Saturday, April 14, 2007

Speaking Out

I recently read this post, To Speak or Not to Speak ? which mentioned R. Groothuis thoughts on speaking out.

    I recently re-read an article by Rebecca Groothuis where she categorizes people into 3 groups concerning biblical equality. She discourages conversation with people who are very vocally against what they term ‘worldly feminism’ and says it is most often a fruitless exercise to try to convince a person whose mind is made up.

    Those who hold to hierarchy but accept that Christians who have other views are also concerned for being true to the scriptures are good candidates for some discussion but here again, it seldom convinces them to change their view. The most profitable group to speak with are those who have genuine questions and are willing to discuss different ways of translating certain passages and are open to learning what we have to communicate.
If I wonder why other women are not speaking out in the conservative blogosphere, I guess this post gives me a clue. For me, I feel that I am happy to write as long as it represents problem-solving for my own thinking. I am not simply repeating myself for the fun of it.

I know it may look as if I am sometimes, but each time I tackle an issue I seek greater depth or competence in some way. I have been surprised at how rewarding it is to comb through footnotes, etc, trying to get at the core of someone else's thinking. If nothing else, it is an academic discipline that I feel sure will pay off when applied to other areas.

It is interesting though that Jimmy Carter in Our Endangered Values: America's Moral Crisis, called for more women to speak out. He writes,

    Women are greatly abused in many countries in the world, and the alleviation of their plight is made less likely by the mandated subservience of women by Christian fundamentalists. What is especially disappointing to me is the docile acceptance by so many strong Christian women of their subjugation and restricted role. page 93
So I speak out and wonder in what way I can impact on the condition of women in other countries and cultures. I remember recently Stephen Lewis, a Canadian politician, returned from Africa and was speaking on the radio about the condition of women in places in Africa he had visited. He started to cry and was unable to continue speaking for a few minutes.

It is not only there but here, and not only women, but men and children, it is the lack of human rights and dignity anywhere that should call to us.

This is in answer to a recent comment on my blog.


Matthew Celestine said...

Those of us Christians who are conservative on gender issues can be guilty of appalling shllowness at times.

Suzanne McCarthy said...

I think everyone is capable of shallowness, Matthew. It doesn't belong to any one group.

However, for those with power, to make pronouncements about how wonderful it is to be one of those without power is just not acceptable. I don't mind quite so much if a man says that God wants women to be submissive and that sure is crappy for women. Well, at least he gets it! But this joyful submission nonsense is just that.

In any case, I am leaving this behind, gratefully.