Hello lovely readers! I hope you are having a wonderful evening and are ready for some meaty material. I have been studying Christian Patriarchy, MRAs, and other misogynistic practices for a little while now and decided to write a multi-part series detailing some of the information that I have come across in my travels. So, without further ado, here is the first segment in the series. I hope you enjoy it and, as always, please share this piece with friends and enemies alike!
You might not think that Evangelical viewpoints have anything to do with you. If you come from another religious tradition or no religious tradition, you may feel comfortable living in America, because it is known as the home of the free. We take for granted the separation of Church and State and we couldn’t possibly be like other countries that have national religions and oppress their people based on religious doctrine.
If this is what you think, I will give you a moment to Google and mull that thought over.
Unfortunately, the separation of Church and State that we have always assumed was our earthly right is being eroded in our country. It has been for many years, but with this POTUS* we see the agenda much more clearly. Not only did he promise to dismantle women’s, gay, and civil rights, but he has shown himself to be a white nationalist and a misogynist. He was the one candidate on the Republican side of the aisle that was willing to do whatever it took to win and what it took was promising the Evangelicals that he would be their guy.
“Still”, you ask, “does this really affect me? I mean – I feel pretty safe here in America because I was born here and I pay my taxes. I think I can overlook the craziness of this administration because in a year we will be rid of this POTUS*.” And my answer to you is, YES. It affects you. It affects every single one of us. It even affects the Christians that think they are doing what is right. We are moving toward a nation that is not free and that will hurt EVERYONE.
How do we fix it? First, we need to understand the people who are lobbying for changes in our society. Evangelicals have a specific belief system that prioritizes the power of men over women. The most obvious example of this is something called ‘Biblical Patriarchy’ or ‘Christian Patriarchy’. This form of patriarchy is not very different from the definition of patriarchy that exists in modern society, and it could be said to be the basis for this modern understanding. Christian Patriarchy touts the idea that men are the head of the household inasmuch as they oversee their wives and children and direct their lives. Women are, in this scenario, considered helpers and their domain is merely the home. According to a literal reading of the Bible, women are responsible for raising the children in the way that their husband has set forth. Here is an example of this structure that I have seen shared in many online forums to describe this movement, with verse references:
That last line is chilling. They have, 100%, worked in that direction and with the current administration they are getting many of the things that they have been striving toward. But why are they so powerful? How did they get someone elected who would move America away from the separation of Church and State and toward a ‘Christian’ nation? The better question is how can we turn this ship around? If we don’t understand the Christian Patriarchy Movement, we are defenseless against what it could do to hurt our Egalitarian society. We have issues with Patriarchy, on the daily, in our secular lives, but adding Christian Patriarchy to the mix takes the struggle for equality to another level.
Again you may wonder: What exactly does this have to do with me? Christian Patriarchy spreads across all denominations of Christianity. It is not just centered on Evangelicals, although we often see them as the largest faction within this movement. Evangelicals have successfully lobbied all levels of government to put their agenda front and center.
Consider this movement as a cruise ship. The Evangelicals and other Christian Patriarchy movement folks are all on the cruise ship and they offer everyone a ticket to their cruise but in order to board you have to leave behind some of the pieces of your identity that you may or may not be able to shed. In essence, you are either on the cruise ship, willing to get on the cruise ship, lost at sea on a raft or small craft, or simply treading water, for eternity.
- First you have to believe in their God and only their God. Being born-again is essential, so if you are anything other than a Christian before you set foot on the ship, you need to change your religion.
Several States have passed bills to display “In God We Trust” and/or the 10 Commandments in front of or on government buildings and on public property. This is in opposition to the Separation of Church and State, but the Evangelical folks don’t believe that it applies to them. To them, the separation isn’t protecting them, it is restricting them. Bonkers.
- If you are a woman, you need to put men in charge of your body (preferably White men, but we’ll get to that in a moment). If you are a feminist, you can’t get on the ship.
The current POTUS* has installed two judges that are anti-choice and successfully won a majority of conservative judges on the SCOTUS. This is a move toward dismantling a basic right for women to control our bodies. Christian Patriarchy folks also believe that birth control kills babies (because of course people who don’t believe in science wouldn’t understand how medicine actually works – clue – birth control pills DON’T actually kill babies, they prevent ovulation) so the next step in the legislation of this kind is to outlaw birth control pills. This is a thing that could happen in the near future if we don’t fight against it with actual scientific facts, legislation to retain the rights of women to have basic healthcare, including contraceptives, and elect more progressive people to overturn the conservative seats in the US Senate. Basically, feminists have won many rights for women that allow us to control our bodies and futures, and the Christian Patriarchy peeps do not appreciate that. So – no cruising for the feminists.
- If you are anything other than CIS and heterosexual, you are unable to board. All the LGBTQPIA2S+ folks are out of luck.
Legislation in this area started with the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), bathroom bills that require individuals to present ID to prove their gender identity matches the sex that was assigned to them at birth, and bills that give cover to adoption agencies that favor straight couples to gay couples going as far as allowing these agencies to use religion as a means to discriminate against couples if they do not meet the criteria of sexual orientation. And we all know about the ‘Hobby Lobby’ case and what I like to call ‘it’s just fucking cake’ legislation. So I guess there will be no LGBTQPIA2S+ folks on the ship either. My goodness how boring it will be.
- Can I get on this cruise ship if I’m not White or is there a segregation clause as well?
Well – there isn’t a segregation clause, per se, but you would need to denounce affiliation with any group striving for Civil Rights in the United States or that the cruise directors generally deem unnecessary or unworthy. This would include Black Lives Matter, the Black Panther Party, the Poor People’s Campaign, the NAACP, Affirmative Action, and any other group that is striving to help people of colour gain equality in the United States. This also extends to anti-fascist (and therefore anti-nazi and anti-white supremacist) groups, anti-hate groups such as the Human Rights Campaign, the Southern Poverty Law Center, or the ACLU, and any other group that seeks to make things fair across all of humanity. If you are or have ever been a member (or ever shown an affinity even for any of these groups) you will not be permitted to board.
So after all of that I say – keep your damn cruise ship, conservatives! Travel the high seas with your posse of bigots and leave the land to the rest of us.
If only it were that easy. Since we cannot exile the zealots to a ship, we have to continue fighting for our own rights here in America. We have to make this land free for EVERYONE, not just the conservative, White, religious folks. To do that, we have to join organizations, fund causes, and march. Our lives truly depend on us all partaking in the experiment that is America and getting active is the only way to ensure a better future for all. Rise up and stay standing for human rights!
Peace and keep up the fight!
Chantale – aka hippiegrrl
A few appropriate links:
Southern Poverty Law Center Hate Map – You would think that the deep south would have the most hate groups, but check out New York and California!
Planned Parenthood Action Fund
Human Rights Campaign
Black Lives Matter
Poor Peoples Campaign
Southern Coalition for Social Justice
Homophobic Tumblr post transformed into a LGBTI dystopian YA novel
Next up in this series: Twitter, Trolls, and Trumpsters. How are these movements connected to organized religion? Get ready for some interesting information to aid in your fight for good. DWP!