Friday, May 11, 2012

Correct Use of Authority at BJU?

Chris Peterman was a Bob Jones University college student who was standing for the truth against a sexual abuse coverup and was recently expelled from his university only nine days before his graduation.   Read this riveting story:  BJU Story.

See if you find any parallels in this story compared to our experiences.  
  • Do you see legalistic rules? 
  • Notice the measures the school authorities took to keep this student from talking? 
  • Many meetings
  • Expelled 9 days before graduating
  • As he brought the sexual abuse into the light of day on public forums, immediately he was called in for his "sin", yet he had never been brought in before for any sin during any time during his years there
  • Instead of dealing directly with the subject of the wrongful sexual abuse coverup, they diverted their attention onto a student who was exposing the truth
  • He had to endure "surprise" meetings with very little notice - sometimes very late into the night.  

Did we experience surprise meetings, late into the night? 
retaliation?  lawsuits, subpoenas, threats?

Did focus shift to our "sin" and our "wrong doings" when we brought up issues?  Were we called subversive or descendants of Korah?

We're any of us fired, removed from positions, shunned, excommunicated, placed on Mark and Avoid list?

And a real biggie here:  how did the treatment of those in authority affect this young man's faith?  How many of us or our children have suffered in our walk with Christ?  How many are confused, despondent, have had a crisis of faith?

Is your abuse creepo-meter on?  If it is, you will see/hear about these types of situations all over the place.  But the nice thing is that through this knowledge of the truth and knowing the characteristics of people who use their authority inappropriately, we won't allow those types of people to abuse their control over us and our families any more.



Update 5/13/12:  Hey all, this is support blog; however, this post seems to have sparked a bit of a debate.  You are welcome to continue the dialogue.  I don't have time to participate :) 




65 comments:

  1. Julie Anne, BJU has been throwing out students for decades. You can argue he was tossed because of his recent stance; but based upon BJU history, getting demerits and getting tossed out is not exactly news.

    Billy Graham left after his first semester partially because he had received so many demerits.

    Chris will survive. If you choose to attend BJU you surely know what you're getting into.

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    1. Sure he will survive. Do you think it is just coincidental that this happened when he highlighted the abuse coverup?

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    2. So, from what I have read on CNN (and you know liberal media is going to attack a conservative Christian college any chance they get) vs. what I have heard from people who have lived through the ordeal out there, while attending BJU, is that the whole truth is not being told by this student, nor by CNN. So perhaps if it is not our own experience of being abused, we ought not go looking for other people to point our fingers at.

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    3. Of course the media has a spin they want to make on this and this is only one side. But it appears you are missing the point of my post which is: how is the authority treating the "lowly"? What methods do they use to exercise their authority? And are those methods appropriate?

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    4. There are actually two levels of abuse in this story. The first one is the most obvious--helping to cover up the rape of a 15 year old girl more than a decade ago. BJU had nothing to do with that, but they held up the pastor who did that as an example to follow. So the cover up of the rape is the first abuse.

      But the second level of abuse has not been touched on so much. Yes, all students at BJU sign a statement saying that they will abide by the rules in the student handbook. I have no problem with that. If you agree to it ahead of time, don't whine when it comes back to bite you.

      But that is NOT what happened here. I have a link to the current student handbook at BJU. Somebody, please point out to me anywhere in that handbook where it says that you can be put on something called "spiritual probation." Tell me where it says that they reserve the right to monitor your FB posts, your twitter posts, and your personal conversations and question you extensively about any and all of it. Tell me where it says they can arbitrarily assign lengthy Bible readings that add a ton of work to your regular studies, require you to go through extensive personal counseling with the dean of students, and be followed around on and off campus. Is it in there? Of course not. None of us would ever sign up for a program like that ahead of time.

      If a person outside of BJU did that to you, you'd have them charged with stalking and harassment. If your boss did it to you, you'd be well advised to get a lawyer. Even the military doesn't discipline its members that way. (I checked.) Where in the world do we get the idea that it's OK for a Christian organization to do that to its own members? Just because they say they're Christian and they're doing it for your own good? I don't think so.

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    5. Your third paragraph was very eye-opening. This is essentially what happened in our church experience, too. It does feel creepy. "Creepy" Chuck O'Neal evidently did not like me to use about him because it was used in the defamation lawsuit. I'll say it again: it felt creepy! :)

      Thanks for filling in more gaps on this story.

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  2. This is interesting. I have a sibling who just finished a degree there. I will have to ask their perspective on this. Have never heard anything like this out of BJU - yes, plenty of expellings have gone on, but in most cases it has been for things like alcohol, pregnancy, etc., Things that are obviously against policies. For instance my sibling found alcohol being hidden inside some tall boots their roommate owned and had to turn the roommate in to school authorities, and after that person would not give up the alcolhol drinking ways, they were expelled. So, I find this interesting. Would be curious to hear what other students were told, as it is a small campus and news travels fast.

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    1. Talked to my sibling and their spouse. Students and staff of BJU, as well as friends that are also students or staff of BJU. This isn't the whole story.

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    2. I'd be happy to hear the other side :)

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    3. no you wouldn't. You've already made up your mind, as I can see from the responses. I'm curious how big of a cover-up it could be as the perpetrator of the actual abuse is in jail. Not well covered. So he wasn't uncovering the actual crime, which you sort of seem to hint at in some of your responses. And how does committing a wrong to uncover another wrong make him protected? And as you pointed out to another reader, All have sinned - so this guy he went after, is he not covered by this verse? Just sayin'. I just think there were better ways to deal with this, especially based on what I have heard from other parties, who are in my humble opinion, as reliable as your sources.

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    4. Quick question - are you new to this blog? I see in my Blogger that a number of people have found this blog by searching BJU. The reason I ask is you seem to be missing the context of this post with the rest of the blog.

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    5. nope. And i see the context and I personally think you have jumped on a bandwagon about a story you don't have all the information about - and you haven't stated whether you have any connections and BJU or any other history with them. You are willing to stir the pot and believe CNN and total strangers when they tell you what a horrible place it is. I too left BGBC and have much connect with BJU and they are not the same.

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  3. so, after reading the BJU article, I have a couple of thoughts. BJU probably committed some wrongs here. However, if he stiffed-neckedly went against their policies, there is a problem from his perspective also.

    I don't see any mention that he went to the police and reported the cover up. Which would have been the appropriate channel.

    They have stringent rules. However, you are paying for the privelege to go there, and they are not acting as your pastor (you have to get involved in a local church for that), so I believe they can enforce strict rules on you. If you don't like them, don't go to school there.

    For him to tweet a complaint about the length of a Bible conference shows that his heart was not in the right place. Obviously, we have all thought sermons have run too long from time to time, but to tweet about it beforehand was a poor choice on his part. Some thoughts and emotions should be kept to ourselves. Even the Bible teaches that.

    So, I guess in a nutshell - I think both parties made mistakes and they just kept building on eachother until it exploded.

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    1. You raise some great points. But I think we're missing the bigger issue when we nitpick on tweeting about the length of a service. He probably didn't want to get kicked out of school. He was fighting a coverup. It reminds me of me. I've had people tell me to let it go. Oh really - - - let it go knowing what I know? Sorry. I don't want to have to answer before God saying I did nothing. I absolutely felt compelled to post the Google review.

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    2. It ain't a privilege to go to BJU if I am paying for it, whether they choose to acknowledge this truth or not.

      They like to "enforce" rules that don't actually exist. In fact, they say in their catalog that "The University may request withdrawal of any student at any time, who, in the opinion of the University, does not fit the spirit of the institution, regardless of whether or not he conforms to specific rules and regulations of the University."

      In other words, "Once we have sucked your money out of your pockets, we reserve the right to kick you out on your ear for any reason, or for no reason at all. In Christian love, of course. And if you don't like it, we will condemn you as "bitter" and "un-Christ-like."

      Have you ever attended a BJU Bible Conference? Five sermons per day, for five days. Most of the sermons are on similar topics. Much of the time is spent praising the wonderfulness of BJU. Saying that it is too long is not evidence that "his heart was not in the right place." You appear to be judging without knowledge, there, "Anonymous."

      Both parties made mistakes. I agree with you there. What punishment will BJU face for its mistakes? It punished this guy as harshly as it possibly could for HIS pretty puny "mistakes." I think the marketplace will punish BJU, since they will face (or accept) no other sanction. They are dying. Enrollment is shrinking rapidly. Only thirty years ago, they ran 6300 students. In my day, they were still over 4000. Now, they are at 2300.

      Be not deceived; God is not mocked. Whatever a man sows, that will he surely reap.

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  4. I am sure CNN tried to write a more glowing perspective of his side and his cause - I do agree with anon. 8:45 - tweeting complaints before a Bible conference starts seems like a poor choice and might well be reflective of his heart.

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    1. What is all of this nitpicking on tweeting?

      We all sin and fall short of the glory of God. Rom 3:23

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  5. Normally I love reading this blog. This post concerns me though because I thought this blog was supposed to be a place to heal, and talk about out experiences. Not find stories about places that are having their own troubles and try to make judgements about something we don't have all the ifnormatin about. Maybe BJU was wrong. it's entirely possible. Not sure how pointing out the errors made by others will help us who have all be hurt by BGBC.

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    1. Sorry you feel this post didn't measure up to what you feel the blog is supposed to represent. Part of the purpose of this blog is to identify ways people use their authority inappropriately. Granted, this is one side, but given the side represented (true or not) do you not see similarities in the methods used?

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    2. except that in your disclaimer (true or not) you leave a huge gap... if it's not true, there are no similarities in the methods used. Only lies. interesting.

      I no longer see this blog as a safe place to heal from the wounds inflicted by BGBC. Now it's a place for you to root around and find people or institutions to hold up as examples - whether you know the full story or not. Poor judgement call.

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  6. A strict set of rules that students are to abide by is not "legalistic." Going to college there is voluntary. These rules do not have anything to do with having the appearance of being saved, or making the school look good on the outside. It is more like the school taking on a parental role. There is a behavior code and a dress code - don't you have these at home? The people attending any university are, at best, young adults. YOUNG. If you have a young adult voluntarily continuing to inhabit your home after age 18 do you give up all rules and regulations and let them do as they please? have you seen what happens at secular colleges that DO let the students do as they please? Unless you have actually read the rule book that all BJU students are required to read and sign an agreement to abide by, you can't make a judgement as to whether they are legalistic.

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    1. Hey, I get the rule thing. That's fine - they sign a contract agreeing to it and they should abide by it . . . . .

      but what have you to say about the ABUSE coverup?

      I'm going through post after post here responding and is there not one soul who will deal with the issue of abuse?

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  7. I am a BJU grad with extensive connections to the school, and I have followed this whole situation since the Tina Anderson story first came out. I found this page while googling for the latest news stories about the school and Peterman's expulsion. There is so much that is missing from the story as it is told here. BJU was allowing a pastor with a questionable history to not only be on their board, but to teach pastoral students. They made no public response at first to hundreds and hundreds of alumni who asked the university to look into what had happened and then respond appropriately.

    Chris Peterman responded to the university by starting the DoRightBJU movement. The school responded in anger at first, then promised that they would not retaliate or punish anyone connected with it. Phelps resigned, the kids went home for Christmas, and you'd think that would be the end of the story.

    But when Christmas was over, Chris returned to campus to find that he had been put on spiritual probation for questioning authority. As part of his probation, he had to room with an RA, complete extensive Bible readings and written responses each night, have mandatory counseling sessions with the dean of men, have his FB and twitter accounts monitored all the time and constantly criticized. He even had the dean of men show up at his off campus job to talk to him.

    In return, Chris retaliated. He made videos that he knew would get him in trouble and published them. He made favorable comments on unapproved music on other people's pages, and responded favorably when people put unacceptabe things on his page. He basically dared them to expel him. They finally did, late in the semester, nine days before he would have graduated, to humiliate him as much as possible and make an example of him.

    They both did wrong. But people who point at the big pile of stuff that Chris did wrong need to also turn around and look at the huge MOUNTAIN of what the university did wrong.

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    1. or perhaps the university saw something in him that needed to be dealt with...as you clearly demonstrated in your "defense" of him just now - he did all kinds of things just to see how much trouble he could get in. Sounds like rebellion to me.

      And I'm hearing quite a different story from my extensive connections at BJU. Not saying the university did 100% right by any means, but there are appropriate ways to buck authority when it is called for. Bringing this all down on your own head on purpose is uncalled for and rebellious. It's different from just standing for the truth. It's poking a bear just to see if he'll eat you. Guess Chris proved his point huh? You break enough rules and they won't let you graduate. DUH.

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    2. What do you think the university did wrong?

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    3. grace2live - thank you so much for your comment. I appreciate hearing a little more of the story.


      Anonymous 4:41: WHO is answering about the abuse? Why is that BIG elephant being shoved under the rug?

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  8. Julie Anne, thanks for letting me just "drop in" on your blog. There's a lot of really good info here!!! I plan on spending a lot of time here reading your past entries.

    I currently go to a very good independent fundamentalist Baptist church. I was also burned once at a REALLY bad IFB. People try to say that the denomination is what makes a church good or bad, or how the church is structured, or what "network" the church belongs to. But the real key to what makes a church good or not is the attitude of the leadership. The leadership must have a humble, open heart, ready to put aside their own agenda and image in order to minister to people. Ministers have to remember that they are there to *minister*, not to build their own empire. When that attitude is set aside, stories like yours will happen in *any* church. Or Christian college, or mission board . . .

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  9. Tina Anderson was an abuse vicim yes. Christopher Peterman, not. Your blog is one of the FEW that has just lately started saying that the reason Christoper was shipped from BJU was for " standing for the truth against a sexual abuse". Until just recently in Christopher's own words, every blog and interview has said he was shipped for "WATCHING GLEE". He wrote in his own stories, submitted his OWN CNN story which was picked up- CNN did not interview him, and tv and magazine interviews that "Glee' was the reason he was shipped, not his standing for abuse victims. This is yet another of his changing stories.

    From Christopher, you have a myriad of stories, with a myriad of reasons that are forever changing, and only Christopher, if he would be completely truthful, knows why he was truly shipped. His love of media, facebook twitter and social attention will eat him alive if he is not careful.

    There are other blogs out there that do contain Christopher's own Facebook posts dissing the administration- wanting "Dr. Bob to "SHUT UP". Tweet posts that reveal less than a stellar attitude toward the University, and admit to posting lyrics of 'We The Kings" a rock band band out of Bradenton, Florida... and much MUCH more.

    Yeah, BJU may not have handled all things correctly here, but abuse toward Chrisopher? No! I am going to call you on that one. There are many other cases of spiritual abuse that you have covered well, this one, you really need to know you have not heard the whole story, you have heard one side, without corroborating facts and evidence. There are always two sides

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    1. Thanks for commenting, however, you missed the point of my blog post. You'd have to read a bit of the blog to get that context. The post was not intended to flesh out the whole story, but to highlight patterns of abuse that people use.

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    2. Julie Ann,
      you are assuming, I did not read your blog, of course I did! :) But you are taking a story that is not accurate, highlighting those 'inaccuracies' as abuse, and asking us if our creepo meter is on.

      I would love to read a blog of this type based on an 'actual' abuse case, that could really key me into things I should be aware of when dealing with spiritual abuse. Not an individuals 'perception' of his abuse, and what is being proven not to have been what he says was abuse. I hope I am making my self clear?

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    3. Ok, maybe you landed on the wrong blog. Sorry to disappoint.

      I still think you are missing the point - you are trying to convince me that I am saying everything this guy is saying is true. Nope - I'm presenting his side as was presented on CNN.com and having readers determine (based on the information he provided) if it sounds similar to the abuse patterns we saw at our church.

      While I am very careful to portray everything completely accurate pertaining to my story and experiences at our church, I cannot possibly get to the bottom of every abuse case that comes along in the news.

      Julie Anne (with an E)

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    4. Just a little back story on me before I put my oar in.

      I went to BJU for 2 years. I did however leave after 2 years after I found out what the school was really like. I only ever got 20 demerits my whole 2 years, some semesters I had none. I was the model student, good grades and good attitude.

      I saw the school expel many student just because they didn't like them, it could be for may reasons, here are a few examples
      #1 A friend of mine was put on spiritual probation for trying to turn in his hall leader for a dress code violation, the hall leader reported my friend as "most likely not saved" with in 24 hours. See at BJU questioning those in authority means you are more than likely not saved at all. All those who actually went to BJU know this to be the truth.
      #2 Two black friends of mine were expelled on trumped up charges after months of shadowing and harassment by BJU. Let me clarify. See BJU has no trouble with you if your black and from Africa, or black and from a northern family who adopted you, (other than the general blanket racist attitude) but if you are black, from GREENVILLE? Might as well just pack your bags. I saw this first hand with my own eyes, one of the friends was put in a Hall leaders room half way through his first semester and given demerits every day till they could trump up an expulsion, for things I know for a fact the hall leader let many of the other students slide on.
      #3 I knew students who where targeted for expulsion, not because they broke the rules, but because they "looked wrong" Too "sexual" as a girl? ( not talking about breaking rules, or having sex, or doing anything wrong other than being "sexual" Strange woman doctrine any one?) Targeted for expulsion. Any trace of critical thinking AT ALL? Targeted for expulsion. If this happen to you you where followed by people on and off campus, accused of horrible things you didn't do over and over and over in closed door meetings (some lasting hours on end) till you "cracked" and admitted to doing something wrong they could kick you out for. And if you hadn't done anything AT ALL? Still gone, they just wrote you up for “insubordination” and called it good.
      #4 One of worst parts about this is the students who where almost untouchable. Yep, students with parents on the board or grandparents on the board, or admin. I knew of several who bragged to me about things they did, and the fact they where not kicked out. Going to Hooters? 25 demerits. Mixed gender party R rated movie? HA 50 Demerits.
      To finish up. I don't care about Peterman, never have. See it doesn't matter what he did. It doesn't matter if he is a liar, a bitter back biter, a fool and so much else. Why? because BJU has done this to HUNDREDS over the years. I know this as a FACT having seen it with my own eyes and heard it with my own ears. I have seen BJU ADMIN lie to my face, lie. to. my. face. And they knew the truth. They lied for the reason of "saving face". They have lied to me, and to friends of mine and to thousands of others throughout the years. See, it doesn't matter about the Grand Dragon of the Alabama KKK who was on the founding board!(Bib Graves) It doesn't matter that BJU 3rd lied on Larry King. (I ask ANYONE that says he did not to watch the interview, then look up BJU's fight all the way to the high court to prevent inter-racial dating)

      All this is in the past. You know what does matter? The fact that they set them selves up as a moral authority and they engage in a systematic and well planned and deeply ingrained method of lies and manipulation to expel students who never broke the rules. They have for years, they still do. See I think Peeterman and was an idiot for breaking the rules he DID break. But I also suspect that he would have been kicked out no matter what, because that's how BJU does thing folks, they always have, they always will as long as we keep sending our kids to that school.

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    5. The author of this blog has stated that this is not blog is not about BJU or Christopher Peterman but to "highlight patterns of abuse that people use", is that not correct Julie Anne? So I think that rule needs to be applied to all posters.

      Again, BJU is NOT a church, does not even have a church. BJU is an Educational Institution, and as an alumni who went there, graduated from there, has had many relatives who went there and still has relatives attending there now, I have not been privy to the same issues that you have seen. Not even close to seeing what you have seen. Yes I have seen kids shipped, have had roommates shipped 2 times, but for breaking the rules. In fact, while I was attending the University, the presidents own son was shipped from the school, so that being said, the Presidents OWN kids were not untouchable! BJU is not perfect, it has it's faults. It is a University run by men.

      I hardly think they hold themselves up as a 'moral authority' 'engaged in an ingrained method of lies and manipulation....'that is quite an accusation, based on a personal opinion.

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    6. Anonymous 7:22 - See my comments below regarding BJU and Church... You do know BJU does hold itself up as a moral authority dictating to those around how to live and how to worship. If you really were there when IV was shipped, you also do know that administrators kids, deans kids, and department chair's kids WERE/ARE treated differently and did/do get away with a lot! I have to admit, there were times that being a faculty kid did have its benefits. (There were also times that being a faculty kid didn't.) The University IS run my fallible men. The problem is, that if their fallibility is pointed out in any way, there are major, negative repercussions. And they will not admit being wrong nor will they apologize for anything they have done. (They would rather lie on Lary King Live than tell the truth!)

      There are definitely those that are favored and those who are targeted.

      And this is not based on personal opinion. It is based on observable, empirical fact.

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    7. Hey it's me again, yes Anonymous 7:22 they do hold themsleves up as a moral and spirtual authority. The thing is, you say you never saw any such abuse of power while you where there, THAT IS THE POINT! Do you you realy think they would WANT you to know? They know how wrong they are, they have the Bible staring them in the face every day telling them they are wrong. They don't go anouncing it in chapple. They dont send it out in student emails. Why do you think they have a hall leader with every student they kick out from the time it happens till they leave the grounds? In the old days this worked great, kick out a student with out just cause, shadow them till they leave the grounds. Hey presto, student gone, lie as too why the student was kicked out (yes they do, I have seen it with my own eyes and heard it with my own ears) and back in the day this was the end of it, then a little thing happend called cell phones, and contact lists, and face book, see you trump up charges against student you don't just cut them off from all their friends any more, with this new tech they can TALK and they do, and things begin to change, and enrolment drops, and BJU is like a rat when the lights come on, darting this way and that, squeeling in fear and trying to find a dark place to hide what it has been doing all these years. I call it theft, outright theft. They mark some students for expulsion, then wait till they rack up a hefty bill all year, then boot them at the end of the semester. I have seen it OVER AND AOVER AND OVER. But you, you never saw any such things, and I don't doubt that that is the case, because if you don't realy care about people, if you don't stay in contact with those expeled by BJU and get THEIR story? Whellll SHOOOOT (Slim Pickens voice) BJU can do no wrong, all expulsions are warented, Admin never lies and BJU realy is the last true Christain School on earth. Huurray!

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    8. I also find it telling that Anon 7:22 doesn't try to say all the instances I stated are not true, he just does't think they hold themselves as a moral authority, see he whent there, he knows (if he hasn't forgotten haveing gone there so long ago) that BJU does these kind of things, all the people I knew there knew these things went on, you would have to be very unconcerned about the fates of others to NOT know, (see my above comment)

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    9. Also, MitigationElf, good to get someone else here with out the rose tinted glasses on. I know what I am saying is true because I lived it, and you know it't true because you lived it. And nearly all students who went to BJU know it even if they try to cram it deep down inside and forget it ever went on. It was sanctiond, systematic and targeted and still is.

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    10. Hey you two- Anon. 7:22 here-minus rose tinted glasses, don't even own a pair. I was there when Bobby the 4th was there, and I have already said I lived in two rooms where kids got shipped. So yes I saw people get shipped for BREAKING rules- nothing more sinister. I had some friends who were faculty kids, and saw NO extra extended privileges to them. So I will not sit and say that I did, to appease anyone. I did not see anyone shadowed and harassed to the point of being within days of graduation and being shipped and sent home. SO, I won't say that I did, to appease anyone. My junior year, I briefly dated a guy, who had an off campus job, and got caught drinking. It was well known that we were dating. I was not even questioned about it. I did not know what he had done, he got in trouble and got shipped. So, I will NOT that people get shipped without just cause as I have not witnessed that.

      What you are saying may have happened to you. That is ONE side of the story. My experience is the OTHER SIDE of the story. I do find it interesting that in your telling of your college experience, you have to resort to words of duplicity, darkness, abusiveness, fear tactics and manipulation on the universities part. Are you SURE, ABSOLUTELY POSITIVE, we are talking about Bob Jones University? ;) I am not a BJU lover by any means, got a great education, but my time with them is done. I have moved on, got a great job, done finito. I am just stating that I, my spouse, my sisters and brother in laws, nieces and nephews now in attendance NEVER saw, and are not seeing this abusive side you are portraying. WE saw, and the see, kids who rock the boat and get THEMSELVES sent home. This only my own very humble experience!

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    11. WOW See, I am going to make a prediction here, I'm going to say you are white? HHmmm? And More than likely came from a Christian School, Hmmmmm? (correct me if I'm wrong on any of this PLEASE) See you where one of "the chosen ones" whether you know it or not, at the very least you where in the middle of the herd, but goodness, if you stand out, EVEN A LITTLE, BOOM they are on you. You just keep making my point for me. If they targeted EVERY student they would have none, hey, I was never targeted. I went through 2 years with 20 demerits all told. I worked at a job however that I had acsess to much info that was ment never to see the light of day, but people who where suposed to keep silent (admin, staff, student leaders)some times like to brag, and yuck it up about the students they just kicked out. I also saw paperwork, forms and such that where suposed to have been burned, but SOMEONE was lasy, and did not do their job and the paperwork came by where I work. Very revealing, whish I would have saved it, but as a dorm student I had no safe place to hide it.

      Once agian here is my point. You and acording to you NO ONE YOU KNOW, (although I would love to know how you called them all last night and questiond them about things they saw years ago, and most likely didn't even care enough about to remember) EVER saw such horrible thigs, for shame! Because as everyone knows, "If I didn't see it it didn't happen. LALALALALAL" (Covers ears and closes eyes) I know how it is, you're all caught up with school, and dating and campus activities, and students just keep vanishing, bloop, gone! Hey Presto! Vanished. You hear rumers about WHY they where kicked out, (rumers I know for a fact are spread intentionaly by admin and student leaders in some cases) And all this was so very long ago, I doubt you would remember things you didn't care about even if you did see them, yep all the people you knew who where kicked out broke the rules and DESERVED it. (SIGH) Did you ever talk to them? Get their side of the story? Other than your boyfriend did you have any contact with people who where kicked out after they where kicked out? And here is the thing, I firmly beleave that nearly 80% of all students kicked out of BJU DID break the rules, and DESERVED to be Kicked out! It is the 20% that are culled from the herd like sick cattle because they don't march in tune (NOT break any rules AT ALL and still get kicked out because you tried to report your hall leader? Get expeled for "atitude problums" wich means you see something wrong and speek up?)

      My guess, and once agian correct me if I'm wrong here, you kept your head down, didn't speek up if you saw any kind of wrong done by authority and whent about your merry way, hey, not knocking it, thousands of BJU students have a great time there, I did up till I had my eyes opend to what was going on, and I was SHOCKED at the time "BJU? Do these kinds of things? NO, NO won't beleave it!" Then I saw more, and heard more and was even more deeply shocked.

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    12. Have you ever read Lord of the Rings? The little hobbits walk around all happy lalala, till they slip on the ring BOOM! The eye of sauron zooms in, orcs and Nasgul run screaming to their location bent on destruction. Meanwhile the hobbit next to them with out the ring on is all like "whats wrong? I feel nothing" It is kind of like that. A tactic offten used by those who defend BJU is the straw man, see they take what they deem to be the weakest part of your argument and try to hold it up as your WHOLE argument. (sigh) It isn't about the majority experiance at BJU. It isn't about what YOU went through or saw or did. It isn't even about the individual instances ( I have already stated I think Chris Peeterman is a idiot for breaking the rules he did break, GLEE, Realy dude?) iT IS THE FACT that this kind of thing goes on and has for years. It may only happen to about 15 -20 students a year. (based on what I know this seems about right) Once again, IT IS NOT ABOUT HOW MANY! OR WHO! It is about the fact that they do it AT ALL! And any "christian" who is in fact a Christian should be angery! And not suport a place that does this, with money or students or words.

      See heres the thing, here is what is realy going on, many of those who go on and on about how "they never saw it happen, they never had it happen to them, THEY never knew some one it happend too" See I think many of them did, it's just that they think it WAS justified! THey see absolutley NOTHING wrong with expeling students who never broke the rules based on atitude. "Well They "rocked the boat' Sniff, they SHOULD get kicked out for questioning authority, sniff, good riddance to bad rubish, sniff" They don't see any thing wrong with it at all. THEY are safe, THEY would NEVER rock the boat EVER. (wich tells you a lot about them right there)

      In fact most of those at BJU are like that, shoot, 4 of my room mates over the years where like that. Hard core BJU, They said things like, "so Dr. Bob Sr. Preached to 1,000's of KKK in Texas and even said he "had no problum with their group" and "they seemed like upstanding Christians to him"? well, I'm sure he had his "reasons" hehe.

      Or "those kids where nothing but trouble, did you see the way they tried to turn in a HALLLEADER! for shame! Kick 'em out!"

      Or, "That girl was a "loose woman, you could tell by the way she "carried herself" we don't need people like THAT at BJU" (yes, being to friendly and atractive at BJU can get you expeled as a girl, my sister was turned in multiple times by students not for breaking the rules, but for nebulus things such as "acting to friedly to guys" (which REALY meant that there where alot of girls who where very upset by her good looks and over all charm) It broke her heart and she strugled for years there because of it.)

      Let me re-state, MANY of those who defend the school and say "they did nothing worg while I was there" realy beleave it, the this is they don't think any of these things ARE wrong, they are all in, BJU 100%.

      One is reminded of history when you see people like this.

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    13. Now I am just laughing, and I mean HOLLERING. BOY, you have me pegged. Right to a tee. Keep going with the assumptions. You may just get me figured out yet.

      I really have no response, and hesitated in even responding to this as I hate to hinder, or subtract from this 'dramatic' image that you have conjured up about me!

      Now I am going on my merry 'lalala' way to enjoy my day. And I certainly hope you do too.

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    14. Still havn't tried to refute one single thing I've said, just keep saying you "never saw it happen" Why?

      Because you know or at least you suspect it did. And No, I'll say it right now, you don't know what your long list of relations saw or heard or did at BJU, you claim to, wich is a laugh, ok, sure you call up your nephew and say "so see any abuse today at BJU? No? Ok cool I'll call your sister next." Do you realy think we are that stupid?

      Also very telling that you won't say that if BJU does these things they are wrong, very telling.

      And notice how you won't say I'm wrong about your being a white, christian schooled person who never speaks up against authority (or didn't while at BJU.)

      Hint around with sarcastic remarks that I am wrong, with out actualy SAYING I am wrong. Good job, no one is fooled.

      For this to NOT be the case you must be one of the 1% of students who where going to BJU at the time you stated you went who WHERE NOT in that demographic. VERY unlikely.

      And does it realy matter if your aren't? No, because even if you are a public schooled African American from Greenville SC (whos husband, and a whole LIST of other relations ALSO went to BJU, (THAT is realy likely ) you are sure ACTING like a privleged rich white kid who has never been persicuted in your life because you always kept your head down and never spoke up against those who do wrong.

      By refusing to come out and speak against things that are wrong you are part of them, joined at the hip, hand in hand.

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    15. And whats so dramatic about a white kid who knuckels under and never speaks out, who is so self absorbed as a student that they don't know (or aparently care) about what goes on around them? Shoot, thats not "dramatic" at all sounds more luke warm to me.

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    16. Done with you. Your retorts are idiotic. I don't participate in this kind of a conversation, and don't feel the need to answer your asinine questions. Bully much?

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    17. No, do you? The fact is that you don't address any thing I have stated, all you can say is that you personaly never had any such thing happen to you, awsome! Good for you! Does that change what is going on at BJU? No! As for me being a bully, thats rich. Call me names all you like, what I have said stands. You just don't like being called out on statments you know are not true (refering to your statement that nearly your whole family went to BJU and NONE of them EVER saw any such thing! (it is literaly imposible for you to know wha they saw and heard) tisk tisk, shame on you for telling such lies! 'Are you sure you whent to BJU?" BJU would NEVER!


      So sad. But tipical. Hit to close to the truth and people won't talk to you any more. (sigh) Well good luck with that. I'm done.

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  10. No, Julie Anne with an "E", somebody put your blog on the Do Right Facebook page so I had to check you out. Didn't land here by mistake.

    Christopher wrote an 'I report' story and filed it with CNN and encouraged his friends to watch and support it, so it was picked up and expanded upon.

    I am not trying to convince you of anything merely suggesting that this is a poor case of abuse patterns in 'churches' as BJU is not a church but an Educational Institution. They don't even have a chuch on campus. I know this as I am a former alumni.

    I like what you stand for on your blog. I admire your efforts and support them wholeheartedly. I just hate to see you use this particular case as an example as it does not fall under 'church' abuse.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Again, based on what was *presented* in the article, it looks, smells, and feels like abuse to me. We'll have to agree to disagree, but thanks for your comments.

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    2. Thank you anonymous 8:31!

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    3. Having been born on the campus of BJU, I lived ON the campus behind the iron gates for 23 years and went through the entire Bob Jones educational system - birth through BS. I experienced and observed the abuse - spiritual and otherwise - that the school imparts to faculty, staff, and students alike. I am extremely familiar with the Christopher Peterman situation and want to hop in here.

      While BJU is not a church, they do hold Sunday morning church on their campus every Sunday. It is required of all faculty, staff, and dorm students to be in attendance at this church service. (There have been some changes to that requirement recently.)

      BJU tries to walk a very thin line taking upon its self the role assigned to a church when it is convenient for them, then hopping over to the other side of that line when it is not.

      "The bob" - as BJU is known - also dictates to churches in their local community how to worship and what to preach. If a church follows their own beliefs of how God is leading them, BJU will shun the church and put them "off limits." While the long list of "off limits" churches has recently been removed from the rule book, there is still a long list of types of worship in which faculty, staff, and students are not permitted to participate without repercussions. Even the church located directly across the road from the front gate of the campus is "off limits" because of their Southern Baptist affiliation.

      Anonymous 8:31 - the "former alumni" (are you no longer an alumnus?) - will have to admit to the glaring parallels and similarities between the BGBS and BJU tactics. And if they don't think the Christopher Peterman incident is a typical situation at the bob, they were not there for very long.

      Julie Anne, the parallels you drew in your blog post are spot-on. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise. You are shining the light of truth on the IFB movement and the deceivers who are leading the movement don't like it!

      I saw the news piece about the lawsuit in a BJU survivors online group. I immediately wondered if the BGBC pastor had gone to BJU. The parallels between what I have read about the church and pastor from the BGBC website and BJU tactics and philosophy are scary. It is almost as if there is a direct, umbilical connection between the BGBC and BJU.

      Stay strong Julie Anne! Continue to exercise your first amendment rights! You and those recovering from being in the BGBC environment are definitely in my prayers!

      Delete
    4. Thank you, MitigationElf. Definitely appreciate the prayers!

      Delete
  11. Comment left on KATU news:

    "Perhaps this guy needs to look into his litigious and mean spirited heart and find the grace to immediately drop the lawsuit and beg forgiveness. Or, he could just quit his outfit and go to carnival barking or selling pencils on a street corner, either of which might be less inflammatory to the sensibilities of the community."

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  12. It should not be surprising at all that BJU has engaged in abusive and intimidating behavior. If you've been in these very conservative IFB circles (as I have) then you know this is a very common way of doing things.

    If you ever question authority or ask the wrong questions then they start becoming very suspicious of you, and you get on a list for the other elders and leaders to start watching out for. They start looking at you and treating you as if you're an outsider. This is very tough to deal with and especially if you are younger. They may call you in for very intimidating questioning trying to entrap or get you to admit there is something wrong with you.

    All too often all of this pressure gets you to start reacting and doing things out of anger that you have been treated this way. And if and when you ever react then they feel they've got you. They point everyone to your reaction and say "see we knew there was something wrong with them the whole time." They send a very clear message to everyone that they are not be questioned, and if they are there will be consequences.

    This is how they maintain control. This is not isolated to BJU or just IFB churches. It is everywhere in probably over a thousand churches in the U.S. alone across all denominations and belief systems.

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  13. I have followed Chris Peterman's story from way before I knew his name. I am a former BJ student, having spent two years in their high school way back years ago. When the FB page, Do Right BJU, was first put up, I, along with many other former students and alumni, predicted that the person who put it up (it turned out to be Chris) would be expelled.

    When the school announced they would not punish anyone who spoke out, some folks thought that meant they were changing. :-) I knew better. They have never changed.

    While Chris' expulsion was dismaying, it wasn't surprising to me.

    The folks who comment that "he should have known the rules," or "he asked for it" either by his conduct or by choosing to go there in the first place just are ignorant of the facts.

    Chris was targeted, stalked, and only allowed to stay as long as he did so a school desperate for money could collect the tuition for that last semester. His fate had been decided months earlier. This is how they do things at BJU.

    This is the pattern in these authoritarian religious institutions, schools, churches, makes no difference.

    The solution, folks, is to leave. Or never go.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. If we can just spread the word I think many will stop going, money is the real driving force behind BJU. (private jet anyone? Vacation in the south of France anyone? While your teachers are some of the lowest paid in the USA? Even by Christian school standards?) And no students = no money = BJU changes, the fact they go on and on about never changing makes me laugh, I mean REALY? They have always changed the rules when enrolement drops, "stay open at all costs, even if we have to lie on Larry King Live in order to fool people (can you tell I still am ASTOUNDED at the gall of BJ 3rd? I Know the background, the long history, the court case all the way to the high court, and BJ 3 says it was never a morral issue for them? On live tv? Good GREIF! They wrote whole little BOOKS about how it was a moral issue, and how race mixing was tied to the ANTICHRIST!) What on earth!?! When will people wake up and not go to this school or send their kids there?

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  14. No, do you? The fact is that you don't address any thing I have stated, all you can say is that you personaly never had any such thing happen to you, awsome! Good for you! Does that change what is going on at BJU? No! As for me being a bully, thats rich. Call me names all you like, what I have said stands. You just don't like being called out on statments you know are not true (refering to your statement that nearly your whole family went to BJU and NONE of them EVER saw any such thing! (it is literaly imposible for you to know wha they saw and heard) tisk tisk, shame on you for telling such lies! 'Are you sure you whent to BJU?" BJU would NEVER!


    So sad. But tipical. Hit to close to the truth and people won't talk to you any more. (sigh) Well good luck with that. I'm done.

    ReplyDelete
  15. So Basically this is turning into a hatefest of the conservative Christian and IFB churches/universities? Sorry to see it.

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  16. Nate? No, no hate, but I am reading a lot of truth on here, to some people they look the same I guess.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And yet when I tell the truth...it's just disregarded. Guess I'm done here. Despite being a BGBC exiter.

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    2. A hate fest would be people saying "I hate that school", or "I hate that church" Instead people are mearly posting a list of the abuses these places have comited and stand unrepentant about.It is not hate it's light, light shined on darkness. Sadly many will see it as hate, I for one do not. And does not God hate sin? Make no mistake, what these places are doing is a sin. Not a "mistake" not a "accident" but a well planned, thought out, deeply ingrained method of sin. The things they do fly in the face of of God and the Bible, and true Christians should call them out on it, publicly if the sin is public, which as an institution it is.

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  17. Update 5/13/12: Hey all, this is support blog; however, this post seems to have sparked a bit of a debate. You are welcome to continue the dialogue. I don't have time to participate :)

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  18. If someone is not happy with the church they fellowship in, why not just walk away? Find a fellowship you enjoy attending. Praying for the leadership, and congregation, puts it into God's hands, and will do more good, than blogging, talking about them. We are warned of sewing discord among the bretheren.

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    1. We are alos warned about false teachers...I think that is the verse you where looking for, certainly the more apropriat verse. There are many people in power at Churches and Schools that show no fruit, and from what I can tell are not part of the bretheren at all. Of course only God knows their hearts, but someone who shows no fruit at all, in fact shows negative fruit, well...

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  19. The Christopher Peterman story is an excellent example of someone who saw leadership making mistakes and when he wasn't taken as seriously as he felt it deserved, he decided to rebel. Through rebellion, he gained the attention he wanted. Good for him - though now he has a whole semester of classes to finish, I'm grateful for people like him. And I hope his parents are proud of him. They raised a son with a conscience. In fact, if BJU were smart, they'd be taking credit for sending a man into the world who cares.

    What this story shows it that Christopher felt uncomfortable inside. That's the Holy Spirit moving. Because he didn't have a mentor or a leader to help direct it in a way that wouldn't be as detrimental to his college degree, he reacted in the only way he knew how. But he reacted! If more of us should listen when the Holy Spirit makes us uncomfortable, what a place this world would be.

    ReplyDelete

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