Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar didn’t have nineteen kids and counting because they’re nice people who love children, or because they’re addicted to the high of childbirth. Rather, the world’s best-known megafamily was created by, of, and for their Quiverfull-ish belief system, in which Michelle’s uterus serves as a rapid-fire birth cannon, winning their Christofascist culture wars through pure demography. And with the first six Duggar grandchildren now already born or gestating, their plan to outnumber the godless heathen liberals of America with a horde of half-educated Jesus freaks seems to be working.
“It is such a joy!” gushed Michelle. “I am just so thankful to have all these grandbabies coming along, doubling the number of grandchildren this year. We’ve gone from three grandchildren to six.”
The couple’s first three grandchildren are Mackynzie, Michael, and Marcus, the children of eldest Duggar son Josh and Anna. Anna is currently carrying their fourth child, a girl, who will be the fifth Duggar grandbaby following Jill and Derick Dillard’s son Israel David.
When the grandchildren come to visit, Michelle said it’s like one big party especially since they still have young kids at home, and there is nothing more satisfying than to see their kids and grandkids run and play together.
The Duggar formula conceals their extreme Christian patriarchy under a thin veneer of pop celebrity baby news through the magic of ‘reality TV,’ which somehow manages to never examine the harmful cult-like reality of their actual belief system, or the Duggars’ abiding connections to the most bigoted and virulent anti-gay groups in America. The Duggar name is thus a slickly-produced brand, with every child becoming a trained and savvy marketing agent: Jessa’s pregnancy food cravings become a trip to Arby’s, whereupon she makes sure to hold her soda cup so the label is visible for her social media audience. When she does open up to say what she really thinks, it’s usually some inane historical revision that she picked up during a homeschool ‘education’ that conveniently left out all the science and facts.
It’s not like 19 Kids and Counting has anything to do with actual Christianity, at least not as most Christians understand it. Consider the family’s recent made-for-TV food donation drive, which helped absolutely no one but themselves:
It didn’t take long for the producers to realize that there was no one in line to receive food. In fact, every person there, with the exception of one family, was at the Compassion Center in order to catch a glimpse of the Duggars. The producers narrowed in on the one family there to actually shop — the Martinez family — and began to vet them for the show, giving the family of four clipboards with release forms.
The Martinez family gave their permission for the crew to utilize any footage with them in it, and according to the witness, producers began to groom the family for their television appearance.
The witness claims to have overheard producers saying, “Let’s go over this… you’re really happy that the Duggars have brought you this food, you really need this for your family.”
[…] One of the Duggar sons took a box of food out to the Martinez family car — but, once the cameras were turned off, the box of food was taken back out and returned to one of the Duggar family SUVs.
When aired, that scene will doubtless make the Duggars out to be the very model of Christian charity. At this point, it is clear that TLC never intends to show the audience their subjects’ deep and abiding homophobia, or their participation in discriminatory political causes, or their son Josh’s work for the anti-gay hate group Family Research Council. Instead, selective production and stage management produce the illusion of a caring, ‘Christian’ family without ever noting that Christ had some choice words to say about people like Jim Bob and Michelle.
All their works they do to be seen by men. They make their phylacteries broad and enlarge the borders of their garments. […] When you pray, you are not to be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and on the street corners so that they may be seen by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full.
For the Duggars, the reward is continued fame and fortune, bankrolling their immense family as they march onward to a default victory over the outnumbered defenders of church-state separation and birth control access. Convinced that fossils are not real, and that fuels are therefore not fossils, the Duggars don’t even have to worry about the enormous carbon footprint of their enormous family’s logistical challenges. ‘God will provide,’ after all; and even if He doesn’t, then there is always another ‘special episode’ in the next grandbaby.