Woman, Know Your Place!

“Women should not be enlightened or educated in any way. They should, in fact, be segregated as they are the cause of hideous and involuntary erections in holy men.” – St. Augustine

Misogyny is defined as a hatred, contempt, dislike or distrust in women – especially by a man. In American society, misogyny is rampant and is the sole reason why there exists gender inequality in almost every area of life. It started with and continues to revolve around the dominant religion of our country, Christianity, and its projection of guilt about sex, its insistence on female subjugation and its dread of female seduction. The sole instigator is a character in the Christian book of myths (The Bible) named Paul of Tarsus, or Saint Paul for all you purists out there. The epistles that are attributed to Paul contain horrifically misogynist statements.

I Could Be Wrong, But…

I can understand the women that were raised in a deeply traditional religious family where it was taken for granted that women were viewed as unequal to a man, or equal but with different roles. But what about those who were not raised with the indoctrination to be Christian?  Why would they choose a religion that would immediately put her in a position of subjugation to another human being?

Now mind you, I am not a psychologist, but after doing a little research and thinking about it for a while, I started to consider the possibility that many of these women may have been either physically, mentally, sexually or verbally abused by their husbands, fathers or other influential men in their lives. Some of them may have even been victims of several or all of these assaults.  In one way or another, a man has let them down, abandoned them or hurt them in one way or another.

It would not be that difficult to convince a woman who is already in a vulnerable state that the main character in Christian mythology known as Jesus Christ would make a perfect replacement for an abusive husband, boyfriend or even male sibling.  Yahweh would make a perfect replacement for an abusive father figure, be it a biological father, a step father, guardian uncle, etc.  After all, Christian mythology teaches that the Christ character is not just a man, but a demigod who will never leave them or forsake them, has nothing but pure love for them and will stand by them in times of trouble, strife and despair.

This is an area where I welcome comments from those who are better credentialed in this aspect of psychology.  Any shrinks out there care to either validate my thoughts or school me where I might be wrong?

You Can’t Polish A Turd…

The simple and fact is that misogyny is fundamental to the basic writings of Christianity and it is such an intricate part of religious society that it took massive social movements to achieve the advances that women have made throughout US history. The right for women to vote, testify in court and own land are more recent than many people are aware. Women are still paid less than men who hold the same jobs and most of the Christian women that I know freely admit that they are subject to the authority of their husbands, much to the delight of said husbands.  Edith, where’s my beer?

In the bible, women are basically commanded to accept a role of inferiority and to be shameful for the simple fact that they are women. Misogynistic biblical verses are so common that if you open a bible to a random page, the odds are pretty good that you’ll find one wherever your finger lands. What makes me shake my head is that Christian women will defend these passages, and many times will use apologetics that were written by misogynist Christian men. They easily justify it by trying to reason in various ways, but in the end, it always comes down to ‘because god said so

Justification…

This is especially true for the first part of a passage in Ephesians, chapter five, that states, “Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church. . . .” Yes, there is the second part about men treating their wives as Christ treats the church, which is largely ignored. This is probably a good thing because Christ has pretty dim view of his church.

The bible is filled with all kinds of wonderful tidbits such as “These are they which were not defiled with women” from the book of Revelation (14:4), and “How then can man be justified with God? Or how can he be clean that is born of a woman?” from the book of Job (25:4) Tertullian, one of the early church fathers, took misogyny to new heights when he wrote:

“In pain shall you bring forth children, woman, and you shall turn to your husband and he shall rule over you. And do you not know that you are Eve? God’s sentence hangs still over all your sex and His punishment weighs down upon you. You are the devil’s gateway; you are she who first violated the forbidden tree and broke the law of God. It was you who coaxed your way around him whom the devil had not the force to attack. With what ease you shattered that image of God: Man! Because of the death you merited, even the Son of God had to die. . . . Woman, you are the gate to hell”

Many Christian men are part of a long history of treating women as chattel. Up until recently, it was still legal for a man to beat his wife and be exempted from prosecution. I won’t even get into the five-hundred year-long period of Church history that saw unending and perfectly legal torture and murder of “witches” because Exodus 22:18 says, “Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live

Just Shut Up…

Women have always (and continue to) hold subservient positions in Christian churches. Most denominations do not allow a woman into the clergy, particularly the role of pastor. The denominations that have acquiesced to female pastors are few and far between to be seen as little more than tokens. Christian men will argue that the church has made many advancements over the years, but this is simply untrue. The patriarchal church still views women as property and this is glaringly obvious with respect to the control a woman has over her own body. The Catholic Church still has reservations about contraceptives and has put considerable time, money and energy into supporting further restrictions on abortion laws.

I Own Your Ass…

The bible is rife with misogyny and degrading passages about women and often relegates them as equal to slaves. It treats them as property and chattel to be traded for a variety of things in ways that can only be described as prostitution and/or human trafficking. It is very clear that the life of a woman does not hold the same value as that of a man, and that men are the only ones who are to hold any positions of authority. The Christian views the bible as the inerrant, infallible and sometimes literal word of their god. For the life of me, I cannot understand why any self-respecting woman would choose to be a Christian.

I have assembled the following passages from “the good book“, Protestant and Catholic versions, to illustrate my point:

  • “No wickedness comes anywhere near the wickedness of a woman…..Sin began with a woman and thanks to her we all must die” (Ecclesiasticus 25:19,24).
  • “A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I don’t permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner” (I Timothy 2:11-14).
  • “The birth of a daughter is a loss” (Ecclesiasticus 22:3).
  • “Keep a headstrong daughter under firm control, or she will abuse any indulgence she receives. Keep a strict watch on her shameless eye, do not be surprised if she disgraces you” (Ecclesiasticus 26:10-11).
  • “As in all the congregations of the saints, women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission as the law says. If they want to inquire about something, they should ask their own husbands at home; for it is disgraceful for a woman to speak in the church.” (I Corinthians 14:34-35)
  • “When a woman has her regular flow of blood, the impurity of her monthly period will last seven days, and anyone who touches her will be unclean till evening. Anything she lies on during her period will be unclean, and anything she sits on will be unclean. Whoever touches her bed must wash his clothes and bathe with water, and he will be unclean till evening. Whoever touches anything she sits on must wash his clothes and bathe with water, and he will be unclean till evening. Whether it is the bed or anything she was sitting on, when anyone touches it, he will be unclean till evening” (Lev. 15:19-23).
  • “If a man takes a wife and, after lying with her, dislikes her saying, ‘I married this woman, but when I approached her, I did not find proof of her virginity,’ …and no proof of the girl’s virginity can be found, she shall be brought to the door of her father’s house and there the men of the town shall stone her to death. She has done a disgraceful thing in Israel by being promiscuous while still in her father’s house. You must purge the evil from among you.” (Deuteronomy 22:13-21)
  • “A bad wife brings humiliation, downcast looks, and a wounded heart. Slack of hand and weak of knee is the man whose wife fails to make him happy. Woman is the origin of sin, and it is through her that we all die. Do not leave a leaky cistern to drip or allow a bad wife to say what she likes. If she does not accept your control, divorce her and send her away” (Ecclesiasticus 25:25).
  • “Now I want you to realize that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of the woman is man, and the head of Christ is God…A man ought not to cover his head, since he is the image and glory of God; but the woman is the glory of man. For man did not come from woman, but woman from man; neither was man created for woman, but woman for man. For this reason, and because of the angels, the woman ought to have a sign of authority on her head” (I Corinthians 11:3-10).
  • “They called out to Lot and said, “Where are the men who came to you tonight? Send them out to us so we can have sex with them! Lot went out to them at the entrance and shut the door behind him. He said, “Don’t do this evil, my brothers. Look, I’ve got two daughters who haven’t had sexual relations with a man. I’ll bring them out to you, and you can do whatever you want to them. However, don’t do anything to these men, because they have come under the protection of my roof.” (Genesis 19:5-8)

Real Crimes Against Nature…

Misogyny has been responsible for some of the most heinous crimes against women in history, and in many ways the Christian misogynist not so dissimilar to his Muslim counterpart. As long as American society upholds the bible as a moral guide, misogyny will exist and women will continue to be disrespected by never-ending sexism, objectification and discrimination in almost every area of life.

Pastor’s all across the nation continue to advise abused women to stay with their husbands and Christian children are taught misogyny to be perfectly acceptable every week in Sunday schools across the nation. These children grow into adults who continue to perpetrate this dogma toward their wives, mothers, sisters and daughters.

The misogynist would like nothing better than to take this country back to the days of television “Father Knows Best” and “Leave it to Beaver” which kept women at home, in the kitchen and subject to the authority of their husbands with little or no thought of pursuing a higher education and “interfering” with things that are better left to the menfolk.

————————————————–

Notes:
  1. Yes, I know that Jamie and Adam did, indeed, polish a turd.  But it was useless.  
  2. If you want to search for an image on Google that is relevant to misogyny, avoid using search terms like “man spanking woman” or “female slaves,” unless you are into that sort of thing.
  3. I removed the comment about Paul probably being openly gay or a latent homosexual because the inclusion of this statement caused many of my readers to think I was suggesting that all homosexuals are misogynists.  I had a point in there, but it is not important enough to the article to try and spend several hundred words explaining it.  Plus, anyone who knows me realizes that I am a very strong and outspoken supporter of the LGBT community, and I do not want anyone to think I support a notion as ridiculous as what my sentence apparently construed.

  46 comments for “Woman, Know Your Place!

  1. danielrudolph
    December 11, 2011 at 1:31 pm

    The fact that women’s position in most churches is inferior to what would be ideal isn’t really cause to say nothing has improved. Timothy 2:12 is one of many verses where many churches deny its plain meaning because secular reasoning has won out over a hard-headed literalism. The majority of denominations ordain women. And while a significant portion of anti-choice types do fit your description, most would reject your framing.

    As to why women get into this, plenty of churches do a lot of pandering to women, just like they pander to men. I imagine the main appeal is how it frees the believer from things like responsibility and the pressure of decisions, because they can say it’s all in God’s hands.

    • Aquaria
      December 24, 2011 at 1:16 pm

      The majority of them?

      Citation needed.

  2. December 11, 2011 at 2:00 pm

    About your note:

    You can, indeed, polish a turd. But it’s still a turd, which is the point I think you’re trying to make with that saying.

  3. danielrudolph
    December 11, 2011 at 2:10 pm

    If there was such a person as this Paul fellow, he was probably either openly gay or a latent homosexual.

    Besides the fact that we know Paul existed because we have books he wrote, how does this not imply gays are misogynists? Also, the idea he was out of the closet is just laughable.

    • Al Stefanelli
      December 11, 2011 at 2:15 pm

      Really? What books did Paul write? If you are referring to the ones in the Book of Christian Mythology (Bible), you can’t possibly believe that Paul of Tarsus actually wrote those, can you? Well, maybe you could.

      As well, I am having trouble parsing your statement: “how does this not imply gays are misogynists?” Please clarify that. Also, homosexuality was widely accepted in ancient Greece, so the idea that anyone was out of the closet it certainly not laughable.

      Info on Paul:

      It is curious that no Jewish rabbinic writings of the 1st or 2nd century so much as mention a renegade student of Gamaliel who, having studied under the master and vigorously enforced orthodoxy on behalf of the high priests, experienced a life-changing vision on an away mission. Not a word emerges from the rabbis about the star pupil who “went bad”, a heretic who scrapped the prohibitions of the Sabbath, urged his followers to disregarded Judaism’s irksome dietary regulations, and pronounced the Law and circumcision obsolete. Surely such a renegade could not have completely escaped the attention of the scribes?

      How likely is it that Paul really studied under the Pharisaic grandee (Acts 22.3)? Paul clearly had difficulty with the Hebrew language: all his scriptural references are taken from the Greek translation of Jewish scripture, the Septuagint.

      How likely is it that, as a young man, Paul – supposedly a Roman citizen and from the Hellenised diaspora – even got the job as chief policeman of the ultra-orthodox of Jerusalem? And if Paul really had secured such a position, he surely would have had far bigger fish to fry than a miniscule “Jesus group” in Damascus. We are told in Acts that the apostles continued to preach in Jerusalem even after the death of Stephen (“They all scattered abroad … except the apostles.” – Acts 8.1,2). So why didn’t Paul go for the ringleaders, closer to hand?

      “Nothing in his letters suggests that Paul had any official standing in his treatment of Christians … Hence, in opposition to what Luke says, he could not have used arrest, torture or imprisonment as a means of forcing Christians to recognize that they had been misled.” – Murphy O’Connor, Paul, His History, p19.

      Given that the Jewish High Council (the Sanhedrin) had no authority to empower a heresy hunter to operate in the independent city of Damascus, Paul’s road trip is even more implausible.

      Link: http://www.jesusneverexisted.com/saul-paul.htm

      • Happiestsadist
        December 11, 2011 at 2:55 pm

        “The epistles that are attributed to Paul contain such outright misogynist statements that if there was such a person as this Paul fellow, he was probably either openly gay or a latent homosexual.”

        There’s this implication here that if one is a gay man, you must therefore be a misogynist. Or, rather, that being gay is the clear explanation for how that misogyny can possibly exist.

        That makes very little sense. On a number of levels. There is, naturally some sexism and misogyny among some gay men, because male privilege doesn’t so much care about your attractions. But I’m thinking most of them men who rape women, abuse their wives/girlfriends etc. aren’t gay.

        • Al Stefanelli
          December 11, 2011 at 4:19 pm

          That’s not the point I was trying to make, that all misogynists are homophobic, which is not even the proper word, but I digress. There are other things that could point to it. But that is hardly important in the context of the article, which is that Christianity (as well as many other religions) degrade the value of females.

          • Happiestsadist
            December 11, 2011 at 7:08 pm

            As a queer FAAB person, I’m both affected by Xtian misogyny and by the assumption that I despise any and all opposite sexes by my presumed not fucking them. Both are offensive. I know that’s not what you were trying to say, but that’s a really, really vicious stereotype right in the middle of a truly stellar essay.

          • December 11, 2011 at 11:42 pm

            @Happiest Sadist — What does FAAB stand for?

            I realize it may well be an awkward question, or one you don’t want to answer, and it’s okay by me if you decline to answer — I’m just curious.

          • Malky
            December 12, 2011 at 6:37 am
        • Happiestsadist
          December 12, 2011 at 4:29 pm

          Malky is correct. 🙂

          Female Assigned At Birth.

          • December 12, 2011 at 5:47 pm

            Thanks, guys!

      • danielrudolph
        December 11, 2011 at 2:56 pm

        Homosexuality per se didn’t exist in the society. What we would now know as gay relationships existed (sort of), but the idea of being gay and sticking exclusively to male partners did not. Also, from his writings, Paul seems to have been a big prude afraid of sex in general.

        As to how we know he existed, yes I am referring to the books in the Christian canon. (Some of them, anyway. Others are forgeries.) From textual evidence, Romans, First Corinthians, Second Corinthians, Galatians, Philippians, First Thessalonians and Philemon all seem to have been written by the same person, who identifies himself as Paul. They can be dated back to roughly the time they were allegedly written. Whoever wrote these books was the real Paul, pretty much by definition. I think that the parsimonious explanation is that he was actually writing to churches he founded as well.

        Did he pad his credentials? Quite likely. We see this with itinerant preachers and motivational speakers all the time these days. For instance, there’s no way Mike Warnke was actually a Satanic priest as he claims, but this is not grounds to question his existence. Were stories made up about him? Of course. A lot of Acts is extremely doubtful and parts contradict things Paul said in his letters. Presumably, the author pieced together a bunch of hearsay, much like he did with Jesus for Luke. The story of George Washington chopping down his father’s cherry tree is made up out of whole cloth and we can trace it back to its fictional beginning, but we don’t say “George Washington, if he did exist, was no tree-chopper.”

        You seem to have said that Paul that Paul was so misogynistic is only explicable by him being gay. If this is supposed to mean something other than that gays are the biggest misogynists, I don’t know what it would be.

        • Happiestsadist
          December 11, 2011 at 3:02 pm

          That’s true, a lot of what’s considered to be “standard” queerness didn’t really exist in a lot of cultures until very recently.

        • Al Stefanelli
          December 11, 2011 at 4:20 pm

          Regarding proof that Paul existed, using the bible as proof doesn’t count. I already addressed this in a previous post, as well.

          • danielrudolph
            December 11, 2011 at 5:28 pm

            I don’t see how your post addresses this. Yes, it’s highly unlikely that Acts was written by someone who actually knew Paul and its claims are suspect for other reasons as well. My understnding I Paul is the only first-century Pharisee (alleged Pharisee anyway) whose work survives, so we wouldn’t necessarily expect other records even if he had been a prominent Jew. But forget Acts. You don’t seem to have addressed where Paul’s letters came from if not a traveling preacher in the mid first century who called himself Paul. (Discounting Hebrews, which seems to have been mistaken for Paul and the later forgeries like the pastoral epistles that apparently were trying to cash in on Paul’s credibility in Christian circles.)

            Your link seems to theorize that Paul was a sort of Ramtha to Marcion’s JZ Knight. Marcion does seem to be the first person to have collected all what are now considered the authentic Pauline epistles together, but also included three of what are now generally thought to be forgeries. Plus, there’s evidence of some of the letters existing separately before that and thus what is currently thought to be the definitive version of Galatians, for instance, does not entirely match Marcion’s version. Because of the rather scant nature of early manuscripts, some of Marcion’s changes likely did creep in, but if Marcion made Paul up, he presumably would have made the books match better and his version would be the original according to textual analysis.

            Yes, the Paul of Acts and the Paul of his letters seem to be two rather different people, but my understanding was the mainstream scholarly view on this was that’s because Paul’s letters (except the forgeries) were written by Paul and Acts was at best written based on second-hand accounts from people who hadn’t seen Paul in almost twenty years and more likely hearsay and folk tales with a good deal of spin to support the author’s own theology. The idea that Paul didn’t exist is a fringe view. Do you have any information on Kenneth Humphries credentials?

          • danielrudolph
            December 11, 2011 at 5:38 pm

            Was this previous post before you set up shop at FTB? The only thing I can find that addresses it is your post abotut eh case against a historical Jesus, where your source says that Paul that scholars agree that Paul did write some of the letters attributed to him, which I understand is a true statement. There’s almost universal agreement among biblical scholars that Paul existed and wrote at least seven of the letters attributed to him, and maybe also Colossians.

          • Al Stefanelli
            December 11, 2011 at 6:30 pm

            It was in a previous comment here.

      • Bruce Gorton
        December 12, 2011 at 3:28 am

        RE: Paul existing

        At the moment in Africa there is a mini-industry of Christian charismatic pastors claiming to have abandoned a life of sin and sorcery – with one claiming to have had the power to turn his shoe into a helicopter.

        None of us are going to take that claim seriously, particularly given how that would revolutionise both aeronautics and basketball. It doesn’t mean the guy making that claim doesn’t exist.

        Wouldn’t the most likely scenario be that Paul existed (Hence authoring the letters) and was simply himself, a liar?

        • sunnydale75
          December 12, 2011 at 11:13 pm

          I don’t think that’s at all the likeliest possibility.
          Given the number of fantastic events listed in the Bible, and the fact that so many of them are not present in any historical documents, a bright light is cast upon the entire book.
          Factor that in with the vast number of errors, falsehoods, and contradictions within that book, and I’m shocked that anyone thinks it can be treated as factual/true.
          Is there evidence for the existence of Paul outside of the Bible? If not then it’s more likely that he didn’t exist, since the Bible is not far from inerrant.

      • Sandman
        December 16, 2011 at 3:03 am

        Let me add to Uncle Als lesson:

        1) Even the Catholic Church admits that the bits of the Bible attrbuted to Paul were probably not written by him…they were written some 50 years after he was supposedly executed. Furthermore, comparison between historical bibles in museums around the world shows that, as with the rest of the Bible, bits were added to Pauls “writings” as time went on.

        2) Literary analysis by scholars shows that major parts and themes n his supposed writings are in fact plagarised from earlier Hellenic and Roman “pagan” sources. As they were written down by Greek speaking scholars thats really no big surprise. Like the rest of the Bible they are a piss poor pastche of earlier more learned writings with extra added smitey spitey Abrahamic hatefulness thrown in.

        3) And finally, like the Jesus character in the same book of myths, there is NO physical proof of Pauls existance. The so called tomb has never been opened and examined by independant sources…maybe because it doesnt contain the body of a decapitated man? The claim that the tomb is that of St Paul is purely church tradition….ie crap made up in the middle ages to attract penitants and sell indulgencies. AND HERES WHERE IT ALL FALLS DOWN….see IF Paul existed and IF he was executed under Roman law his body would not have been given over for burial, it would have been chucked in the Tiber, used for arena animal food or lobbed on any convenient rubbish tip nearby, and nobody would have claimed it as to do so was an admittance you were a Christan and in Nero’s days that meant you got the chop too.

        So….wise up bucklehat. Do yourself a favour….put down that book of myths and try catching up with the modern world eh?

  4. December 11, 2011 at 6:22 pm

    This may be your best article yet!

    To anyone who denies the chattel status of women I would also remind them that, even today, in religious (Christian) wedding ceremonies the priest or minister says, “Who gives this woman?” In the tradition of Christianity women were the property of their fathers until “given” by the father to the new owner, the husband. Women had no independent status at all. Going back to Hebrew tradition, women did not choose their own mates, but mates were selected for them by their fathers, who used them as means of solidifying relationships between families or as a means of paying off debts. A humble woman, after all, might be worth as much as a few sheep or cattle.

    • December 11, 2011 at 11:44 pm

      So why can’t the woman just answer “I give myself, of my own free will”?

      • sunnydale75
        December 12, 2011 at 1:36 am

        Theoretically they should be able to. If not for that long established religious tradition of male superiority deeply embedded into many believers.

        Tony

      • papango
        December 12, 2011 at 4:39 pm

        My sister-in-law wasn’t having any of that. She had a priest ask ‘Kim, do you choose to marry Russell?’ and then ‘Russell, do you choose to marry Kim?’, instead of any ‘giving’ nonsense.

        • sunnydale75
          December 12, 2011 at 5:01 pm

          I like her already! It’s saddening that so many women have been indoctrinated for so long that they support the very system that represses them. When people speak out against that system and in support of women’s rights, it’s almost laughable how many women will defend whatever institution they’re part of.

          Tony

  5. Al Stefanelli
    December 11, 2011 at 7:51 pm

    I removed the comment about Paul’s sexuality. See my notes at the bottom of the piece. Thanks, everyone, for your comments.

    • Happiestsadist
      December 11, 2011 at 8:17 pm

      Thank you very much. I really appreciate it. Now, to repost this excellent essay. 🙂

  6. sunnydale75
    December 11, 2011 at 11:36 pm

    >And do you not know that you are Eve? God’s sentence hangs still over all your sex and His punishment weighs down upon you. <

    -One of the many things I find funny/sad/pathetic about the Genesis account of creation is that god told Adam not to eat from the tree. Not only did god not give Eve this directive, she hadn't been created when god gave that command to Adam. So what god did was give the only human being on the planet the directive not to eat from that tree. He didn't tell Adam that NO ONE could eat from the tree. He just said that to Adam. So what exactly did Eve do wrong?

    Tony

    • Blue Duck
      December 12, 2011 at 3:11 pm

      Ha! Excellent point – Eve was not around when Gawd gave this edict. I’ll have to spring this question on a fundy some time and see if they turn purple and sputter….

    • ttch
      December 14, 2011 at 2:03 pm

      Genesis 3:2-3 shows that Eve was aware of the prohibition even if she got it a little wrong.

  7. pietvrijdenker
    December 12, 2011 at 5:28 am

    Dear Mr Stefanelli,

    To promote skepticism/critical thinking I wrote some questions for the Christian believer. Mefiante from South African Skeptics made a good translation. She is now working at the last part. The most sophisticated questions. Are you able to put the link to these questions at your blog.

    Thank you very much,

    Piet – Rotterdam – Netherlands.

    The original questions

    http://www.freethinker.nl/forum/viewtopic.php?f=31&t=8382
    The translation
    http://www.freethinker.nl/forum/viewtopic.php?f=31&t=10033
    The first one who did this, was Jonathan. This is a good example.
    http://www.limbicnutrition.com/blog/tough-questions-for-believers/

  8. Yoritomo
    December 13, 2011 at 9:49 am

    Is there a source for that St. Augustine quote? All I found were random websites repeating it without proper attribution, and this page arguing it is probably made up.

    • Al Stefanelli
      December 13, 2011 at 2:58 pm

      I am sure there is, but I can’t be bothered to look for it.

      • Yoritomo
        December 13, 2011 at 11:05 pm

        I take that as “I have no idea whether that’s an accurate quote, but it sounds good and seems to support my case.” I had hoped we had better standards.

        • Al Stefanelli
          December 13, 2011 at 11:34 pm

          You can take it however you want, makes no difference to me. It is a quote that has been around for a very, very long time and is used by many people, including writers, bloggers, authors, journalists and historians. I will continue to use it, as well.

          • Yoritomo
            December 14, 2011 at 2:47 am

            Can you please point me to one of the historians using that quote? If you cannot, in what way is your propagation of a dubious quote whose source you do not know better than, say, the propagation of dubious “founding father” quotes by David Barton and his ilk?

          • Al Stefanelli
            December 14, 2011 at 9:50 am

            No, I really have no interest in doing that. If you want to research it, I can suggest a couple of places to start. http://www.google.com or http://www.bing.com. Look, my friend, the quote at the beginning of the article is just that, a quote. The article was not written to justify or explain the quote and has no impact on the meaning of the article at all, so it is really a non-issue. If it really makes that much difference to you, then have at it. I really, honestly do not give a shit. Comparing me to David Barton is a fucking joke, really, and if you cannot see why, I can’t help you.

          • Yoritomo
            December 14, 2011 at 10:14 am

            I googled the quote before I asked for a source – and as I said before, I came up with lots of websites giving it without proper attribution, and others saying it’s probably fake. I did not find any historians using it. Now there is one more blogger and journalist, though; the next one will have an even easier time repeating it without bothering about accuracy or evidence. In the future I’ll know that I have to check all quotes you give myself because you have no interest in making sure they are accurate. Thank you for the clarification.

            As an aside, I agree with the gist of your post, and the biblical quotes you give (with proper attribution) make Christianity’s misogyny obvious enough – all the more reason, I’d think, to avoid using dubious quotes.

          • Al Stefanelli
            December 14, 2011 at 10:55 am

            Dude, you are beating a dead horse – to death. I mean, thank you for the props on the actual article, and if you feel the need to check the quotes I use, then have at it. But, really, I’ve already used up enough time on this topic. I really don’t give a shit. Not trying to be rude, but I seriously don’t.

        • ttch
          December 14, 2011 at 2:11 pm

          Dude, you’re writing for the public. If you’ve been made aware that a quote is dubious you should nail it down or remove it. It’s that simple.

          • Al Stefanelli
            December 14, 2011 at 2:17 pm

            I don’t believe the quote to be dubious. There are hundreds of attributions for this quote and only a handful of nay-sayers. And, again, it is not relevant to the accuracy of the article, and I don’t give a fuck. The quote will stay. I will not remove it and I will do no further investigation regarding it’s alleged dubiousness. It is a non-issue. This is becoming the Sienfeld thread…

          • Clare
            August 23, 2012 at 6:31 am

            Regardless of the authenticity (or otherwise) of this quote, and other dodgy comments he made, it is only fair to note that by the standards of his time and culture, St. Augustine was relatively open-minded with regard to women. In particular, he apparently said that women were spiritually equal (or even superior) to men and also argued that a woman who had been raped was not “defiled” but retained her spiritual virginity – in contrast to other teachers of the day who felt that suicide was a good course of action against rape.

  9. Rasmus Odinga Gambolputty de von Ausfern....of Ulm
    December 13, 2011 at 4:31 pm

    I’ve often wanted to ask women in my family how they reconcile the misogyny in the bible with their faith. I have a feeling that the answer is quite simple- they haven’t actually read the bible.

    • sunnydale75
      December 13, 2011 at 11:01 pm

      Sadly, that is likely true. Then, to add insult to injury, many believers do not know much more than the sermons they’ve sat through. Sermons that were probably cherry picked, which leads to a
      Question:
      I can probably count on one hand how many times I’ve gone to a church service (it only takes two hands to count the number of times I have even entered a church), is it common for preachers to discuss the negative aspects of the Bible during their sermons? Stuff like god creating evil, Jesus coming here not to save us, rejecting your family so you can give yourself over to Jesus…

      Tony

  10. JeseC
    December 14, 2011 at 10:51 pm

    As a woman who grew up in conservative Christianity and has looked back on this question many, many times…

    I think part of the problem is that there is a significant amount of misogyny in everyday society. Some of the messages that society at large offers are not far off from those of religion. Sure, a secular person won’t say “women need to dress modestly so as not to tempt men”, but they will say “well what did she think was going to happen, going out dressed like that?” They don’t say that “women should submit to men”, but they do call a woman who asserts herself too much a “ball-busting bitch.”

    For a woman in our society, Christianity promises relief from the sexism in society at large. It promises that good Christian men won’t harass you while you’re trying to do your job. It promises that you can date without being expected to “put out” quickly whether you want to or not. It offers the message that you don’t have to look hot or sexy all the time to keep a man.

    I don’t think it takes any special abuse to make those kind of promises look attractive to a woman. I think it just takes a certain temperament and the experiences that many women in our society have. Does it follow through on those promises? No. But they are attractive promises, and it’s not always obvious right away that they won’t be fulfilled.

    I’d suggest reading some of the ex-quiverfull blogs for more info on this. There’s several women who got into it as adults who have explained their reasons.

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