The Myth of the Good Ole Days by A. Bevere
Here are just a few excerpts from this other blog. Please click the link to visit the other blog if you’d like to see the entire article:
(Link): The Myth of the Good Ole Days
The Myth of the Good Ole Days by A. Bevere
Here are just a few excerpts from this other blog. Please click the link to visit the other blog if you’d like to see the entire article:
(Link): The Myth of the Good Ole Days
Salvation Army Bans Duggar / Quivering Cult’s ‘Retreat’ (Called ‘Get Them Married’) that Promoted Arranged Marriages for Teen Girls – Quivering Advocates Are Anti-Adult Singleness and Anti-Celibacy
Before I present you with the links to the news reports about this story (which are much farther down the page), I wanted to make some introductory comments in general, and a few specific comments refuting a few points from a pro-Quivering page about celibacy.
In regards to the specific news story I am blogging about today, this Quivering group is completely overlooking Apostle Paul’s comments in (Link): 1 Corinthians 7 that it is better for people to remain single than it is to marry – and Paul does not say that this teaching is in regards only to “a few,” or only a “minority” of people.
The Bible nowhere states that marriage is “a norm,” or that God expects or wants all, or most, people to marry.
It just so happens that in other cultures thousands of years ago, most people did happen to marry – one should not deduce from this cultural situation that God supported it or wanted it to be so. It just was what it was.
If the Bible said that all or most ancient Jews painted their bodies green once a year and balanced weasels on their heads while jumping up and down on a watermelon one week out of a year, one should not assume from this that
The Quivering group’s position on marriage, celibacy, and singleness is unbiblical, not to mention disturbing.
According to this article (linked to much farther below), the Quivering group was going to call this event, (where they set up marriages for little girls to marry), “Get Them Married.”
Why not have an event called, per 1 Corinthians 7, “It Is Better To Stay Unmarried”?
Am I opposed to marriage? No.
Is the God of the Bible against marriage? No.
But the Bible does not say that being married is better or more holy for girls, women, or culture, than being single, but a lot of Christian groups, and these wacky Christian cults, insist otherwise.
Christians need to do a better job of recognizing adult singleness and celibacy as legitimate, godly, biblical lifestyles and choices for all persons (and not only meant for a small minority of people who were supposedly “gifted” with it), instead of promoting marriage and natalism as the only legitimate avenues or as ways of fixing culture, the nation, or as pleasing God.
Continue reading “Salvation Army Bans Duggar / Quivering Cult’s ‘Retreat’ (Called ‘Get Them Married’) that Promoted Arranged Marriages for Teen Girls – Quivering Advocates Are Anti-Adult Singleness and Anti-Celibacy”
Christian Radio Host Busted for Slapping Woman’s ‘Butt Cheek’ Inside Target Restroom – And How This Conflicts With Preacher Doug Wilson’s Propriety of Rape Commentary
First, here is a link to the news story with some excerpts, followed by some observations by me:
(Link): Christian Radio Host Busted for Slapping Woman’s ‘Butt Cheek’ Inside Target Restroom by B P Markus
Before I tie this in with pastor Doug Wilson (much farther below), I wanted to reiterate a few points I normally make about such stories when I post them.
I don’t know if this Howington guy is married or not, or a father. If he is either one or both, I can tell you this is another example of how being married or a parent are not indicators of maturity or godliness, as many Christians say they are. Nor is being married a guarantee a man is not going to pull sexual shenanigans on people who aren’t his wife.
Married people also sexually sin at times. Sexual sin is not the lone province of single adults.
Not only am I, a never married adult not having sex (I have chosen to stay celibate so far into my life), but I don’t go around doing things like slapping other people on their butts.
Why “Family Values” Defined Conservative Christianity (and Why “Religious Liberty” has Replaced It) – by E C Miller
I am right wing, somewhat Christian, and believe that many Christians and secular conservatives have made the nuclear family and marriage into idols, which is wrong.
I am not opposed out-right to the traditional family, marriage, or to motherhood, and so forth, in and of themselves, but I am in disagreement at how so many right wingers and Christians elevate all those things to the point that they end up marginalizing anyone who does not fit the mould of “married with children.”
Anyone who is infertile, child free, divorced, never married, widowed, and what have you, is excluded or treated shabbily by the majority of “family values” obsessed right wingers and Christians, which again, in my view, is terribly wrong and unfair.
Here is an article explaining how and why the religious right elevated “the family” in their rhetoric:
Patriarchy vs. Single Women in the Bible by B. and T. Jennings
(Link): Patriarchy vs. Single Women in the Bible by B. and T. Jennings
This page I am linking to and excerpting below is critiquing one that was arguing that single women should stay at home.
The authors are addressing the author of the other page, a woman who explains she is still living at home and not going to college because she believed she was following biblical teachings for women.
Married Father and Baptist Preacher J D Hall – Another Example of How Marriage and Parenthood Does Not Make a Person More Godly or Mature
(There is an update at the bottom of this post).
This involves a lot of back story I don’t want to get into because this blog post would be ten pages long.
I am blogging this primarily for adult singles who have felt marginalized or hurt by Christian denominations or churches that treat adult singles as though they have cooties.
I have a somewhat different motivation for blogging about this than other blogs do. There were a few other blogs who addressed the child abuse aspect of the story, that we have an adult (Hall) badgering a teen kid (Braxton Caner) on the internet.
J D Hall is a Calvinist preacher with a blog called “Pulpit and Pen,” a Twitter account, and a group of fan boys who follow him around online who actually refer to themselves as “Pulpiteers.”
At one time, Hall’s groupies were using the #pulpiteer (or “pulpiteers”) hash to follow each other around Twitter. I’m not sure if they still use the “Pulpiteer” label or not. I will continue to refer to them as such.
This group, and a few other people, have a long standing hatred of another guy named Ergun Caner.
Being Childfree, Childless, Infertile, or Dealing With the Death of a Mother on Mother’s Day, An Abusive or Insensitive Mother, Mothers Who Lost Adult Children to Murder or Sickness (links)
Disclaimer: I am not anti-motherhood, nor necessarily against people taking their mothers out to brunch on Mother’s Day, or buying dear old Mom some flowers to mark the occasion.
I am, however, against the excessive focus on motherhood, the failure to acknowledge and celebrate childless and childfree women, the onslaught of syrupy Mother’s Day hoopla, on and before the day, and the church services that honor mothers because:
Some Christians have turned motherhood (as well as fatherhood and marriage) into idols, which they should repent of.
That is one reason why churches are losing visitors and members: despite the fact that 44% of American adults are single (edit: as of 2014 studies, (Link): that figure is now 51% or greater) and a big chunk are childless, most churches either…
– IGNORE adult singles/ childless adults,
-preachers and Christian talking heads insult adult singleness and adult virginity from their blogs, pod casts, books, organizations, and pulpits, by implying or forth rightly saying, that adult singleness (or being childless) makes a person stunted, or makes a person not as “godly” as being married with kids.
Now, why the hell does anyone suppose I, a never-married celibate woman, would want to attend a church where I am insulted before I ever step foot in it?
Most churches spend mountains of money on “family” ministries, family dinners, programs for youth and married couples.
Most churches and denominations do not budget time or money for adult singles anything – not classes, social functions, dinners. The big message from that is, “At our church, we don’t care about adult singles or those without children. You have to be married with a kid to count here.”
If you are a church that has a “Mother’s Day” celebration or ceremony of some sort, even if it’s very brief, you should also have one the following Sunday for all the childless, never-married women, the child free women, and infertile- but- married women too, or women who have not been able to carry a baby to term (ie, miscarry) – it’s only fair.
If you are unwilling to honor ALL women in ALL situations, ages, and life stages, at one time or another during the year in your church, nobody should get a holiday or party, none, nope, nuh-uh.
This post discusses being single and childless or childfree on Mother’s day, or other circumstances that make Mother’s Day painful for some women.
(Link): Mother’s Day After Abortion
Dear Person at the Front of the Room,
Written by a Child Free, lesbian Woman (you do not have to be a lesbian or agree with or endorse lesbianism to relate to what this woman says):
(Link): On Not Being a Parent by Julie R. Enszer
(Link): A Bittersweet Mother’s Day
Continue reading “Being Childfree, Childless, Infertile, or Dealing With the Death of a Mother on Mother’s Day, Or Dealing With An Abusive or Insensitive Mother, Mothers Who Lost Adult or Young Children to Murder, Abortion, Miscarriages, or Sickness (links)”
(I just got a notification from Word Press that today is my four year anniversary of registering with them for this blog. Yay, four year anniversary.)
Christian ‘historian’ David Barton: Allowing women to vote ‘hurts the entire culture and society’ and prohibiting the female vote kept the family together
(Links to pages with Barton’s quotes are farther below)
I am no secular feminist. I’m not left wing or a Democrat or a liberal (“progressive”), but I find some of my fellow right wingers to be odd balls on occasion, and this is one of those occasions.
It’s bad enough that some conservative Christians defend sexism under the guise of it being “biblical” (the terms they slap on church sanctioned sexism is sometimes referred to as ‘gender complementarianism’ or ‘biblical womanhood’) –
But to see a well-known Christian personality such as Barton defend the sexist notion that women should not vote, or it was good that at one time they were not permitted, because it makes for “stronger families” is another indication that some Christians have turned the nuclear family, marriage, and parenthood into idols.
Views such as this also do not take into account that some women never marry and never have children.
Some women who do marry are infertile, or their husband is, so they never have children.
Yet other women are widowed or divorced.
You will notice in Christian gender complementarian views, women who “fall between the cracks,” ones who are unmarried or childless, are not recognized.
This Barton guy has crack pot views about marriage and coffee and PTSD as well (see links at bottom of this post).
I think keeping women from voting on the basis of their gender alone, and supposedly that it’s due to keeping families together, is sexism.
Please, some Christian, try to defend the idea that being sexist is okay with God and oppressing women in this way is justified to “defend the family” or “defend culture.” (This is a rhetorical proposition.)
Although I am socially conservative and a right winger, I think other so cons and right wingers need to keep things in perspective.
Sacrificing equality of women in the name of “the family” – when it comes to this particular case (voting) – is unjust and shows just how much some Christian conservatives have turned “family” into an idol.
Christian ‘historian’: Allowing women to vote ‘hurts the entire culture and society’ by David Edwards
A so-called “historian” who Glenn Beck hired to teach at his online university insisted this week that women had originally been denied the right to vote “to keep the family together,” and for the good of “the entire culture and society.”
On the Thursday broadcast of Wallbuilders Live, David Barton explained that biblical principles — and not sexism — were behind not allowing women to vote prior to 1920.
“So family government precedes civil government and you watch that as colonists came to America, they voted by families,” he said. “And you have to remember back then, husband and wife, I mean the two were considered one. That is the biblical precept… That is a family, that is voting. And so the head of the family is traditionally considered to be the husband and even biblically still continues to be so.”
Barton argued that in the time since the women’s suffrage movement succeeded in the United States, “we’ve moved into more of a family anarchy kind of thing.”
Kook Christian Groups/Individuals and Their Nutty Beliefs on ProCreation and What Constitutes Being Unequally Yoked
Here is another post or two with more quotes by people who claim to be Christian but who teach the thoroughly un-biblical view that God’s kingdom is to be spread by married couples pro-creating (making babies).
The Bible in fact teaches that the kingdom is to be spread and enlarged by Christians- whether married, single, divorced, with children or childless – telling the un-saved about Jesus Christ, not by marrying and having children.
As to this first link. I tend to lump all these categories together myself – patriarchy, quiverfull, complementarianism – because to me, they are all just a bunch of men teaching that men should control females.
The author of this piece below might kind of disagree with me, because he (or she?) seems very keen on people following very specific definitions of each term.
I do not agree with some of the sharp criticisms of this piece. I for one don’t see the problem with someone proclaiming that “Christian patriarchy is two steps away from making women wear a burka.”
Because you know what? It is. Some of the rhetoric and reasoning is very similar in “Christian modesty ” teachings as it is in Islamic teaching on how they feel women should cover their bodies and faces.
I actually think that comment is pretty dang accurate, in that many of these groups do advocate “modesty” teaching, which frowns on Christian women showing so much as an ankle.
Both groups – Muslims and pro-modesty Christians – tell women that they should cover their bodies because men are incapable of controlling their sexual urges and that men get instantly turned on beyond their control at the site of an attractive female. So, responsibility is placed upon women in both schools of thought to “dress modestly.”
Regardless of those issues, note the quote below about how this person believes that Christian women should “out breed” their opponents:
From the page, (Link): WHAT “CHRISTIAN PATRIARCHY” IS NOT , by R.L. Stollar
Michael Pearl gave us a perfect embodiment of Quiverfull’s dominionist streak, when (Link): he recently stated,
“If you can’t out-vote them today, out-breed them for tomorrow.”
That is Quiverfull (albeit a distilled, intense version of it).
… Yes, there are many advocates of Christian Patriarchy who are Quiverfull.
And by all means, speak out against the dehumanizing and toxic idea that your children are your weapons, and a woman’s vagina is a weapons-building factory.
But remember these are distinct, especially considering there are many advocates of Christian Patriarchy who are not Quiverfull.
Take Doug Wilson, for example.
Doug Wilson is considered one of the pillars of Christian Patriarchy but believes birth control can be useful to ensure you’re actually taking care of your current children. That’s outright heresy to the Quiverfull crowd.
From this site:
(Link): Not On Your Side, Debi
Excerpts (emphasis added by me):
… Besides being given to racist and homophobic remarks, the Pearls are somewhat obsessed with sex. It gives Michael [Pearl] hope to envision homeschoolers “outbreeding” progressives.
He counsels the wife of an angry man to “make love” to improve her husband’s mood.
Debi often suggests that being sexually available is a wife’s primary responsibility.
Michael even wrote a book on erotic pleasure for fundamentalist Christian couples.
I can’t remember where I saw it – if on one of the pages above, but some page I read earlier today referenced quotes by Debi Pearl about being “equally yoked.”
Perhaps these comments can be found on her and her husband’s site, No Greater Joy, I am not sure.
Someone on another site quoted Pearl as having said that if you are a Christian, and you marry another Christian in a state that permits homosexual marriage, that your marriage – yes YOUR marriage to another Christian – is “unequally yoked.”
The argument seems to be that if you, a Christian, marry an opposite gender to yourself Christian in a state that also has legalized homosexual marriage, that a marriage performed in such a state taints yours, or makes yours invalid.
To put it yet another way (according to the Pearls): your marriage to another Christian is “unequally yoked” all because your next door neighbors, Fred and Stan the homosexual couple, are legally married by the same state too.
Please let that sink in and roll around in your brain for several moments: two Christians, one a man, one a woman, married to each other in a state where homosexual marriage is legal are said by the Pearls to be “unequally yoked”.
I’ve thought on it for awhile and still cannot make sense of it. What nuts these people are.
I ventured on over to the Pearl NGJ (No Greater Joy) site and see they have a page for singles ((Link): NGJ: Singles), and with pages on advice on how to find a mate, LOL, no thanks, won’t take advice from crackpots like them. The Pearls advise in their books on parenting that parents should beat their infant children with pipes.
There is much more nuttiness by them, but I don’t want to make this a huge post about the Pearls and every crazy thing they’ve ever taught.
On the main page for NGJ Singles is this:
This page at NGJ Singles actually recommends that parents allow a brother to pick out husbands for their sisters:
I’m in my 40s now and still not married.
My one brother is married to an atheist heroin addict. Yeah, I don’t think I’ll be going to my big brother for martial partner selection or input, thanks but no, Debi.
By the way, does it never occur to these Christian parents that their daughter may choose to stay single, a choice which God respects (see 1 Corinthians 7)?
Excerpt from Debi’s page:
She was gentle, cute, hard-working, and always cheerful, in addition to being the most compliant girl you have ever met.
But before they ever made it to our door to talk to Daddy Mike, most of them were already discounted as possibilities. Gabe or Nathan had seen to that with their reports.
Big brothers were watching out for their sisters, especially the sweet one.
How skin crawling is that, for so many reasons.
I have said it before, and I will say it again, but some Christian views on gender roles – whether we are talking patriarchy, gender complementarianims, or using the term “biblical womanhood” – is nothing but CODEPENDENCY under religious terminology, and is, therefore, un-biblical.
Codependent women are sweet, gentle, shy, compliant, soft spoken – they have poor- to- no- boundaries. Codependents are afraid or reluctant to be assertive, say no to people, and express anger.
Note too, that these are the same exact characteristics that are held up by Christians as being marks of biblical womanhood, or desirable for a Christian man to look for in a Christian wife: sweet, shy, gentle, compliant, soft spoken, little- to- no- boundaries.
Further note in books by experts on spousal abuse the sorts of traits abusive men intentionally look for in a mate:
sweet, shy, gentle, compliant, soft spoken, little- to- no- boundaries.
Seeing a pattern yet?
Yeah, Debi Pearl is (and I find this sad and chilling) totally thrilled that her daughter is prime pickings for an abusive man.
More excerpts from the page (advice to older brothers with younger single sisters):
Now, the oldest sister is kinda bossy, but she always gives in after a little persuasion. She’s the smartest. So if you think you would enjoy a little challenge but get a good mate for the extra effort…she’s your gal.
My next sister is not so cute, but she is the nicest of the bunch.
…So how about it…wanta check out the fam? I got four other guys coming Sunday for brunch, so you better hurry if you want the pick of the litter.”
That whole excerpt is so horrifying and sexist, I hardly know where to begin.
I would not want my brother approaching his male friends and blurting out, “So, you lookin’ for a bride?” My god, that would scare away every man on the planet.
Not that I object to friends and family setting me up with eligible guys my age, but what Pearl is suggesting sounds almost more like arranged marriage, where the woman is playing a very passive role.
Pearl also makes it sound like the brother is supposed to “market” the sister to men, as though she is not a human being, but a brand of shampoo, a car, or a tube of toothpaste.
She is kind of asking the brother to play the role of a pimp.
This remark: “My next sister is not so cute”
If your own mother is basically advising your brother to tell his pals you are ugly, that is pretty damn insensitive.
At any rate, here we see above yet more examples fringe, wacko groups, or persons, passing themselves off as Christian, but who are teaching some bizarre, un-biblical things about marriage, having children, and re-defining what “equally yoked” means (or has been traditionally understood by most Christians to mean).
It’s bad enough when Christians are telling Christian singles to only marry other Christian singles
but the Pearl family is basically telling Christian singles not to even marry another Christian single if they live in a state where homosexual marriage is permitted, as that would make their marriage “unequally yoked” (sorry I do not have a source for that, it is a quote someone pasted in at another blog without a link, I have no reason to believe he or she was lying about it).
I am really creeped out and appalled by these views of marrying, what constitutes being un-equally yoked, and pro-creation these groups are advocating. Their views are totally un-biblical. They have given themselves over to the worship of marriage, parenthood, and family.
Instead of worshipping the God of the Bible, they are worshipping their own peculiar ideas of culture, family, and marriage.
If Moses came down from the mountain today, he’d see most of the contemporary, American “Christian” people bowing down before a statue made of gold, of a figure of a man, woman, and child holding hands (a statue of “nuclear family”), with a “Focus on the Family” broadcast playing on a radio in the background, with a mountain of books with titles such as, “Ten Steps to a Great Marriage” and “How to Raise Godly Children.”
(Link): Pastor charged in wife’s murder was headed to Europe to marry boyfriend, prosecutor says – Single Xtian Ladies: Kick that Be Equally Yoked Teaching to the Curb! Also: Marriage and Parenthood do not make people more godly or mature or loving or ethical
(Link): Christian Single Women: Another Example of Why You Should Abandon the “Be Equally Yoked” Teaching: 21-Y-O Christianity Student, Children’s Minister Charged With Murdering Fiancée He Was to Wed in August; Made It Look Like Suicide
Sorry, but being a mother is not the most important job in the world, by Catherine Deveny
Christians are guilty of, as this writer below says, “The deification of mothers.”
Trust me on that one, as the voice of experience.
Try being over 40, still a virgin – never married, no children – and you feel very excluded in many conservative churches.
The exclusion against childless and older single women is not always deliberate in Christian culture, sometimes it is.
However, the un-intentional put downs and un-intended insults can be almost as hurtful. Most often, married Christian mothers, the instant they learn you are over 30, never married and have no children, lose all interest in getting to know you further.
Some of these married mothers act instantly uncomfortable and awkward around you once they find out you are still single and childless… you are treated like an alien from Mars, rather than a fellow human being. It’s hurtful, awkward, and is one reason of many I no longer attend church.
Churches constantly host Mother’s Day ceremonies or do things like monthly invite all new mothers foreward to pray for their newborns, but when is the last time you saw a preacher call all never-married women forward to pray for them, or to cheer on their accomplishments, such as buying a house alone, getting a work promotion, getting a college degree? Yeah, never. Only motherhood is viewed as a significant “accomplishment” for women in churches.
(By the way, I do not hate motherhood, and I am not opposed to women being mothers: I am only opposed to how adult single women, the infertile, childless, and child free are excluded, insulted or marginalized by so many Christian churches, denominations, and media.)
Here’s the article:
It’s time to drop the slogan. It encourages mothers to stay socially and financially hobbled, it alienates fathers and discourages other significant relationships between children and adults
Being a mother is not the most important job in the world. There, I said it. Nor is it the toughest job, despite what the 92% of people polled in Parents Magazine reckon.
For any woman who uses that line, consider this: if this is meant to exalt motherhood, then why is the line always used to sell toilet cleaner? And if being a mother is that important, why aren’t all the highly paid men with stellar careers not devoting their lives to raising children? After all, I never hear “being a father is the most important job in the world”.
The deification of mothers not only delegitimises the relationship fathers, neighbours, friends, grandparents, teachers and carers have with children, it also diminishes the immense worth and value of these relationships. How do gay dads feel about this line, I wonder? Or the single dads, stepdads or granddads? No matter how devoted and hard working you are, fellas, you’ll always be second best.
I’m also confused as to what makes you a mother. Is it the actual birth? Or is a “mother” simply a term to describe an expectation to care for children without payment? Is this empty slogan used to compensate women for gouging holes from potential careers by spending years out of the workplace without recognition?
Enabling this dogma devalues the unpaid labor of rearing children as much as it strategically devalues women’s worth at work. If being a mother were a job there’d be a selection process, pay, holidays, a superior to report to, performance assessments, Friday drinks, and you could resign from your job and get another one because you didn’t like the people you were working with. It’s not a vocation either – being a mother is a relationship.
Even if it were a job, there is no way being a professional mother could be the hardest when compared to working 16 hours a day in a clothing factory in Bangladesh, making bricks in an Indian kiln, or being a Chinese miner. Nor could it ever be considered the most important job in comparison with a surgeon who saves lives, anyone running a nation, or a judge deciding on people’s destiny.
~ Read the rest here ~
Related posts this blog
No Man’s Land – Between Agnosticism and Christianity / Also: It’s Emotional Not Intellectual (PART 1)
This will be a series of posts where my thoughts wander in and out and all over, and it rambles, but there is a point or two behind it.
Since I’ve been in a faith crisis the last couple of years, somewhere between being an agnostic and a Christian, I have noticed I don’t fit in anywhere. I reside in No Man’s Land.
(Even before then, when I was a total, committed Christian, and politically, I was, and am, right wing, I still didn’t fit in at most blogs and forums, including political ones, and including ones for right wingers!
I tend to be one of those personalities who annoys or angers everyone, even those on “my side” of an issue, except a small number of people, who are either on my side of a topic or not, who “get me” or who appreciate where I’m coming from – again, this is true for even the ones who disagree with me on whatever topic we are discussing.)
I am in this really weird place now, where I am critical of some aspects of conservative Christianity, and see where conservative Christians get some doctrines and other things wrong, but, too, I am not fully on board with militant atheism (I find the New Atheists to be arrogant, vile, hateful and rude), and I don’t even care for lukewarm atheism.
Nor am I in the camp of anything and all things liberal Christianity, except where I think they get the occasional point correct (such as their rejection of gender complementarianism).
Since drifting away from the Christian faith more the last few years, I more often began frequenting forums or blogs for and by atheists, ones by liberal Christians, ones by ex Christians, or by Christians who were abused by a former church who remain Christian but who dropped out of Church, or who now are on a crusade to expose abuse by preachers or the absurdity and harm of current evangelical gimmicks.
THE MILITANT ATHEISTS
A clarification: when I say I have been visiting atheist forums and blogs more often, I am very picky about which ones I regularly visit.
I do not like the frothing- at- the- mouth, extremely bitter, biased- against- Christians- type atheistic communities.
The bitter atheist groups sound like a bunch of irrational, hate-filled loons who reject Christianity for emotional reasons, but who lie to others and themselves and say, “Oh no, it’s purely intellectual.”
But their unrelenting, insane amount of hatred at any and all things God and Christian, is just a total turn-off to me, so I try to avoid such sites.
These angry, always-ranting atheists are really nothing more than Fundamentalist Atheists or Taliban Atheists. They are just as dogmatic about their atheism as Muslims are in their Wasabi Islam or Baptists are in their Neo Fundamentalism.
Really, those types of atheists are just as bad as the religious groups they claim they hate, but they don’t seem to spot that they are. It’s ironic – and it’s hard to stomach the day in, day out anger and hatred, so I try to avoid their sites.
HYPOCRITICAL CHRISTIANS VS NON HYPOCRITICAL CHRISTIANS
Also, you have to be honest with yourself, which I do not find militant atheists to be, by and large: not every single Christian is a hypocrite, jerk, idiot, dullard, or complete jackhole.
I say this as someone who is very fed up with Christianity and Christian persons myself these days.
But your average militant atheist will never admit that some Christians are in fact okay and not being hypocrites.
I have known and met a few Christians who were sincerely trying to live the Christian faith out, such as my mother, who is now deceased, and her mother before her (my grandmother).
I’ve met a few honest, sincere Christians online who do help people and show compassion to the wounded.
So it’s not fair to completely dismiss the entirety of Christians and their faith or treat them all like jerks because some are liars, mean, or abusive.
Which is not easy for me personally, because at the same time, I do keep noticing that a lot of self-professing believers do NOT live out what the Bible says.
Many self professing Christians today, for example, do not protect victims, such as young church members who have been sexually molested by preachers.
Nor do many church goers today hold accountable preachers who bilk their church goers out of millions to buy big mansions and jets.
These idiots, these lemmings, actually defend their greedy pastors online, which I’ve written about here: (Link): Your Preacher Sucks – and People Have a Right To Say So And Explain Why.
Then you have a conservative or evangelical culture, which claims to care deeply that people preserve sex until marriage, but if you actually find yourself 40 years of age and still single – and therefore still a virgin, such as myself – these same churches and Christians do not offer you any support.
You either go ignored, or preachers and talking heads of such groups “run down” and insult celibacy as well as older, celibate adults. Churches treat single (and especially celibate) adults as though they are flawed, lepers, weirdos, or losers.
Churches wrongly counsel abused wives to return to their spouses – this is particularly true, again, of churches or Christian groups who buy into “biblical womanhood” (aka “gender complementariansm”) or “patriarchy.”
Churches and average Christians also remain ignorant or callous about matters pertaining to mental health issues, from P.T.S.D. to depression and anxiety attacks.
Some Christians wrongly and insensitively teach that “real Christians” can never get depression or other mental health maladies.
Or, some Christians believe and teach that prayer, faith, service to the poor, or Bible reading alone can cure one of mental illness.
Still other Christians (or the same type) will shame and guilt suffering Christians for using anti-depressant medications, or for seeing secular or Christian psychiatrists and therapists (see this link for more, “Over 50 Percent of Christians Believe Prayer, Bible Reading Alone Can Cure Mental Illness (article) – In Other Words Half of Christians are Ignorant Idiots Regarding Mental Illness”).
Yet other Christians are incompetent at, or unwilling, to provide more ordinary, “every day,” run- of- the- mill comfort to other Christians who are hurting, such as a Christian who is stressed out over a job loss, someone who is in mourning for a deceased loved one, etc.
Christians are dropping the ball in numerous ways.
And this failure, this huge failure, causes life long Christians like me to look long and hard at the faith and wonder if it’s true at all.
It causes even someone such as myself to ask if the faith is true, because
~ and it makes you wonder “what is the point, then.”
I find this discrepancy between confessed belief and actual practice shocking, because I myself sincerely tried living out the faith since childhood.
Also, my Christian mother was a role model for me, and she genuinely, consistently lived out and by biblical teachings, including getting up off her ass and actually HELPING people (giving them money if they were in a bind, cleaning their homes for them when they were sick, listening to them cry and rant about their problems for hours without judging them or interrupting them, etc).
I am not seeing most other Christians do any of this. They say they believe in those things but then they do not do them.
BLOGS AND FORUMS FOR SPIRITUALLY ABUSED OR THOSE HURT BY CHURCHES
Before I actually get into this topic (which I discuss more in Posts 2 and 3), here is some background leading up to it.
As far as the sites I have visited by liberal Christians, ex Christians, atheists, as well as sites by Christians for the spiritually abused:
By and large, these have been wonderful, supportive sites and groups to visit (the ones run by Christians for hurting Christians).
I have noticed, though, that there are problems even within these types of communities, and I don’t entirely fit in at them, either.
Married Preacher, Father of Eight Kids, Used Nanny as Sex Object – update on Phillips story
WARNING. Post ahead contains some sexy scenarios, some adult material, if you will.
I have written of this story before – twice. Here’s yet another update on the Phillips saga.
Most Christians don’t support folks like me, who have stayed virgins into our 40s or older – I’ve never been married, but had wanted to be – but instead, Christians preach repeatedly on the importance of marriage and having children. They claim to defend and revere “family values.”
Christians pay attention to marriage, married couples, and children and parenting all the time, but do little for or about older singles.
I’m treated like persona non grata, or like a leper, depending on which denomination we’re considering, for being a childless, never married, 40 something virginal woman.
But these guys who work as preachers who espouse the “nuclear family” ideal, who are married, some are fathers, get caught in affairs all the time. They are such flaming hypocrites it makes me want to form a fist and punch a hole in the wall.
Instead of Christians harboring the unfair stereotype that never married men past age 30 are child molestors, given the staggering amount of news items I keep seeing of MARRIED CHRISTIAN MEN (see this link for examples) who are using prostitutes, having affairs, molesting kids, and acting inappropriate towards young women, I think the stereotype needs to be dropped.
It’s much more accurate for Christians to suspect married men of sexual sin than un-married ones.
We have an update on another married preacher, a marriage- and- family idolater, Doug Phillips, who apparently cheated on his wife, which you can read at (Link): Spiritual Sounding Board
– under the “Lourdes Torres, Alleged Victim in the Doug Phillips (Vision Forum) Sex Abuse Scandals Files Lawsuit” post which was published April 15, 2013
(Link): Lawsuit claims S.A. religious leader preyed on his kids’ nanny
(Link): Sex Scandal Rocks The Duggars’ Christian Patriarchy Movement
(Link): Pastor accused of ‘using nanny [Lourdes Torres] as sex object’, from WND
This has nothing to do with anything, but in some of the photos, particularly the “red dress” photo, Torres looks like British R&B singer Amy Winehouse.
Compare (Link): Torres’ Photo with (Link): Amy Winehouse photos and tell me if they don’t look like they could be sisters. Anyway…..
Excerpts from WND article:
Lawsuit claims religious leader promised to marry young woman after wife dies
by CHELSEA SCHILLING
(Warning: This story contains explicit descriptions of alleged sexual conduct described in a lawsuit and may be offensive to some readers.)
The former leader of a popular Christian ministry – who resigned from his position after confessing to an “inappropriate” relationship – is now the subject of a lawsuit that claims he “methodically groomed” and made unwanted sexual contact with a young woman after serving as an authority figure in her life for more than a decade.
Doug Phillips, a husband and father of eight children, had been a popular and controversial figure in the homeschooling movement and a leading advocate of “biblical patriarchy” before his resignation from Vision Forum Ministries and Boerne Christian Assembly, a Baptist church outside San Antonio, Texas, at which he had served as an elder and preached hundreds of sermons.
… According to the teachings of the patriarchy movement, also known as the stay-at-home daughters or quiverfull movement, young women remain at home under the protection of their fathers.
They’re generally expected not to work outside their home or go to college, and they’re taught to abide by strict gender roles in which men have authority over women.
‘A personal sex object’
In the complaint filed in Kendall County District Court in Texas Tuesday morning, Phillips is accused of using a woman named Lourdes Torres, now 29, as “a personal sex object” over a period of five years.
… Torres said she met Phillips and his wife, Beall, at a homeschooling conference in November 1999 when Torres was 15 years old.
Torres spent many hours in the Phillips home, cared for their children and helped run the family farm. She was invited on trips with the family to Hawaii, Virginia, Mexico, Florida and other states.
By 2007, according to the complaint, Phillips began “to pay special attention” to Torres, complementing her beauty and devotion to his family, giving her money, touching her, asking her personal questions about her thoughts and life plans and telling her he would take care of her.
By October of that year, the lawsuit states, Phillips invited Torres’ family to live with him as they were moving into a new home: “Phillips entered [Torres’] bedroom and without her consent began touching her breasts, stomach, back, neck, and waist.” Torres alleges she began to cry and ask Phillips to stop as he rubbed his genitals on her and “masturbated and ejaculated on her.” She claims the behavior continued, and Phillips told her he loved her and intended to marry her and “blatantly disregarded her requests” that he stop.
“Douglas Phillips, on the evenings he visited Ms. Torres, persuaded her that he was not doing anything wrong, that he intended to marry Ms. Torres, and that his wife would die shortly and enable him to marry Ms. Torres,” the complaint states. “He further repeatedly told Ms. Torres that he loved her, that he would take care of her, and that what they were doing was not wrong. He also stated that if it was wrong, it was completely her fault.”
A Female’s Virginity Belongs To Her – Not Her Father or Husband – Re: Purity Balls
This story has been making the rounds the past week.
While I do believe the Bible forbids pre-martial sex and supports virginity until marriage; and that virginity until marriage has been under attack from Christians the past few years (in addition from secular culture); and that a person’s choice to remain celibate should be respected by all (not mocked); that Christian parents or parents with traditional values have a right to instill Christian or traditional morals in their children, I do not support things such as purity balls.
One of my first problems with these “purity balls” is that they focus on female sexuality.
In these balls, the young ladies are forced to dress in white wedding type dresses, dance with their fathers, their fathers give them purity rings, and the young ladies pledge their virginity to their fathers.
As far as I am aware, there is no male equivalent, where young males are told to give their virginity to their mother and later, should they marry, their wife.
The Bible is clear that pre-martial sex is forbidden for all, for both genders, not just the ladies.
It is sexist and unbiblical for Christian parents to emphasize virginity only for female children.
I do not feel purity balls are appropriate for several reasons, but if one is going to hold one for females, one needs to keep things evened out by forcing males to participate in them as well, by having the males pledge their virginity to their mothers.
Growing up, I was very much turned off at the idea of marrying a non-virgin male. My preference is still to marry a virgin male.
I do feel that people who have pre-marital sex cheat their future spouse out of something that is rightfully theirs (ie, their virginity).
I know a lot of liberal Christians, emergents, and so forth hate that reasoning, but I apply it equally to males. I am grossed out at the idea of going on a honeymoon knowing the guy I have married has already placed his penis in some other woman’s orifices.
As I get older, I realize I may have no choice, because fornication is rampant these days – adult, male virgins are not exactly a dime a dozen. I’ve made peace with that.
At any rate, male virginity is not valued or upheld nearly as much as female virginity is, especially in religious circles.
I suspect one reason for this is that religious parents do not want to deal with unplanned pregnancies. Who gets pregnant from sex, males or females? Exactly.
I suppose Christian parents find it easier to clamp down on their daughter’s sexuality so as not to have to deal with birth control, abortion, adoption, and medical bills, so they up the pressure on the female children not to put out. One does not have to worry about a son becoming pregnant.
A woman’s virginity belongs to her and her alone.
At this point, I don’t even want to say one’s virginity belongs to God, though I suppose a biblical case can be made that a person’s body, sexuality and so on belongs to God (and there are biblical passages which indicate this), but God does not force Himself on people, their bodies, and their choices.
I have seen numerous testimonies by Christian women who admit to having had slept around many times over their life, and they suffered no ill consequences from that behavior.
God may call pre-marital sex a sin, but He does not enforce any negative consequences – in this lifetime- upon those who engage in such behavior, so far as I have been able to ascertain.
I actually see the opposite: I often see testimonies by Christian women on television programs who said they were big sluts, they admit they knew the Bible is against pre-marital sex, yet had sex anyway, they say they came down with some kind of awful disease as a result, but when they turned to God again, that God completely healed them of their sexually transmitted disease.
Still others said the only bad outcome of whoring around is that they came to feel empty or guilty due to said behavior, later stopped, and later met a great Christian guy who they married.
So, in spite of all the pre-marital sleeping around, they later got married, and now live happy, conventional, married, middle- class- American life styles.
Whether a female chooses to engage in premarital sex is her choice and hers alone.
I am not opposed to parents teaching their children to save sex for marriage and bringing up potential health problems involved of having sex, but in the end scheme of things, one’s virginity is one’s own, and one can do with it as one pleases.
(Note, however, the Bible does in fact teach that pre-marital sex is a sin. You can certainly have pre-marital sex if you so choose, but God does not condone that behavior.)
Forcing girls to attend faux marriage-like ceremonies where they have to devote their virginity to their fathers is distasteful, borders on incestuous, and places unrealistic, unfair pressure on these young ladies.
Give the young lady the proper moral guidance and health information she needs, and step out of her way; stop it with the purity balls.
I find these purity balls to be just as bad as the porn-i-fied culture we live in.
It’s the reverse extreme: usually in our society, people are pressured to have sex, have a lot of sex with lots of people and to start young. They are told their sexual choice to remain celibate is ridicule-worthy, shame worthy.
The virgin’s or celibate’s sexual choice to refrain from sex is often not respected. It is belittled. Virgins are shamed and bullied into acting like whores.
The purity ball is the reverse, but just as bad – pressuring young women into a sexual choice they may not want to make for themselves.
It’s telling them that their body, their virginity is not theirs, but belongs to someone else, either a father or a future husband.
I do believe one should save one’s virginity for a future spouse – so in a sense, I’d say yes, your virginity is owed to your future spouse – but at the end of the day, one’s virginity is still really and finally one’s own.
Your body is yours, not your father’s, not your future husband’s.
What I am getting at is that one’s choices should be respected. If you make all your kid’s choices for her, she will never be able to function as an adult. At some point, she needs to make choices for herself about herself, and that includes what to do when it comes to sex and her body.
Another reason these purity balls are so damaging: they make the job of all Christians (or semi- Christian, semi- agnostics with traditional values) who defend the Bible’s teaching on sex, (such as myself), ten times more difficult.
I already have an uphill battle defending celibacy and virginity as it stands, without these lunatic, crackpot fringe Christian groups holding these bizarre father and daughter virginity dances.
Staying a virgin until marriage does not guarantee great, regular sex, as many Christians like to maintain. I have numerous examples on my blog; just use the search box and type in “sexless marriage” for example after example of people who stayed virgins until marriage, but then their sex lives were terrible or dried up totally.
By the way, I am not fully on board with the “you are married to God” talk one sees pop up among some Christians. It sexualizes God and Jesus. I am an adult single – God is not my husband, and I am not “dating” Jesus.
See these links for more:
(Link): How the Sexual Revolution Ruined Friendship – Also: If Christians Truly Believed in Celibacy and Virginity, they would stop adhering to certain sexual and gender stereotypes that work against both
Do the people who throw these purity balls ever stop to consider that their daughters may never marry?
I was a Christian since I was a child, I was raised with the expectation that I would marry some day. I am still single in my 40s. No “Prince Charming” ever entered my life.
Fewer women seek help for infertility, data show
I didn’t care too much if I had children or not, but I blog about this topic on occasion because if you are a Christian female, you get the message from Christian culture constantly that you are not worth anything unless you marry and have children.
Some lunatic Christians, even the ones more mainstream, and despite the total lack of biblical support (sorry, but the Bible comparing kids to a ‘quiverfull of arrows’ is really not suggesting that believers should breed like rabbits for theological, or socio-political-cultural, reasons) are teaching that to win ‘Murica back to Christ, that Christian couples need to pop out oodles of rug rats, out breed the heathen.
That is why I occasionally post infertility articles, unwed mother birth rate articles, etc. etc.
Increased awareness about the options hasn’t resulted in increased use of infertility services, according to new federal data. Instead, the numbers show declines for those seeking medical help to get pregnant or to prevent miscarriage.
“There’s always been this perception these things are on the rise when the data have never supported that,” says Anjani Chandra, lead author of the report, out Wednesday from the National Center for Health Statistics.
Findings are based on a survey of 22,682 men and women, ages 15-44, conducted from 2006 to 2010, but much of the focus is on ages 25-44, because that’s when the report says “infertility service use may be more prevalent.”
… Kurt Barnhart, president of the Society for Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility, says the report confirms what he already knows.
“Fertility services are underutilized and not reaching everybody,” says Barnhart, an OB-GYN at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.
Still, findings show that women ages 25-44 with current fertility problems were “five times more likely to have ever used any infertility services and six times more likely to have used medical help to get pregnant” than those without current problems.
… Still, high costs for some procedures (that can reach thousands of dollars) as well as the fact that not all procedures are covered by insurance means that some may not take that first step, Barnhart says.
“Not everyone needs expensive or high-tech treatment,” he says. “Maybe simple treatments and advice is all they need. When people don’t come in to get the consult, they don’t know if simple solutions would have helped them.”
Barnhart suggests one reason for the declines could be that the survey was conducted largely during tough economic times.
Christian Patriarchy Group: God Demands You Marry and Have Babies to Defeat Paganism and Satan. Singles and the Childless Worthless.
Though it is primarily a blog about spiritual abuse, the following blog occasionally covers the very troubling, odd views some self professing Christian groups have about marriage, dating, and having children:
(Link): Spiritual Sounding Board
I usually devote my attention to marriage and child worship by evangelicals, Baptists and one or two other main stream groups, but there are other Christian groups who are actually far, far worse.
These groups include Reconstuctionists, Quiverfull, some homeschooling groups, and Dominionists. Some of these “Christian” groups want the USA to revert back to using Old Testament Laws. They place far more emphasis on having children and being married than even the average Baptist, Reformed, or evangelicals do.
These fringe groups, somewhat like Independent Fundamentalist Baptists, have a lot of weird, unbiblical ideas about inter-gender relations; they seem to frown upon men and women merely spending time alone together, even if it is just in friendship, to chat.
They assume any and all male-female interaction will always end in sex. When the genders are taught this way and are not encouraged to spend time with each other (one on one) it can and does stunt a person’s growth, and leaves them unsure how to approach or deal with the opposite gender… which in turn means, such people lack the courage or skills necessary to date, which also means they cannot marry, or it will be a long, long time before they do..
I realize that some of these groups don’t even permit dating and are into courtship, but the courtship model pushes kids who are not right for each other into marriage far too young. And it too causes them to have all sorts of strange ideas about the genders and how men and women ought to relate.
Here’s one post about it from the Spiritual Sounding Board blog.
Here are excerpts (please click the link above to visit the page):
The speakers in the audio are Doug Phillips and Geoff Botkin. Here is the introduction to the series:
[— start quote from patriarchy group —]
Our age is defined by warfare against the Christian family, and one of the casualties experienced by many families is the death of multi-generational victory. Psalm 128 teaches that it is the hope of the righteous man to see the generations that come after him persevere in Christ
Only God’s grace can produce such a blessed result, but the Bible teaches that parents can make strategic choices which either impede or bless generational faithfulness.
…. In the battle between pagan culture and the Christian family culture, paganism often wins.
…We believe more is needed. Our message is this: To achieve victory, first you must seek it. In the battle for the family, this means making God-honoring and strategic choices …
[— end quote from patriarchy group —]
If you click the link above and read the entire post, you will see the word “family” (as in nuclear family, NOT the spiritual family of God) mentioned over and over. These people have made an idol out of the traditional family.
Interesting (and Disturbing) Editorial On How Males Outnumbering Females Leads to More Violence Against Women etc
BY SUNNY HUNDAL
Imagine a world where the proportion of girls being born is so low that large proportions of males just cannot find partners when they come of age. In such a world they are more likely to congregate in gangs for company. In turn, that means they are more likely to engage in risky behaviour: i.e. commit crime, do drugs and engage in violence against women. In gangs, men are more likely to harass women and even commit rape.
But this isn’t some dystopian fantasy – there are 37 million more men than women in India, and most of them are of marriageable age given the relatively young population. A social time-bomb is now setting off there with terrifying consequences.
While researching for my e-book on violence against women in India, earlier this year I came across an extraordinary article on why some brothers living in the same household were sharing a wife rather than marrying separate women.
Let that sink in for a moment. The Times of India reported in 2005 on instances where between two and five brothers living in a house, in rural areas in the state of Punjab, had married the same woman. It was extraordinary not just for what was in it, but for what was left out.
Continue reading “Interesting (and Disturbing) Editorial On How Males Outnumbering Females Leads to More Violence Against Women – Men Cannot Find Women To Marry, etc (Re Demographics in India, Gender Selective Abortion etc)”
Marriage Does Not Make People More Loving Mature Godly Ethical Caring or Responsible (One Stop Thread)
The following are links to many (but not all) posts on this blog about news reports about sins and crimes committed by MARRIED people.
Not only do these news reports dispell the Christian myth that married people are more godly, mature, responsible, or sexually pure than singles, but…
These links also demonstrate that married sex is not as great Christians say it is, which they say to entice kids into staying virgins until marriage.
If married sex were as wonderful as Christians claim, we would not see all these reports of married Christian men (or women) using porn, having affairs, or hiring prostitutes.
Some of these married people featured in the news reports below might also be PARENTS and CHRISTIAN.
—- LIST OF CRIMES / SINS COMMITTED BY MARRIED PEOPLE —-
List of Married MEN who have been caught in sin or crime is listed farther below
Contains links to information about why married women commit adultery, survey info, etc:
Man writes for advice, his wife had affairs:
Continue reading “Marriage Does Not Make People More Loving Mature Godly Ethical Caring or Responsible (One Stop Thread) Confronting Refuting Correcting Rebutting Christian Propaganda Arguments Stereotypes About Marriage Married Matrimony”
A Response to the Hemingway Editorial ‘Fecundophobia’ – conservatives and Christians continue to idolize children, marriage – which is unbiblical
Ms. Hemingway must be out to lunch.
Other than the secular, hyper-militant Child Free persons (and yes, they do exist, I’ve encountered them on forums or blogs for Child Free, and they are usually self professing pagans or atheists, and they are almost always very liberal and hostile towards Christians, pro lifers, and Republicans), I don’t know of many people who are pushing for, or embracing, “low fertility rates.”
Nor do I know many people among the childless or CF (childfree) who are “afraid” or pregnant women or children.
Here is a link (well, it’s a tiny bit farther below) to the editorial by the woman, Hemingway, who has a misunderstanding about the childless and childfree. Not all childless or childfree are alike in personality, political or religious views, or in their reasons as to why they remain without children.
I’ll only be writing from my particular vantage as a childless woman, I will not be attempting to defend or explain the differing views of or for every single childless or childfree person.
I have additional commentary below these excerpts; there are points where I agree with this author, and points where I do not:
(Link): Fecundophobia: The Growing Fear Of Children And Fertile Women, By Mollie Hemingway
The author, Hemingway, begins by quoting an article by a sportswriter about a football player who is about to have child number seven, and she seems to feel that the author is implying that it is “weird” for the footballer to have so many children.
Here is the section Hemingway quoted:
If you visit the page in question, however, (Link): the page in question, you can see that the page’s writer is primarily riffing on this point:
Nick Novak hit a 50-yard field goal just inside the two-minute warning to give the Chargers a two-possession lead. This was Philip Rivers’s reaction. He’s like a sad movie character who pumps himself up in front of a mirror.
The primary point of the page is not fertility at all, but rather, the player’s strange body language and facial expressions he makes during games.
The part about him having six or seven kids is a minor thought that appears at the bottom of that page. It is not the focal point.
Hemingway then goes on to criticize several papers for not criticizing the choices of other football players who asked their girlfriends to get abortions.
Note that Hemingway quotes this by Philips, when asked how he handles being father to six children:
This is actually one of several reasons I am somewhat opposed to the acceptance of, or pushing of, hyper fertility – the burden is always put primarily on the woman to look after the rug rats, while hubby gets the easier task of shuffling off to the 9 to 5 job daily.
Mom never gets a break; she stays with the children 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
But women like Hemingway think this lop-sided and unfair burden of child care foisted on the woman only is a good thing, I would suppose.
Read about Andrea Yates and how she murdered several of her children after being expected to be a full time mommy with little to no help from anyone, not even her spouse ((Link): Yates information).
Hemingway responds to the perfectly natural, “how the hey do you manage with six children?!” question by asking incredulously,
Why, it’s the kind of perfectly normal, natural reaction of someone, of any sane, rational, and logical person, who thinks having more than two or three children is strange, expensive, and very time consuming – that is the sort of person who.
Even people who are currently parents to two or three children might wonder in awe at, or in bewilderment at, why anyone would want to have more than three children, or how they handle more than three, without going broke or being physically exhausted all the time.
It is not only the liberals, childless, or childfree who get puzzled by this sort of thing.
Christian gender egalitarians note that there are some differences between men and women ((Link): visit CBE – Christians for Biblical Equality), but it does not follow that while women may be better at relationship, or more drawn to building them, that they therefore should all have at least one child, or up to ten of them.
Women can just as easily use their interest in, and talent at, relationships for volunteering to help lonely seniors at senior citizen retirement homes, or volunteering to feed homeless people at soup kitchens, or, helping take care of homeless puppies and cats at the ASPCA.
Hemingway’s argument shortly before that, which gets into how we are all interdependent, actually shoots down her other points which argue in favor of each person having ten children: you can go through life childless but depend on brothers, sisters, uncles, neighbors, friends, and if you are a church goer, fellow church members.
One does not have to have children in order to have someone to depend on, or to be “interdependent.”
Just because a larger percentage of people in contemporary society are choosing not to have children (and remember, some who want to are unable to – from lack of partner to infertility), does not mean all people will make this same choice.
As a matter of fact, the number of babies among unmarried women have been skyrocketing, which is angering, or worrying, a lot of Christians:
(Link): Single Father households on the rise
Nor does a decrease in people interested in pro-creating necessarily mean all of society will grind to a halt. There will always be someone, somewhere, who will keep getting pregnant and giving birth. (It’s just not going to be me specifically. And that is okay.)
Then there’s this information, which would appear to refute some of Ms. Hemingway’s views:
(Link): America’s Baby Bust Must Be Over
As a matter of fact, that is the pattern that Jesus Christ sought to establish, that people be freed from the ancient over-dependence on family, because Jesus recognized that such a society ignored those without one, such as orphans, spinsters, and widows:
Someone told him, “Your mother and brothers are standing outside, wanting to speak to you.”
He replied to him, “Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?”
Pointing to his disciples, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers. 50 For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.”
[source: Matthew 12]
And further, from Matthew 10, Jesus speaking:
For I have come to turn
“‘a man against his father,
a daughter against her mother,
a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law—
a man’s enemies will be the members of his own household.’
“Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.”
No where in the Bible does Jesus teach that one must have children in order to have someone to “depend upon.”
Having children, in the New Testament, is not listed as a rule or commandment.
Your spiritual brothers and sisters in Christ (that is, other Christians) are to be your primary family; you are not to seek family out in husband, children, mother, or brother.
The Bible does not condemn marriage or having children, but it remains that singlehood, as stated by Paul the Apostle under inspiration of the Holy Spirit, is stated as being preferable for believers – not marriage and procreating.
26 Because of the present crisis, I think that it is good for a man to remain as he is.
27 Are you pledged to a woman? Do not seek to be released. Are you free from such a commitment? Do not look for a wife.
28 But if you do marry, you have not sinned; and if a virgin marries, she has not sinned.
But those who marry will face many troubles in this life, and I want to spare you this.
32 I would like you to be free from concern. An unmarried man is concerned about the Lord’s affairs—how he can please the Lord.
33 But a married man is concerned about the affairs of this world—how he can please his wife— 34 and his interests are divided.
An unmarried woman or virgin is concerned about the Lord’s affairs: Her aim is to be devoted to the Lord in both body and spirit. But a married woman is concerned about the affairs of this world—how she can please her husband.
35 I am saying this for your own good, not to restrict you, but that you may live in a right way in undivided devotion to the Lord.
[source: 1 Corinthians 7]
I am a right winger, I am a social conservative, and yes, I realize that a lot of the media -which is tilted left- rabidly supports abortion.
I do not support abortion myself.
I am not opposed to women having babies, if that is their informed choice.
However. It remains a fact in American society that outside of left wing media, there is still a tremendous pressure, and expectation, placed upon people, especially women, to crank out babies.
The cultural landscape is the direct opposite of what Hemingway states in her editorial.
Outside of fringe, far left, kook, militant Child Free type groups or individuals, or rabidly militant, secular feminists, there is still a huge expectation from larger culture that women should have babies, and if they do not have children, for whatever reason, they are hounded for it, put down, and insulted, or scolded, or treated as though they are freaks.
Women are attacked for remaining childless not only by commentators such as Hemingway in newspapers and blogs, but also by their baby-obsessed mothers, sisters, aunts, and grandmothers, and female co-workers.
It is a very real perception and stereotype by the child-loving population, which is in the majority, that you are thought weird, baby-hating, evil, incredibly selfish, etc, if you cannot have children, or, if you deliberately choose not to have children.
I have never liked children myself, so I never cared if I had a baby or not.
But please note: I do not “hate” children, I do not fear them, I do not condone child abuse or abortion. I am simply not comfortable around babies and children: they are typically loud, messy, distracting. I prefer not being around them.
At one point in her editorial, Hemingway talks about walking around a city, an area very liberal in flavor. She mentions seeing signs hanging up around that part of town reading, “Thank you for not breeding.”
I suggest to her, I posit, that conservative and Christian culture does the same exact thing as that liberal section of the city she visited, only they are mirror opposites: rather than hanging up signs that say “thank you for not breeding!,” conservatives and Christians hang up signs screaming at women TO marry and TO “breed.”
False Christian Teaching: “Only A Few Are Called to Singleness and Celibacy” or (also false): “God’s gifting of singleness is rare” – More Accurate: God calls only a few to marriage -and- God gifts only the rare the exceptions the few with the gift of Marriage
Before I get to the main point of this post: About the chastity thing, or celibacy thing. Technically, all Christians are called to a chaste life, not just singles.
If you are married, you are not supposed to be diddling anyone but your spouse, and per Jesus’ comments of (Link): Matthew 5:27-28, that means no dirty web site, movie, or magazine viewing for married people, either.
First of all, the Bible does not teach the concepts of “Gift of Singleness” (GOS) or “Gift of Celibacy” (GOC).
Nor does the Bible teach that God fore-ordained in eternity past who would remain single, or who would be married, which is the faulty method in which some Christians understand the term “gifted with singleness” or GOC.
I will not address those points here, because I have discussed them in older posts here:
I want to address one somewhat common falsehood and assumption I see crop up in televised Christian marriage seminars or sermons, or in Christian blogs and pod casts about dating, sex, and marriage, which is this:
Often times, a preacher will pause to say during a presentation about marriage that “only a few are called to singleness.” But is this true?
Preachers will sometimes use this “only a few are gifted or called to singleness” rhetoric to shame singles into getting married.
I believe preachers and conservative Christian organizations feel this way and keep quoting “only a few are chosen for singlehood,” since they assume that the once-common American cultural situation of one marrying in one’s twenties and having children was typical, that it remains typical.
Most troubling, such Christians seem to assume that the Bible commands, or expects, all Christians to marry and have children, and that not marrying, or not procreating, is sinful – but it does not. In the New Testament, singleness is regarded as being fully acceptable.
Preachers, and even many Non Christians, continue to assume that marrying young and having children is the norm.
However, census data of the past ten years reveal that getting married young, if at all, is no longer the norm.
More and more people – including Christians – are either skipping marriage altogether, or getting married later in life, due to circumstances beyond their control, or, some are deliberately choosing to stay single for a lifetime, or at least until their 30s or later.
Some figures I have seen have stated 44% of American adults over the age of 18 are single, while other figures cited have been as high as 50%.
When close to half the American population of adults is single, and this applies to conservative Christians in Baptist and evangelical contexts as well, how can Christian preachers, Christian talking heads and speakers at Christian marriage seminars, keep making the BOGUS claim that only a few are called to singleness?
When half of adult conservative Christians are single, is it not more accurate to say (if you believe in the “gifting” or “calling to” of singleness, which I do not), that God has called a heck of a lot of adults to singleness, and that God has only called a piddling few to marriage?
The New Testament does not prescribe or describe marriage or having children as being normative.
The New Testament does not depict being married, getting married, or having children as requirements, commands, mandates, or expectations for anyone, for most, or for all.
Marriage and having children are presented as valid options for believers, but as being no more valid or worthy than being single and childless, whether by deliberate choice or by circumstance.
I do not believe God calls or pre-ordains anyone to singlehood or marriage, but if one insists upon using such terminology, and wishes to be accurate about the state of culture today, it looks like God has called only a few to marriage and childbearing / procreation.
Look at these American statistics:
by D’Vera Cohn, Jeffrey S. Passel, Wendy Wang and Gretchen Livingston
Barely half of all adults in the United States—a record low—are currently married, and the median age at first marriage has never been higher for brides (26.5 years) and grooms (28.7), according to a new Pew Research Center analysis of U.S. Census data.
In 1960, 72% of all adults ages 18 and older were married; today just 51% are. If current trends continue, the share of adults who are currently married will drop to below half within a few years. Other adult living arrangements—including cohabitation, single-person households and single parenthood—have all grown more prevalent in recent decades.
Number of unmarried people in America 18 and older in 2011. This group comprised 44.1 percent of all U.S. residents 18 and older.
Source: America’s Families and Living Arrangements: 2011
Percentage of unmarried U.S. residents 18 and older in 2011 who had never been married. Another 24 percent were divorced, and 14 percent were widowed.
Source: America’s Families and Living Arrangements: 2011
Number of households maintained by unmarried men and women in 2011. These households comprised 46 percent of households nationwide.
Source: America’s Families and Living Arrangements: 2011
Number of people who lived alone in 2011. They comprised 28 percent of all households, up from 17 percent in 1970.
Source: America’s Families and Living Arrangements: 2011
Table H1 and HH-4
(but churches keep right on ignoring singles anyway)
The long-term slide in marriage rates has pushed the proportion of married adults of all ages to 52% in 2009, according to the Census, the lowest share in history. In 1960, 72.2% of adults over 18 were married.
The U.S. began tracking marriage statistics in 1880. The latest figures on marriage come from the Census’ annual American Community Survey, the government’s deepest and broadest look at economic, social and demographic trends.
But consider, too, the flip side: about half of all men find themselves in the same situation. As the number of people marrying has dropped off in the last 45 years, the marriage rate has declined equally for men and for women.
We’ve been hearing for years that fewer and fewer people are tying the knot, and a new study reveals just how much the marriage rate has declined in the last century.
A new report released Thursday by Bowling Green State University’s National Center for Marriage and Family Research found that the U.S. marriage rate is 31.1, or 31 marriages per 1,000 unmarried women. That means for every 1,000 unmarried women in the U.S., 31 of those previously single women tied the knot in the last year. For comparison, in 1920, the national marriage rate was 92.3.
Meanwhile, the average age at women’s first marriage is 27 years old, its highest point in over a century.
In 2011, the Pew Research Center found that 51 percent of Americans were married, compared to 72 percent in 1960. However, rates of cohabiting couples are rising — according to private research company Demographic Intelligence, less than half a million couples were cohabiting in 1960, compared to 7.5 million in 2010.
Earlier this year, Los Angeles Times columnist Meghan Daum offered a reason for declining marriage rates: cultural “rules” now compel couples to wait to marry until they have reached upper-class status. Pew researcher D’Vera Cohn told HuffPost in 2011 that the decline could be due to more acceptable living arrangements, including unmarried cohabitation.
Singles constitute more than 44% of the adult population in the nation.
About 44% of the nation’s workforce are unmarried employees
The Census Bureau estimates that about 10% of adults will never marry.
A majority of the nation’s households are headed by unmarried adults
Married couples with minor children live in fewer than 25% of the nation’s households.
Single adults living alone comprise about 27% of the nation’s households.
Another 13 million single adults are living with unmarried relatives.
Marriage has not been the norm in American culture for at least the last ten years now, maybe longer, depending on how one wishes to look at things. It is therefore dishonest and misleading for Christians to keep insisting that only a “few” “chosen” are called to lifelong singleness or celibacy or are “gifted” with it.
Related topics, this blog:
Focus on the Family Members Practice Infidelity or Homosexuality and Get Divorced and Remarry – links to exposes
(Some of these stories date from the year 2000.)
Edit. April 2016. Preface and Clarification.
What hypocrites. And they continue to aid in the marginalization of adult singles and adult childfree, and they keep on worshipping parenthood and the nuclear family.
By the way, if Christian groups spent more time doing what the Bible says they are to do – such as, policing their own rather than those outside the church ((Link): 1 Corinthians 5:12), AND spent their time pointing outsiders to Jesus (who was never, ever a hypocrite), instead of complaining and griping about homosexuality, abortion, and feminism, and other social issues, then when one of their own is caught in an extra-martial affair, or whatever other kind of sin, there would not be as much damage done to Christianity.
You can also see in posts such as this, which contain numerous examples of married Christian men screwing teen girls or having affairs with grown women, that they run around claiming to support sexual purity but in practice actually do not.
This also goes to show, once more, that being married, contrary to what most Christians believe, does not make a person more ethical, sexually pure, or responsible than being un-married.
Christian fable: if you stay a virgin until you marry, the sex will be great. -If that is true, we would not see so many middle aged married Christian men screwing their 25 year old secretaries or visiting prostitutes, now would we?
This link is from Democratic Underground, a site whose members I am usually not in agreement with (I am right wing):
(Link): “Focus on the Family,” glass houses, a Philanderer and an “Ex-Gay” Gay – Democratic Underground
Focus on the Family official resigns, admits extramarital affair
[original story source]:
(Link): Here We Go Again
Though I totally disagree with this comment, that appeared in the above article:
That excerpt above assumes that people are incapable of sexual self control, so married people avoid singles, and singles become isolated as a result. This is sometimes referred to as the Billy Graham Rule, which I have blogged about several times over on my blog, such as (Link): here and (Link): here – and many others (search for the term “Billy Graham Rule” on my blog to find more posts about it.)
Another book excerpt on Google Books mentioning the sexual sins and affairs of married Christian men who publicly bray about the importance of “family values” and marriage (though I assume this book was published ten or more years ago, because today’s social conservatives have LOST the culture war):
Related on this blog:
(Link): Christian, Family Values Vlogger – Austin Null – Caught Sexting (story dates from January 2016)
(Link): Good Grief! Five Million Dollar Family Idoltary on Display: Focus on the Family Launches $5 Million Project Targeting Family Breakdown, Social Ills – Please, when you say you support marriage, be honest about what you REALLY mean