Monday, May 28, 2012

Media Inaccuracies: Setting the Record Straight

There have been some inaccuracies in news stories around the internet and I want to set them straight.  This post will be updated if I see more inaccuracies:

  • I am not single.  I am married and have been married to the same man since 1985.  We are still married and living under the same roof, all of our children are ours, no prior husbands, no step-children or children outside our marriage. 

  • As soon as we left BGBC,  we did spent a couple months looking for a new church before settling in a new church.  We loved that new church, but had to leave due to a job change.  Since moving to our new location, we have attended the same church for nearly a year.  At no point have we not gone to church as has been reported.

  • The ACLU has not taken my case, although they have commented on the case in various reports.  My attorney is Linda Williams. 

  • I never reported to anyone that Chuck O'Neal was a sexual abuser.  I do not believe that to be an accurate statement and haven't had any reason to question that he might be a sexual abuser.  Any reports you may have read that say otherwise are simply not true.  

  • I never stated that elders or elders wives looked through the closets of women from church to approve their clothing.  That statement was most likely lifted from the comments section of my blog and was incorrectly attributed to me.  I had never heard of that "practice" before reading the comment.  Perhaps that was done before my time, I don't know.  But I was not aware of that happening during our time there.

  • This part of the MSNBC article is incorrect:  "Court filings state that another defendant, Meaghan Varela, allegedly made accusations of child abuse against the pastor, which led to a December 2008 visit from the Oregon Department of Human Services. The social worker informed O'Neal's daughter that someone also reported that pornography was being distributed to children at church. "The allegations of child abuse filed by Meaghan Varela were extremely painful to my family," O'Neal's daughter said in a statement."         

    Julie Anne's comment:  This is ridiculous.  DHS never discloses who files reports and they certainly do not report what was said.  This is pure speculation on the part of O'Neal's daughter.  This same speculation was reported by Chuck O'Neal in his press release here:  "Just after the release of the before mentioned staff member, in Dec. of 2008, a member of this group called the police and the DHS to deliver a false report accusing Pastor O’Neal of physically abusing his own children and allowing pornography to be distributed to adolescents in the church.".   It is impossible for him to verify this with DHS (as they will not release it to him).  I find it irresponsible for MSNBC to report such information as surely they know that DHS holds in strict confidence the identity of anyone who reports a suspected abuse situation. 
  • The MSNBC article mentioned only one child who was sexually abused.  Chuck O'Neal's own court declaration mentioned more than one child when he used the word "siblings" twice.   Additionally, the sex offender's mother also used the word "siblings" to identify the sexual abuse victims.  There was clearly more than one child abused.  Who is minimizing this story to the press?  Also, the MSNBC article stated "inappropriate touch" by the sexual offender.  This is also not true.  He was charged with rape and other counts of sexual misconduct.  Why is this crime being minimized to the media when court records show otherwise? 




14 comments:

  1. Julie Anne,

    Your correction is what I understood from reading your blog and the other materials about the case. You should not be held to account for false statements made by O'Neal or his daughter, or anyone else, including those who comment on the blog. The blog is a open forum with minimal screening to prevent bad language, porn, and the like, and not to keep people from expressing their opinion and sharing what they may believe to be true.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I just found this blog, http://suspiciousberean.blogspot.com/2010/05/american-christians-is-your-pastor.html.

    There is a comment that mentions your former Pastor's control that was dated 2 years ago.

    You don't need to post my comment, but I just thought to show that others noticed his control tactics and blogged about it before you made your reviews of him on Google.

    Ed Chapman

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ed - My original review was actually posted before the comments you linked above. However, those specific comments you are referring to are actually part of the original lawsuit against 2 of defendants. One of those defendants was dismissed from the lawsuit by Chuck O'Neal right before the hearing on May 21.

      Interesting that you found those comments. Chuck or someone from the church would have had to do a Google search to find those comments.

      Delete
    2. I find it interesting that he was able to identify who "anonymous" was in those postings. How did he do that? Privacy is why people post as "anonymous". Is there a reason that you know of that one defendant was dismissed from the lawsuit, or is that information not available yet? I guess Chuck couldn't prove that he's not a wolf?

      Delete
    3. Ok, first, Ed, whew - I wasn't sure if you were telling me to not post the comment or what, and took the risk hoping you would quickly contact me if you wanted it deleted. I thought you brought up an important point because not much has been mentioned about the aspects of the case and how ridiculous they are.

      We have no idea how he came to the conclusion that the others named in the lawsuit are responsible for those comments. They are posted as "anonymous". They are not accepting responsibility for those comments. We weren't given a reason why the one young man was dropped. We can only speculate. A few phrases of mine were also removed from the lawsuit. I have to look them up, but I know that one of the phrases was "creepy". Evidently Chuck's attorney has decided that it's okay for us to call him creepy.

      I'm pretty sure the word "wolf" is still a part of the lawsuit. I find that interesting when looking at the church's website where you can see that word used freely by his own words.

      Delete
    4. Oh I was fine with you posting my comment. I just wasn't sure if my comment merited posting, and left that decision to you. Sounds to me that Chuck and his worker bee's stalk the Internet for Chuck's name to find comments, and to do, as you say in military terms, Damage Control. But the fire is still burning for him. His damage control is the threat to "repent", or else suffer the wrath of God. What nerve of him.

      Delete
    5. I'm glad you mentioned it. It clearly shows the preoccupation with damage control and image. Those are key themes in spiritual abuse. You nailed it!

      Delete
  3. Hey Julie Anne,
    THANK YOU for setting any example of integrity for all bloggers in your post "Setting the Record Straight." Truth is rare online; while you could have simply let the wrong information go without comment, and possibly gain more attention and advocates for your "cause," you didn't, but instead spoke truth into the situation. Way to go! Ken

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ken - this has always been about the truth for me. Thanks for your support!

      Delete
  4. The whole sexual abuse thing is just plain weird. My understanding is that it did not even make it into the verbiage of the lawsuit, but yet pastor Chuck showcases it in the press release. And the rants about Julie Anne's "war on God." Can't wait for his next public statement.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Me,too. I admit it, I laughed when I read the press release because it was so long. Press releases are normally a paragraph or 2 and this would have been probably more than 10 pages if you printed it out. Who would publish that?

      So because he knew he couldn't rely on his buddies at Grace Community to back up the lawsuit (as he previously suggested), he needed pages and pages of notes from dead biblical scholars to justify that he did what the Bible told him not to do - file a lawsuit against a Christian.

      Delete
  5. Attention: For immediate release it is now OK to call Mr.O'Neal creepy. I hope everyone out there in blogger land adds creepy to their list of pastor approved adjectives. LOL

    This is getting pretty bizarre, down right embarrassing for that church. I really kind of feel sorry for them, they are paying the price in national humiliation for incompetent, mean spirited,immature and vindictive leadership.

    I really admire you Mrs. Smith. I pray that God some day gives me a wife like you. Your courage and integerity is what is required of all believers if we are ever going to take back the church from the clear trend of abusive leadership, financial secrecy (and down right $$$ corruption in some cases). Many churches are run like a family business. That is unscriptural from the word GO.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The sad thing about this is the whole world is watching - people of all religions and people of no religion and they can plainly see it, yet those trapped firmly believe they are being persecuted in this war and they are helping God out by suing me.

      Delete
  6. Well they need to learn better tactics in damage control. A church suing a former member is going to be hot news in todays anti-religion media. This will be a burr under their saddle for a long time. Their efforts to silence you in actuality just gave you a worldwide bullhorn.

    ReplyDelete

Please refrain from using "Anonymous" as your user ID. Instead, click on Name/URL. In the "name" field, type your pseudonym, ie, Fred Flinstone.

You may leave the URL field blank. Thank you for commenting!

I reserve the right to remove or not publish disruptive and/or rude comments.

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.