Is There A Mark Ebner In Missoula Getting Ready For An I Told You So Tour?

by Travis Mateer

Before Bill Cosby was exposed as a sexual predator, he was a protected asset of Hollywood celebrity culture. That’s what Mark Ebner discovered when he tried raising the alarm in 2007 about the substantive allegations swirling around. Here’s the introduction from his Daily Beast article:

In 2007—seven years before she publicly came forward—I spoke with Joan Tarshis, a former Hollywood publicist who claimed that Bill Cosby raped her. After our talk—and, of course, much more research—I filed a version of the following story on my website Hollywood, Interrupted. It identified a number of women who claimed that Bill Cosby had raped them, including Andrea Constand, whose allegations led Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, prosecutors to charge Cosby criminally on Dec. 30, 2015. 

In my interviews with several of the women back then, I found the tale they told disturbingly similar: All were young and impressionable, beautiful, and talented. Cosby had taken a keen interest in their careers, and had offered to mentor them or otherwise open the fabled doors to the glistening kingdom of show business, for which he was a principal emissary. All were given spiked drinks—or drugs misrepresented as medicine—and became incapacitated, the women charged. And all allegedly awoke with the unshakable sense that something wrong had occurred. People magazine even ran an article on the lawsuits that were settled with several of the women, but never followed up on it. And from my own experience, I can confirm that the story shook people to the core: Even more than Woody Allen, Bill Cosby was a beloved figure and civil-rights pioneer; hardened editors were horrified at the prospect of taking him down. I might as well have pitched a story about Martin Luther King Jr. philandering with white women. The story went nowhere.

It’s important to track the history of this story, and the media complicity that enabled it to remain untold for so long. Heroes always fall hard, but their suffering and anguish is nothing compared to that of their victims. — Mark Ebner

In Missoula, it’s not a celebrity hero who has fallen, but a member of the faith community by the name of Jonathan “JD” Partain, the “former” CEO of Missoula’s Boxing Club. Considering this man’s reported confession, it’s nice of the Missoulian to say his arrest is only on “suspicion” of child abuse in the title of the article that posted yesterday. From the link:

Charging documents filed in Missoula County on Nov. 22 allege that in August, a teenager told officials one month prior she was changing when she noticed a cellphone propped up on a speaker system Partain installed earlier in the day.

She noticed it was recording a video.

Partain told investigators he installed the stereo in the girl’s bedroom. He activated his phone’s video recording via a smart watch that was connected to the device, according to charging documents.

“Partain stated he was ‘completely at fault for all of it,’” Handelman wrote.

The case was filed directly into Missoula County District Court last week. Partain is not currently in custody.

No, Partain isn’t currently suffering the indignity of pre-trial incarceration, so he’s free to go about his days, but considering the nature of his charges, that Boxing Club he started for ONLY youth probably needs to be closed down.

Do you see the age range? Yeah, that’s a problem, but it’s just one of many. Other problems include who knew what about this guy, and when.

When you go to the Boxing Club website, you can see the tactics on full display. Beyond the targeted age range, the “club” requires youth to complete their homework before “gloving up”. Here’s a screenshot of the language explaining the Books Before Bags program:

That last part I find particularly creepy in light of the allegations AND confession by Partain, so let me emphasize it in case the text from the screenshot is hard to read: Once a student has finished to THE SATISFACTION OF THE DIRECTOR, he or she is allowed to glove up!

I have a hunch the quick confession from JD Partain is because predators like him are calculating, and he knows he will STILL HAVE SUPPORT in the faith community, despite the despicable nature of his alleged criminal actions sexually exploiting a minor (his daughter?).

How could this man get support from his faith community? Just acknowledge that flesh is weak, scapegoat Satan, then ask for forgiveness. It’s not complicated.

While I myself am not a member of any particular faith community, the upside down world we now live in has seen me on more than a few pews looking for answers and community support. I know others on similar searches, and while good people are definitely finding each other, we’re also realizing something important: the wolves are everywhere.

Case in point:

JD Partain is by no means an unusual man. In fact, his trajectory is eerily similar to another man-of-faith I’ve been looking into this past year, a man who isn’t shy about what he begs God to do to his enemies.

To answer the question posed in the post, no, there isn’t a tour being planned, but THERE ARE Mark Ebners who exist, and there are conversations happening, and it’s only a matter of time before more comes out about who the wolves are, and the lengths they go to protect themselves, and each other.

If you’d like to help sustain my ability to investigate what’s happening in this community, please consider making a donation at my about page.

And thanks for reading!

About Travis Mateer

I'm an artist and citizen journalist living and writing in Montana. You can contact me here: willskink at yahoo dot com
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