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Large Christian Families

Large Christian families or large families in general are not a new phenomenon. In years past, there were mothers who had many children with hopes that a few of them would survive infancy and later childhood. For instance, within a period of 21 years, Susanna Wesley, Christian mother of Methodist founder John Wesley, gave birth to 19 children, many of whom died in infancy.

So, why is Mark Morford so bent out of shape about Michelle and Jim Bob Duggar recently having their 16th baby?

Morford mulls over his reaction in his SFGate column (October 19, 2005):

It's wrong to be this judgmental. Wrong to suggest that it is exactly this kind of weird pathological protofamily breeding-happy gluttony that's making the world groan and cry and recoil, contributing to vicious overpopulation rates and unrepentant economic strain and a bitter moral warpage resulting from a massive viral outbreak of homophobic neo-Christians across our troubled and Bush-ravaged land. Or is it?

Obviously, nowadays here in America, modern advances have increased the probability that babies will survive. And there are many people who would question the Duggarsâ?? judgment in choosing to turn out yearly â??screaming spitballs of joy.â?

Mark Morford inquires:

Perhaps the point is this: Why does this sort of bizarre hyperbreeding only seem to afflict antiseptic megareligious families from the Midwest?

Even though the Duggars are from Arkansas, a state Iâ??ve always thought of as a Southern one, the operative word that struck me in Morfordâ??s question was â??megareligious.â?

Certainly there are many Christian families who love children but do not desire large families. Among the ones who do want big families, I propose that not only is love of children, as expressed by the Duggars, a reason, but also, for some others, these multitudinous little blessings from their God are part of a strategy to fully proselytize the Good News. Overpopulating the world could even mean overtaking the heathens, by golly!

In Nancy Campbellâ??s list of â??101 Reasons for Having Children!â?, #84 reads:

I want another arrow for God's army.

Ouch.

Mark Morford ends his article:

Ah, but this is America, yes? People should be allowed to do whatever the hell they want with their families if they can afford it and if it's within the law and so long as they aren't gay or deviant or happily flouting Good Christian Values, right? Shouldn't they? Hell, gay couples still can't openly adopt a baby in most states (they either lie, or one adopts and the other must apply as "co-parent"), but Michelle Duggar can pop out 16 kids and no one says, oh my freaking God, stop it, stop it now, you thoughtless, selfish, baby-drunk people.

No, no one says that. That would be mean.

Balderdash! Define â??mean.â? There is a time for politeness, and there is a time for, well,... protective measures.

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