not. If anyone feels that they are not aware of this situation, please contact them and make them aware.

I have also heard that they practice gentle parenting.  If I am not mistaken, as members of ATI, they are required to use corporal punishment.  Also, here is an old article which states that they believe that the Bible requires spanking.

Now, in an article from 2010, someone came right out and asked her if she ever spanked her children and look at her response.  As you can clearly see, she said no.  Wait…  No, not exactly…  Well, she sure didn’t say yes…  The truth is, she use over 700 words to say that they focus on the positive while evading the question entirely.

Edited to add March 13, 2015: I noticed that some of the pages to which I was linking in this post have been removed from the Dugger’s website so I am now linking to them on the Internet Archive (Way Back Machine) to prove that they used to exist.

Edited May 23, 2016 to add a new link: Duggar Endorsed Ministry: Depravity Spreading From One Christian Homeschool Family To The Next. 

Always The Woman’s Fault?

Forgedimagination responds to an article by the Pearls in Cloistered Fruit: (Not) An Open Letter To The Pearls.   This is a rather extreme example of their teaching that everything comes down to being the fault of the woman (or in this case, women.)

More Looks at Michael Pearl’s Teachings

Michael Pearl’s teachings are being discussed in the blogosphere again.

Rick Morton responds to Jonathan Merritt’s Analysis of Michael & Debi Pearl’s “Child Training” & The “Adoption Fever” Dialogue in this post.

Morgan Guyton discusses Why He Would Fail Michael And Debi Pearl’s Parenting Class.

The Pearls in the Religion News

Jonathan Merritt has published an article about Michael and Debi Pearl on ReligionNews.com entitled, How Influential Are Michael and Debi Pearl?  And How Harmful? He only found out about them recently but has apparently done his homework very well.

Rejecting The Pearls

Calulu reflects on how and why she rejected the teachings of “To Train Up A Child,” in Parenting & the Super Religious.

Discussing Tim Challies’ Reviews

Recovering Grace promotes Tim Challies’ review of Created To Be His Help Meet. Also, someone brings up his review of To Train Up A Child in the comments and discussion of the Pearls ensues which might be of interest to my readers.

 

But They Look So Happy

Home Educating Family Magazine has published an opinion piece about the Duggars and the teachings they follow (Gothard, S. M. Davis and Pearl) called, They Smile, but Do They Laugh?

 

Is This Good Christian Parenting?

Ruvin, who blogs at By The Hui, has grave concerns about the Pearls’ teachings. She explains why in This is Christian Parenting?