“Women are prevented from playing a full and equal role in many faiths, creating an environment in which violations against women are justified,” former President Jimmy Carter noted in a speech last month to the Parliament of the World’s Religions in Australia.
“The belief that women are inferior human beings in the eyes of God,” Mr. Carter continued, “gives excuses to the brutal husband who beats his wife, the soldier who rapes a woman, the employer who has a lower pay scale for women employees, or parents who decide to abort a female embryo.”
Mr. Carter, who sees religion as one of the “basic causes of the violation of women’s rights,” is a member of The Elders, a small council of retired leaders brought together by Nelson Mandela. The Elders are focusing on the role of religion in oppressing women, and they have issued a joint statement calling on religious leaders to “change all discriminatory practices within their own religions and traditions.”
This is from a Nicholas Kristof article, via Echidne, who notes that the major problem with this generally admirable initiative is that it won’t mean diddlysquat to the subset of religious authoritarians who view the subjugation of women as a feature of religion rather than as a bug.
Categories: ethics & philosophy, gender & feminism, religion
But it will do something to force the authoritarians who view the subjugation of women as a feature of their religion to ‘fess up that that’s how they see it, and take away some of their cover that everyone important thinks that way, so it’s obviously the way things are meant to be.
Good point, Orlando.
”… the subset of religious authoritarians who view the subjugation of women as a feature of religion rather than as a bug.”
Nicely put, tigtog 🙂
I thought that the Abrahamic religions were invented to keep women down. And when did Desmond Tutu become a feminist? I must’ve missed that bit. (Don’t think I’m letting Hinduism off the hook, it’s pretty nasty toward women too. Buddhism has a few bugs, but it’s a lot more female friendly than the rest.)