Small-Town Elitist

January 31, 2009

The Patriarchy Movement: Submission, subordination, danger, and attraction.

Well, I am glad to see that the complementarian and patriarchal movements are starting to get attention from liberal and progressive sources.

I think that it is important that these movements be examined, and that everyone reach their own conclusions about them. I feel they should not go ignored.

I would like to use my personal space to explore where I stand with this movement, which is not exactly knew to me.

Nearly seven years ago, I became a born-again Christian. I still consider myself a follower and daughter of Christ, but I am transitioning to a place where I can’t stand by evangelicism. That is another story for another time, but this post should begin to shed some light on my exit from conservative Christian settings.

Long before I became a born-again Christian, I was a feminist (and have never truly crossed over to anti-feminism, to be honest). When I entered the church, there was shaky and scary new ground for me to personally confront. My attraction to feminism was an outgrowth of how an overtly religious school counselor treated me when I confided physical, emotional, and sexual abuse as a child. Now as a new Christian, I was essentially admitting that I felt my position on gender relations as a feminist were wrong. What was going to take its place?

This was when I began my education into the various stripes of complementarianism and patriarchy in the 21st century church.

Because I knew of the teachings that one must submit to her husband, I intially had determined for myself that I would never marry and never have children because I’d grown up in a home where there was domestic violence. I was terrified by giving a chunk of my autonomy over to a future husband, I was setting myself up for further abuse.

Eventually, I came to the decision that I would read about “biblical femininity,” and, how to put this politely…martial obligations, specifially, I wanted to know what was required of husbands.

Good luck finding that. In the past, internet searches had trouble finding sermons and essays on these obligations, and even now, you will still find more sites yammering on about what women must do and must not do. When you do find a man’s obligations, it does sometimes seem like a good game. For someone who’s lived their life with abuse, protection does sound great. But a certain realism has to set in, and you realize that there’s a huge danger in giving your personal autonomy over to a mere mortal who is just as messed up as you are, if not more.

Everything seemed so daunting, so painful, and as a survivor, it was so triggering.

One thing that is indeed very triggering about complementarianism is that not all of its proponents like women all that much. Many of them are actually misogynists who are content to blame women for society’s problems. Some take vigorous offense to any thought that God might actually be Goddess, or that a woman could be a leader in a male God’s church.

And worst of all in my experience, I found lots of blame for victims and survivors of abuse in a complementarian structure. Once, at women’s Bible study, I was given a little booklet of quotations, some biblical, some not quite, on issues that women face. I was horrified and disgusted to read an admonishment not to wear skimpy clothes under the “rape” section. Years after that, Michelle McKinney Hammonds book The Power of Femininity horrified me with its suggestion that men abuse women when their authority is challenged.

I ask you, is that a view of men you want to have? That they are cowards and bullies?

The EWTN network had a series with Alice von Hildebrand and Father Benedict Groeshel which I actually liked, which stressed a reconciliation between man and woman.

In light of that idea, how does showing complementarian men to be bullies and cowards work towards this reconciliation??

I don’t have any idea of what to replace complementarianism, including egalitarianism, but I do know that as it stands, complementarianism has some flaws and vulnerabilites that make me wary of it.

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January 30, 2009

Dubya, looking peaked and bushed; more linkage.

Here’s to a quick linkage post. It’s late here, and I’m a bit tired, so please forgive me if I end up making typos. With that, here goes:

Common Dreams shares some frightening photos of Bush’s last address to the public before his presidency ended. He looks truly disturbed, and disturbing. h/t to the posters at Crooks and Liars.

RH Reality Check clears up some confusion about emergency contraception at was at TIME Magazine’s website.

The U.S. Postal Service is going broke. h/t to Crooks and Liars commenters again.

Crooks and Liars and The Curvature report on the horrifying news story out of Algeria; a CIA station chief is accused of drugging and raping two Muslim women. My thoughts are with the women and what they must be going through.

From abyss2hope, the Supreme Court rules against a company who retailiated against a woman who reported sexual harrassment.

Here’s a great article explaining what went wrong with the world economy. h/t to Crooks and Liars commenters again.

Michelle has a great essay about how our learning styles affect our thinking as liberals and conservatives.

Womanist Musings has an open letter to Ted and Gayle Haggard in the wake of their interview with Oprah Winfrey.

Feministe writes about teenage sexuality not being as wild as people, especially nosy conservatives, assume it to be.

Racialicious has a fascinating look at transgender and African-American history through the pages of popular African-American magazines, such as Ebony.

HuffPo reported that Obama took Wall Street to task over their greedy, irresponsible spending of our bailout money.

Natalia Antonova responds to someone who hurled racist and sexist abuse in her direction after she posted about dealing with sexual harrassment in Jordan. The response is compassionate, and stands up for Middle Eastern/Arab men.

MOMocrats write about how Dr. Jill Biden will continue her job as a college English professor.

From the crafty corner:

At Etsy’s Dark Side, our street team’s historical dead crafts theme.

Well, it’s about time I put down my knitting, stopped my blogging, and went to bed. So good night y’all!

Vatican to the world’s women: Yer pee is ruinin’ teh enviroments!!!1

Ok, so perhaps that is the non-eloquent way of summarizing this bombshell from the Vatican.

Of course, it needs to be said before anyone busts a gut laughing, that pharmacuticals making their way into our water supply *is* a concern. However, the agenda behind the Vatican’s little announcement is very transparent to anyone who has been paying attention.

The pill “has for some years had devastating effects on the environment by releasing tonnes of hormones into nature” through female urine, said Pedro Jose Maria Simon Castellvi, president of the International Federation of Catholic Medical Associations, in the report.

Clearly, this is an attempt to paint a portrait of women’s usage of hormonal birth control as the cause of our problems with pharmacuticals in the water, and naturally, the Church convieniently ignores the fact that pregnant women are peeing a similarly copious amount of female hormones into the water supply.

A couple of good questions to keep in mind when you read this stuff from the Church are when will the Church call out pregnant women for also contributing to the environmental deterioration, and damaging men’s fertility, and also, if women taking the pill are damaging men’s fertility, how is exactly that we have so many pregnant women also adding feminine hormones to the water supply?

It’s also a rich and sad thing that the Church is blaming women’s urine specifically for the hormones getting into our water and food supplies. Pharmacuticals are finding their way into our unsuspecting bodies in a variety of ways, but I guess women’s urine is the “dirty” way it is contaminating food and water supply. *sigh*

January 29, 2009

Racist RNC-chairman contender shirks personal responsibility; plus more links.

Time for my roundup of blog links for the first time in such a long while. Here we go!

Racist pig Chip Saltsman, who is in the running for RNC chairman, tells Contessa Brewer that it’s all the *media’s* fault that he sent out a mixtape of racist songs including “Barack the Magic Negro” to his Republican buddies and got caught in the process. Yes Chip, blame the media!  H/T to Crooks and Liars.

Womanist Musings has an article about boneheaded comments made by George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton.

abyss2hope writes about men who complain about “men haters” by spewing their own misogyny.

The Curvature brings up something I’d read the other day that depressed me: Italian PM Silvio Berlusconi says it’s impossible to protect Italian women from rape because they’re all so beautiful.

Michelle calls Rush Limbaugh out on his BS about the economy.

Season of the Bitch shares their thoughts on Rachel Maddow’s big interview with Rod Blagojevich.

Beyond Feminism talks about the breakdown of the nuclear family and what it means that an new alternative to it has not been found.

Racialicious explains why the Boston Globe is missing the point about why racial parity is important amongst the White House Press Corps.

Feministe has a great post on why the <a href=”http://www.feministe.us/blog/archives/2009/01/27/obama-getting-it-wrong-on-birth-control/”&gt; family planning provisions</a> in the stimulus package were important, up until they were tanked, anyway…

Rachel at Rachel’s Tavern posted about the scary actions of racist mobs in Australia.

HuffPo has an article on the House of Representative passing the stimulus bill without the help of the House Republicans.

Natalia Antonova writes about how the dire economic situation in Kiev, Ukraine is leading to more alcohol abuse and then more sexual harrassment and out of control behaviors in general. She then makes a great point, when are people going to quit excusing violence and harrassment with the phrase “he was drunk?”

Brownfemipower has some powerful insight on how the myths surrounding the life of Sacagawea affect Indigenous women and women of color living today.

MOMocrats have a post on President Obama’s interview with the al-Arabiya Network.

From the crafty department:

WhipUp shares how to make a purse from a “fat quarter” of fabric.

That’s it for now!

January 28, 2009

Insert dramatic music here…I’m back!

Filed under: About Annaleigh,About the Blog — by smalltownelitist @ 11:53 pm

If you are looking at this blog right now, are you shocked yet? I’ve decided to make my return. We all still have our share of problems in society, and the potential for solutions, so before this first month of 2009 is done and spoken for, I’ve decided to make the committment to resume blogging.

My chosen blog topics will continue to be quite a bit of what I was blogging about before taking my break, but I do also have goals for this year as well. I will continue to write about, and try to step up my work, writing about fundamentalist religion of all stripes with a focus on Christianity, since that it was I am best familiar with. I commit to spend quite a bit of time writing about economic conditions both at large, and in my little town and region of California. I have had it up to here with listening to clueless fools with too much money and time on their hands in mainstream media talking about poverty issues they neither understand, nor sufficiently care enough about.

And to lighten things up just a little bit, I will include a couple catagories to take the load off, a crafting/DIY section where I’ll talk  about my obsession about all things crafty and extoll their political virtues; and a catagory I’ll call “Empowerment by DIY” where I’ll talk about something that, to me can mean anything from learning how to write letters to your political representatives to give yourself a voice, to educating yourself about nutrition in order to take charge of yours and your family’s health during this financially strapped times.

That is my “I’m back” message in a nutshell. I am going to have to teach myself to balance blogging with college, my part-time business, and life in general.

It’s good to be back!

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