Thursday, February 4, 2010

The Duggers: A Lesson Learned?

Less than a year after the birth of number 18, the Duggers had yet another child. It was born some five months or so premature, but it is clear that Mom and Dad Dugger wasted no time getting started on number 19. Their philosophy on childbearing is reflected in a quote from their oldest son's website. He is already married and a father:

"In our vows to each other at the wedding ceremony, we committed to God that we would leave the timing and amount of children in His hands. Of course, both being from "large" families (Josh the oldest of 18 and Anna number 5 out of 8) we knew that the question would come up, "So how many children will you have?" Anna responds, "We would be happy with two or three if that is all God blesses us with, but we believe that children are a blessing from God and we look forward to receiving each gift that He gives us."

A noble thought, I suppose, if you are totally without reason and are "surprised," as Mom and Dad Dugger were, when they found that number 19 was on the way.

The latest Dugger baby was born December 10 and weighed 1 lb. 6 oz. I watched the TV show last week chronicling the birth. Mama Dugger had a gallstone attack that put her in the hospital and endangered the baby. She was airlifted to a hospital in Little Rock, where she developed preeclampsia, a high blood pressure condition in pregnant women. Her blood pressure consistently reached 200 and a c-section resulted. The baby remains in an incubator in the hospital.

One has to wonder if Mom and Dad Dugger will announce another pregnancy before this child is released from the hospital. Given their philosophy for having children, it would not surprise me. The cynic in me wonders if the last four or five children have been the result of the TV show. After all, ratings would drop if the show were simply about this over sized family and its daily life. However, new children and challenges keep the interest up and the money rolling in. It isn't cheap to feed, clothe, and house 19 kids.

Obviously, the Duggers did not plan to have the current situation happen. No one wants to have a premature child with so many potential problems. Yet their reaction is that God will take charge. If this is the case, why did God cause this to happen? Many who think like the Duggers would say that it was God's plan, and it was done to teach them something...not to have more children, maybe? No. He is the one causing the children. The Duggers have nothing to do with it.

I'm sorry. I do not buy it. Why would a loving God put a child through such torment to teach some kind of lesson to parents, who can't refrain from making babies? Wouldn't there be a better way? I have never bought the idea of a tragedy being "God's will," especially if it is man's decision that caused the problem. I definitely do not buy the "lesson" teaching thing.

The Duggers made the choice to eschew birth control at their age, presumably, knowing the dangers that accompany motherhood after 40. I sort of understand parents, who have never had children, taking the risk for both the mother and child, but I do not understand the Duggers. They have enough to go around. Why risk bringing a child into the world that may suffer? Why continue, when the risk factor goes up every year for the mother? I wonder if their doctors have ever advised them about the dangers. If Mom Dugger dies with the next one, what happens? Does Dad Dugger find a young one and start over? Bet on it.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Tim Tebow's "Over the Top" Religon

Tim Tebow is a Christian. We know that, or at least he told us that, every football game last season. He put Bible verses in the black under his eyes. Nothing wrong with that, even if it is a bit over the top. It is a free county. He is free to proselytize as much as he wants, I suppose. I doubt that many football fans took the time to look up the Bible verses, but he may have affected a few.

Now Tebow has chosen to cooperate with Focus on the Family, one of the notorious political/religious organizations, in an anti-abortion ad to be run during the super bowl. In the ad Tebow's mother is supposedly characterized as having chosen to risk her life to have him, when doctors recommended that she have an abortion to avoid endangering her life. Nothing wrong with that...or is there? Apparently, Ms Tebow was a missionary in the Philippines at the time of her problem. The issue? Abortion has been illegal in that country since the 1930's. The law makes no exceptions for the health of the mother. Any doctor performing an abortion there is subject to a prison term, so it is very doubtful that a doctor in that country would have recommended an abortion.

If Ms Tebow and Focus on the Family are lying, it would not be surprising. Focus on the Family has never been above twisting the facts to advance its political agenda. Ms Tebow and her son are simply being used by this less than stellar organization, either willingly or through duplicity in order to fuel the abortion controversy. My guess is that the Tebows are doing this willingly and did not realize that, once the controversial ad was publicized, there would be someone smart enough to smell a rat. It is a learning experience for the young man, one of many he will learn as he enters the world of professional sports.