Jimmy Carter is 90 years old and making a positive contribution to society. Here are quotes from an article entitled, “Losing My Religion For Equality ” by Leslie Salzillo. I don’t read major Newspapers. I have no idea whether this has been aired nationally, but it should. I’m pleased to see that such a devout Christian is questioning Christian beliefs, as I do. I’m always appalled by avowed Christians who are filled with vitriol and hate for others.
Over the years, Jimmy Carter, a devout Christian, has become a very strong proponent of women’s rights, to a point where he has spoken out against the falsehoods and extremism we see within the ‘religion’ of Christianity today. In 2009, he penned an open letter, severing ties with the mega SBC/Southern Baptist Convention, after being a member of the Convention for 60 years. Carter said the decision was difficult and painful, yet ‘unavoidable,’ after the Convention leaders chose to take bible verses out of context and claim ‘Eve’ was responsible for ‘original sin,’ and thus all women must be subservient to men. In Carter’s aforementioned open letter, he expands on his reasons and concerns:
This discrimination, unjustifiably attributed to a Higher Authority, has provided a reason or excuse for the deprivation of women’s equal rights across the world for centuries.
At its most repugnant, the belief that women must be subjugated to the wishes of men excuses slavery, violence, forced prostitution, genital mutilation and national laws that omit rape as a crime. But it also costs many millions of girls and women control over their own bodies and lives, and continues to deny them fair access to education, health, employment and influence within their own communities.
The same discriminatory thinking lies behind the continuing gender gap in pay and why there are still so few women in office in the West. The root of this prejudice lies deep in our histories, but its impact is felt every day. It is not women and girls alone who suffer. It damages all of us.
Carter states “Subjugation was not always part of Christianity.”
The carefully selected verses found in the Holy Scriptures to justify the superiority of men owe more to time and place – and the determination of male leaders to hold onto their influence – than eternal truths
I am also familiar with vivid descriptions in the same Scriptures in which women are revered as per-eminent leaders. During the years of the early Christian church women served as deacons, priests, bishops, apostles, teachers and prophets. It wasn’t until the fourth century that dominant Christian leaders, all men, twisted and distorted Holy Scriptures to perpetuate their ascendant positions within the religious hierarchy.
“The truth is that male religious leaders have had – and still have – an option to interpret holy teachings either to exalt or subjugate women. They have, for their own selfish ends, overwhelmingly chosen the latter. It is time we had the courage to challenge these views.”
THANK YOU JIMMY CARTER.