Christian Fundamentalism = Anti-intellectualism = Societal slide to the Dark Ages

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Registered: 02-04-2009
Christian Fundamentalism = Anti-intellectualism = Societal slide to the Dark Ages
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Wed, 02-20-2013 - 12:12pm

Christian Fundamentalsts are Driving Our Country Into the Dark Ages

I read this article today and I have to say that I agree.  While the Catholic church in a surprising (to me) reversal of their traditional protection of the lesser and weak of society, has been much in the news in their attempts to dismantle the single greatest step forward in medical care in this country because they don't want women--any women--to take birth control, even if the church isn't paying for it.  But they really AREN'T the worst of the bunch.  The so-called "fundi-gelicals" are the worst, for their insidious inroads into local politics and their attempted domination of the House and Senate with their Tea Party idiots.

<p>But I agree, they are leading us to intellectual ruin.  In another generation or two, if they are left unchecked, US children will rank among the lowest and least educated in the world.  Already they are all but dismantling true science education by trying to force creationism--the magic science--into the classroom.  Our children can barely read, they consistently fall behind most every other 1st world country in math and science.  And we're abdicating our nation's food sources to Monsanto and corporate farming.

<p>I had a dream a week ago that I was a very old woman, telling my great grandchildren about how I used to be able to vote.

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Kitty

"If you can't annoy somebody with what you write, I think there's little point in writing."-- Kingsley Amis, British novelist, 1971 t .

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iVillage Member
Registered: 10-23-2001

Continue funding public education, And keep creationism out of the classroom I guess.:-)

 


 


iVillage Member
Registered: 12-29-1999

From a theological standpoint, I am always horrified by literal interpretations of scripture because I find that those who interpret it literally generally pick and choose which verses they want to use for their agenda and ignore the rest. The context in which it was written is almost NEVER taken into consideration, which is utterly asinine because you can't appropriately interpret an ancient document without taking its context into consideration. 

For example, Leviticus is frequently cited as the be all end all verse against homosexuality. But those who cite it don't keep kosher or stone adulterers. Why the double standard?

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Registered: 02-04-2009

mygarnetboy wrote:
<p>From a theological standpoint, I am always horrified by literal interpretations of scripture because I find that those who interpret it literally generally pick and choose which verses they want to use for their agenda and ignore the rest. The context in which it was written is almost NEVER taken into consideration, which is utterly asinine because you can't appropriately interpret an ancient document without taking its context into consideration. </p><p>For example, Leviticus is frequently cited as the be all end all verse against homosexuality. But those who cite it don't keep kosher or stone adulterers. Why the double standard?</p>

Not to mention how insane it is for the "left behinders" both of the LeHaye variety and all who came before him, to insist that Daniel, Isaiah and Revelations were all written about now and the kinds of "oppression" like the faux war on Christmas, instead of written for a contemporary audience struggling under actual life-threatening oppression.

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Kitty

"If you can't annoy somebody with what you write, I think there's little point in writing."-- Kingsley Amis, British novelist, 1971 t .

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-29-1999

Apocolyptic literature was quite common amongst the Jews at the time. And as Christianity started as a sect of Judaism, it is logical that early Christians adopted that genre for themselves.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-27-1998

Not a fundie, but as a devout Christian, I do feel an obligation to speak up for my faith. 

I am as concerned about the culture of political correctness quelching genuine debate as I am about fundamentalists (of any religion) turning this country into an anti-intellectual backwater. Our very language has been bastardized to the point where we can only use the "correct" terminology for things or risk being called a bigot. Why not just have a dialogue where all sides are respected?

My kids go to a Christian school. Although the worldview taught there is orthodox Christianity (e.g. the Bible is the word of God, though not necessarily literally interpreted; it is hoped that students will choose to believe in Christ as their savior, etc.), there are students of other faiths, or no faith at all. Evolution is taught in science classes, and sex ed is taught in health class.

What's really interesting is that both of my kids report that class discussions are much more open and intellectually honest than any they had in public school, and DD went thru the 10th grade in public school. Why? Because nothing is off limits. They really can and do talk about anything, including sex, religion, race, politics, and homosexuality without the sense that they have to tread carefully or risk offending parents.

 As a counter-example, one of DD's friends is taking the same AP lit class DD is, only at her old public school. This girl had no idea that there were significant Christian themes in Beowulf because the idea was barely addressed. Another book, which dealt with the Japanese occupation of Korea before WWII, was taken out of the curriculum at our public middle school because a Korean parent complained that the Japanese protagonist was portrayed in too positive a light. By contrast, this same book has been recommended reading in the Christian middle school for years, even though we have a lot more Chinese and Korean students than the lily white public school ever did.

I don't disagree that fundamentalism is dangerous (and I know plenty of young earth creationists), but it's not the only threat to intellectual rigor in this country. The real threat, to me, is people not feeling free to discuss the issues for fear of being called intolerant and hateful. I don't want my children being taught the earth is only 6000 years old, but I'm equally averse to having books banned from the curriculum because they are considered insensitive.

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-29-1999

Most of the fundamentalists I know homeschool, their kids don't go to public school or private school.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-23-2001

The real threat, to me, is people not feeling free to discuss the issues for fear of being called intolerant and hateful. I don't want my children being taught the earth is only 6000 years old, but I'm equally averse to having books banned from the curriculum because they are considered insensitive.

I agree with this.  On a quest to be politically correct we've forgotten the ability to express oneself freely.  I've been lucky, My DD is a 9th grader and she has told me about the very frank and open discussions at her public school, And although creationism is NOT a formal part of their curriculum it has been a topic for discussion in the classroom.  I'm actually open to the theory of creationism and my district/area has tossed around offering up a bible course as an elective for high schoolers.  IMO fundametalism is rooted in your christian/parochial schools and they have every right to push their beliefs, Kairo are the retreats those kids still attend too, Those are my observations, My kids see so much more in the public schools. 

Edited to add link to post I agree with. 

 


 


iVillage Member
Registered: 05-27-1998

This is true of some of the fundamentalists I know, but not all. However, in certain states, those who interpret the Bible literally (how does one do that, I wonder? :) have a lot of political clout. I think this is what the OP was concerned about.

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-04-2009

jamblessedthree wrote:
<p><em>The real threat, to me, is people not feeling free to discuss the issues for fear of being called intolerant and hateful. I don't want my children being taught the earth is only 6000 years old, but I'm equally averse to having books banned from the curriculum because they are considered insensitive.</em></p><p>I agree with this.  On a quest to be politically correct we've forgotten the ability to express oneself freely.  I've been lucky, My DD is a 9th grader and she has told me about the very frank and open discussions at her public school, And although creationism is NOT a formal part of their curriculum it has been a topic for discussion in the classroom.  I'm actually open to the theory of creationism and my district/area has tossed around offering up a bible course as an elective for high schoolers.  IMO fundametalism is rooted in your christian/parochial schools and they have every right to push their beliefs, Kairo are the retreats those kids still attend too, Those are my observations, My kids see so much more in the public schools. </p><p>Edited to add link to post I agree with. </p>

There is no "theory of creationism"  There is only a bunch of religious charlatans selling the myth of creationism to an entire generation too ignorant to be able to counter their bogus "science."

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Kitty

"If you can't annoy somebody with what you write, I think there's little point in writing."-- Kingsley Amis, British novelist, 1971 t .

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-04-2009

ashmama wrote:
<p>This is true of some of the fundamentalists I know, but not all. However, in certain states, those who interpret the Bible literally (how does one do that, I wonder? :) have a lot of political clout. I think this is what the OP was concerned about.</p>

Partly.  I also worry about those who read my post and figure they have to defend all of Christianity against someone who probably isn't Christian.  I am Christian.  My post was very specifically NOT about Christianity in general, but those Christians who an awful lot of other Christians never speak out against, but often attempt lamely to distance themselves from any time there is real criticism to be made.  Unless the rest of us Christians speak out against these alleged 'fringe members'--who have a crapton of political clout and who have all but destroyed any hope of real education at the public level--then we are all to blame for their existence AND their influence.

<p>Christianity does not deserve defending if we remain silent and accepting of those sects within it who would destroy it and this country in its name.

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Kitty

"If you can't annoy somebody with what you write, I think there's little point in writing."-- Kingsley Amis, British novelist, 1971 t .

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