America Redux

Fundamentalists love America for it is the land of freedom; the land of Washington the Baptist; the land that flows with Milky Ways and honey mustard sauce. Yet, Fundamentalists hate America too for it is the land of gay marriage; the land of Madonna and the pelvis of Elvis; the land of public schools and open bars. With fundamentalists love is always conditional and these United States just aren’t fit to be loved anymore.

So instead, of loving the country as it is or as it could be fundamentalists set about to love it as it never was or as they hope it will someday be. They love the romantic myth of a country made with hands, prepared by their ancestors where every jot and tittle of the fundamentalists code is kept. It’s a place where flags are never burned, gays are always burned and a counsel of Baptist pastors has just re-written the Bill of Rights to read “Christians have no rights. Non-Christians have even less than that.” In this beautiful city on a hill everybody shows the joy of Jesus on their face, or else.

In this land everything is banned for our own good. Liquor is no longer. Drugs, infidelity and children throwing tantrums at Denny’s all now receive the death penalty. Women are keepers at home, dreaming of the day when they may have a career as church secretary serving under a popular pastor. Children are taught 1611 English in schools and Congress has just passed a law mandating that Saviour must be spelled with a ‘u’. From sea to shining sea there are white picket fences surrounding white houses full of white people with the sound of hymns drifting from every radio.

Now there’s an America that a fundy could love. God forbid.

149 thoughts on “America Redux”

    1. Congratulations!

      Your butt cushion will be waiting for you in your regular pew at church. ๐Ÿ™‚

      1. But woe unto her if she takes the pew of a long-time church member!

        (Or was this just my church?)

        1. Naw, PP, that’s lots of churches. We had a moment of confusion Sun b/c our regular pew was taken, but we just sat a few rows back. No biggie. But the lady in our regular spot saw us, apologized profusely, & offered to move. Um, I thought the seats were first-come, first-served. Is there some rent to own pew program I don’t know about?

        2. “Mardon me, padam, you are occupewing the wrong pie; may I sew you to another sheet?”

          –The Reverend William Archibald Spooner

        3. From my reading, I think the practice was fairly common in the UK around 100 years ago — maybe just in the Church of England. I’d read about “family pews” – I assume that the family had to do the maintenance of their own pews.

          I don’t think I’ve been in a Baptist church that has seats that are actually reserved for someone, although many seats are held from long custom.

          Anyone know more about “family” pews?

        4. My mom, who grew up Free Methodist, told me that the reason the Free Methodists split from the Methodists was that back in the day (don’t know how long ago) the Methodists charged for their pews. Families were assigned pews and had to pay a small fee. (Maybe a madatory tithe? Maybe for maintenance on them? I don’t know.) Some members thought attending church should be free so they split and formed the Free Methodist Church.

          Disclaimer: I don’t know if this story is true — it’s just what my mom told me.

        5. Pew rents were pretty common in the 19th century among Catholics, Anglicans–Episcopalians in the US–and Presbyterians, according to Wikipedia. They provided an additional source of income for the church. If you didn’t pay your rent on time, your seats could go to someone else.

          In earlier centuries, when a church was being built, wealthy families might supply their own pews, which they owned outright–and could even box in and lock. I know there are a couple of old churches in Virginia with pews like that, although I doubt that they’re still owned by the descendents of the original families.

  1. :happy dance: Ok,I’d like to order a butt cushion that actually looks like a butt, please.


    1. Aaaaand now that I’ve read the post, I’ve got the heebie-jeebies.

      Sounds like a scary story you’d tell at a campfire… ๐Ÿ‘ฟ

  2. Though I proudly stand for the American flag and the cross of Christ, never, ever like the photo above.

    1. Somehow they manage to violate flag protocol and Christian iconography in a way that show maximum disrespect to both. I’m thinking a lot of thought had to go into something of that magnitude. It goes way beyond everyday offensiveness.

    2. Looks like they needed somewhere to put the flag, and just decided to throw it on the Cross. Yuck!

  3. … And there are all of four people who could actually live happily in that land. Really. Even in Norman Rockwell’s America there was smut.

    1. Now I’m looking for Rockwell-styled dirty pictures. That might be interesting. :mrgreen:

      1. is a collection of the work of Art Frahm, who pretty much is THE Rockwell-styled smutty artist. You can also google ‘retro smut’ which will lead you to a website of the same name. I won’t link here because it is basically vintage porn, rather than just girly pics. Interesting to see that large-busted girls have always been popular, though the vintage ones are real.

        1. Checked it out. Is there an opposite of brain bleach? Because these are some fine, fine pictures. ๐Ÿ˜ณ ๐Ÿ™‚

      2. GEORGE!!! Now, to try again:

        In New Mexico is a shop which sells antiquities: rare maps, rare books, and, yes, 17th and 18th century porn. There’s nothing new under the sun. (I liked the maps.)

  4. If they loved the flag that much, they wouldn’t drape it over the cross like that.

  5. This sounds more like what the enemies of SFL say it is than a usual SFL post.

    I know quite a few fundamentalists, and no one I know has ever claimed that G. Washington was a Baptist. That claim is certainly not reflective of fundamentalists.

    Nor do I believe that racism is confined to fundamentalists; it is not one of their identifying beliefs. SFL has properly documented and mocked those specific fundamentalists that are racist, but the majority are not, I believe.

    This post is a great example of the broad brush tactics.

    Instead of banning “everything”, I’d rather see people’s hearts and minds changed by a living relationship with Jesus Christ so that they don’t buy such things. A nation’s laws can reflect righteousness, but just having the laws doesn’t make people righteous. Or, as has been said, one “cannot legislate morality”.

    1. Indeed. In a (reasonably) functional democracy, the laws can’t stay more moral than the majority of the population.

    2. “This post is a great example of the broad brush tactics”……….Indeed!

    3. “This post is a great example of parody.”

      I fixed that for ya. ๐Ÿ˜‰

      1. Parody. Oh. I guess it did go over my head.

        Second thought: Really?
        Parody: “A humorous imitation of a person or group”

        I don’t believe that he is really imitating fundamentalists. Maybe he was imitating himself, as to what fundamentalists THINK SFL is all about (?).

        I love it when SFL points out real spiritual abuse of people like Hyles and Schaap. These self-promoting, lording-it-over-the-flock types have injured many, and long may SFL point out that they are really naked, and blind, and poor in spiritual reality.

        But preaching and teaching that drinking alcohol is wrong (or any of the other doctrines that have been mentioned in SFL posts) is not spiritual abuse. You don’t agree with the teaching; fine – that’s your right as a priest before God.

    4. He by no means said that racism is confined to IFB fundamentalism. He just said that racism is present, and even prominent.

      I highly disagree that most fundamentalists aren’t racist. Your experience, of course, may be different, but I have experienced Fundamentalism in multiple states and incarnations. The majority may not be KKK-type racists, but they are Paula Deen-type racists. See

      1. That essay Clara linked to is excellent.
        “Paula Deen racist” may become a permanent part of our vocabulary. Because Ms. Deen IS emblematic.
        She doesn’t spit on black people or throw rocks at them or burn crosses in their yards.
        Yet she thinks it’s OK to say “nigger” (I’m skipping the usual euphemism) as long as you don’t say it in a mean way, she says “most jokes are about Jewish people, rednecks, black folks,” and that’s apparently OK with her, and she thinks having a “plantation-themed” wedding with an all-black service crew is a charming idea.

        There aren’t many Bull Connors anymore in American Fundamentalism, although Darrell has shown us a few. But there are a lot of Paula Deens.

      2. While that article is an interesting read and the author does make some valid points, I take exception with the self-defined idea of racism…that is only against “minorities”. I’m sorry, but I live in a major northeastern city, and I can tell you from first-hand experience that, according to that definition of racism, ALL ethnicities are racist. Until that standard is applied equally, I’m not subscribing.

        1. There are two common meanings of “racism” in contemporary discourse, and they often get confused.

          In terms of personal racism (having prejudiced ideas about other races and social groups), all ethnicities ARE racist. Correction: All individuals, of whatever ethnicity, are racist. In other words, every person has social prejudices.

          In terms of institutional racism, though, the prerogative to be racist is in the hands of the people who run the system. In the USA, the system favors white people in countless ways (although who is “white” is variously defined in different times, places, and situations). That’s something one individual doesn’t have the power to change, no matter what he or she may personally think about it. No matter how much I believe in equality, my having light-colored skin gives me some perks that other people don’t automatically get. That’s true on the global level. More locally, when I have lived in neighborhoods or worked at places where I was part of a small minority, and the people in charge were not white, I experienced some “reverse” racism.

          Institutional racism is very different now from what it was a couple of generations ago. But it is still with us.

        2. But is not “institutional” racism just a reflection of the personal racism of the people in charge?

          You seem to confuse (coflate?) the difference between prejudice and racism. Is “racism” just a prejudice against a race, whereas prejudice can be against any particular distinctive appearance?

        3. To change to a different area, it seems to be “common” knowledge that mechanics often assume that women know nothing about cars, and that is, perhaps, a kind of institutional prejudice that causes them to be charged higher prices for the same car work. Is this your point?

        4. I disagree that everyone is prejudiced or racist.

          I do believe that everyone may have his own set of prejudices, but it isn’t until it affects treatment of the other person that it is actually prejudice or racism.

          Believing, for example, that all Hispanics are dishonest only becomes racist when one forces them to jump through hoops that no one else has to jump through.

        5. BG – Perhaps I am naรฏve, but I really think that people are more social-economically prejudicial than racist. If I were to walk into a room of 100 people and 99 are white and dressed in dickies and t-shirts and 1 African-American is in a suit, I would seek out the suit-wearing person for conversation. What muddies the waters is that there is a black subculture that hits on both fronts…race and social-economic. I think people tend to lump these together to try and prove their respective points about prejudice/bigotry. I think this is what Bill Cosby was referring to in his chastisement of the black community a few years ago.

        6. Bro. Bulto, I agree that classism is an even stronger discriminatory force than racism in American society. But racism does still exist and function.

          Guilt-Ridden, if you believe that all Hispanic people are dishonest (I assume that’s hypothetical), how could it NOT affect your behavior toward a Hispanic person?

      3. I have no idea who Paula Deen is or what she said or did; the article started with her, and the swerved to Pat Buchanan. The article wasn’t very good, in my opinion; I don’t know anything about the author, either, but it seemed to be of the type “You don’t agree with me, so you are racist.”

        I think many of the terms in the article are offensive NOW because people have been taught to take offense at them. I know that at one time “wop” referred to Italians, and is probably offensive today. I was taught that the term came from “WithOut Papers” for some immigrants, and (I guess) it was common among immigrants from Italy. But no one ever told me that it was an unkind term; when I learned that, I fortunately rarely used the word, so it was easy to drop. Other habits, learned during growing up, are much harder to drop.

        1. “I have no idea who Paula Deen is….”

          She is a chef who had shows on the Food Network.

          She invented butter. :mrgreen:

          Or at least she figured out a way to incorporate a stick of butter in every single dish that she ever made.

        2. Ah, no one in our house watches Food Network… that’s why I’m unfamiliar with her.

          Thanks for the education.

        3. Actually, “wop” originally referred to people of Spanish origin, and it probably comes from “guapo” (Spanish for “handsome”). By extension, the word was also used for people of Italian, Greek, or other Mediterranean origin. A kindred word is “dago,” which apparently derives from “Diego” (a common Spanish name).

          But it isn’t the original meaning of a word that makes it offensive or not, it’s how the word is used and understood (“negro” and its uglier brother originally just meant “black”). As far as I know, “wop” has never been used in a complimentary or neutral sense in English. It always had derogatory implications.

        4. She did far more than simply use the word many decades ago. Her attitudes and behaviors even in the last few years have been utterly reprehensible.

          Paula Deen is indeed a racist.

    5. I’m confused by this comment. I’m more than happy to make the case for racism in fundamentalism, but I don’t see how that relates at all to this post.

      Also founders = baptist is exaggerated for effect, and not some kind of literal accusation.

      1. RobM, the comments on racism come from this in the post. “From sea to shining sea there are white picket fences surrounding white houses full of white people with the sound of hymns drifting from every radio.”

        That is implying that the onnly acceptable Fundamentalism is white and racist. As a fundamentalist, I went to school with a total of 3 black guys. Then in ministry, I encountered about 2 pastors in 15 years who were black and fundamentalists. And they were generally brought into conferences to speak on subjects like “HOw to reach Black America.” In other words, their only value was in being black and being a token colored guy at the conference, so that the conference organizers could brag about being inclusive. Hogwash. How many fundy schools have black men on staff? HOw many large fundy churches would interview and call a black man as youth or Senior pastor? Probably none. My point is that racism is alive and well in fundamentalism, and Darrell’s comment makes sense.

        1. I’m not sure I see racism accusations in that as much as homogeneity. Either way, I’m ok with broad brushing fundamentalism as racist, I just don’t really agree that you read it correctly in this post.

        2. The fundy lite church I attended had black (and Hispanic) bus captains and a black man in charge of the middle school group (like teen group only, well, middle school). So there’s at least one IFB church out there with a bit of diversity.

    6. We could create a long list of IFB leaders who were racist (Bob Jones I) or turned a blind eye to the mistreatment of ethnic minorities. โ€œThe Curse of Hamโ€ was a key part of IFB theology.
      The IFB and similar faiths are the officially religions of the white underclass. Better to tell the a poor white congregation their problems are the fault of Blacks, Jews, immigration or homosexuals, instead of telling the IFB the truth, maybe their lives are awful because they got married too young and went to an unaccredited college and majored in Bible Studies!

      1. Yes, the claim has definitely been made. Also see pseudo-historians like David Barton on Jefferson, Franklin, et al.

      2. While I can believe that there *MAY* be some who claim that George Washington was a Baptist, I’ve never heard anyone say that. If you say that Landmark people say that, fine… they are still wrong.

      3. I looked through the article; it merely says that George Washington was baptized by immersion; I didn’t see the claim that he was actually Baptist (but I was going through it rapidly and may have missed it).

        I can believe that a Baptist may have baptized GW, but that doesn’t (to me) make him a Baptist. I’ve never subscribed to the (common?) belief that one automatically joins the church when one is baptized.

        1. Sorry for many replies; read further into the article and it begins to use some faulty assumptions – that because the CHAPLAIN was Baptist, Geo Washington must have been Baptist. Chaplains probably have to (or do?) respect different sects in Christianity. If George Washington was Episcopal, but wanted to be baptized by immersion, I can see a chaplain (not a pastor) going ahead and baptizing him.

        2. GR – For the record, my initial post was not directed “at” you, just the people who hold that opinion. That being said, I can tell you from first-hand experience that here in the northeast, the idea is promulgated that the Founding Fathers (Washington in particular) were (at the least) “closet Baptists”. This flies in the face of recorded history, but the sheeple buy it hook, line & sinker.

        3. I don’t know why people bother to try to insist that GW was a Baptist — why does it matter? He, at least when he was young, seemed to be a very sincere Christian; studying his Bible diligently and praying daily.

          One problem, of course, is that we cannot take one speech, one life’s incident, and declare that that’s what they were. People change over a lifetime. I’m not elderly, but I can see that that my life spiraled toward stricter and stricter churches until we got into a HAC-type church, and then we’ve gone less strict. The pastor believes that women should wear skirts or dresses instead of slacks, but he has never said (as I have heard “preached” in the HAC church) that “you’re not right with God” if a woman doesn’t dress that way he thinks they should dress.

      4. “…General Washington demanded in a quiet way and wished no demonstration made over it, and partly to the fact that [b]it was not according to Baptist usage to immerse any one who was not received into the Baptist church[/b].”

        ^ Seems pretty clear to me.

        1. Well, that didn’t work right. Hmph.

          Regardless, it sounds as though it had been hushed up because the chaplain went against Baptist tradition in baptizing a non-Baptist.

    7. Actually, I was subjected to a whole semester of high school devoted to showing that George Washington was a perfect forerunner of a proper fundy Baptist. Of course we acknowledge that he didn’t call himself a Baptist, but that’s because all the good Baptists back then didn’t know any better than to be called Episcopalians and what not.

      I also grew up believing that all the Old Testament laws involving death penalties should be applied to us now.

      I don’t think this post is so far off, but it probably depends on what strain of super-Fundyism you are most familiar with.

  6. Once upon a time, long, long ago, there lived in a valley far, far away in the mountains, the most contented kingdom the world had ever known. It was called “Happy Valley”, and it was ruled over by a wise old king named Otto. And all his subjects flourished and were happy, and there were no discontents or grumblers, because wise king Otto had had them all put to death along with the trade union leaders many years before. And all the good happy folk of Happy Valley sang and danced all day long. And anyone who was for any reason miserable or unhappy or who had any difficult personal problems was prosecuted under the “Happiness Act”.

    (Sounds of laughter and giggling. A hammer strikes a gavel. Giggling continues throughout)

    Prosecutor: (Not giggling)Gaspar Sletts(?), I put it to you that on February the Fifth of this year, you were very depressed with malice of forethought, and that you moaned quietly contrary to the Cheerful Noises Act.

    Gaspar Sletts: (Also not giggling) I did.

    Defense:(Not giggling, too)May I just explain, m’lud, that the reason for my client’s behavior was that his wife had died that morning?

    (This elicits big laughs. Judge bangs gavel again)

    Judge: (laughing)I sentence you to be hanged by the neck until you cheer up.

    (more laughter)

    1. You have just described a scene from my darkest fears. ๐Ÿ˜ฏ ๐Ÿ˜ฎ ๐Ÿ™

  7. What fundies (and many evangelicals) want is a return to the 1950s, when homosexuality didn’t exist, no one talked about racism (and it was limited to the Deep South anyway), divorce was a rare thing never mentioned, no one had abortions, there was no corruption in government, housewives stayed at home and took care of the kids, if the Bomb dropped all you had to do was “duck and cover,” and America always, unfailingly, stood for what was good, right, just, and true,

    . . . and everything that was REALLY going on was nicely covered up.

    Ahh, the memories . . . (sigh).

    1. The 50s as we like to think they were might not be at all the way they really were. My grandmother worked outside the home as an editor of the local paper, and (zomg!) my other grandparents were separated.

      And then there are the stories of the secret adoptions (girls going away to visit family members), the abuse, the coverups … no, the 50s were not The Beave no matter how we might wish they were.

    2. Exactly. They want the imagined 1950s, not the one my parents actually lived through.

    3. I’ve never heard anyone say that homosexuality did not exist in the 1950s. What I’ve heard fundamentalist leaders say is that in the 1950s (era), homosexuality was a deep shame. It was classified as a mental disease until, I think the 1970s.

      Divorce and out-of-wedlock pregnancies were also considered a great disgrace, and not flaunted openly. I remember when, growing up in rural America (well past the 1950s), divorce was still something that was whispered about, and still considered shameful.

      I think they wish that such things were shameful again, and not openly flaunted as good and healthy.

  8. Wow, that picture is just so wrong. It’s disrespectful to both the cross and the flag…but I’m sure they thought they were being super Christian and patriotic…ugh!

  9. “All those who have served or are currently serving, please stand.”
    I stand with all my strength. My mind is saturated with me. My soul is overwhelmed with the reality that I am their hero. The love that I have for God and others has taken a back seat for this hour of worship.
    I seriously used to loath that moment of being asked to stand.

    1. I loathed it with you, but I never served, so bringing up the seeming idolatry of veterans and the American flag on special patriotic Sundays was never something I wanted to say anything about. I didn’t want to be painted as unappreciative or unpatriotic.

      What bugged me more was that it wasn’t just the 4th of July. It was the same stuff around Memorial Day and Veterans Day, too. And if all of this was in an election year, I almost felt like taking a sabbatical, because there was no worship of God happening anyways.

      Memorial Day bugged me the most, because why are you going to ask veterans to stand on a day that is supposed to be for fallen soldiers? I always felt like it was because our pastor served and liked extra recognition.

      1. There is a time and place. I just don’t think the time and place is Sunday morning in a church building.
        There were a couple times I thought of NOT standing. But the pressure would build as we all knew it was coming. I’d see people in our row leaning forward to glance at me. It made me sick to my stomach.
        You’re right about what would have happened if you’d have said something. They would have looked at you as a traitor. Or even worse, a liberal!

      2. “there was no worship of God happening anyways.”

        There was worship of *A* God, called America…

      3. We generally had a moment of silence and played Taps on the Sunday before Memorial Day and recognized the veterans on Veteran’s Day.

        I think one of the reasons many IFB churches do so is because the church is not JUST church but their community center and the focus of their social lives. Many people are so separated from their culture that they’re not involved in the community, so church is the only place for them to express their love of country or appreciation of the holidays. Also, they feel alienated that most public observances today omit all references to God. They don’t want to just sing “This Land Is Your Land”; they want to sing “God Bless America” and pray aloud for our country in Jesus’ name. That sadly is forbidden in many public venues.

        Perhaps I’m not as burned as some of you in this regard because 1) my churches were small and 2) my churches tended to be fundy-lite with much less extremism.

        1. I can see where you’re coming from. Thank you for sharing your well thought out perspective.

      4. I’ve been in multiple services in which veterans were asked to stand (Veteran’s Day) or people who have lost a family member in military service to stand (Memorial Day), and they are thanked for their sacrifice/service, but I don’t consider this to be idolatry.

        I completely agree with the aggravation of people who cannot keep Veteran’s Day distinct from Memorial Day.

    2. Most of the men in our church (and mind you, it was largely a military church) would wear their uniforms. My dad was a rebel and would just show up in his regular church clothes, lol.

        1. My father hated wearing his uniform to church, even when we lived on base. To this day he gets grumpy around patriotic holidays when the church goes nuts for veterans. He happened to be on the deacon board one year when the pastor wanted to buy 100 little American flags to hand out to those who served or had a child in the service. My father told the pastor he’d stay home that Sunday since he went to church to worship God, not the military. Dad was not re-elected to the deacon board the following year.

        2. “My father told the pastor heโ€™d stay home that Sunday since he went to church to worship God, not the military.”
          … whoa, that’s a rebuke

  10. Given the number of liquor stores in any bible belt small town, the fact that christian divorces are just slightly behind non-christians and the proven fact that the most religious state in the country (Utah) has the highest number of online porn users; I find myself wondering just how long the average fundy would survive this “God Lovin’ Amurica” they say they want to create.
    just thinking… ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. I read recently that the divorce rate among Evangelicals has now passed the populace at large. Know where it’s lowest? In godless, unchurched Massachusetts.

    2. Dallas, TX has more churches and strip clubs per capita than any other city in the USA.
      Almost every town in the south seems to have a Hooterโ€™s. When I was at the Hooterโ€™s near the Alamo in San Antonio, one of the waitresses was wearing a large gold cross around her neck. I started to talk with her, found out she attended Max Lucadoโ€™s Oak Hills Mega-Church

      1. Wonder if she ever has any private, personal conferences with the pastor, you know, with the door shut… heh-heh-heh… ๐Ÿ˜ˆ
        I’m going to get in trouble for saying that, aren’t I? ๐Ÿ˜ณ

      2. Actually, the Most Strip Clubs Per Capita belongs to Portland Oregon. We also have the most tattoo parlors. I’m actually something of a minority, not being inked.

        1. I’ve always thought it was Tampa, but according to Politifact, it’s actually Vegas, with Cincy #2, and Tampa #3. IDK where Dallas or Portland wind up.

        2. Kappa, IL has a population under 500 and has a full nude strip club. Beat that ratio. ๐Ÿ™‚

          I’ll stick with the unmanipulated numbers.

  11. I don’t know why, but this hilarious piece was especially triggering! You must have hit the nail on the head! ๐Ÿ™‚

  12. During a baptist history series of Wednesday night sermons we were taught that the founding daddies (“call no man father”) were baptist, they just went by a different name…. right.

    On another note, don’t forget that Elvis was glorious saved by Jack Hyles. Actually there are quite few fundies who apparently have claim to a blue suede butt cushion in their mansion in glory now because of that.

    1. Except that Elvis was still responsible for *gasp* the devil’s own music — Rock And Roll! ๐Ÿ˜ˆ
      “the Founding Daddies” be a good name for a ’50s doo-wop band. ๐Ÿ˜€

    2. And I have been under the delusion that Elvis had been saved by Carl Hatch. Thanks for setting me straight!

  13. Fundies have been trying this with their “Bible College” movement. They attempt to create their small kingdom where they rule as sovereign king! I remember when I was consumed in the IFB and I thought it would be great if Jack Hyles were president! Can you imagine the horror??

  14. An America “where every jot and tittle of the fundamentalists code is kept,” sounds like a Muslim country to me. Actually, the longer I’m out of that horrid subculture the more it resembles the fundamental ideologies of the extremists and terrorists. Fundy’s aren’t always physical terrorists (but sometimes they are that too), but they are spiritual, social, and emotional terrorists consistently.

      1. It’s bad, and it’s insidious because it can LOOK so innocuous on the surface. But I would never, ever, ever trade my experience as a culotte-wearing, TV-shunning, no-make-up-wearing, sheltered fundy girl with having to live in a culture that insisted I drape myself in yards of fabric, stay indoors unless I had a husband, father, or brother to escort me, be denied an education, and run the definite risk of being killed if I disagreed with any of those things.

        Life for women under the Taliban (and others like them) is a real-life horror movie.

        1. I’m with PW. The Taliban & terrorism like Nazi’s isn’t a good metaphor/simile for argument’s sake.

        2. I disagree. I don’t think those of us who have left understand how much we were affected psychologically. The things PW mentioned, culotte wearing, no pants, no tv, and being shunned and shamed if she broke those rules, is just as powerful a control measure as Sharia law. Because when you are so sheltered in the fundy world that all you know is your little circle of people, and you are told over and over that if you leave Fundamentalism, you are leaving the only true faith (or some such words), when you finally do leave, it takes years and years to shake those false beliefs. I just read Jocelyn Zichterman’s book, and although she tends to exaggerate some things, in my opinion, she shows how deeply ingrained those “standards” can become.

        3. Oh, I know how much of the idiocy I’ve internalized. I may’ve been saved by my rebellious nature and my refusal to take anything at face value. But I still internalized quite a bit.

          Still, there’s a difference between my own experiences and those of women under repressive regimes. My every movement was closely guarded while I lived at home, but the police weren’t going to stone me if I stepped outside my house without a chaperon (my parents might beat me, but not to death). I was sent to fundy schools, but I DID learn. Girls in some of these countries aren’t permitted an education at all or must quit when they enter puberty.

          I may’ve experienced shame, guilt and despair, but I always knew there was a light at the end of the tunnel. That I could escape. And I did. Now, I do understand some people who are still in may not realize they can escape, but that doesn’t change the fact that they CAN. Contrast that to a woman in Pakistan. How can she escape? It’s not (only) her parents or her husband or her church oppressing and abusing her. It’s her entire *culture. There’s nowhere for her to go, no sanctuary, no freedom.

          Yes, there’s a difference, and a pretty significant one.

        4. What PP said. It definitely isn’t the same. Not even comparable. Abuse is not the same as true totalitarian dictatorial repression.

      2. RE: Muslim nation vs. Fundy nation… If Fundies were given the total power and control of ruling the country… The sick power abusers would be way worse than they are now just running their churches and it would be similar to a Muslim country. THAT was my point.

  15. “Saviour must spelled with a U”
    Which would not be an issue in Canada. ๐Ÿ˜‰
    Tell the truth, it does look more natural that way. Darn, now I’m going to be noticing that from now on! ๐Ÿ™„

    1. What really got to me was web site (I think featured here) that claimed that “Saviour” was the ONLY correct spelling because it has 7 letters, and only evil “Bible correctors” would dare to spell it the American way as “Savior”, which only has 6 letters and shows how humanistic and man-centered they were.

      The sad thing is that in some IFB circles, such reasoning passes for “a great reasoner”.

  16. Possible part 2s.
    The “White Piano” law and the resurection of prayers in schools and ‘released time’ attendance.

    Back in the 60s/70s time frame, the puplic schools would allow the public school kids attend classes led by local clergy in the church facilities which were located less than 3 blocks from the school. Apparently this is still in place in some localities.

    1. I live very close to Utah, and my public high school offered this (and probably still does). It was ostensibly for any religion, but pretty much the only people who took advantage of it were the Mormon kids who went to the little house seminary that bordered the high school property.

    2. It was fairly common in WI in the 60s and 70s. I remember going to church classes every Thursday afternoon in 4th through 6th grade.

  17. This article sounds like a description of the Fundamentlist’s ideal Theocracy modelled on Old-Testament Israel, rather than the New Testament. There is no evident in the New Testament that the Church demanded that the Laws of the Land were changed to make them more Christian, or that they demanded that *everyone* followed their particular set of Christian morals, or else. Maybe the Christians of the New Testament got it wrong, and the Fundamentalists are finally fixing that mistake for the Glory of Gawd…. Hey-men?

  18. There are several versions of this. You have the David Barton version, for instance. But then you also have the “Christian Reconstructionist” version – from Rushdoony to North to Bahnsen to Wilson. Plenty of nuttery there, too.

  19. Read on Twitter:

    “I follow cause you’re funny, but that article was irresponsible and made you sound like a vindictive child. Be bigger.”


    1. Why is parody lost on some people?

      I think the person who tweeted this doesn’t really understand the site or get the “humour”.

    2. Which is bigger, Mrs. Bigger, or Mrs. Bigger’s baby?

      The baby. It’s just a little Bigger.

    3. Heh — apparently I’m not the only one who didn’t recognize the parody (if it really is one).

  20. If we clean up America then we can save America!

    Wait… Billy Sunday, J. Frank Norris, and the Anti-Saloon /Temperance movement’s morality and anti-Communist preaching didn’t turn America to God in the last century. Just like wrapping the Cross in the American flag and preaching moralism will not “save” America in this century.

    If America falls today I wonder… will “Christians” look to Washington or to Christ? The moral/cultural/economic/political/social issues in America today are not the problem in America, it is the Body of Believers and what we have become, and I am chief cynic and sinner of all. I do not reflect Christ to a lost and dying world as I ought. I do not love as I ought. I do not walk in faith…as I ought. So yeah, moralism is easier to live out because it is quantitative and measurable.

    *dis-mounts soap box…walks away shaking head and muttering to self

  21. Having seen much of this, I found it amusing but not really funny. Then you frightened me at the end. Darrell, I don’t know what to say, but keep it up.

  22. “Congress has just passed a law mandating that Saviour must be spelled with a โ€˜uโ€™.”

    Being British, that one I approve of!

  23. You have no idea how annoyed I am to now have a Carman song stuck in my head ๐Ÿ˜›
    “We need God in America, God in America, God in America agaaaaaaaaiiiin”

    75% of Americans are Christians! Why do people think that God has gone somewhere? Slavery is now illegal, legislated segregation has been done away with, forcibly having sex with your wife is now considered rape, crime rates have been falling since the 1980s — yet they think God is not here today, but was back when there was all that crap?

  24. The secretaries are always under a a popular preacher. ‘Cause in the “United States of FundaMENTAL Baptist America” only missionary position is allowed. ๐Ÿ˜€

    1. While most would rather chew ground glass than admit it, subtle bigotry has been a part of the fundy life, at least IME. While I never heard anyone in my church use the *N* word, it was generally implied that God loved dark skinned people a lot more if they lived in Africa or South America than if they lived here. ๐Ÿ˜ก

  25. That picture, Darrell…dear God.

    Reading this, I was reminded of the barefoot wisdom of Rich Mullins:

    โ€œChristianity is not about building an absolutely secure little niche in the world where you can live with your perfect little wife and your perfect little children in your beautiful little house where you have no gays or minority groups anywhere near you. Christianity is about learning to love like Jesus loved and Jesus loved the poor and Jesus loved the broken.โ€

  26. “So instead, of loving the country as it is or as it could be fundamentalists set about to love it as it never was or as they hope it will someday be. They love the romantic myth of a country made with hands, prepared by their ancestors where every jot and tittle of the fundamentalists code is kept.”

    You know the chilling thing? I’m infiltrating Vision Forum’s History of America Mega-Conference, and their message isn’t too far from this. The whole conference seems to be about framing history through a fundamentalist Christian lens, rather than looking at history for what it was.

      1. I checked out the link and shivered. Botkin is one of the speakers. The guy reminds me of Lenin, except only slightly less sinister looking.

  27. If a fundie ever got the impossible thing they want, they’d find something other impossible thing to strive for.

    Fundies need to fight – they wouldn’t know what to do with a victory.

    1. They give me this and they give me that,
      And I’ve nothing whatever to grumble at!

  28. The fundamentalist American dream is really an uneasy mishmash of several dreams that don’t harmonize with one another and don’t work on their own. Are we supposed to have an America made up of patriarchal compounds answerable to no one? Or are we supposed to become a theocracy with (specific types of Christian) prayer mandated for public schools? Wait, aren’t public schools of the Devil–aren’t we all supposed to be homeschooling our kids? But if the men are homeschooling, they’re not running independent businesses, and if the women are homeschooling, they’ll sooner or later be teaching future men, which is a sin. And if all business are home businesses overseen by the paterfamilias, who’s making the ink, the paper, the printing presses? Who’s fixing the roads or railroads to bring the books to the homeschool doorstep? Who’s delivering the mail?

    Backing off from this level of ridiculous detail still leaves us with a rosy picture of eternally smiling righteous white folks who are never afflicted or in need. Basically 1950s advertising, but with longer skirts and no pedal pushers allowed. And you can achieve this, you really can. Just put like-minded people in power, then use that power to force everyone who isn’t just like you into invisibility. Return to the days of “separate but equal,” girls suddenly “going to see their aunts” and returning with carefully hidden stretch marks, and psychiatric institutions as dumping grounds for anyone who doesn’t quite fit in.

    Oh, wait, we did that already. And rebelled against it. Gee, I wonder why.

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