Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Women Happy to Be Women and Men Happy to Be Men: American Taliban Spells Out the Agenda

Markous Moulitsas summarizes the findings of his new book American Taliban: How Sex, Sin and Power Bind Jihadists to the Radical Right at Huffington Post today.  As he notes, whether the issue is violence, women and gays, or hostility to education and science, the American radical right is cut from the "same controlling, ideological cloth" as the jihadists whom they so violently oppose on the other side of the globe.

Moulitsas quotes Jerry Falwell, who explains it all to us--who explains the agenda of female subordination and male domination that is at the very heart of the American right's theocratic goal for cultures it can control:

As Jerry Falwell once said, "I listen to feminists and all these radical gals -- most of them are failures. They've blown it. Some of them have been married, but they married some Caspar Milquetoast who asked permission to go to the bathroom. These women just need a man in the house. That's all they need. Most of the feminists need a man to tell them what time of day it is and to lead them home."

This is precisely the agenda of Catholics now touting the theology of the body and its gender-complementarity theory as the best thing the Catholic church has going.  This is precisely what folks like Daniele Sauvage mean when they tell African Catholics to resist the ideological poisons of the West, and maintain their cultural traditions in which men remain men and women remain women (and men are on top and women are on bottom, and no gays are allowed).

It is beyond belief that this crude, oppressive, biologicaly deterministic ideology of keeping men men and women women has come to dominate the thinking of key sectors of a world religion with a long, complex, rich tradition whose core teachings are centered on mercy, justice, and love.  It is beyond belief that, in its restorationist moment, this mantra of keeping men men and women women is the best Catholicism imagines it has to offer the world today, under the leadership of Benedict XVI.