(But there’s much more to improve to reach true Godly equality)
- “Christianity was quite revolutionary in the way it treated its women, especially when you realise how sexist the ancient world was.” Manchester University professor Kate Cooper
- “All are equal–There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” Galatians 3:28
On January 21, 2017, millions of people across the world marched for women’s equality and rights. It was wonderful to see people working towards this goal from many backgrounds. Make sure to continue to “educate, agitate and organize” for women’s equality and join action events at both national and local sites!
A really short but insightful lecture on why women’s rights and equality are crucial for thriving societies is by Sheryl Wu Dunn here:
But as the Chinese proverb goes, “When you drink water, don’t forget those who dug the well.” As you will see from extensive research, citations and evidence below, without Judeo-Christianity, almost no one would have any comprehension or thoughts that women should have rights equal to men (and this site shows that other cultures did not consider children with rights as people nor that minorities or the poor had the same rights as the rich. http://www.truth-is-life.org/GoodLifeEvidence.html) . Why? Because this kind of idea was just ludicrous to everyone in the ancient world. They didn’t even dream of this concept. The ancient world outside biblical cultures simply did not possess any concept that there should be equality between all human beings. There have been a few rare cultures where women had most/all the power and men were the exploited ones. But that’s just the same problem in reverse.
The reality is that women in most other cultures in ancient times were subjected to infanticide, sex slavery and had the status of slaves or objects at best or considered to have the status of animals and the origin of all evil at worst.
It was biblical cultures that pioneered women’s rights and equality from the beginning of creation in Genesis where women were created from Adam’s rib to show equality and where both are redeemed from sin to redemption and where the ideal is that both mutually serve each other, since as the Bible points out no baby can be born without a man and woman together giving it life. These are just a few of many scholars and Bible verses that demonstrate that it was the Bible that pioneered women’s rights from the very beginning, more than all other cultures COMBINED.
- “Christianity was quite revolutionary in the way it treated its women, especially when you realise how sexist the ancient world was.” Manchester University professor Kate Cooper
“Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib, and he brought her to the man….This explains why a man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one.” Genesis 2:22,24
- I rescued you from Egypt, where you were slaves. I sent Moses, Aaron, and Miriam to be your leaders.” Micah 6:4 (CEV) (See also Judges 4 & 5 where Deborah is the top political leader of the nation, a judge, a prophetess, a co-general and a mother in Israel)
- “But among the Lord’s people, women are not independent of men, and men are not independent of women. “I Cor 11:11 (NLT)
- “All are equal–There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” Galatians 3:28
These scholars and Bible verses alone may begin to help you understand that those who criticize the Bible for being against women’s rights are either quite deceived or else not telling you the truth. More importantly, as much research shows, those who are opposing the Bible’s high standards of rights and equality for women and people in general are contributing to the destruction of women’s rights now and making it easier for women to be exploited. There are definitely plenty of sincere, but misguided people who claim to be doing good for women, but actually are doing harm. This is true of atheist states, secular states, conservative economics and liberal rejection of biblical influence in government as well as some pseudoChristian groups that have followed pagan ideas instead of the Bible.
It is true that some believers in God compromised and betrayed the truths of God in the Bible and followed pagan practices or those of atheism in rejecting, ignoring or not defining women’s rights or inventing destructive rights that did great harm to women. But we blame or throw away all science when some scientists become corrupt and compromise/betray the principles of science due to greed. Rational people blame greed or whatever caused the compromise, not the valuable principles. The same rational and fair process must be used to evaluate Christianity or any worldview. They can only be judged by people FOLLOWING the principles they advocate fairly.
Leading intellectuals and research is showing that whenever cultures abandon Judeo-Christian values, whether through atheism or through other religions or through fake Christianity that rejects major portions of the Bible, the rights of women and all people are severely damaged over time.
In the 19th century, one of the biggest problems and the focus of many protests was was slavery. In the 20th century, the major challenge was communism/totalitarianism. But in the 21st century, probably the 2 biggest threats to peace, justice and civilization are economic injustices (the root of most human rights abuses and losses of freedom) and the abuse and exploitation of women that causes a great deal of brutality in our modern secular world that many people just do not see for various reasons, such as that it is so seldom reported on.
There are many faces to this injustice and brutality. It ranges from the reality that in almost all countries, women are prevented and excluded from reaching the top levels of management in corporations in most western countries as well as eastern countries all the way to the much higher rates of infanticide for girl babies throughout history and the modern times. Research cited below shows that at the height of the slave trade, ~80,000 people a year were being trafficked into slavery at prices which in our day would equal ~$40,000 a person. At present, ~800,000 people, mostly women are being trafficked in sex slavery, and often for just a few hundred dollars. In addition, researchers show that there may be up to 126 million missing females around the world.
“Demographers estimate that 126 million women are missing due to gendercide (also called femicide). That is as many deaths as WWI, WWII, and AIDS combined. Every year, we lose 2 million baby girls to sex-selective abortion and infanticide. That’s 4 girls per minute.” gendap.org/faq.html
There is something very crucial to understand about women’s rights as well as all human rights.
1) When people disregard the Bible as their worldview, either in whole or in part, they are making themselves and others much easier to exploit, because the Bible is the source of all major human rights principles that protect life, especially the Old Testament which is where the most important foundations of economic justice are located.
“Once truth has been devoured, people swallow falsehoods whole. Without confidence in the concept of truth, listeners are disarmed against lies.” Oxford professor Felipe Fernando-Armesto, “Truth, A history and a Guide for the Perplexed”, p. 165
2) Dr. John Warwick Montgomery is a professor at the University of Luton and holds eleven earned degrees (such as Ph.D., University of Chicago; Th.D., University of Strasbourg; M.Phil., University of Essex; M.A., University of California, Berkeley; and others) and in this lecture he explains how throughout history, when people reject aspects of the Bible in various ways (as many atheists and theists do) or reject belief in God entirely, that they lose knowledge of truth and their God given human rights. Because of this, over time, they become easier and easier to exploit and human rights decline. Another way to say it is to quote Patrick Henry who said,
“It is when people forget God, that tyrants form their chains.”
You can listen to Dr. Montgomery’s lecture here:
This is also true in the area of women’s rights. Contrary to the misrepresentation of much modern media and in contrast to the horrible way many ancient cultures treated women (such as the Greeks, Romans, Indians, Chinese, etc.), biblical Judeo-Christianity in both the Old Testament and the New Testament was actually the foremost worldview in history to improve women’s rights and a stellar pioneer in respecting and advancing women’s place in society in at least 10 major ways (listed below), far more than most other sources combined.
12 WAYS JUDEO-CHRISTIANITY PIONEERED WOMEN’S RIGHTS
Here is a little of how the Bible pioneered and uplifted women dramatically above all other cultures of its time. Without the Bible’s influence, many women today would be treated as highly inferior, sex objects at best, or even at the level of slaves or animals at worst.
1. WOMEN WERE CREATED AS EQUAL HELPERS (like God)
The Bible teaches that women and men were created as full and equal partners.
“Then the Lord God said, ‘It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper who is just right for him.’ Genesis 2:18
In her book “Eve and the Choice Made in Eden”, Beverly Campbell explains, “This word [ezer] is a combination of two roots, one meaning “to rescue”, “to save,” and the other meaning “to be strong.” So women are equal helpers who can be strong in different areas than men and can sometimes save them.
 The Real Meaning of the Term “Help Meet”, www.womeninthescriptures.com/2010/11/real-meaning-of-term-help-meet.html?m=1
Dr. David Richardson explains that the term for helper in Hebrew is “ezer” and God himself is called a helper/ezer in the Bible many times(e.g. I Sam 7:12; Ps 121:1-2). It does not mean women are lower or inferior to men at all.
“In Gen 2 woman is the climax, the crowning work of creation. She is created from a rib from Adam’s side, to show that she is “to stand by his side as an equal” (Gen 2:21- 22; PP 46). She is man’s ēzerk’negdô (“helpmeet for him,” Gen 2:18 KJV), which in the original does not denote a subordinate helper or assistant. Elsewhere in Scripture it is most often God Himself who is called ēzer (“helper”) (Exod 18:4; Deut 33:7, 26; Ps 33:20; 70:5; 115:9, 10, 11). The phrase ēzerk’negdô in Gen 2 means no less than an equal counterpart, a “partner” (Gen 2:18, 22 NEB)(see Jacques Doukhan, The Genesis Creation Story [Berrien Springs, MI: Andrews University Press, 1978], 46-47).
In the Old Testament we see numerous women in leadership roles over men, thus confirming Genesis 1. Witness Deborah (Judges 4 and 5), one of the judges over the people of Israel– women and men. Witness the leadership role of Miriam (Exod 15:20-21), Huldah (2 Kgs 22:13-14; 2 Chr 34:22-28), Esther, and others (e.g., Exod 38:8; 1 Sam 2:22; 2 Kings 8:1-6; Ps 68:11; Jer 31:22).
“The Bible Supports the Ordination/Commissioning of Women as Pastors and Local Church Elders”, Dr. Richard Davidson, J. N. Andrews Professor of Old Testament Interpretation, and Chair, Old Testament Department, Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary at Andrews University. This article was first published in April of 2010.
2. MEN & WOMEN ARE INTERDEPENDENT
The Bible teaches the full equality of men and women from Creation and throughout God’s redemption story. They are of course different in some obvious physical and mental ways, but these differences are complementary. It is only when they work and serve either other together in mutual interdependence that they can reach God’s ideal and experience the highest level of living.
“But among the Lord’s people, women are not independent of men, and men are not independent of women. For although the first woman came from man, every other man was born from a woman, and everything comes from God. I Cor 11:11-12 (NLT)
(Gen 1:26-28, 2:23, 5:1-2; Gal. 3:13, 28, 5:1).
3. THERE SHOULD BE MUTUAL SUBMISSION
The Bible teaches mutual submission by both men and women to each other. Wives are instructed to submit to their husbands, which means to sacrifice to make them happy whenever they can and men are to do the same and more, sacrificing even their lives for the good of their wives if needed. Scientists these days talk about moving beyond dependence to independence and then to interdependence. Interdependence means that even though you could be independent, you choose to become part of a team where each person can cover weaknesses of another and you can focus on what you are best at doing. This interdependence is the most efficient and successful way of living. Each person is suppose to consistently give what they can to help others reach their highest potential. The Bible teaches this principle repeatedly for all people. It teaches it in marriage, in the church and in other areas of life because it is the most successful way to live.
21 And further, submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.
22 For wives, this means submit to your husbands as to the Lord…
25 For husbands, this means love your wives, just as Christ loved the church. He gave up his life for her…
28 In the same way, husbands ought to love their wives as they love their own bodies. Ephesians 5:21,22,25,28
When many people hear the word love, they just think of some romantic emotion. But biblical love was much deeper than that.
“What is love? Love is the constant choice to give to another.The answer to that question can be found in the ancient language of Hebrew. In Hebrew the word for love is “ahava.” Every Hebrew word has its root word from which its meaning is derived. The root word of ahava is hav, which means to give. In other words, loving is synonymous with giving. Love is the constant choice to give to another. You don’t fall in love; you create love. You act lovingly, by giving to your partner. As a function of giving, we create love. The more of yourself you invest in anything or anybody, the more attached you feel to that other thing or other.” person.www.aish.com/f/m/48932207.html
4. WOMEN HAD MAJOR MARITAL RIGHTS
Both the OT and NT give women (and men) rights such as sex), regardless of whether it was to have a child or not.
“If a man who has married a slave wife takes another wife for himself, he must not neglect the rights of the first wife to food, clothing, and sexual intimacy.” Exodus 21:10
Men were adjured to care about their wife’s sexual needs:
“The husband should fulfill his wife’s sexual needs, and the wife should fulfill her husband’s needs. The wife gives authority over her body to her husband, and the husband gives authority over his body to his wife.” 1 Corinthians 7:3,4
Jewish culture also placed a great emphasis on making sure the women was fulfilled sexually:
“The Jewish position on marriage and sex places sex more central to marriage than romance. Interestingly the rabbis taught their men how to give their women an orgasm.” Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, Kosher Sex: A Recipe for Passion and Intimacy (New York: Main Street Books, 2000), p. 10, 35-37
5. MEN SHOULD HONOR WIVES AS EQUAL PARTNERS
“In the same way, you husbands must give honor to your wives. Treat your wife with understanding as you live together. She may be weaker than you are, but she is your equal partner in God’s gift of new life. Treat her as you should so your prayers will not be hindered.” 1 Peter 3:7
6. WOMEN HAD FULL ECONOMIC RIGHTS
Women had the right to do business and to work in a number of respected careers in the Bible (prophetess, judging, midwifery, buying/selling land, selling in markets, etc.) and to be honored and admired for good work and wisdom. Read Proverbs 31 about the ideal woman who goes into the market and evaluates fields to buy and sell and also manages her home wisely.
7. MEN & WOMEN BOTH SINNED TOGETHER
The Bible teaches that man and woman were co-participants in the Fall: Adam was guilty of sin the same as Eve (Gen 3:6; Rom 5:12-21; I Cor 15:21-22).
8. JESUS CAME TO REDEEM WOMEN & MEN
The Bible teaches that Jesus Christ came to redeem women as well as men. When we believe in Jesus, we are all equal as children of God. Race, wealth, intelligence, age, sex don’t matter. (John 1:12-13; Rom 8:14-17; 2 Cor 5:17; Gal 3:26-28).
9. JESUS, PAUL & APOSTLES SPOKE OF EQUALITY OF ALL
Jesus and Paul wrote strongly on the equality of all, including both sexes:
Jesus: “all of you are equal as brothers and sisters.” Matthew 23:8
Paul: “All are equal–There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” Galatians 3:28
10. THE HOLY SPIRIT CAME ON MEN & WOMEN
The Bible teaches that at Pentecost the Holy Spirit came on men and women alike. Without distinction, the Holy Spirit indwells women and men, and sovereignly distributes gifts without preference as to gender (Acts 2:1-21; 1 Cor 12:7, 11, 14:31).
11. WOMEN WERE LEADERS IN ISRAEL & THE CHURCH
Women were leaders of Israel and the church at times in various ways. There were hero queens like Esther who saved the nation from disaster. There were several women prophetesses. There were leaders in the church such as Mary, Dorcas, Julia, Lydia, Persis, Priscilla, Phoebe, Tryphena and Tryphosa (Acts 1:12-14, 9:36, 16:14, 18:24-26, 21:7-9, Romans 16:1-16).A few women were the top leaders in the nation.Deborah skillfully led the nation as its top leader, judge, general, prophetess and a well known mother in Israel, all important roles. Few if any women OR men in history have held as many leadership roles as she did and she is highlighted as a godly female hero in the Bible. Read her story in Judges 4-5.
12. MODERN CHRISTIAN WOMEN (and men) PIONEERED WOMEN’S RIGHTS
Modern Christian women pioneered many human rights. Amy Carmichael rescued many girls from being sex slaves in Hindu temples, adopting many of them. Many Christians argued strongly against burning widows when their husbands died in the Indian and other cultures. Gladys Aylward helped stop binding girls’ feet. Mary Slessor and other Christians fought against killing twins in Africa and throwing away girl babies in many countries. Mary Lyon pioneered education for blacks, women, etc. She tried to make school cheap for poor students. Many others worked hard for other human rights.
It is again unfortunately true that there were certain Jews and Christians who followed Greek and pagan ideas some instead of God’s human rights. That was wrong and we must be careful not to make similar mistakes. But we don’t blame Christianity for people who don’t follow its principles anymore than you blame science for a scientist who was bribed by a cigarette company to falsify his results, going against the principles of science.
The fact is that history shows that the Bible was the #1 source for improving women’s rights and other rights and that it was far above any other culture, sometimes even higher than modern cultures.
A BRIEF SURVEY OF WOMEN’S FROM ANCIENT TO MODERN TIMES
Like many scholars, Manchester University professor Kate Cooper writes:
“Christianity was quite revolutionary in the way it treated its women, especially when you realise how sexist the ancient world was.”
She says this for numerous reasons such as that the Bible teaches the full equality of men and women from the very start in Creation and also in the concept of Redemption (Gen 1:26-28, 2:23, 5:1-2; I Cor 11:11-12; Gal. 3:13, 28, 5:1). Women were created by God to be man’s ēzerk’negdô or helper. In Hebrew, this does not indicate a subordinate helper or assistant, but an equal partner. God Himself is often called ēzer (“helper”) (Exod 18:4; Deut 33:7, 26; Ps 33:20; 70:5; 115:9, 10, 11). See ~10 ways the Bible pioneered women’s rights below for more on this.
But what kind of sexism in the ancient world was Dr. Cooper talking about above? What was life like for women before Judeo-Christianity transformed their rights? There were variations to be sure, but in nearly all cases, women had very few rights and were exploited a great deal in almost every culture, esp. in comparison to the rights that God gave women in the Bible. In addition, when cultures and nations discard the Bible, women’s rights soon decline. We’ll look at a short survey of women’s rights in cultures that did not accept the Bible’s principles.
1) INFANTICIDE OF GIRLS
Research shows that infanticide [esp. of baby girls] was common around the world in places such as India, China, Japan, among Brazilian jungles, the Eskimos, was common in Africa, among the Indians of North and South America before Europeans came, and others (Susan C. M. Scrimshaw, “Infanticide in Human Populations: Societal and Individual Concerns, “ in Infanticide: Comparative and Evolutionary Perspectives, ed. Glenn Hausfater and Sarah Hrdy (New York: Aldine Publishing, 1984), 439., James S. Dennis, Social Evils of the Non-Christian World (New York: Fleming H. Revell, 1898), 69-70.)
2) SEXUAL ABUSE OF CHILDREN
Lloyd de Mause, a scholar who founded the Journal of Psychohistory, wrote that, “[T]he child in antiquity lived his earliest years in an atmosphere of sexual abuse. Growing up in Greece and Rome often included being used sexually by older men.”
3) NO RIGHTS FOR CHILDREN (Esp. girls)
The historian O.M. Bakke wrote a book titled, “When Children Became People”. He writes about how ancient Greeks and Romans did not consider children to be people. People thought they were kind of like plants than people. Higher class parents usually left their children for slaves to take care of. And beating children was very common. In Rome, a father could kill a child for any reasons. Just as bad, many children, especially boys, were sent into sex slavery in order to earn money and parents could rape their own children. There were no laws against this, since children weren’t considered people yet. (see: http://theweek.com/articles/551027/how-christianity-invented-children)
Joe Trembley writes that the idea of children as people “was really an outgrowth of its most stupendous and revolutionary idea: the radical equality, and the infinite value, of every single human being as a beloved child of God. If the God who made heaven and Earth chose to reveal himself, not as an emperor, but as a slave punished on the cross, then no one could claim higher dignity than anyone else on the basis of earthly status. That was indeed a revolutionary idea, and it changed our culture so much that we no longer even recognize it.” (see: www.catholicnewsagency.com/column.php?n=2777, www.amazon.com/When-Children-Became-People-Christianity/dp/B002G9U288#reader_B002G9U288)
4) GREEK WOMEN–SOURCE OF ALL EVIL, IMPRISONED IN HOMES/ALMOST NO JOB CHANCES
Dr. Robert Garland who hosts “The other Side Of History–Daily Life in the Ancient World” for Great Courses illustrates the incredible differences between the condition Greek women and that of women today. He doesn’t say it, but if western culture had followed Greek culture instead of the Bible, the status of women would be highly inferior or close to a slave nowadays.
“Being a Greek Woman”
A brief summary of the lecture is:
“The Greeks were deeply sexist. Women in their view were responsible for all that were bad in the world (partly due to their belief that the woman Pandora who released all evils in the world)….Aristotle in his book “Generation of Animals” defined a woman as “an infertile male”…”
The chances [for a Greek woman] of becoming a creative artist or intellectual were pretty much nil.”…
A woman was always blamed for any failure to conceive.
They were socially invisible with almost no contact with males outside the house (except at funerals)…
Because of the culture they were in, women didn’t know that life should be any different. They did have real friendships and real intimacy and at times some influence over their husbands, but compared to women these days [whose rights were pioneered by the Bible], they were definitely highly inferior.
The Greek poet Semonides wrote a poem about 10 types of women ranging from a bristly sow to the ugliest and worst evil. Only one is any good, but that women is essentially a myth and impossible to find. https://www.msu.edu/~tyrrell/Semonid.htm
Hesiod writes that while nothing is better to acquire than a good wife, bad ones are like parasites and “Whoever trusts women, trusts thieves.”
“Why hast thou given a home beneath the sun, Zeus, unto woman, specious curse to man?”Hippolytus in a play of Euripides
“For women are a shameless set, the vilest of creatures going.” Aristophanes in his play, Lysistrata 368-69.
Sophocles wrote “O woman, silence is an adornment to woman.” (Ajax 293). Aristotle agreed.
Euripides said, “Silence and discretion are most beautiful in woman, and remaining quiet within the house.” (Heraclitus 476)
5) WOMEN WERE BANNED FROM SPEAKING IN PUBLIC
Mary Beard, Professor of Classics, Cambridge University enlightens us about how the ancient world regarded women speaking in public.
“Did women in Greece and Rome speak?…nowhere in the ancient world did they ever have a recognised voice in public – beyond, occasionally, complaining about the abuse they must often have suffered. Those who did speak out got ridiculed as being androgynes (‘men-women’). The basic motto (as for Victorian children) was that women should be seen and not heard, and best of all not seen either.”
Penelope, who is waiting loyally for her husband, Odysseus, to return from the Trojan War, comes downstairs from her apartment in the palace to find a bard singing. His song tells of the terrible and deathly struggles the Greek heroes are having in getting back home after the war to conquer Troy. Not surprisingly Penelope, thinking of her own husband’s troubles, is upset and asks the bard to choose a happier theme. But no sooner has she spoken than her son Telemachus – not much more than a wet-behind-the-ears teenager – tells her to pipe down and go back upstairs to her weaving, “for speech is the business of men”.
…the myth of the virgin prophetess Cassandra, the daughter of the king of Troy, who was – when the city fell – taken by king Agamemnon to be his concubine (she was eventually murdered, with the king, by his wife Clytemnestra). But before that, Cassandra’s lot was always to prophesy the truth but never to be believed. It is a wonderful twist on the idea that women’s speech is never authoritative: even when it really is true, it doesn’t seem so to listeners.
“Did women in Greece and Rome speak?”, Mary Beard, blog.britishmuseum.org/2014/03/24/did-women-in-greece-and-rome-speak/
6) WOMEN’S RIGHTS UNDER ATHEISTIC COMMUNISM IN CHINA
In more modern times, atheistic communist countries around the world tried to change the role of women in society so radically that their femininity was invisible or eliminated and except for a few obvious differences like the ability to get pregnant, they were treated essentially as men.
Ja Jan Ying explains that in China, communism turned women into comrades, not lovers. Everyone was supposed to be brothers and sisters. They forced people to dress in the same way, wear the same hairstyles, etc. The party chose everyone’s spouse and this resulted in millions being trapped in loveless, sexless marriages. Romantic love was condemned and sexuality was almost eliminated. Sex was considered one of the old bourgeoisie traditions to be discarded. Sex was a tool for reproductive purposes, not for fun. Why? Love was dangerous to the revolution. They needed men to fight and the family [and church] was a threat to state authority. State glory was all that mattered, not people’s happiness or pleasure.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yMzpQYOvJY8 (~ minute 2:00+)
Ironically, at the same time, Mao himself was extremely promiscuous, with a special taste for deflowering or at times raping as many young virgins as he could . Dr. Li was Mao’s private physician for 22 years and wrote,” The Private Life of Chairman Mao”. He said that Mao
“was happiest and most satisfied with several young women simultaneously sharing his bed…He encouraged his sexual partners to introduce him to others for shared orgies, allegedly in the interest of his longevity and strength.”
But he also reports that Mao had a parasitic STD but refused treatment, and so it spread among his partners. In addition, refused to bathe or clean his genitals, saying, “I wash myself inside the bodies of my women.”
“According to those people who were close to Mao there were thousands of women or young girls who were raped and discarded by Mao. ”
Thousands of women used and discarded by Mao
7) WOMEN’S RIGHTS UNDER ATHEISTIC COMMUNISM IN RUSSIA
The Bolsheviks wanted to recreate society completely, creating an ideal world where all people were equal. This notion of equality included women, who up until this point, were limited to domestic work. Now women were expected to be a part of the workforce outside of their homes. Their roles within the family also changed with new Soviet policies…Particularly under Stalin’s regime, this ideal woman did not turn out exactly as planned. Instead of creating gender neutrality, women were not treated equally under the new laws…Women were not freed from their roles as domestic leaders; in fact they now were forced to play a larger role at both work and at home.
Women Under Stalin A New Womanhood By Chelsea Adler blogs.bu.edu/guidedhistory/russia-and-its-empires/chelsea-adler/
Despite official ideology, Soviet women did not enjoy the same position as men in society or within the family. Average pay for women in all fields was below the overall national average, and the vaunted high percentage of women in various fields, especially health care, medicine, education, and economics, did not hold true in the most prestigious and high-paying areas such as the upper management of organizations in any of those fields. Women were conspicuously underrepresented in the leadership of the CPSU; in the 1980s, they constituted less than 30 percent of party membership and less than 5 percent of the party Central Committee, and no woman ever achieved full membership in the Politburo. countrystudies.us/russia/51.htm
There was always an aura of taboo around sex in the Soviet Union. At the same time, there was, of course, sex…It’s just that talking about it was considered embarrassing and indecent…Back in 1977, Georgi Vasilchenko’s book, “Common Sexual Pathologies,” was published, in which he summarized his experiences and described couples he saw in his practice. From his experience, it was clear that many sexual disorders occurred because people did not know how to talk about it. Words for sex and sexual organs were either obscene or medical terms—neither of which encourage frank discussions…
In the 1920s, the Soviet authorities released the reins on sexual mores…It was possible to get a divorce without even informing your spouse…
[Eventually] Sex was one of the ways to resist totalitarianism. No wonder Orwell wrote that the goal of a totalitarian state is to subject the body and squash all sexual pleasure.
Using the services of a prostitute was like paying for drinking water when it was available for free at any water fountain. There were plenty of girls who were willing to indulge in the joys of sex for free…
It was said that sexually active girls bathed more often, but proper girls only changed their underwear when they bathed, which was once every four days. Even in the 1970s, neighbors thought that a female student who rented a room in a communal apartment and took a shower every day must be a prostitute. Back then, it was believed that only a prostitute would bathe every day. services.rbth.ru/society/2013/09/30/sex_in_the_soviet_union_myths_and_mores_30325.html
8) BOTH CONSERVATIVE AND LIBERAL POLICIES CONTRIBUTE TO EXPLOITATION OF WOMEN
There was exploitation of women in the past and that is also happening in the present. As time has gone by, Christian governments in one country after another have been replaced by secular governments. Many researchers and scholars have shown that there is a twin problem in politics that causes the exploitation of women, such as prostitution and sex trafficking. The conservatives in these government pursue giving trillions to the wealthy in the vain and debunked idea that it will trickle down, when research shows that it doesn’t. It causes massive amounts of poverty. This is compounded and exacerbated by the liberal side legalizing prostitution and eradicating Christian morals from education and the government, morals that unite to forbidding sex slavery and trafficking in many ways. So conservatives make people poor. Then liberals make people immoral and far more willing to either force others into sex slavery or to be ignorant of how damaging it is and willing to get involved in it personally.
There was an evil slave trade of ~80,000 slaves a year in the past, something that Christians like William Wilberforce and John Newton and thousands of others worked hard to end in their abolition movement that eventually succeeded in wiping out chattel slavery across the British empire. But official estimates are that now there are over 800,000 women trafficked for sex every year and up to 2 million women are in sex slavery around the world.
nearly two million mostly women and girls who are sex slaves at any one time.
Dr. Gail Dines, a professor of sociology and women’s studies at Wheelock College who also chairs its American Studies department, said in comment for this piece that “we know that trafficking is increasing — which means demand is increasing. This means that men are increasingly willing to have sex with women who are being controlled and abused by pimps and traffickers.”
“There are only two conclusions here: That men are naturally willing to do this to women — biology — or that they are being socialized by the culture to lose all empathy for women,” Dines said. “I refuse to accept that men are born rapists, porn users, or johns.” …
According to FTND CEO Clay Olsen, “porn fuels the demand for the sex trade” in a way often not seen by those who view porn. “Traffickers have learned to package their product in a way that disguises the fact that the ‘performers’ are forced to participate,” said Olsen….
Pornography doesn’t just cause harm to those held in slavery — it has been linked to premature ejaculation and a loss of sexual control among men, and relationships and families are also devastated by porn. The highly-acclaimed movie “Don Jon,” for example, highlighted what is a reality for many couples and families: that addiction to porn tears men away from their girlfriends, spouses, and children. As such, it is often a major factor in divorce. www.huffingtonpost.com/johnhenry-westen/want-to-stop-sex-traffick_b_6563338.html
1) CONSERVATIVE PLUTOCRACY:
Conservative politics advocates trickle down economics which means giving the rich trillions for no work done, thinking they will make businesses and more jobs. The Bible is vehemently against this concept in places like Nehemiah 5 where godly prophets did the exact opposite, forcing the rich to give interest and land back to the poor. What trickle down economics actually does is give the rich more money to merge companies into bigger and bigger corporations that slash jobs and manipulate government laws and forces the government to eventually raise taxes. All of these make most people a lot poorer while hallowing out the middle class. Even the designer of Reagan’s trickle down economics agrees that it failed badly. All of these links explain how conservative welfare for the rich economics (also called neo-liberalism), has made billions much poorer.
The forced poverty on the Republican side and the legalization of prostitution and eradication of protecting Bible principles in government on the liberal side are a twin duo that forces millions of women into exploitative situations.
Chris Hedges, former NY Times Pulitzer prize winning journalist and head of the middle east bureau for 7 years talks with former prostitute Rachel Moran in a particularly insightful interview, exposing this sophisticated manipulation which devastates so many women emotionally and relationally in time (as well as leaving men empty of the real kind of love and pleasure they should enjoy in a committed relationship with a wife). Rachel explain that surprisingly it is liberals who have been particularly virulent and mean in opposing her work to help women escape this kind of exploitation.
Not just adults, but vulnerable teens and even younger girls are at times caught in this destructive deception and driven by poverty to sell their bodies for sex or turn to drug dealing or theft, even in America.
9) MODERN TIMES/SECULAR STATES/NO CHRISTIAN THEOCRACIES
As Noam Chomsky and other scholars have shown, secular governments have waged many military wars and engaged in massive economic warfare for greed in other countries, esp. the third world. At present, this is causing the 3rd world into paying what is essentially tribute of ~$2 trillion per year to the developed world. This has killed over 51 million people and forced millions of families into poverty and situations where they are desperate, uneducated and thus easy to exploit.
Noam Chomsky (Author) and Andre Vltchek wrote the book, “On Western Terrorism: From Hiroshima to Drone Warfare”. Statistics they have compiled show this:
“Between 50 and 55 million people have died around the world as a result of Western colonialism and neo-colonialism since the end of World War II. This relatively short period has arguably seen the greatest number of massacres in human history. Most of them were performed in the name of lofty slogans such as freedom and democracy. A handful of European nations and those governed mainly by citizens of European descent have been advancing Western interests — the interests of the people who ‘matter’ — against those of the great majority of humanity. The slaughter of millions has been accepted and seen as inevitable and even justifiable. And the great majority of the Western public appears to be frighteningly badly informed. Along with the 55 million or so people killed as a direct result of wars initiated by the West, pro-Western military coups and other conflicts, hundreds of millions have died indirectly, in absolute misery, and silently. Such global arrangements are rarely challenged in the West, and even in the conquered world it is often accepted without opposition. Has the world gone mad?
Sheryl Wu Dunn has a brilliant TED talk that everyone needs to listen to. It’s about
Global Oppression of Women – Sheryl Wu Dunn – TED Talks
She talks about some of the major abuses and challenges for women in modern times:
“My first major of two tenets of “Half the Sky” [is that] the central moral challenge of this century is gender inequity. In the 19th century, it was slavery. In the 20th century, it was totalitarianism. The cause of our time is the brutality that so many people face around the world because of their gender…some of you may be thinking, ‘Gosh,..She’s exaggerating.’ Well, how many of you think there are more males or more females in the world…There are, true enough, in Europe and the West, when women and men have equal access to food and health care, there are more women, we live longer[note that the West has been permeated with Judeo-Christian values of equality and respect for women, despite some unfortunate compromises with paganism by some] . But in most of the rest of the world, that’s not the case. In fact, demographers have shown that there are anywhere between 60 million and 100 million missing females in the current population…
The second tenet of “Half the Sky” is that, let’s put aside the morality of all the right and wrong of it all, and just on a purely practical level, we think that one of the best ways to fight poverty and to fight terrorism is to educate girls and to bring women into the formal labor force. Poverty, for instance. There are three reasons why this is the case.
1) For one, overpopulation is one of the persistent causes of poverty…When you educate a girl, she tends to have significantly fewer kids.
2) The second reason is it has to do with spending…not only do poor people take in very little income, but also, the income that they take in, they don’t spend it very wisely, and unfortunately, most of that spending is done by men. So research has shown, if you look at people who live under two dollars a day — one metric of poverty — two percent of that take-home pay goes to this basket here, in education. 20 percent goes to a basket that is a combination of alcohol, tobacco, sugary drinks — and prostitution and festivals. If you just take four percentage points and put it into this basket, you would have a transformative effect.
3) The last reason has to do with women being part of the solution, not the problem. You need to use scarce resources. It’s a waste of resources if you don’t use someone like Dai Manju. Bill Gates put it very well when he was traveling through Saudi Arabia. He was speaking to an audience much like yourselves. However, two-thirds of the way there was a barrier. On this side was men, and then the barrier, and this side was women. And someone from this side of the room got up and said, “Mr. Gates, we have here as our goal in Saudi Arabia to be one of the top 10 countries when it comes to technology. Do you think we’ll make it?” So Bill Gates, as he was staring out at the audience, he said, “If you’re not fully utilizing half the resources in your country, there is no way you will get anywhere near the top 10.”
So what would some of the specific challenges look like? I would say, on the top of the agenda is sex trafficking. And I’ll just say two things about this. The slavery at the peak of the slave trade in the 1780s: there were about 80,000 slaves transported from Africa to the New World. Now, modern slavery: according to State Department rough statistics, there are about 800,000 — 10 times the number — that are trafficked across international borders. And that does not even include those that are trafficked within country borders, which is a substantial portion.
And if you look at another factor, another contrast, a slave back then is worth about $40,000 in today’s money. Today, you can buy a girl trafficked for a few hundred dollars, which means she’s actually more disposable.
But you know, there is progress being made in places like Cambodia and Thailand. We don’t have to expect a world where girls are bought and sold or killed.
Larry Summers, when he was chief economist at the World Bank, once said that, “It may well be that the highest return on investment in the developing world is in girls’ education.”
Let me tell you about Beatrice Biira. Beatrice was living in Uganda near the Congo border, and like Dai Manju, she didn’t go to school. Actually, she had never been to school, not to a lick, one day. Her parents, again, said, “Why should we spend the money on her? She’s going to spend most of her life lugging water back and forth.” Well, it just so happens, at that time, there was a group in Connecticut called the Niantic Community Church Group in Connecticut. They made a donation to an organization based in Arkansas called Heifer International. Heifer sent two goats to Africa. One of them ended up with Beatrice’s parents, and that goat had twins. The twins started producing milk. They sold the milk for cash. The cash started accumulating, and pretty soon the parents said, “You know, we’ve got enough money. Let’s send Beatrice to school.” So at nine years of age, Beatrice started in first grade — after all, she’d never been to a lick of school — with a six year-old. No matter, she was just delighted to be in school. She rocketed to the top of her class. She stayed at the top of her class through elementary school, middle school, and then in high school, she scored brilliantly on the national examinations so that she became the first person in her village, ever, to come to the United States on scholarship. Two years ago, she graduated from Connecticut College. On the day of her graduation, she said, “I am the luckiest girl alive because of a goat.” (Laughter) And that goat was $120.
So then, I ask, what’s in it for you? You’re probably asking that. Why should you care? I will just leave you with two things. One is that research shows that once you have all of your material needs taken care of — which most of us, all of us, here in this room do — research shows that there are very few things in life that can actually elevate your level of happiness. One of those things is contributing to a cause larger than yourself…like her, you, me, we have all won the lottery of life. And so the question becomes: how do we discharge that responsibility?
Some may not understand the injustices and inequalities that are happening to women these days and why we need to take action. If so, these 2 articles are a good introduction:
1) “Don’t Women Already Have Equal Rights in America?
“Women won the right to vote in 1920. The next step was supposed to be full equality for women under the Constitution. Almost a century later, that still has not happened. The United States Constitution still does not provide women with the same rights as men….Not only has the United States not ratified the Equal Rights Amendment it is the only developed nation that has not ratified the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW). Countries who ratify the CEDAW are required to enshrine gender equality into their domestic legislation, repeal all discriminatory provisions in their laws, and enact new provisions to guard against discrimination against women. The only countries in the United Nations who haven’t ratified CEDAW are: Iran, Palau, Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan, Tonga, and the United States.”
2) Read this insightful article as well:
14 WAYS THAT WOMEN ARE NOT EQUAL TO MEN
For these and many other reasons, it’s important for Christian, Native Americans, Buddhists, Muslims, agnostics, atheists and others to become active and vocal in agitating for women’s equality.
Skeptics often claim things like this:
“The god of the bible is unbelievably sexist. Calling him a pioneer for women’s rights is ridiculous.
1 Corinthians 11:3-10: “But I want you to realize that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of the woman is man… For man did not come from woman, but woman from man.Neither was man created for women, but women for man. “1 Corinthians 14:34-35: “Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience as also saith the law.And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.”Colossians 3:18: “Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as it is fit in the Lord.”And let’s not forget that the bible god says women can be taken home as war trophies.Deuteronomy 21:11-14: “And seest among the captives a beautiful woman, and hast a desire unto her, that thou wouldest have her to thy wife. Then thou shalt bring her home to thine house, and she shall shave her head, and pare her nails.And she shall put the raiment of her captivity from off her, and shall remain in thine house, and bewail her father and her mother a full month: and after that thou shalt go in unto her, and be her husband, and she shall be thy wife.And it shall be, if thou have no delight in her, then thou shalt let her go whither she will… “
And Numbers 31: 17-18: “Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him. But all the women children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves.”
Leaders in the Bible are supposed to put the interests of others above their own. It’s called servant leadership and is completely different from the oppressive worldly hierarchical domineering, destructive of freedom leadership practiced in the secular world.The Bible teaches that those who wish to be leaders must be servants of all. It has tremendous duties to make choices and to act in service for the good of others above yourself.
For those who are Christians, the essence of genuine biblical Christianity is that it always influences and pushes cultures and societies to move much farther towards God’s ideal of full equality and full human rights, to be more and more like heaven.
Here’s a little more about the goals of the women’s march that happened.
The rhetoric of the past election cycle has insulted, demonized, and threatened many of us – immigrants of all statuses, Muslims and those of diverse religious faiths, people who identify as LGBTQIA, Native people, Black and Brown people, people with disabilities, survivors of sexual assault – and our communities are hurting and scared. We are confronted with the question of how to move forward in the face of national and international concern and fear.
In the spirit of democracy and honoring the champions of human rights, dignity, and justice who have come before us, we join in diversity to show our presence in numbers too great to ignore. The Women’s March on Washington will send a bold message to our new government on their first day in office, and to the world that women’s rights are human rights. We stand together, recognizing that defending the most marginalized among us is defending all of us.
We support the advocacy and resistance movements that reflect our multiple and intersecting identities. We call on all defenders of human rights to join us. This march is the first step towards unifying our communities, grounded in new relationships, to create change from the grassroots level up. We will not rest until women have parity and equity at all levels of leadership in society. We work peacefully while recognizing there is no true peace without justice and equity for all.
HEAR OUR VOICE.
“It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept, and celebrate those differences.— Audre Lorde
Women’s rights are human rights, regardless of a woman’s race, ethnicity, religion, immigration status, sexual identity, gender expression, economic status, age or disability. We practice empathy with the intent to learn about the intersecting identities of each other. We will suspend our first judgement and do our best to lead without ego. We follow the principles of Kingian nonviolence, which are defined as follows:
Principle 1: Nonviolence is a way of life for courageous people. It is a positive force confronting the forces of injustice and utilizes the righteous indignation and spiritual, emotional, and intellectual capabilities of people as the vital force for change and reconciliation.
Principle 2: The Beloved Community is the framework for the future. The nonviolent concept is an overall effort to achieve a reconciled world by raising the level of relationships among people to a height where justice prevails and persons attain their full human potential.
Principle 3: Attack forces of evil, not persons doing evil. The nonviolent approach helps one analyze the fundamental conditions, policies and practices of the conflict rather than reacting to one’s opponents or their personalities.
Principle 4: Accept suffering without retaliation for the sake of the cause to achieve our goal. Self-chosen suffering is redemptive and helps the movement grow in a spiritual as well as a humanitarian dimension. The moral authority of voluntary suffering for a goal communicates the concern to one’s own friends and community as well as to the opponent.
Principle 5: Avoid internal violence of the spirit as well as external physical violence. The nonviolent attitude permeates all aspects of the campaign. It provides a mirror type reflection of the reality of the condition to one’s opponent and the community at large. Specific activities must be designed to maintain a high level of spirit and morale during a nonviolent campaign.
If you want to contact Bryan Bissell, the author of this page and website, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org
For those who are Seventh Day Adventists or anyone who is interested in what SDAs are doing for social justice, these are some good sites to join:
SDAs have long had a very high interest in social justice of various kinds since the Sabbath is intrinsically connected to human rights. One reason it was established was to remember the God who sets people free from slavery (Deuteronomy 5:15). The Sabbath also has massive connections to human rights (Isaiah 58).
Keep up the fight for women’s rights!
==============EXTRAS TO ADD TO THE ABOVE (unorganized)=====
*Korean women BIble 12 ways, pagan/secularism 10 ways.
He has put up with this situation since he was married. “Can you imagine the shock of leaving your family home and suddenly becoming a dogsbody in your mother-in-law’s house?” he asks. “She gives the orders and you become a good-for-nothing servant.” “Only mothers or mother-in-laws look after the children. Men are not even entitled to take part in family gatherings. The husband is up against a whole clan of people: his wife, his mother-in-law and his children. So all he can do is play the guitar, sing, take to drink and die young,” Pariat concludes gloomily. Men are the weak sex in Meghalaya, but Pariat hopes the Syngkhong Rympei Thymai (SRT) campaign [roughly “a wedge to shore up a shaky table”] will promote reform of family structures. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2011/jan/18/india-khasi-women-politics-bouissou