James Duggar's Father's Day Tribute To Jim Bob May Actually Be A Swipe At Sister Jill

As the 13th of the 19 siblings in his family, James Duggar doesn't get as much attention as his older sisters and brothers, whose weddings and births were highlighted on the "19 Kids & Counting" series. At almost 22, he's single and the owner of an environmental services company, helping to clear land for new construction. He posts only occasionally on Instagram, highlighting family trips, showing off his heavy-machinery skills, and taking flying lessons from his brother Jeremiah. James is also the one who orchestrated the wild gender reveal stunt for brother Jedidiah and his wife, Katey.

Since James isn't as active on social media as his siblings, it came as a surprise when he posted a Father's Day 2023 tribute to dad Jim Bob Duggar on Instagram. "Happy Father's Day to the man who has always been my biggest supporter," he wrote. James went on to praise his father's work, faith, and "the countless memories we've made together." But in the middle of the heartwarming sentiments was one statement that appeared to be a direct slap in the face to one of his famous siblings — and followers were quick to point it out.

Is James still a Shiny Happy Person?

James Duggar's effusive Father's Day tribute declared, "Regardless of what anyone may say, your [sic] the best dad in the world!" It was a telling statement, considering his older sister Jill Duggar Dillard has been saying quite a bit about Jim Bob Duggar. She and her husband, Derick Dillard, appeared in the Amazon docuseries "Shiny Happy People: Duggar Family Secrets," in which, in addition to criticizing the controversial Christian ministry she grew up in, Jill made some startling claims about her father. Jim Bob, she said, never gave them their TV earnings. Worse, she said he pressured her to appear in an interview to defend the brother who had harmed her. It was "damage control," Jill added, to help keep their TLC show on the air.

James's support of his father launched a war of comments. "Direct dig at the only one who has the guts to stand up for herself," said a Jill fan. Another referenced the fact that Jill and her sisters were tasked with helping to keep their younger siblings in line: "This is sad. Jill basically raised you and yet you support and thank the man who has hurt her time and time again." Among the pro-Jim Bob statements were, "James Duggar has a right to still love his dad" and "I believe he is a great father!"

His sister may yet have the last word. Jill Duggar Dillard is releasing her own tell-all book, "Counting the Cost," in September 2023.