I would have to believe that the morals of the 1800's during the time of Brother Joe's life were invested in men who knew how to uphold their role and responsibility. Men did not refer to women as Hoes, females or bitches. Men back then did not have the government up their ass with the save the children banner and so it was a mans role to raise and guide his family by his own moral compass. I believe it was that level of independence from the government which allowed men to thrive in their role and fulfill their duty as husbands and fathers. We tend to think that the underage marriages reported from that time illustrate men were having a grand time abusing children. But I have to consider the reasons for the marriages which may have been regarded as something other than the shallow sexual perspective which we ourselves project onto those early times from our current measure of morality. All I see in the forums today is the sexual and polygamist aspect of it. That seems to be the only thing that most people can think about. It makes me wonder if our set of standards and morals of the present is only a vague memory of what it truly used to be. Might we have fallen so far without even knowing it?
Men in the 1800's were not constantly bombarded with sexual suggestions from the media on radio, print, movies or television. Ladies were honored. If we could travel back through time and go up to Brother Joe and assert to his face that he is a child molester then we would be dead before we could ever make it back to our time. He perceived his right to marry Helen Kimball was just and it was his duty, as a man, to defend it.
We have to measure Brother Joe by the standards of his time, not ours. I believe it is ourselves in our current generations that have perverted the image and role of women and girls. If this is the case then we really are in trouble as a society and we need to get government out of running our homes and back out on the street building sidewalks.
Just some food for thought so that everybody here knows where I am coming from. The first assumption would be the obvious- that I myself am looking to marry young girls. Whatever. What is alarming to me is that nobody seems to grasp this point: in the 1800's there were probably very few, if any perverts running loose. I believe this because there was no media to saturate their minds with suggestions and images portraying women as sex objects. I understand that women during the 1800's did not enjoy the same rights and their counterparts. But that doesn't mean they were treated like objects or sex slaves.