Posts Tagged Brother Jed
Check out my final story on Brother Jed’s family in today’s issue of the Wildcat.
This should be the last time I write so much about Brother Jed. I feel like I’ve done a lot in the past year, and I don’t want to beat one topic to death.
Read my news article, and wish me luck in D.C.
When Brother Jed Smock visited the UA campus last semester, he incited a lot of anger, tension, excitement, and insanity from the student population. Just read my Brother Jed Chronicles. People yelled, threw objects, stole Jed’s chair, flashed CD’s into Jed’s eyes, and were all-around highly disrespectful.
Times have changed, it seems.
Students are much tamer this year, and people are committing fewer acts of violence against Jed. There’s definitely a lot of arguing and laughing, but the discussions remain fairly respectful.
I talked to Jed Smock during his half hour break this afternoon, and he seemed really exhausted. As he told the UA students five minutes earlier, he is soft spoken, reserved, and zen outside of his preaching persona. It’s shocking to see Brother Jed behave so relaxed after watching him shout into a crowd.
“I can’t sing the ‘Gay Song’ anymore, what if some gay person heard it and got offended and committed suicide? I can only sing it with permission of the gay community.
“I don’t want to sing it every day, the people will be bored with it.”
During Jed Smock’s sitting out session, Brother Roy took over. The overall student population didn’t seem happy about this.
“Go away! Get out of here! We like Jed better!” said one girl in a shrill voice.
“Yeah, come on, Jed, this guy sucks!” another student said.
“I’m taking a break,” Jed responded, hands folded as he sat in his black stool.
The ASUA Pride Alliance angels stood in front of Heritage Hill, intending to block Jed’s performance from the view of passersby.
As the afternoon wore on, up to seventy people gathered around to watch Jed’s preaching. Character actors dressed as Mario and Luigi passed around PSU game cube coupons to students on Heritage Hill, other religious figures came to talk with students, and students spontaneously gathered in many different groups to have break-out discussions about religion. Say what you will about Brother Jed, but it’s very rare for one individual to spark so much dialogue in one setting.
“I love today. This is one awesome day. Mario and Luigi are here, Brother Jed is screaming at the world, the Pride Alliance members are standing their ground, (Brennan Vincent) is carrying around a sign of two kissing women. This is perfect. I just texted my friends about how great today is,” one guy explained.
“Bro J is the shit,” another sign holder said.
“I hope you people who engage in anal intercourse give one another good enemas before you do that,” Jed told the audience, and everyone laughed.
What would Brother Jed’s campus visit be without shock-value statements?
“Do you realize how offensive the ‘Gay Song’ is to gay people?” Jed asked the crowd.
“Do you care?”
“That’s a fucking change.”
“Well, I’m more sensitive than I used to be,” Jed said.
The funniest part of the day had to be when Brother Jed did a sexual intercourse demonstration with his hands. There’s no way I can describe it, nor should I.
“Don’t you ladies need to start thinking about marriage?” Jed asked everyone.
“You girls need to think about becoming mothers.”
“I hope I’m not remembering wrong, but, how can I say this, do you belong to that group?” Jed asked one girl whom he recognized.
“Yes, I am a lesbian,” she answered.
Last year, the same girl shouted in Jed’s face for a week straight. Not today. I hate to say I was a little disappointed at the lack of drama.
“I’m afraid you girls are going to end up as old maids. And some of you have lost your maidenhood. So you may end up as old hags,” Jed Smock told us.
Good to know.
“Girls, do not let any boy touch you. You think you have a boyfriend, but he’s actually your boy enemy. A true friend, girls, will encourage you to be virtuous. I’m the best friend most of you have,” Jed said.
Jed’s wife and two daughters will be on campus tomorrow, and I’ll be interviewing them for a Wildcat news feature. Let’s just see if the family’s presence will create more insanity among the audience. One student argued that Cindy is even crazier than Jed, and tomorrow could reveal whether or not this statement is true.
I hate to say it, but this is going to be a slow blogging and news writing week for me.
On Wednesday, I’m headed to Washington, D.C. for the CPAC 2010 ordeal with the UA College Republicans. I’m stoked about that and will try to blog about everything that happens. God willing, the D.C. storms won’t a). prevent me from getting to D.C. or b). prevent me from flying back to Tucson on Sunday.
I should have three news stories in the Wildcat this week, but realistically, I won’t be publishing my weekly opinions piece.
With that, I urge you to read my stuff from last week, especially my column about the importance of dating nice men.
This week, I’m going to be doing a little more Brother Jed reporting, so stayed tuned for that.
So, is anyone else glad that Valentine’s Day is over? I guess I feel like an atheist on December 26-Totally relieved that the holiday insanity is no longer warranted. Valentine’s Day has turned into a week-long event that all-around annoys even those in a relationship. Valentine’s Day also lends itself to saccharine films such as He’s Just Not that Into You (a good reality check regardless) and Valentine’s Day, which makes talented singer Taylor Swift look like a vapid ninny and an even worse actress. Whoever cast her in this film should be punished. Poor Swift seems like such a nice girl, and this movie takes advantage of her apparent good nature.
Anyway, I’m stoked that Valentine’s Day is over and done with…for now. Yay for bigger and better things!
So, at CPAC, I am excited to see these people speak:
Rep. Michele Bachmann, Glenn Beck, Tucker Carlson, Liz Cheney, Ann Coulter, Sen. Jim DeMint, Hon. Newt Gingrich, Rep. Ron Paul, Rep. Mike Pence, and Hon. Mitt Romney!
I’ll keep you posted.
Next week, I’ll be doing a longer piece about Brother Jed and his family for the Wildcat, so here are my findings from today, which was Jed’s first day on the UA campus in 2010. This is more newsy than opinion based (because I was originally writing it for the Wildcat), but eventually, I will share my opinions on the matter. For now, here’s some objective reporting on what happened with Jed today:
Approximately 50 students gathered around Heritage Hill Thursday to watch Brother Jed Smock, controversial college campus evangelist, perform his interactive preaching of the bible.
“This guy is the epitome of campus preachers,” said Brennan Vincent, a mathematics sophomore.
Vincent carried around a poster of two women kissing each other in tank tops and panties to show his support for homosexuality.
“I’m carrying this photograph because Brother Jed has been insulting homosexuals since he first visited this campus,” Vincent said.
Smock travels to college campuses during the academic school year to declare the gospel to college and university students. He is on a college campus on every school day, Smock said.
Students joined together in laughter and shouting in opposition throughout Smock’s speeches. Students also sang along with Smock’s rendition of “Amazing Grace” and “When the Saints Go Marching in.”
“Don’t marry one of these girls that wants to wear the pants,” Smock told the crowd.
“Wives, submit yourself to your husbands,” Smock said. “It’s sort of like I’m the king, she’s the queen. I’m the breadwinner, the provider.”
Smock receives donations from churches and private donors to travel around the country to preach. He has also written five books.
“This is the best free comedy show on campus,” said Rob Wolfset, a creative writing sophomore.
Mechanical engineering junior Candice Bauer agreed that Smock’s visits are entertaining and interactive.
“He gives Christians a bad name,” Bauer said. “He preaches hate rather than love.”
Creative writing junior Kimberly Topolosky shared a similar view.
“I was offended when Smock yelled ‘No homos, no homos,’” Topolosky said. “The God I believe in loves everyone.”
Smock, who held a crucifix style walking stick, shared stories about his relationship with his wife, his support for former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin, the bible, and his college days among other topics.
“I’m ashamed to say I used to be a whore mongering fraternity boy,” Smock said of his undergraduate years as a Delta Upsilon fraternity brother at Indiana State University.
Smock told the story of how he met his wife, Cindy Smock when he visited the University of Florida in the 1970’s.
Cindy Smock initially opposed Jed Smock’s preaching, but she changed her views after going to church with Jed Smock, who denied her request to kiss him. The Smocks waited until their wedding ceremony to have their first kiss together.
“I only come to see Brother Jed for the humor,” Bauer continued. “More people would be in the audience if the weather was warmer.”
“Brother Jed isn’t as mean anymore,” said Carla Green, a retailing and consumer sciences senior. “He seems to have gotten softer over the years. He used to sing the ‘Gay Song’ and get up in everyone’s faces.”
Smock will be on the UA campus Friday and all next week, when his wife and daughters will join him.
“You can’t take everything in the bible literally. It’s the moral rejuvenation [of born again virginity] that counts,” Smock said of Bristol Palin’s commitment to abstinence upon having her first child.
“Don’t take everything I say so literally.”
Get excited, everyone!
Brother Jed Smock will be on the UA campus tomorrow afternoon and Friday. His girls and wife won’t be in Tucson until next week, but Jed’s presence will be more than enough for this campus!
Be prepared for LOTS of screaming, swearing, anger, judgment, yelling, everything.
The ASUA Pride Alliance will be busy protesting Jed in silence, and there will be plenty of others shouting in opposition.
Can’t wait to report on all the drama going down.
Last year, someone threw a water balloon at the Smock girls, and one guy stole Jed’s chair. What will happen this year?
It’s hard to believe that a year has gone by since Brother Jed Smock visited the UA campus and I started my Brother Jed Chronicles, which have gotten an insane amount of traffic.
With that, Jed Smock will be back on campus in exactly one week’s time.
Let’s hope the weather permits him to speak up and incite chaos from the student body.
ASUA Pride Alliance has already created a Facebook event page for Smock’s arrival, and they’re looking for volunteers to don angel wings in protest of Smock’s preachings.
I’m expecting a lot of insanity on campus those days, and it’s truly a shame that I will only be able to cover two of the five days that Smock is on campus.
Expect to see reports from me on February 15 and 16 for sure.
Sadly, I will be flying to Washington, D.C. on February 17 for CPAC (Conservative Political Action Conference). Let’s just pray that the D.C. snowstorm subsides by then.
Anyway, get excited for Brother Jed’s presence on campus.
Love him or hate him, he’s an incredible entertainer and fascinating evangelist. I definitely don’t agree with everything he says, but I cannot doubt his effectiveness. Even his haters remember him. He’s someone that will never disappear from your thoughts.
Stay tuned for Jed Smock reports and stories.
This should be my last blog entry about Brother Jed. My fellow Wildcat colleague, Daniel Sotelo wrote a column about Brother Jed and the futility of his protesters. In some ways, it goes hand-in-hand with what I’ve been saying all week, so I suggest you read it regardless of your views. Dan writes really well.
I’ve spent a lot of time blogging about Brother Jed Smock and his memorable, radical approach to campus preaching, but I never had a real conversation with him or his family until today.
Last Friday, Brother Jed announced to the University of Arizona that he has a Facebook account, and he encouraged everyone to add him to their friends list. After blogging about him a half dozen times, I thought I’d benefit from adding him as a friend on Facebook, and I ended up getting more from it than I expected. Brother Jed accepted my request and came across this blog, which he found entertaining, and he apologized for being short with me last month. His daughters sent me emails, and they invited me to chat with them on campus this afternoon.
Jed, Cindy, and their daughters, Martha and Priscilla arrived on the UA campus at 11:30 this morning. This is Brother Jed’s second week visiting the UA, and he leaves for Flagstaff on Wednesday morning. His daughters will fly back to Missouri, where they’re home schooled. Cindy and the girls don’t usually travel with their father, but they said they enjoy spending the extra time with him since he’s always away at college campuses.
“A lot of the things I say are tongue and cheek,” he began, and he seemed calmer when speaking in a regular voice as opposed to his booming shout, which draws the attention of students.
“When that young man kissed his hand and tried to touch me, I was feigning shock,” he said, noting that I picked up on his exaggerated horrors in my later blog entries.
“A lot of times, these students say things to shock me, but it’s never anything I haven’t heard thousands of times,” he said, laughing.
“To hold everyone’s attention, you have to put on a show,” he continued.
“But it works to our advantage,” added Cindy. “If we get ignored, it’s frustrating, but it’s usually due to bad weather.”
Brother Jed travels from campus to campus year-round. In the winter months, he visits Florida State University, Louisiana State University, University of Houston, University of Texas-Austin, Texam A&M, Arizona State, University of Arizona, UC-Davis, and several other western state colleges.
Jed Smock has been preaching for 35 years, and despite the physical and emotional drains of his job, he’s in good health. Every morning, he does 35 push-ups, 50 jumping jacks, and 15 sit-ups.
“I’d like to keep this job for another 30 years, or as long as I’m able.”
Jed’s ways seem to provoke an overriding negative reaction among students, but he feels his campus visits have been quite successful.
“We have changed people. I get a couple of emails a month about converted students. I’ve received so many emails that say something along the lines of, ‘you came to my campus in the 1980′s, and you made me so mad, I started reading the bible, and then I started going to church.’ We definitely see results.”
Perhaps Jed Smock’s biggest success story is his wife, Cindy, who he met in the late 1970′s when he preached at the University of Florida.
“Cindy made fun of me. I pointed her out in the audience and said, ‘repent your sins, wicked woman!’ Little did I know, that flattered her, and four years later, we were married.”
By the time Brother Jed came to Cindy’s college campus, he hadn’t kissed a girl in six years. Cindy saw this as a challenge, and she tried to get him to kiss her.
“You don’t go around kissing,” Jed told her, and dropped her off at her dorm immediately.
Thirty or so years later, they have five daughters, the oldest is 24 and the youngest 14. Evangeline is the oldest, and she serves as a chaplain’s assistant.
“With my old fashioned thinking, I wasn’t excited about her joining the military, but she wanted to serve and wouldn’t do it without my blessing, and my youngest daughter, Priscilla told me to give my consent, so I did.”
As Cindy Smock started to read bible passages to the crowd, Martha and Priscilla Smock asked me to come sit by them. The three of us sat on their unfolded blanket, trying not to let the unusually fierce wind dictate the Brother Jed experience.
In Friday’s blog, I wondered about the Jed girls’ social lives, and they’re definitely not lacking in friends or social activity. Both 17-year-old Martha and 14-year-old Priscilla are home schooled, but they get together with a group of other home schooled students a few times a month, and they participate in a myriad of social activities.
“We organize a monopoly tournament, go skating, shopping, and have a prom, which we call an elegant evening because we dance like the women in Pride and Prejudice,” Priscilla said.
Though the girls aren’t allowed to date until they graduate high school, they get their fix for hanging out with boys.
“I have more guy friends than girl friends,” Martha shared. “When I was little, I wanted to be a boy. I climbed trees, and I’d always want to be the dad when my sisters and I played House.”
“I’m the youngest, but Martha was the oddball who got teased,” Priscilla said, giggling.
Last week, I was extremely curious as to how the Smock girls handle all the family ridicule and abuse among college students. After today, I can see that they’re completely desensitized to the negativity.
“We’re used to it, but when I was 4 years old, some guy wouldn’t stop yelling at my dad, so I kicked him. I was just a little kid, so it’s not like I was hurting him, though,” Martha said.
“Most people are nice to us. They were mean at Arizona State, but some guy spit on me here at UofA, and then ran away,” Priscilla said.
The girls get a feel for every campus they go to. When they were younger, Priscilla and Martha brought their doll houses to each school and ran around the campus. At Indiana, the girls would bring their swimsuits and jump into the water fountain. Here at UA, they walk through the campus, which Priscilla remarked as “beautiful,” dine at Panda Express, re-fill their sodas at Chick-Fil-A, and sometimes roam the UA Bookstore. Last week, Priscilla donned her new gray Arizona sweater. She tries to buy a hoodie at every college campus.
All five Smock daughters stay pretty busy. Charlotte studied Nursing at Pensacola Christian College in Florida, but hated the “strict Christian rules” about clothing among other things, so she left. Justina is married with a baby girl, and Evangeline is married as well. The remaining high school girls have ideas about what they’d like to do once they graduate.
“I want to do something with fashion,” Priscilla said.
Martha wasn’t sure what kind of career appealed to her, but Priscilla later mentioned that Martha would like to help her dad with campus preaching after high school graduation.
“Have you ever thought about applying to college?” I asked.
“I’ll go if I want to.”
When asked about Evolution, Priscilla said, “I don’t worry about it. I have faith that God created the universe.”
That’s when I brought up my own views. I believe in Evolution, but I also believe in God, and I asked Priscilla if she thought it was wrong for someone to pick and choose what to believe in the bible.
“As long as you have religion, it doesn’t really matter.”
Jed and Cindy waited until their wedding day to have their first kiss as a couple, and their daughters expressed a desire to follow this route.
“My dad wouldn’t mind if I kissed before marriage, but it’s my choice not to do it,” said Martha.
“If I got married, but had done stuff with other guys before, I wouldn’t be giving my whole heart to my husband,” said Priscilla.
“Have you ever thought it would be hard to meet a guy who is willing to wait until marriage to kiss you?” I asked.
After a pause, Priscilla answered, “If he really loved me, he wouldn’t mind.”
But holding hands and hugging is permitted. The girls like to dance, and they see no problem with
that, and they thought it was strange that some of their friends aren’t even allowed to hug boys or be friends with them on Facebook.com.
Brother Jed began speaking out against masturbation, and a young male student questioned why Jed doesn’t do it.
“I don’t need to, I get the real thing! Cindy is all over me!”
“Is it humiliating to hear about your parents’ sex lives?” I asked the girls.
“Yes!” they answered in unison.
“It’s weird when he talks about his fraternity days and bad past,” Martha said.
“I only get really embarrassed when he brings out the electrical cords for his homosexuality demonstration,” Priscilla said. “I hate when my friends find it online.”
With many exceptions, the girls remind me of myself in high school. They watch American Idol as I did, and they’re up to date on the lives of Ashley Tisdale, Hilary Duff, Katy Perry, and the Jonas Brothers. They grew up watching The Sound of Music, Fiddler on the Roof, and other musicals. Like every teenage girl, Martha is excited to get her license, and she credits Brother Jed as her preferred parental driving instructor.
The girls play instruments, and they said they’d be friends with sinners so long as the sinners don’t put any pressure on them.
“Our best friend, Nikki isn’t Christian,” Martha added.
I decided to ask more religious questions, and I wanted to know more about her family’s take on homosexuality. It’s one thing to see Brother Jed scold gays in front of a crowd, but a different experience to hear the family seriously discuss the reality of the situation.
The five daughters are heterosexual, but life wouldn’t be good for them if they weren’t.
“If one of us were a lesbian, we’d probably get kicked out of the house,” Martha said.
I furthered on the gay lifestyle, which the girls think is a choice.
“Why would Jesus plan for someone to be gay and basically condemn him to Hell from birth? He’s a loving God, he won’t lead us into sin.”
Believe it or not, though, the girls feel they have a “happy medium” between party girls and Amish girls.
“We’re stereotyped as being one or the other, but we’re in the middle.”
Priscilla also said it frustrates her that Christian girls get penalized for misbehaving when other girls do the same things and get away with it.
“If I wore a shirt that revealed my boobs, I’d be called out for being Christian and doing it even though tons of other girls do the same thing on a daily basis.”
“So yeah, we do have social lives,” Martha said, grinning as she alluded to my blog entry in question of that.
The girls delved into some of the more serious violent acts against their parents on campus visits. Brother Jed broke his leg and arm, and he has been pushed off walls. Cindy was also pushed into a fountain. When a crowd went wild, Brother Jed was arrested for his own safety. On a less destructive level, a UA student threw ice cream at Jed, and another student stuck a piece of gum on Jed’s chair. The girls used ice to remove the gum. Today alone, someone threw a water balloon at Jed, Cindy, and Priscilla, but it missed and hit an on-looker.
Even though the Smock daughters live what most would consider a restricted life, they’re level-headed and genuinely happy, and from my observations, they are much better behaved and stable than most girls their age. It was refreshing to talk to teenage girls about something besides drinking and parties as the main conversational focuses, and they seem to have a lot of self-respect and pride in what they do. Martha isn’t crying over boys as I was at 17, and Priscilla isn’t concerned with rushing into adolescent mischief as most high school freshman girls are. I can see they’re truly happy with their decisions, even if the choices don’t always make sense to me or anyone else. Though I’m considerably more sinful than the Smock girls, I appreciated talking to them because they have a more meaningful thought process than a lot of college students I encounter, who seek shallow friendships and drink to fill voids that the Smock daughters don’t have.
My good friend, Rob sat next to me and the Smock girls around 2:15, when Jed began his lecture on pre-marital kissing.
“I waited four years of dating to kiss my wife!”
“Wow, I thought two months was bad,” Rob noted.
“Tell me about it, it’s been since July for me,” I said. “I’m picky.”
That was when the girls stood up from the blanket, setting a chair down on it so it wouldn’t blow away.
“We’re going to go study at the library now,” they said, and then they walked off. I hoped I hadn’t made them uncomfortable. After all, they did say that they have several friends who chose to abstain from kissing until marriage.
“They seem really cool,” Rob said, watching the girls descend the grassy hill.
You can say all you want about the Smock family’s evangelism, but the girls were raised well. Any student with an opinion on Brother Jed should approach him individually. It’ll be different than watching him from the top of Heritage Hill. The family views remain the same, but they do not live as radical a lifestyle as you’d expect. The girls love their lives, and Cindy greatly misses Jed while he’s away. She wants to travel full-time with him when Priscilla graduates high school. Whether or not you agree with their beliefs, they’re happier than the average American family.
Day Four of my observations on Brother Jed Smock’s preaching at the University of Arizona:
“Why do you come day after day if you hate my beliefs? Because you’re drawn to me like a magnet!” Brother Jed Smock fired back at one of the many UA students who violently disagrees with his proselytizing and notably bizarre manner of spreading religion.
“JESUS LOVES ME AND I LOVE SEX,” a UA sophomore screamed as she walked away from Heritage Hill, where the audience of at least 60 people sat.
“Back in college, I would have run after her!” he said, recalling his sinful Delta Upsilon fraternity days at Indiana University.
There were two incorrigible audience members from today’s session with Brother Jed. A California marijuana addict interrupted and screamed at Jed and wife, Cindy every time they spoke, so I’m going to refer to him as “California Boy.” His speech dripped with pomposity to the point of nausea, but I’ll try to maintain some professionalism as I describe him in this opinionated blog.
For two hours, California Boy jeered at Brother Jed and Cindy. He said he smokes weed every day, his throaty shouting voice indicative of this, and he kept reminding everyone that he has a lot of sex, clearly boasting or lying about his alleged Casanova tendencies rather than making a point. He swore to an unnecessary extent, he called Cindy a “f***ing b****, and spewed verbal abuse which the Women Resource Center would find appalling.
Men are punished for verbally and physically harming women, yet this pathetic-excuse-for-a-college-man gets away with yelling in Cindy Smock’s face and calling her a whore, b****, idiot, and dumba**. Why do so many college students side with this young guy’s arrogant, disgusting behavior simply because it’s directed at religious extremists? If you ask me, he’s on the same level as any verbally abusive man, and as a self-respecting female, I would never date a guy who presents himself in such a deplorable, cocky, hypocritical manner.
“You’re going to burn, baby, burn,” Sister Cindy said to California Boy.
“Jesus told me you’re a f***ing idiot!” he yelled, and then preached in support of sex and drugs.
“How does it feel to be inferior to your husband?” A student asked with a smile on her face.
“I don’t have a problem with that,” Cindy said. “My husband is very intelligent. He taught me everything I know and he gave me permission to come here and speak.”
The crowd laughed as you can imagine, and then Cindy went on to say she thinks that all women want to get married and have children since it’s their only purpose in life. Even the femi-nazi’s secretly strive for this lifestyle, according to Sister Cindy.
“I used to be a wicked, evil woman until Brother Jed came to my college campus and saved me!”
“So do you have any STD’s?”
After a pause, she replied, “I was a bad girl before STD’s came out.”
“You’re a f***ing c*nt!” one student yelled from the Hill, and even California Boy agreed this comment was inappropriate.
As Cindy started reading Luke 12:54, a male UA student picked up Cindy’s large soda and spit into it. The crowd cheered, but the Smock family was not happy. Brother Jed’s 17-year-old daughter descended the hill and poured the coca-cola onto the asphalt.
California Boy started talking to young Smock as she climbed onto the hill.
“Is that your mom?” he asked.
“Do you understand why they’re doing this?”
“They want to save souls,” she said, emotionless.
“Do you believe we’re all going to Hell?”
“Yes,” she said, grinning. That’s when I decided to cut in.
“Is it hard for you to watch everyone bash your family?” I asked.
“No, I’m used to it. They’ve been bringing me to college campus preachings since I was born,” she said before joining her father at the top of the hill.
This is off-topic, but I have to say that the Smock girls are very pretty, at least in my opinion. As you’ll see below, their looks spark more discussion, but more than anything, I sometimes wonder what their love lives are like. They’re more attractive than the average female, but they’re probably not allowed to date. Their parents oppose pre-marital kissing, so you can say these girls are missing out on a lot because of family beliefs. They’re also home-schooled, and I can’t imagine what their social lives must be like. I wouldn’t be surprised if they’re entirely devoted to their parents, especially since they go on all the college campus tours. Can you imagine being stuck with your family 24/7 without any real friends or outside connections?
Jed is the only male in his immediate family, and his daughters and wife wear skirts that hang just above their ankles and over-sized t-shirts, which hide all female curves. As I’ve said before, some people may think it’s immoral to raise these girls with narrow-minded, radical Christian values, but this is how others are, and they’re not going to change. If the girls like their lives, they don’t need to be told that they have horrible parents and a bad upbringing. Everyone lives differently. The Smocks just picked an uncommon way of life.
California Boy turned to Cindy, who was finishing up some bible passages on judgment.
“Why do you subject your children to this?” he asked.
“They’re here to meet losers like you and see how evil you are,” Cindy said.
“Really? She thought I was cute,” California Boy said, his self-absorbed personality coming out.
“No, you thought she was cute and you wanted to get in her pants because she’s purer than the whores you’ve been screwing! You’re self-centered, egotistical, condescending, high-minded, and arrogant! God is not impressed, Pothead!”
A few minutes later, I saw Sister Cindy shading her eyes, and it was because three UA students decided to hold the backs of CD’s in Cindy’s direction so strong sun beams would shine in her face.
I found this to be extremely inappropriate, so I marched to the top of the hill and confronted the three laughing boys, who watched Cindy struggle to keep the sun out of her eyes.
“You do know that you’re being very immature, right?” I asked.
“Yes,” one guy said.
“I know you think she’s crazy, but you can do serious damage to her vision if you guys don’t stop this. It’s one thing to yell at Jed and his family, but it’s another to try to hurt them.”
“We’re not going to do it anymore,” another guy said, embarrassed.
Two out of the three guys I yelled at set down their CD’s, but one continued holding up his CD, which sparkled in the sunlight. I felt like I was hitting my pre-motherhood days, scolding a bunch of boys for being mean. I am proud of myself for calling them out because very few people would do that in defense of the Jed Smock family. I always have to stand up for the underdog in some way, and I will not tolerate physical harm. Jed’s daughter approached the guy still holding up his CD and kindly asked that he put it away, and he listened.
After a while, I migrated to the Pride Alliance angels, who stood behind Sister Cindy. Bible Boy from yesterday’s blog post spoke out against the angels. He wore a black t-shirt that read EX-PORN ADDICT.
Bible Boy is an advocate for Brother Jed, and he has similar if not identical beliefs on Christianity. I came into a conversation between Bible Boy and another male UA student. They were talking about masturbation, which Bible Boy thinks is a sin.
“You don’t think it’s okay to masturbate?” I asked.
“But what about blue balls?” I asked, unsure of how to professionally phrase my question, which is legitimate. How can masturbation be such a sin if men (and women) have to do it for health purposes?
“You can only get blue balls if you are aroused for a long period of time. I avoid that.”
“He hasn’t had blue balls since I bent over in front of him,” one guy added with a laugh.
The best part of the entire day was when ten male students stripped down to their shorts and danced in a circle around Brother Jed, grinding up on him and gyrating their hips. Jed stood there like a stone before yelling, “HOMO’S! HOMO’S! HOMO’S!”
The creator of this Facebook group planned the whole thing, but I hope he knows it’s been done before.
There’s nothing anyone can do to shock Brother Jed. Even if he acts surprised and horrified by a gay couple kissing or a bunch of half naked guys, he’s seen it happen hundreds of times. Jed has been doing this for nearly forty years. He probably isn’t offended by much anymore despite his expressive reactions.
“We’re coming back next week!” Jed screamed, pointing his finger at the crowd. Let’s hope so. I’m getting used to this unusual entertainment between classes.
Brother Jed Smock brought two of his five daughters to the University of Arizona campus today. Another preacher spoke, but he wasn’t nearly as popular.
It was still sunny and comfortably warm at 4:30 p.m., and a female pastor spoke to dozens of UA students on Heritage Hill. The crowd seemed wilder and angrier, particularly one vocal girl who would scream at the top of her lungs even though she was at the bottom of the grassy hill, therefore in close proximity to the visiting preachers. The pastor yelled back at this girl, and she also told me that only certain Catholics can be admitted into heaven.
As UA students tore down the preacher, Jed sat atop the grassy knoll with one of his other daughters, who bowed her head and sat at his side. Jed rubbed her back and frowned at the rabid audience. As inhumane as some say Brother Jed is, he looked like a dedicated, compassionate parent today, and I felt sorry for the Smock family. I can imagine it’s hard for the young girl to see hundreds of students abuse her father, mother, and sisters. You can argue that Jed subjects her to it by inviting her on tour, and I have no comeback to that. Still, can you picture watching the same spectacle happen to your own family? Wouldn’t you be heart-broken, too?
I never thought I’d pity the Smock family, and I can’t explain why I found it so sad to see them in pain. Maybe I’m too easy on him. Even though I think he can say hurtful, inappropriate, and offensive things, he’s a person at the end of the day, and I hate to see any family be so publicly denounced.
I explained this to a close friend, who said, “Well, of course the girls are upset. They’re Brother Jed’s children! How would you feel in that family? What are they raising these girls to be?”
I’m going to counter that as well. Most people believe that Brother Jed is a disgusting person and that his teachings are beyond out-dated. There are, however, others out in the world like him, and they’re probably content. As liberated individuals, we can’t understand how anyone would enjoy being in Jed Smock’s family, or why it’s okay to promote questionable ideals, but everyone is different. We can’t impose our opinions on the Smocks, nor can they rightfully shove their evangelism on us. If the Smock girls want to be essentially subordinate and “baby makers” (as Cindy Smock put it), they should be able to live this way. It’s not my path by any means, but I respect that maybe it’s best for them.
On a lighter note, another pastor entertained the crowd after the female pastor sat back down.
“My grandmother was the sweetest woman in the world, but she’s in Hell right now because she didn’t accept Jesus Christ,” he said.
The highly vocal girl continued shouting at an unnecessarily high volume. I truly think some of these on-lookers visit Brother Jed just to release their own anger and anxieties. It’s too easy to dump that on Brother Jed, the perfect target. I still think it’s kind of pathetic to get so worked up just to purge negative emotions. Not even the Smock family deserves to be a punching bag.
Around this time, the Pride Alliance angels gathered behind the pastor and stood in silence, passing out sheets of paper on the organization. All was quiet until a student walked up to them, a yellow bible in hand.
“Great, horse face is back,” someone said to me, referring to the same young man with the bible.
I will not call him “horse face,” so I’ll just say his name is Bible Boy. He took advantage of Pride Alliance members’ silence and preached against homosexuality, sex before marriage, and many other subjects Brother Jed mused upon. Only he was much calmer.
I walked over to the “angels,” and the loud girl and her friend were already harassing Bible Boy. One girl was wearing a bikini and asked Bible Boy if he liked what he saw. He turned away from her and began talking to the silent angels, who were trying hard not to laugh or say much.
Bikini Girl pointed to her half exposed chest.
“Do you like these?” she asked Bible Boy.
“Those are for your husband.”
“But you can’t see my nipples.”
“You’re still probably going to Hell.”
“What problem do you have with her?” I interjected.
“She’s a sinner and she’s exposing herself.”
The girls and I moved back to the hill, and Bikini girl announced, “THE TEMPTATION IS BACK!”
Brother Jed was speaking at this point, and the rabid young girl stole his chair. I told her that I thought she was being immature by taking an old man’s chair, but she refused to move. She was being highly insensitive by preventing an aging man from sitting down if he needed to. No matter how nasty Brother Jed may be, she’s pathetic for taking away his crutch.
A quieter evangelist predicted that this girl will become a Christian in time because she is so passionately against it. If you hate something, you also love it, in a way. If you don’t care, you wouldn’t have any feelings on the matter.
I left just after Brother Jed said, “You guys can be saved and be like me and my wife. We’re saints.”
Don’t you have to die before being dubbed a saint?
Let’s see what happens on Jed’s last University of Arizona visit tomorrow. By the way, Bible Boy went off to get dinner with Cindy Smock and one of her daughters around 5:30. Jed can say he changed one UA student, at least.