This post looks at how Q Anon is a serious threat to blogging as it undermines credibility. This blog condemns and rebukes Q Anon. And this blog will not use a Q Anon believer as a source. This blog is also calling on the blogging community to rebuke and condemn the Q Anon conspiracy theory.
“Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.”
Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.
Psalm 37:4 NIV
Front page of the Los Angeles Times on January 18, 1990.
When I was growing up in California in the 1980’s there was one item that was always in the news. I remember hearing about it on the radio in the car going to elementary school. I didn’t understand it because it seemed complicated and when you are young many adult topics fail to capture interest. It had to do with a preschool in Southern California that was the center of attention for child sex abuse. The McMartin Preschool in Manhattan Beach, California became the center of the dark topic of child sex abuse. Peggy McMartin Buckey, her son Ray Buckey and her mother Virginia McMartin were indicted in 1984 on 115 count of child molestation. That had blossomed to 208 counts involving 41 children, and the the case was whittled down to 65 counts of molestation and conspiracy against Buckey and her son. The case was the result of the Satanic Panic and there were claims of sex abuse in tunnels and hidden rooms and also Satanic activity with ritualistic sacrifice. Peggy McMartin Bucky denied repeatedly on the stand that she sexually abused a person. The McMartin preschool case became the longest and most expensive trail in United States history and when it came to an end, lasted almost eight years. I was a freshmen in high school in January of 1990 when Peggy McMartin Bucky was acquitted and Raymond Bucky was cleared of 52 of 65 counts. He was later tried again and later cleared a couple of months later. The trial changed how child sex abuse cases are handled, and the situation revealed what happens when hysteria takes hold. For the McMartin’s the protracted trial harmed their life. Virginia lost the school, income, and when her livelihood stripped away also her well being. The McMartin Preschool case stands as a bold warning as to what happens when false allegations drive a narrative and there is no factual based evidence and hysteria takes over. After the trial the McMartins wanted to live in privacy after their public fame. The preschool was later torn down and when doing so no evidence of underground tunnels or rooms were ever found. In the view of this blog the McMartin Preschool is the most egregious result of the Satanic Panic that happened in the 1970’s and 1980’s.
What is the Q Anon Theory?
There is another panic or conspiracy theory that is happening today which is equally as dark and troubling. Q Anon grew out of Pizzagate here in the Washington, D.C. area. An evangelical who believed that Hillary Clinton ran a pedophile ring out of a D.C. pizza parlor drove up from North Carolina and fired a weapon into the pizza parlor back in 2016. Q Anon grew out of the dark fringes of the internet. The claim is that there is a deep state cabal fighting pedophilia. Q is a person who works in the intelligence community and has a Top Secret security clearance who gives hints to his followers on the war against pedophilia. The Q Anon cult believes that Hillary Clinton is going to be arrested and that Donald Trump will save the day and be the hero. Q Anon has infected the Republican Party with a number of candidates running for office. And the Q Anon theory has been encouraged by Donald Trump who has refused to condemn it. The FBI and those who work terrorism issues in the United States government have pointed out the the Q Anon theory has led to violence, and can lead to terrorism.
The Q Anon Theory Undermines Blogging and Calls It into Question
In November of 2019 I attended Julie Roy’s Restore Chicago. I wrote about attending in the following post, “Before Julie Roys Restore Conference An Explanation as to Why Evangelicalism Can Not Be Reformed.” I attended because I wrote heavily about the Harvest Bible Chapel scandal. While in Elgin, I met a number of people and got to connect names with faces and Twitter accounts. Getting to meet so many people was encouraging and good. After the conference one of the many people I met did something on Twitter that baffled me. This person started to Tweet about following Q, and then in their Twitter profile they placed a WWG1WGA. I was curious and baffled about it. Later on I realized what the Q Anon conspiracy theory was about and it troubled me. But around the time this was happening I noticed other people in the evangelical community start to embrace Q Anon. People who comment at survivor’s blogs also began to talk about Q Anon on Twitter of other forms of social media. It started to bother me.
What I eventually did is back away from a few people who were into the Q Anon theory. I stopped following and ignored them and went a separate path. In time I realized that the Q Anon theory deeply undermined blogging. Are these people actually against sex abuse? Or are they in a conspiracy theory and thus attracted to a blog that writes about it from time to time? For me it became a major issue and it troubled me deeply especially as incidents of violence started to be documented. Not only does Q Anon show how bankrupt evangelical theology is, especially with many evangelicals embracing it but it leaves me to wonder for some of these people what is truth? What is fact? One of the Q Anon believers from the Harvest Bible Chapel community wanted to share some information on the Paxton Singer situation with me. I became confused and wondered to myself does this person have actual information that I can use? Or because of what Q Anon believes about pedophilia and more is that influencing their thinking? I honestly did not know. I decided not to respond to the person and let them be. But those who embrace this batshit crazy conspiracy theory they do great harm and undermine the actual allegations of sexual abuse that do exist.
The EFCA and Sex Abuse
Speaking of facts let me state my thoughts on sex abuse and the EFCA. Over the last few years I have been told of a couple of situations about sex abuse in the EFCA. When I tried to press for more details or information the people I interacted with felt nervous about sharing more. So with my hands tied I couldn’t proceed forward. People have contacted me about a lot of things over the past few years. And people email articles or information that is a tip off. And while the EFCA is complicated what people have approached me about is not sex abuse. This blog is one that is driven by the facts. While the Southern Baptists are a separate entity who do have that problem as of this writing I can’t say that there is a sex abuse problem in the EFCA. The evidence right now is not there. I will keep an open mind going forward but in light of what I wrote about with the McMartin preschool above however, I am not going to keep pursuing something when the evidence is not there to support the claims. Now if people approach me about sex abuse situation in an EFCA church in Florida, and then I hear about one in Arizona, and then another in Texas and a pattern starts to emerge then my opinion will change. But as we are talking about conspiracies and sex abuse and I wanted to state my thoughts on this topic as I work the issue here.
This Blog Will Not Use a Q Anon Conspiracy Theorist as a Source
This blog wants to let people know. If you believe in Q Anon this blog will not use you as a source. Many organizations from the Washington Post to the CIA vet and look at sources to make sure they are not being misled. I also vet sources and go on a case by case basis. There are people that struggle with mental illness. There are people who try and throw a blog off. I have had to deal with both in the history of this blog. But for me a Q Anon conspiracy theorist raises a lot of concerns about credibility, mental health and stability. And this blog is not going to write a post for the sake of writing. A good source is everything in these situations and a bad source leads to trouble. It could also open the door to risk which I monitor as well. But if you are into Q Anon don’t bother to contact me as I will have questions as well.
If Other Bloggers Do Not Call Out the Q Anon Theory Then They are Part of the Problem
Its time for other bloggers to call out conspiracy theories like Q Anon and to condemn them. I know Warren Throckmorton and Michael Newham have deep concerns about Q Anon and have condemned this perverse conspiracy theory. And currently that is about it from my understanding. If other blogs refuse to condemn this conspiracy theory and they let this grow then it raises questions about the integrity of their writing. Q Anon is toxic to the internet and we have a responsibility in social media to condemn it and take the right course of action. This blog, The Wondering Eagle condemns and does not respect anyone who believes in Q Anon.