Jimmy Carter

Must It Be Either Religion Or Equality?

Jimmy CarterAn article, Losing My Religion for Equality, written in 2009 by former President Jimmy Carter is making the rounds on Facebook.

President Carter makes some critically important points as he declares he is leaving his Southern Baptist Church. I highly recommend you read his entire short article. I was completely unaware of The Elders, assembled by former South African president Nelson Mandela.

In his article, President Carter is speaking specifically about gender equality. I would add marriage equality to the scope of what he is saying as well.

It’s past time to admit that the Bible just got some things wrong: we aren’t supposed to be stoning gay people, selling off our women as property, or owning a workhouse full of slaves.

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. Similar biblical excerpts could be found to support the approval of slavery and the timid acquiescence to oppressive rulers.

Isn’t always about maintaining power and privileged position?!

Morality: The eternal truth about loving your neighbor as much as you love yourself has stood the test of time. Immorality: Slavery, misogyny, homophobia, oppression and subjugation have not.

I had to divorce myself from fundamentalism decades ago and have come to feel as though I have been forced to disown all organized religion until it stands firmly for social justice. I see I am in good company.