Godly Response to Abuse in the Christian Environment has postponed the release of their report. The one about BJU’s handling of sex abuse cases. It will now be released toward the end of November or beginning of December. The reason being the death of the father of one of the GRACE members. This is less than two weeks before the report was to be released. The first time it happened was when BJU ‘fired’ GRACE within weeks of their report being released. Now it’s GRACE that’s responsible for the delay.
The excuse is valid. At least, it makes sense there would be some delay. I would think, at the most, a month considering most of their work should be done by now. Then, a roadblock hits and they’re down for the count for two whole months! If December rolls around and there’s no GRACE report, will people will be just as forgiving because Boz Tchividjian (founder of GRACE) knows how to politic? Probably.
Boz’s job at Liberty is not solely related to fighting child abuse. It’s also preserving the integrity of institutions.
Recently, Braxton Caner, the son of Ergun Caner committed suicide. Speculation is he was driven to this drastic action by JD Hall, another fundamentalist trying to bring down his competition. This resulted in articles where ‘on-line watchdogs’ are allegedly undergoing some ‘soul searching’ regarding their methods. Their methods include finding family members who may, or may not, subscribe to their narrow version of morality, and post their so-called incriminating pictures to bring down the main person. In this case, using the photos of Braxton and his girlfriend to shame their father, Ergun Caner.
Ergun, known for his claim to have Islamic roots, was exposed for lying about them. Boz Tchvidjian was given the task to investigate Ergun and, in the blog ‘A Squirrel in Babylon’, the writer talks of receiving an email from Boz imploring for confidentiality.
This excerpt from an e-mail sent by Boz Tchividjian is from the blog, A Squirrel in Babylon.
Lynchburg, We Have A Problem: ” we would appreciate if you could keep this email and the enclosed inquiries confidential. It is our objective to seek and obtain the truth during this investigation. Our God is too holy to allow us to do anything short of that objective. Much thanks.”
I don’t know if Boz wrote Liberty’s final statement on Ergun Carter, but while the rest of the literate world saw a fraud in Ergun Caner, Liberty came out with this gem following their ‘internal investigation’:
After a thorough and exhaustive review of Dr. Ergun Caner’s public statements, a committee consisting of four members of Liberty University’s Board of Trustees has concluded that Dr. Caner has made factual statements that are self-contradictory.
However, the committee found no evidence to suggest that Dr. Caner was not a Muslim who converted to Christianity as a teenager, but, instead, found discrepancies related to matters such as dates, names and places of residence.
Boz is in a tough spot with the upcoming report on BJU.
He will not put himself in a corner by commenting on the statements of homophobic Liberty University leaders (or his uncle, Franklyn Graham). Nor does he speak up regarding the shenanigans at the Richmond Outreach Center where the latest pastor who replaced Pastor G (out due to abuse charges) was kicked out by the Liberty University ordained committee, with no reason given. While Boz criticizes Southern Baptist leadership for circling the wagons for C.J. Mahaney, he says nothing when Jonathon Falwell does the same thing regarding abusive leadership at the ROC.
So, now to criticize BJU for how they ‘react’ to abuse? I’d like an independent study of Liberty!
If Boz writes a report that is anything less than, “Fire Jim Berg!” (BJU professor who teaches psychology and known for advising rape victims to forgive their rapists), they might feel betrayed unless someone does a really good job of gaslighting the victims.
The winners in all this will be fundamentalist institutions.
There is no doubt that monopolizing the narrative of how BJU came to hire GRACE is of the utmost importance to the university. BJU makes no mention of the student protests that resulted in Christopher Peterman’s eventual expulsion (GLEE, right!). It was because of those activists that BJU and abuse, two subjects now linked together, were thrust into the national spotlight. Ultimately, without the activists, there would have been no GRACE report. BJU would prefer you think they did it out of the goodness of their hearts.
From BJU’s webpage: In the fall of 2011, following a number of high profile national news reports regarding child sexual abuse, especially on college campuses, BJU took a leadership role in its part in exercising best practices in the handling of matters regarding sexual abuse. BJU leadership wanted to make certain that BJU’s policies and procedures for handling reports of sexual abuse both comply with every aspect of the law and ensure a loving, scripturally based response to those involved.
BJU is not the only group of people concerned about the narrative.
Lately, the very activists whose work resulted in hiring GRACE also want to control their narrative by banishing one of their own. It’s been a virtual cyber-Armageddon since Jeffrey Hoffman was virtually attacked in Facebook status updates for revealing a private conversation he had with Boz Tchividjian. Boz speculated that ‘all interested parties will be disappointed in the GRACE report’. This was all mentioned in a private Facebook group. Jeffrey’s contention was that a private conversation had been leaked.
GRACE also released a letter marked ‘confidential‘ to announce that BJU fired them. They justified posting the confidential letter by claiming they needed to be transparent. Right or wrong, that decision, in my opinion, ordained certain parties with the right to decide what gets to remain confidential and what does not. You don’t even have to commit a terrible crime to be exposed. Just simply disagree. The idea that all interested parties might be disappointed in the GRACE report was too much to handle.
I thought all this would go by the wayside once the GRACE report came out. Then again, it is the beginning of a new school year and anything with ‘abuse at BJU’ on it doesn’t help build good morale for paying students. Of course, that’s not the reason given for postponing the report, but it’s funny how it all seems to coincide. All of this is beside the point: we have three or four more months of survivor wars to go!
It’s Survivorgeddon: the survivor war trumping all survivor wars.
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