Josh Harris, author of I Kissed Dating Goodbye, has recently stated that he regrets that his book caused people harm and has halted its production. Image via JoshHarris.com
Josh Harris, a former pastor and former advocate of the “purity movement” stated that his marriage is over and that he has lost his faith and, because of that, apologizes for any harm that his best-selling book, I Kissed Dating Goodbye has caused to anyone who has read it, according to The Guardian.
I Kissed Dating Goodbye can be described as a how-to guide for relationships that uses biblical information to tell people how relationships should work. In the book, Harris encouraged Christians to stop dating, practice abstinence, discouraged young couples from holding hands, kissing, or spending time together before marriage, and Harris also wrote that dating is a “training ground for divorce.” The book, when it was written, was praised by Evangelicals because they felt that it promoted “purity culture.”
However, Harris denounced the teachings of his book after his divorce from his wife, saying that he disagrees “with its central idea that dating should be avoided” and that he thinks that “dating can be a healthy part of a person developing relationally and learning the qualities that matter most in a partner.” He has also said, in an Instagram post, that he wants to apologize to LGBTQ people for his past views on sexuality, his opposition to marriage equality, and for contributing to a “culture of exclusion and bigotry” and that he is no longer a Christian.
I’m conflicted – on one hand, it’s good that he changed his mind but on the other hand, has the damage already been done? The book was written in 1997 and, I assume, has been in circulation for all of these years and he is now just denouncing it. So my question to you, should people accept this apology as sincere or should we look back on all of the harm that he has caused not only with his book but his speech as well and chalk this up to simple damage control?
Source: The Guardian