To love certainly doesn't always mean to approve of, but it might mean to support regardless. People think Jill Duggar is defending Derick Dillard with her newest Instagram, in which she offers that exact explanation for why the family stands by their beliefs (even when they seem wrong or hateful). Monday's post comes just a week after Derick landed himself in hot water with fans after he said that showing Nate Berkus' same-sex family on TLC was a "travesty."
It all started last week when Derick responded to a tweet from TLC promoting the series Nate & Jeremiah By Design, according to People. The show follows Nate Berkus and Jeremiah Brent along with their two young children as they renovate and restore properties for clients (yes, it does give some Fixer Upper vibes). Presumably responding to the fact that Nate and Jeremiah are in a same-sex union, Derick said: "What a travesty of family. It’s sad how blatant the liberal agenda is, such that it both highlights and celebrates a lifestyle so degrading to children on public television as if it should be normal.” In response to a request for comment regarding what many called homophobic and anti-LGBTQ remarks, Derick sent an email statement to Romper:
It’s just very disheartening to see how liberal TLC is so biased. They do not accurately represent people and are sometimes even dangerous in the way they portray the challenging horizons facing American culture. With respect to the show you’re asking about, I’ve said it before, but I love homosexual people; I have friends who are homosexual. What I don’t appreciate is a network that is so sly in the way it intentionally chooses its shows to suit its own agenda, as if to pull the wool over the eyes of the American people until we are so desensitized about certain aspects of culture to even care anymore. It’s supposed to be a design show from what I understand. Meanwhile, our Christian faith is edited at every opportune moment. I know because it’s happened many many times to myself. It’s all about what’s being promoted, overtly or otherwise, and how it’s represented.
This is not the first time that Derick has spoken out about being disappointed with the network due to his conservative and religious beliefs. The New York Daily News reported in November of last year that Dillard had parted ways with TLC due to disapproving of Jazz Jennings also having a show on the network, calling it "a 'reality' show which follows a non-reality."
All of that might explain why Jill then took to Instagram to say that she doesn't have to agree with someone to still love them. "To disagree doesn’t = hate, or judgement. Love doesn’t always = approval," she wrote. "Just because I disagree with my child on something doesn’t mean I hate him, and just because I love and forgive him doesn’t mean I approve of everything he does. You can be friends with, love and care for people you don’t agree with 100%."
Of course, this could be referencing a number of things: she could be saying that she doesn't agree with her husband, but that she still supports him. She could also be saying that it's OK if her husband doesn't agree with the actions of others (like Nate and Jeremiah, or TLC). Though disagreeing with someone seems much different than calling their family unit a "travesty"...
Followers seem to think Jill is just saying she can disagree with her husband while still loving him, saying things like: "Wrong is subjective for one, the entire homosexual population are not breaking any laws. For another, 'calling out' is different than calling names," as one fan put it.
Another person said, "Not everyone is a Christian though. It’s a sin in your worldview, not mine, not a lot of people’s. There are thousands of religions all thinking they’re right and true, if it’s a sin to you don’t do it. Simple."
However, there is also a chance that she was referring to a post she uploaded on May 2, in which she shared a list of things you should pray for your kids. In it, it says that you should hope they will remain "morally pure," and that "God would keep them from evil." Notably, the last point on the list is that "boys would be glad to be boys," and "girls would be glad to be girls," undoubtedly pointing toward their clear stance against fluid gender or transgender individuals.
Regardless, Jill has made it abundantly clear that she's going to stand by her husband, regardless of his actions. (After he and TLC parted ways, In Touch Weekly reported that she also left Counting On, possibly in solidarity with Derick, and shortly after announced that she had started Labor Sit, her midwife company).
Whether she does agree with Derick's words or not remains... unclear. Though there's no second guessing any of the Duggar or Dillard families morals or social stances, Jill has more or less voiced support for her husband without explicitly stating she agrees with him. Only time will tell how things really unfold.