By Bridget Jack Jeffries
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TONTITOWN, ARKANSAS — A Wednesday afternoon bout of “Dark Web” dumpster-diving through leaked Ashley Madison user files yielded the timely revelation that disgraced fundamentalist reality show personality, Josh Duggar, was the likely owner of multiple AM accounts.
“I am shocked and appalled that a man who could molest his sisters and then go on to become a family values spokesman could do something so hypocritical as cheating on his wife as a family values spokesman,” wrote one distressed commentator. “Josh Duggar has lowered the high standards we’ve come to expect from creepy patriarchal southern fundamentalist Bible-thumpers everywhere.”
In the wake of Tuesday night’s Ashley Madison leak, comments across the Web had just about proven conclusively that not a single one of the 37 million users registered at AM–whose business motto is “life is short, have an affair”–was actually on the site with the intention of having an affair. Blogs, Twitter, and news articles erupted with comments from users who had joined Ashley Madison for something other than the site’s well-advertised main purpose.
“I’m a single woman and I was on the site to meet single men, because in spite of the site’s reputation, it is a DATING site,” wrote one woman. When queried as to how she knew for certain that the men she met were also single, she replied, “Why would a guy like that lie?”
Gawker’s Sam Biddle became one of the first to verify that the leak was legitimate, tweeting that he was, “covering online dating stuff for gizmodo and my email is in there.” Ah, yes, I was on the site for “reporting,” murmured an appreciative chorus of men in São Paulo, Toronto and Chicago.
There were an alarmingly high number of comments about “puritanism” and “judgment” and “your sexual morality” from tight-lipped, seemingly disgruntled commentators, yet not a single person could be found who had signed up for Ashley Madison to cheat on his or her spouse–until Josh Duggar spoke up.
“I have been the biggest hypocrite ever. While espousing faith and family values, I have been unfaithful to my wife,” said Duggar in a statement. “I am so ashamed of the double life that I have been living and am grieved for the hurt, pain and disgrace my sin has caused my wife and family, and most of all Jesus and all those who profess faith in Him . . . I humbly ask for your forgiveness.”
Reactions to Duggar’s statement were varied. “We’re just glad we were able to disgrace at least one legitimate adulterer,” said a member of the hacktivist group Impact Team, who spoke on condition of anonymity. “We kind of figured that, out of 37 million users, there would be at least a couple more, but apparently not.”
“Josh should have told them it depended on what their definition of the word ‘is’ is,” said former President and aspiring First Man Bill Clinton. “That always works. And why didn’t his fantasy wish list include anything about cigars? Oh well. No accounting for taste.”
Former Vice Presidential candidate John Edwards concurred. “The trick is to only admit to what the tabloids can prove,” he said. “They could prove that Mr. Duggar had an Ashley account, but not that he’d actually had any affairs, so he should have only admitted to that. Kind of like I did when The National Enquirer cornered me outside that hotel bathroom and I put out a statement denying my own daughter’s parentage and insisting that I’d only cheated on my ailing wife while her cancer was in remission.”
“We’re just relieved that shaming people for adultery is cool again,” said Nick Denton, co-founder of Gawker. “We were worried after the Condé Nast fiasco. You gotta admit, America is kind of bi-polar on this one.”