The failed insurrection on January 6th should have been a watershed moment for many to abandon the parasitic party of Trump. Sadly, after the dust and armed guards cleared, many have returned to their delusions and skewed realities. A few key Republican politicians have refused to return to the fold; Liz Cheney (WY) and Adam Kinzinger (IL) have become the most vocal in their opposition.Continue reading “Schism of Reality, Schism of the Republican Party By Anjeanette LeBoeuf”
Tag: US politics
Deb Haaland, the Secretary of the Interior We Need by Anjeanette LeBoeuf
This past week brought an announcement from the 46th President Elect’s office on the nomination for the Secretary of Interior position, House of Representative Debra Haaland of New Mexico. This nomination has solidified President-Elect Biden and Vice President-Elect Harris’ promise to be a more inclusive, progressive, and diverse cabinet. This appointment is revolutionary, outstanding, and diverse. If this nomination is accepted, Deb Haaland will become the first Native American and first Native American woman to hold this position.
Continue reading “Deb Haaland, the Secretary of the Interior We Need by Anjeanette LeBoeuf”
A Case for Context by Sara Frykenberg
I have a close family member who is staunchly Republican and frequently posts videos from the conservative platform PragerU or “Prager University.” Video topics include: why the Democratic Party is the “real” racist party (as though either party is innocent of racism), the “war on boys” and masculinity, and how feminists don’t care about Muslim women (as though some Muslim women aren’t also feminists), among other issues. You get the picture. It is a propaganda media source founded by radio talk show hosts which creates short videos on every topic there is, presenting the conservative viewpoint as the simple “God’s honest truth” about the issue.
I’ve seen some of these videos. They are as offensive as they are misleading. But one element that is particularly egregious to me is their complete disregard for larger context. Continue reading “A Case for Context by Sara Frykenberg”
Kamala Harris, the Democratic Vice President for 2020 by Anjeanette LeBoeuf
August 11th saw Democratic Presidential Candidate Joe Biden announce his pick for Vice President. This pick broke open the history books; California US Senator Kamala Harris. Kamala has been steadily rising as a political force for over ten years. Her nomination is groundbreaking on so many levels. So, let us talk about Senator Harris.
Continue reading “Kamala Harris, the Democratic Vice President for 2020 by Anjeanette LeBoeuf”
I Am a Progressive because of Not in spite of My Feminist Spirituality by Carol P. Christ
Feminist spirituality is often disparaged in academic feminist and progressive communities. Many of the strongest critics are Marxists, but there is a general agreement that religion is the opiate of the people, a false belief system that diverts energy from the difficult work of creating justice in this world. This view is rooted in the habit of thought known as classical dualism in which spirit and nature, spirit and body, and this world and the next are viewed as antithetical. From this, it would seem to follow, feminist spirituality focuses attention on an imagined spiritual world as opposed to the material world in which real people live and interact with each other. Nothing could be farther from the truth.
Feminist spirituality is rooted in a strong critique of classical dualism, which sets mind above body, spirit above nature, and male above female. Feminist Goddess spirituality asserts that the female body has been especially disparaged in traditional theologies rooted in classical dualism. This can be seen in the image of the naked Eve as the source of evil, sin, and temptation. In contrast, Goddess spirituality is inspired by images of the female body of the Goddess as a symbol of the Source of Life. Goddess spirituality understands nature (or the world) to be the body of the Goddess and affirms this world as our true home. This world is understood to be an interconnected web of life shared by humans and other than human beings. Continue reading “I Am a Progressive because of Not in spite of My Feminist Spirituality by Carol P. Christ”
The Brass Tacks of the Trump Impeachment by Anjeanette LeBoeuf
From the very moment after the dust settled from the 2016 elections, notions of impeachment started to break. Now three years into the Trump Presidency, impeachment proceedings have been launched. To start, Impeachment is a Constitutionally supported right. It is an element of the “Checks and Balances” system to ensure that no one branch of the government holds too much power. Instigating impeachment processes is not treason, nor is it unpatriotic – it is a testament to the democratic procedures established by the founding fathers and maintained for the last 230 years.
Continue reading “The Brass Tacks of the Trump Impeachment by Anjeanette LeBoeuf”
Keepin’ On Keepin’ On by Carol P. Christ
It is now Monday morning, five days after the new President was elected, despite losing the popular vote.
For many of us, and for me too, losing this election feels like losing everything we have worked to achieve during our whole lives. One of my friends wrote, “I am totally distraught and unable to focus.” My cousin said, “I feel like I am in Nazi Germany in the 1930’s.”
I have been scouring the internet to try to figure out what we can still do to try to create a world that guarantees liberty and justice to all people and all beings in the web of life.
There is much to fear. Continue reading “Keepin’ On Keepin’ On by Carol P. Christ”
Pope Francis, Complementarity, and US Politics by Gina Messina-Dysert
A theology of complementarity, referred to by Pope Francis as an “anthropological fact,” has had a strong influence on American politics. According to the Vatican teaching, women and men have distinct but complementary roles, meaning that women’s value is found in the home as wife and mother and men are responsible for providing for the family. Such a teaching is highly problematic in that it demeans women’s value and places women on the underside of dualism.
As a woman with an ongoing struggle with infertility, I find it troubling that my church sees my value as less because my womb is barren. Likewise, do women have less value if they choose a career over motherhood? What if they choose not to marry? There are also clear implications for single parents, LGBTQ parents, and so on. In addition, societal norms make clear that women’s work in the home is not valued as the work of men in society. Likewise, it is damaging to men in that it refuses to acknowledge the critical role men play in the household, in the lives of their children, and their responsibilities to be partners and co-parents.
The idea of complementarity upheld by Pope Francis greatly contributes to economic injustice for women. The Vatican’s refusal to value women’s roles outside the home influences US social policy on women’s issues. The continued struggle to close the pay gap, implement paid parental leave, and create viable options for childcare and early childhood education are directly connected to complementarity. If women are supposed to remain in the home and be wives and mothers, then there is no need to address any of these issues. How can we possibly have women in leadership roles if they are supposed to be at home cooking dinner and caring for children? And so, when women do pursue careers the social attitude is that women do not belong. Such an idea is even more problematic for women of color who suffer a lower pay rate – $.64 on the dollar for African American women and $.54 for Latina women. Furthermore, many have have been forced to work outside of the home as a result of economic and racial injustice. In this secular nation, Christian values dominate our political debates and perpetuate the idea that women are subordinate to men. And to be frank, these are community issues that impact men as well as women; yet they have been deemed women’s issues as a result of the manifestation of theological teachings.
As republicans focus on defunding Planned Parenthood, ending marriage equality, protecting religious freedom, and claiming issues like parental leave are not federal issues, women continue to be relegated to second class status. In a time of turmoil and multiple threats to the progression of our nation, there is greater concern for regulating women’s bodies than guns.
Pope Francis has been praised for his commitment to the poor; yet he has been unable to make the connection between poverty and the women’s issues that exist as a result of complementarity. Likewise, the Church’s stance on reproductive justice continues to perpetuate the very issues that the pope seeks to address. As Sr. Joan Chittister points out:
I do not believe that just because you’re opposed to abortion, that that makes you pro-life. In fact, I think in many cases, your morality is deeply lacking if all you want is a child born but not a child fed, not a child educated, not a child housed. And why would I think that you don’t? Because you don’t want any tax money to go there. That’s not pro-life. That’s pro-birth. We need a much broader conversation on what the morality of pro-life is.
No doubt, his lack of relationships with women is a major contributing factor to his ignorance when it comes to such issues – by the way, which could be easily fixed by embracing women’s ordination. And so, as Pope Francis has become an international figure deemed a savior to the people, these disconnects fuel ongoing US political debates that keep women in a marginalized position and continue a cycle of poverty and oppression.
Pope Francis has called for a “Year of Mercy” in which he has stated that if a woman confesses having an abortion, she will be forgiven. Many have praised the pope for taking such a step towards healing; yet, I can’t help but think, “how judgmental and irresponsible.” Without knowing a woman’s circumstance, her decision making process, her doctor’s concerns, etc., why should one be told to repent? To deny women the right to reproductive justice is to deny women the ability to make decisions about their physical, emotional, and financial health – and we see this play out in the US as a result of the influence of complementarity in our political system. So, in this “Year of Mercy,” I wonder will the Vatican confess its sins against women, LGBTQ persons, and others it has marginalized?
Portions of this article are excerpts from If Jesus Ran for President coming from the Far Press in Spring, 2016.
Gina Messina-Dysert, Ph.D. is Assistant Professor of Religion and Gender Studies at Ursuline College and Co-founder of Feminism and Religion. She writes for The Huffington Post, has authored multiple publications and is the co-editor of the highly acclaimed Faithfully Feminist: Jewish, Christian, and Muslim Feminists on Why We Stay. Messina-Dysert is a widely sought after speaker and has presented across the US at universities, organizations, conferences and on national platforms including appearances on MSNBC, Tavis Smiley, NPR and the TEDx stage. She has also spoken at the Commission on the Status of Women at the United Nations to discuss matters impacting the lives women around the world. Messina-Dysert is active in movements to end violence against women and explores opportunities for spiritual healing. Connect with her on Twitter @FemTheologian, Facebook, and her website ginamessinadysert.com.