I picked a bad day to be on vacation. But who would’ve guessed today would be the day we learned Jerry Falwell, Jr. sat in the room to watch while a pool boy fucked his wife on multiple occasions over the course of several years?
That’s the story, according to Aram Roston of Reuters, who published an exclusive story this morning based on information from Giancarlo Granda, the infamous “pool boy.”
It also explains why Falwell was so eager to get his side of the story out last night, before this piece dropped. Remember that he said in a statement to the right-wing Washington Examiner that his wife Becki “had an inappropriate personal relationship with this person, something in which I was not involved.” He implied he knew nothing about it, and that when he realized it, he went through a kind of depression, losing weight in the process.
Falwell also slipped in this comment about Granda:
During the years that followed, we got to know his family and other loved ones, good people who also really care about him. They shared and confirmed to us that he has periodically demonstrated emotionally unstable behaviors with some destructive tendencies, seemingly in response to his inability to achieve his professional goals. Based on information from other sources, we believe that he may have targeted other successful women in similar ways.
Well, if the Reuters piece is to be believed — and it’s not like Falwell has a track record for honesty — then Falwell was being sneaky when he said he “was not involved” in their sexual relationship. He just wasn’t involved physically.
Here’s the bombshell from Reuters:
… Starting that month [March of 2012] and continuing into 2018, Granda told Reuters that the relationship involved him having sex with Becki Falwell while Jerry Falwell looked on.
Granda showed Reuters emails, text messages and other evidence that he says demonstrate the sexual nature of his relationship with the couple, who have been married since 1987. “Becki and I developed an intimate relationship and Jerry enjoyed watching from the corner of the room,” Granda said in an interview. Now 29, he described the liaisons as frequent — “multiple times per year” — and said the encounters took place at hotels in Miami and New York, and at the Falwells’ home in Virginia.
As I’ve said before, I don’t give a damn about their kinks. If this arrangement was consensual on their parts, it’s no one else’s business. What’s troubling is the ethical and political side of this.
Ethically, Liberty University is ridiculously strict when it comes to sex. Not only is sex forbidden outside of marriage, even if you’re in a relationship, there used to be a time limit when it came to hugging someone: Three seconds. That rule was later relaxed. The idea that the school’s leader was engaging in a years-long relationship in which he watched another (much younger) man fuck his wife just blows the word “hypocrisy” right out of the water. Why should students refrain from sexual exploration when the head of Liberty is getting front-row seats to a sex show?
Politically, the reason this is relevant is because Granda allegedly had texts and photos of Becki Falwell in compromising positions.
The material Granda showed Reuters includes screenshots from what Granda said was a FaceTime conversation he had with the Falwells in 2019. During that call, Granda said, Becki was naked as the two discussed their relationship while Jerry peeked from behind a door. Reuters was able to verify Granda’s description of the screenshots.
Those images appear to have landed in the hands of Michael Cohen, Donald Trump‘s former lawyer, who may have used the material to coerce Falwell into endorsing Trump in 2016. Falwell’s early support for Trump — just before the Iowa caucuses — came as a surprise at the time, considering Ted Cruz was still in the race, but it opened the floodgates for more Trump support from white evangelicals.
Ultimately, Falwell’s sex scandal isn’t even that surprising. He’s had a long history of being a Christian jackass who acts above the very rules he has in place for Liberty students. Unlike Pastor Ted Haggard, the evangelical leader who was found to be paying a man for sex while preaching agaist homosexuality, Falwell’s story didn’t come out of nowhere. But Haggard was dropped from his positions of leadership; evangelicals wanted nothing to do with him. How could they?
But Falwell may still return to Liberty. That’s because evangelical hypocrisy is no longer surprising anymore. Americans have finally figured out that white evangelicals, by and large, are all talk and no action. Any group that votes overwhelmingly in favor of a thrice-married, affair-having, pussy-grabbing, swamp-attracting, family-separating, COVID-spreading huckster has no business claiming to be all about family values, sexual purity, and basic human decency. They’re morally bankrupt.
(Portions of this article were published earlier)