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Mar 11 2009

Every sperm is sacred

Dudes continue uninterrupted exercise of divine right to annex uteruses as political tools, almost as if International Women’s Day had no impact whatsoever!

Whups! Looks like I missed International Women’s Day. I was preoccupied with extensive preparations for my “Dancing with the Stars” pre-season gala. No doubt you were, too.

Unlike International Men’s Day — which runs year round (including during International Women’s Day) in an effort to promote patriarchy, marriage, religion, compulsory pregnancy, poverty, global warming, pole-dancing, and violence — International Women’s Day is a poorly advertised 24-hour period when it’s marginally more acceptable than usual for media to acknowledge women who sound off about the global humanitarian crisis afflicting the vaginatariat.

But the next day it’s right back to business as usual, as the first three items in the Twisty Inbox attest.

– In New Jersey two gubernatorial candidates are arguing over which one of them decided to become an anti-abortionite first. That’s right, it’s news when two dudes fuss over the inception date of their support of the state colonization of women’s uteruses. Why? Because the longer a dude politician fœtophiliac has fought for the rights of men to use women, the more lovable he is to his “socially conservative” (i.e. misogynist) constituency.

“I’ve hated women longer than Dude X has! Vote for me!”

“Not true! I’ve hated women since Day 1!”

“Oh yeah? Well, I’ve been tripping old ladies on escalators since 1983!”

“Oh yeah? Well, I’ve been ogling 9-year-old girls on playgrounds since 1978!” Etc.

– Fran Ellers, a pro-choice woman making a “passionate plea” to a Kentucky legislative panel, was obliged to “respectfully oppose” a bill that would impose one of those asinine ultrasound/ cute-beating-baby-heart/ 24-hour-waiting-period dealios that are all the rage right now.

Way to go Fran Ellers, but I focus here on the word “respectfully.” The constraints of patriarchal convention required that, prior to making the wild suggestion that women are human, Ellers essentially had to suck it up and curtsey before the great wisdom of the dudely tribunal and offer deferrential “respect” to the insane idea that women are meatsock fetubators.

Happily the anti-abortionite bill died in committee, but the necessity of pretending to pay homage to that outrageous, barbaric viewpoint — hell, it’s not even a viewpoint, it’s the actual practice of oppression — sorely chaps the Twisty hide. Yet obeisance to this “with all due respect” social nicety is precisely what all women are required to do by the de facto owners of their uteruses if we expect to get a word in. If I ever tried to testify at one of those things I’d probably get hauled off in chains.

Not that it matters one way or another in the long run. One of the dudes who voted against the ultrasound bill claims that his opponents are blocking his bills in other committees, ostensibly in retribution for his pro-abortion ways. Thus, as is justified by global accords governing the fair use of women, uteruses remain the sole property of dudes to squabble over and hold hostage and infest however they see fit.

– Of course you have heard of this particularly mind-blowing case of medieval wankery. I allude to the recent rampage of Catholic Archbishop Sobrinho, Grande Mucky-Muck of the Brazilian Coalition for the Torture of Little Girls. Sobrinho first tried to block the abortion of a pair of fetuses infesting a 9-year-old girl. When that failed, he went on an excommunication spree, kicking out of his moron church anyone who had anything to do with the abortion. He booted the girl’s mother, the girl’s doctors, the doctor’s dogs, and the horses they rode in on.

He did not, however, excommunicate the 9-year-old’s stepfather who, it turns out, is the dickmunch perv who raped the kid in the first place.

Like all Catholic mucky-mucks, Archbishop Sobrinho worships an invisible magic dude who tells him that aborting parasitic growths is way, way worse than raping little kids and then forcing them to bring twin fetuses to term even though the little kids are physically too small to do it. This invisible magic dude will welcome the dickmunch child rapist into his billowing cumulus-cloud arms for eternal bliss, but everyone who advocated for the innocent little kid is going straight to hell. It’s comical, except that it isn’t.

The Catholic dude defends his views by comparing women’s bodily sovereignty to the Holocaust. No shit! Thus is a 9-year-old rape victim who gets a life-saving abortion like unto a Nazi.

Another dude, the president of Brazil, gets a piece of the action by condemning the Vatican.

I don’t personally see what the big whoop is with getting kicked out of an organization that loves pedophile rapists and hates 9-year-old girls. If some priesty barbarian patriarchyist excommunicated my ass from a crummy club like that, I’d rent out Tuscany for the weekend and throw a Butt-Dance Festival.

72 comments

1 ping

  1. birkwearingblamer

    Twisty, the sentence in your second paragraph is the best sentence EVER! Pure brilliance.

    I would so attend a Butt-Dance Festival in your honor.

  2. PhysioProf

    If I ever tried to testify at one of those things I’d probably get hauled off in chains.

    In the unlikely event that I ever get elected to any sort of legislative body, I am totes inviting you to address the body.

    Hugs,
    Comrade PhysioProf

  3. INTPagan

    This has tempted me to join the Catholic Church just so that I can get myself excommunicated and throw a party, too.

  4. another voice

    Despite the evil subject matter, this post made me laugh aloud; I know it is so very 1990s to spell that out, but such is my way. I have also now entered a state of perpetual waiting for a Twisty Butt-Dance festival. Of course, I was already waiting for the revolution.

  5. Felicity

    ” an organization that loves pedophile rapists and hates 9-year-old girls.”

    Much of society is like this. It makes sense if men are constantly presented as pouting children. Pouting female children on the other hand….. are sluts and attention seekers.

  6. Emily

    I’m not sure what a butt dance festival is, but if it’s in Tuscany, count me in.

  7. yttik

    I’m pretty sure I was excommunicated long ago for praying to become a lesbian. I think that’s a Catholic felony. Seemed rational to me at the time, men were dangerous, often violent, and at 15, downright stupid, so no loving God would burden me with being attracted to them, right?

    I’d like somebody to come up with a line of rubber uteruses that we could mail to these politicians in protest. You want to own and control a uterus, here you go, your own personal uterus. Have at it! Actually I’d like to rip mine out and send it to them, but that’s probably not realistic.

    Yes, I am also very tired of respectfully disagreeing with all due politeness.

  8. Orange

    Now, now. The Catholic Church isn’t so terrible. After all, it didn’t condemn to hellfire the 9-year-old girl, probably because she wasn’t old enough to consent to the abortion.

    She is, of course, old enough to consent to being raped and impregnated by her stepfather and then forced to continue a twin pregnancy despite the grave danger to her own health and life. Because that would be the good Catholic way to handle it. Probably she should marry the guy, too, but since he was already married to her mom, that gets complicated.

  9. JetGirl

    Orange has an excellent point, since the modus operandi in many Latin American countries has until recently been to marry off those pesky rape victims to their rapists. After all, they weren’t virgins anyhow, so let’s damage those damaged goods a bit more!
    Had the perp in this case not been the girl’s stepfather, Archbishop Assbag would likely have suggested it so she could become respectable. And had the girl’s mom not been ex-communicated already, she would probably be once she divorced the scumbag.
    And, delicious ironies of delicious ironies, step dad can’t be ex-communicated for raping a child, but could be for divorce.

  10. rootlesscosmo

    it’s not even a viewpoint, it’s the actual practice of oppression

    Yes. Yes. Yes.

    And I did so want to visit Tuscany, too.

  11. BadKitty

    Wait a second. “Stepfather”? So the mother was married twice? In the Catholic church? I’m ignorant on all things Catholic but I didn’t think that was allowed. Or is it OK if the first spouse dies? Somebody help me out?

  12. Chai Latte

    BadKitty, it’s true divorce is taboo within the Catholic Church. (In modern times, it’s pretty much ignored.) Marriage after a spouse dies is perfectly okay. I can only assume the mother was a widow.

    Twisty, THANK YOU SO MUCH for this post. You said everything that has ever been on my mind about abortion rights (and access), and said it with the force and eloquence I can only dream of achieving. (Working on it!)

    I am so tired of having to pretend to consider some asshole’s perspective–and then, invariably, I’m told that as a young woman, I am simply too close to the situation to be able to judge it clearly.

    *headdesk*

  13. Comrade PhysioProf

    I’m not sure what a butt dance festival is, but if it’s in Tuscany, count me in.

    Can we wear funny hats?

  14. VibratingLiz

    Re: divorce in the Catholic church: if you have enough money to bribe a higher up, you can purchase an annulment, obtaining an official document that says the marriage never happened, therefore the divorce never happened, therefore remarrying is not a sin.

    I knew a devoutly Catholic guy down in Louisiana who had been married 12 years and had two kids before divorcing. Several years later he wanted to remarry, so he set about filing for a belated annulment. I think the going rate in that parish at the time was between $500 and $1000 depending on circumstances, clout, deep pockets etc.

    The guy had to have various relatives fill out dozens of affidavits attesting to his character and stuff. His sister was among those who were supposed to fill one out, but she was going through a rough time herself, one of her daughters had a brain tumor, so she never got around to it. The deadline passed, the annulment request expired, and his money was not refundable. The poor guy didn’t have another $800 to dish out, so he forewent the annulment procedure and married anyway.

    Now he’s doomed to burn in hell for all Eternity, just because his sister’s kid was sick and she failed to fill out a two-page form before the deadline. For some reason this whole absurd story made me laugh hysterically when I heard it, deeply offending the condemned-to-hell guy and his second wife (who is also condemned to hell, for marrying a married man).

    Holy, holy crap. It IS funny, except it isn’t.

  15. Laughingrat

    “She is, of course, old enough to consent to being raped and impregnated by her stepfather…”

    Funny you should mention that, Orange, because some of the print news coverage of the story actually used language that implied that the girl could have consented, referring to an “alleged rape,” “alleged rape victim,” etc., rather than referring to the stepdad as the “alleged rapist,” which would have covered legal bases without also dehumanizing the child further.

    The top of my skull blew clean off from fury and had to be reassembled by a team of forensic pathologists (or, as I once misheard it from a student, the “friends of pathology”). After everything was back in place I wrote a letter to the AP for being so goddamn weaselly as to imply that a 9-year-old can give consent in the first place, much less that she wanted to be raped by a family member, but I’m sure it went into their already-brimming “Letters from Man-Hatin’ Bulldykes” bin, aka the trash.

    At least we can laugh, sometimes. Thanks for that, Twisty and Blamers.

  16. Kuleana

    Couldn’t the mom also never have married the girl’s father to begin with, hence the stepfather could’ve been the mom’s first husband? (Or would giving birth out of wedlock also get her excommunicated?) Hell, I grew up Catholic, and I still know shit-all about it. The more I know, though, the more scary it gets, plus they have all these bizarre rules and exceptions to rules and exceptions to the exceptions and random shit they threw in just to appear mysterious.

    Also, INTPagan, since I am technically probably still Catholic, I could probably do something to get excommunicated in your honor. What would you like me to do? I don’t want to get an abortion, since that would necessitate being pregnant in the first place. Or I could forge some medical records to make it look like I had an abortion. (HA, that would be something, wouldn’t it!) But I think we can probably get more creative than that. Blamers, help a sister out…

  17. rootlesscosmo

    <i.I could probably do something to get excommunicated in your honor. What would you like me to do?

    James Joyce learned from the Jesuits that the sin for which Satan was condemned was disobedience; “I will not serve,” he told the boss, and that was it. A model worth studying.

  18. Suzz

    “Respectable” – as in, unwed pregnant women becoming “respectable” by marrying their rapists – is a sad idea not so distant from the “respect” that must be shown to the ridiculous woman-hating ideologies that “govern (::rule over tyrannically),” like legislative panels. Both really just mean, “cooperating with a fucked-up paradigm that is in no way in her interest, but will destroy her even more utterly if she rebels.”

    Rocks and hard places… not an easy place to move around. But it’ll be nice in no-rocks feminist wonderland, where we can have room and move around enough to enjoy Butt-Dance Festivals all day, every day. But only if you throw in some good margaritas.

  19. another voice

    Rootlesscosmo is on to something. Non Serviam! Should we fax our non-compliance memos to the Vatican? Who’s on board?

  20. hallie

    Linked here from “Lenin’s Tomb”. Great blog and entertaining comments: will, drop in again, sometime.

    I never did like the patriarchy.

  21. Ayla

    There are so many reasons why IBTP is the best blog in the history of blogs. My favorite is the fact that when Twisty righteously shit-talks religion, I can actually read the comment section without my brain being assaulted by numerous skreeds from self-professed christians/jews/muslims/whatevers tripping over themselves to explain how their patriarchal religion isn’t totally evil and is actually SO totally compatible with feminism.

    Ok, maybe not FAVORITE, but it’s up there.

  22. wisewebwoman

    I WAS Catholic and my Catholic marriage was annulled by my ex-husband who was still a practicing Catholic and wanted to marry a hitherto unsullied new bride. He paid big bucks for the privilege.
    I had T-shirts printed up for my kids:

    “I hath been bastardized by him what annulled my mother.”

    Needless to mention, none of us now belong to this paedophiliac women hating organization and threw a Bastard Pagans dancing festival years ago.

  23. FatWhiteMaleEngineerHumanist

    If you listen to the arguments put forth and try to analyze the logic, your brain explodes: “But the mother was not in a state of grace at the time her husband raped the child, and he did so while wearing a green coat, so we HAVE to punish the mother.” Or whatever. It is only if we step outside the arguments and consider the event as a whole that it becomes obvious that it is solely and completely about oppression.

    Given that the priesthood has been dealing in obscene matters and obstructing justice, and that they’ve demonstrated a recognizable repeated pattern of criminal enterprise, it would be interesting to see a RICO prosecution. Seize those assets. Treble damages. Bust the pope. Sell the Vatican to pay victim compensation.

    May I come to Tuscany? I want to eat tomatoes while sitting on one of those grapevine-planted slopes, and let the sun wash everything away. If asked, I will butt-dance, and you can all have a happy chortle!

    David

  24. PatriarchySlayer

    Unfortunately, this has been the reality all along. I try to tell people, but no one ever listens to me. You can believe in God sure, but when you get into the nitty gritty of religion (especially with the Vatican), it’s not about loving people and making the world a better place. It’s all about power. And frankly I’m sick of it.

  25. TwoBees

    One can only imagine the rush to become the first official anti-abortionite going back to the time when their mothers were sitting quietly and thinking What the fuck have I done? And how can I get this evil out of me? If only there were some way…

    Unfortunately there was live birth involved, and 40+ some years later (and hundreds of years backwards) we are shown theses two stains fighting over the lower spots in the gene pool.

    Pretty soon they’ll be fighting over who first opposed the Butt Dance Festivals.

  26. Sabayon

    yttik,
    Can you knit? http://knitty.com/ISSUEwinter04/PATTwomb.html

    As far as the Catholic church, Jesus Christ on a toast point that is some hard core misogyny. One might think that they should at least seem to come out against pedophilia considering certain recent scandals, but no, once again they prove that women and children are just tools to be used for whatever “good” catholic men should chose to do with them. You know, there is an old Renaissance love potion consisting of the Eucharist soaked in menstrual blood. I think certain church fathers deserve a few boxes of those, because nothing freaks out godbags more than menstruation and we all know how they go apeshit about their precious Jesus crackers.

  27. slythwolf

    Or would giving birth out of wedlock also get her excommunicated?

    I don’t think so. Maybe it depends on the parish? I have a Catholic friend who’s got four kids and a live-in boyfriend but has never been married.

  28. Vinaigrette girl

    Here in the UK, “with respect” is the known code for “with no respect whatsoever”, and “with great respect” is code for “You’re talking deep shit”, and “with the greatest respect” is “Not only do you talk shit, I’m about to wipe you off my shoe, you oxygen-thief.”

    No chance she was talking English?

    As for the Full Brazilian, here’s the amazing double-talk getout reported over here last week: the priest didn’t actually excommunicate them himself, he said that was what the local Catholic diocese had warned the participants to expect from the Vatican. Nobody has a monopoly on double-talk – just have a talk about BDSM porn with the sex-pos pro-porn crowd – but that takes the biscuit for me this week.

  29. Jodie

    I’d love to go to Tuscany — I’d even bring Pixie the Wonderdog, who does the Butt-Dance on command, for treats.

    Got a fax number? I’d get on board with Non Serviam.

  30. Sydney

    Yeah, the story about the excommunication has gotten a lot of attention in the past few days. Pathetic that it takes a nine year old girl who might have died if not for the abortion to get people to say something about the oppression of pregnant women, but there you go.

    And the fact that people even try to pretend that their religion (at least Christianity, I don’t know much about others) isn’t sexism is appalling, because sexism is absolutely entrenched in Christianity. The Bible is a great source that sexists can use to try to justify sexism. Eve was the one who made poor Adam eat the apple, and Adam was made in God’s image, but Eve was just made from Adam’s rib. Oh, and God’s a ‘He’, by the way. So is Jesus, and so are all of his twelve followers. But Christianity isn’t oppressing women or anything, it’s just that women have different roles! You know, the submissive roles.

    Unfortunately, I’m technically still a member of the Catholic Church (I’m 18 now, and when I joined as a preteen due to family influences I wasn’t yet a hardcore feminist). I pretty much ignore it, but I think I should leave sometime soon. They’ll be disappointed that those eight years of being taught about the Godliness of patriarchy and oppression of women in Catechism didn’t work.

  31. Virginia S. Wood, Psy.D.

    @Vinaigrette Girl: It’s much the same here in the Southeastern US. “With all due respect” often means “I’m about to f*** with you.” But Twisty’s point is also valid: There is tremendous pressure to respond from within the paradigm, to choose one’s words carefully so as to be “heard”, so as not to be too threatening, so as not to be completely obliterated by the backlash.

    Twisty’s points, of course, are always valid. And I would butt-dance with Twisty anywhere, including Rattlesnake, TX.

    Non Serviam! (My new motto–don’t you just love it?)

  32. Vinaigrette Girl

    @Virginia S. Wood PsyD, I wasn’t questioning the validity of Twisty’s point.

    It’s always useful to choose one’s battles. I was just wondering – as I don’t know the current argot of southern politics – if there was a parallel view which could be held coterminously with the initial revulsion the Twisty Brain so clearly and correctly put down simply for those of us slower of study.

  33. Jezebella

    Wow, Non Serviam just resonates, don’t it? Matching tattoos, anyone?

  34. Rachel

    while we’re blaming the Vatican, have y’all seen this?

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/vatican-the-washing-machine-liberated-women-1640134.html

    YEP, that’s right folks.

  35. QRaccoon

    This whole situation has inspired me to request excommunication from the Catholic Church. Even though I haven’t set foot in a church in years, I am pretty sure I am still on the rolls. No longer! Thank you for inspiring me to action!

    Non Serviam!

  36. undercover punk

    Standing ovation for this post!! ENCORE! ENCORRRRRE!!!

    Ms. Wood, I adore the phrase “with all due respect”! It allows me to placate the audience before saying something they don’t want to hear or may feel threatened by (Twisty’s point), but particularly when it’s pointing out something rather obvious—that’s the “fuck you” part. In a perfect world, I suppose you’d just say the unpleasant thing withOUT an apologetic preface. In the meantime, I enjoy making frequent use of “with all due respect” as a way to facilitate the audience’s acceptance of my statement. I find it to be an extremely effective tool for presenting “radical” ideas that I view as undeniably reasonable.

  37. yttik

    I had some fun with the Vatican washing machine story, trying to teach some complaining teen age boys to do laundry. “C’mon it’s fun and liberating. You put the powder in, relax, and this feeling of fulfillment comes over you.” They weren’t buying it.

  38. Jezebella

    Ah, so, “with all due respect” is the political equivalent to the Southern insult sweetener, “bless your heart”. I see.

  39. Julie

    It is very difficult to be (officially and publicly) excommunicated from the Catholic Church. In recent years, the only offense that results in true excommunication is messing with ordination. For instance, a bishop who ordains women might find himself excommunicated. If Hitler had been Catholic, however, it is highly unlikely that the Church would have excommunicated him. Excommunication sounds cool, but they really don’t practice it anymore as they had in the past. And I, for one, am grateful for that, since the time that excommunications were at their height was a time when corporal – and capital – punishment often went hand in hand with your damnation for all time. I don’t want to be part of the church, but I don’t want to be burned as a steak in an auto de fe, either.

    I wish I could find grant money to have my uterus removed. Then maybe the Church – and the patriarchy – would leave me alone. I don’t need the damn thing.

  40. Anna Belle

    We could always start a t-shirt campaign and go all Fred Phelps on their asses. “God Hates Women,” where the o has the masculine arrow attached and the n rolls down to the feminine + sign ought to do it. Think of the outrage and challenge it would stir up.

    That said, I was wondering why you missed IWD, and now I wonder why that topic is more compelling than the entire month of March, which is Women’s History Month. I’ve been hammering away at examples on my blog. I know it’s still only one month, but we could really use it to break that particular area open and, you know, make change happen. Call me naive….I won’t care.

  41. birkwearingblamer

    The unforgivable sin is blasphemy against the Holy Spirit. That’ll get you a ticket straight to hell. Do not pass Go, do not collect $200.00. That and making fun of the pointy hat.

  42. Antoinette Niebieszczanski

    I’ll be checking my mailbox daily for my invitation to the Twisty Tuscan Butt-Dance (is it similar to the butt-walk, only more rhythmic?) Festival. Especially if there will be margaritas.

  43. Tina H

    The Catholic Church isn’t so terrible. After all, it didn’t condemn to hellfire the 9-year-old girl, probably because she wasn’t old enough to consent to the abortion.

    Well, IIRC the age of reason is 7, so, although they’re not publicizing it, that poor little girl probably is going to hell too. IBTP.

    Where do we sign up for the God Hates Women shirts? I’m a size XL.

  44. Virginia S. Wood, Psy.D.

    Oh, where to begin: There’s such rich material here.

    #1. The washing machine did liberate us. Read all the ads from the ’50s and ’60s for washing machines (and dishwashers) if you don’t believe me. They read exactly like the Indian ad, and had pictures of happy housewives entering the Machine Age wearing expressions of sheer bliss.

    #2. Yes, Jezebella! You’ve got it exactly! You can say anything in the South as long as you add “bless her/his/your heart” to it. “With all due respect” works exactly the same way.

    #3. I didn’t think Vinaigrette Girl was arguing with Twisty. In fact, I was agreeing with you, VG, that my reading of the legislator’s “Respectfully” was that it was sarcastical-like, as we say here in the Sunny Souf. And of course it is disgusting that we have to try to be agreeable when we are disagreeing. This is how people who are one-down in the power equation do it and get away with it, and it does suck.

    #4. And speaking of sacred sperm, did anybody catch the last sentence in the washing machine article? To wit, “The Osservatore Romano held the pill responsible for polluting the environment and contributing to male infertility.”

    Personally, I can’t wait to read Twisty’s post on that one.

    By the way, my generation revered The Pill, and thus capitalized it. You know, like God, as opposed to just any god. That’s probably what really got the Vatican’s goat.

  45. Hattie

    you know that little hussy led her stepfather on. that’s the way nine year old girls are.

  46. LCforevah

    What would everybody put on their “I’ve been Xcommunicated” tee shirt? As a lapsed rc, this would be fun, like the big letter A for adultery that Hester Prine was made to wear.

    Xcommunicated!

    “The Pedophiles finally threw me out!”

  47. orlando

    But the holocaust-denying bishop dude – he gets let back into the club. Given the background of the current oh-most-patriarchalish-of-all one this should surprise no one, but it does give us the opportunity to respond to questions very obviously requiring and affirmative with “is the pope a nazi?”

  48. LCforevah

    orlando, I’m heavily depending on Joey the Ratz to speed up the irrelevance of the rc. This man’s regressive path is going to alienate the moderates and the young, not just those who consider themselves feminist or progressive.

    Par for the course–he doesn’t know anything about the planet he lives on.

  49. Ron Sullivan

    The Holocaust-denier didn’t get excommunicated for denying the Holocaust or for any other actual offensive thing. He got excommunicated because he got his Official Magic Hat(tm) from a Magic Hat(tm) fence*. It’s still a Real Magic Hat(tm) but it didn’t get passed on through official channels, so spankies from the Pope.

    (*Fence meaning the guy who sells you back your stolen car radio at the flea market, or equivalent.)

    As the Magic Hat(tm) fence was a pawnshop of the rightwing variety, it’s no surprise that he’s getting a lollipop now that his butt-glow has faded. I’m certain that the Magic Hat)(tm) fence(s?) that ordained a bunch of (shudder) women a year or two ago won’t get so much as a chewed-n-drooly paper stick and that the Magic Fingers(tm) those women got will be deemed Not Magic Ever At All Fershure Nuh-Uh.

    To get excommunicated, you don’t need to have an abortion yourself; you just need to have “facilitated or procured” one. Do a stint of clinic escort duty and Barb’s Yer Uncle.

    I’m still trying about how one succeeds in blaspheming the Holy Spirit, myself. I find I’m just a teensy bit hesitant about that one, as I like birds, even pigeons. Some of us are old enough to remember having our favorite Beatle. (George, before he started writing his own lyrics.) I was a devout Catholic tootsie, and so had a favorite Person of the Trinity, and of course that was the (as we said then) Holy Ghost.

    The HG always seemed a bit more intellectual, see.

  50. thebewilderness

    blas·phe·my (blsf-m)
    n. pl. blas·phe·mies
    1.
    a. A contemptuous or profane act, utterance, or writing concerning God or a sacred entity.
    b. The act of claiming for oneself the attributes and rights of God.

    Pretty much what religionists do every time they substitute their teachings for the teachings of the guy they named their religion after.

  51. Spiders

    “…plus they have all these bizarre rules and exceptions to rules and exceptions to the exceptions and random shit they threw in just to appear mysterious.”
    This about sums up catholicism, generally. Of all the brands of mainstream godbagism, it’s the shonkiest.

  52. taggles

    Feminism by whirlpool

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ufkVg-mFhuM

    very enlightening! :roll:

    I wonder if this is where the vatican got the idea from.

  53. tinfoil hattie

    How to blaspheme the Holy Spirit? Just say “she” and “her” when talking about that particular branch of the family tree. Should get you kicked out right quick.

  54. Fhiona

    I am a practising Catholic, on the basis that:

    1) Everything the Vatican says is a heap of shit, and to be roundly ignored

    and

    2) I am a secretly-already-excommunicated-abortion-procurer.

    I just like the social side. To be fair, my current priest knows this, and of my total lack of contrition about the whole thing, and doesn’t give a toss.

    I also agree with Ron Sullivan and thebewilderness. If people could stop the bollocks and not judge, do unto others etc, the world would be a less crappy place. And the Holy Spirit is [i]definitely[/i] the intellectual of the bunch – and is usually referred to as female in our diocese.

  55. Orange

    Y’know, the whole excommunication thing is so haphazardly applied. A zillion Catholic people have gotten, procured, performed, or otherwise facilitated abortions without getting excommunicated. Fhiona suggests that maybe the determining factor is the local priest–if he doesn’t give a rat’s ass, you ain’t getting the boot. If he is mortally offended by abortion facilitation but doesn’t know about it, he can’t excommunicate you.

    I wonder how it came to pass with the Brazil case. Did Mom go to confession like a good Catholic and own up to it? Was it in the news owing to the girl’s young age? Did Mom seek moral (!) support from her clergyman to help her through an incredibly difficult time in her life? Did the assorted priests and bishops argue amongst themselves whether excommunication was called for or a cruel overreaction? (Good gravy, you’d like to think that at least a few of them would have argued in favor of leaving the family alone.)

  56. slythwolf

    So, the way I understand it, the Holy Spirit is supposed to be what impregnated Mary, right? Would it be blasphemy for me to opine that it’s a little fucked up that God’s semen gets a name, a personality and a place in the pantheon?

    Okay, his “magical”, like, intangible semen, whatever.

  57. Jezebella

    An acquaintance had heard this story as one of those “weird news” stories that was basically like “Wow, what a very young pregnant person! Only NINE! How wacky!” He had not heard about the rapist stepfather. Somehow that little detail got left out of the story somewhere along the way. Quel surprise.

    A priest shouldn’t be able to publicize information received in confession, even if it results in excommunication, so I’d rule out that possibility.

  58. Fat Angie

    I’m raised Catholic, and so maybe I have a different view of this. I am not posting this as an apologist, but merely to clear up some questions/misunderstandings. To borrow from the Church itself, I enjoy playing Devil’s Advocate.

    The bishop was totally wrong and an asshat, and against Catholicism. Here is why: when speaking to priests, religion teachers, etc. abortion does have exceptions, because the commandment “thou shalt not kill” has the exception of self-defense. This case involves a nine year old girl who would most likely die from the pregnancy, therefore abortion falls under self-defense in this case. Technically, they can go to another bishop or canon lawyer to appeal directly to the Vatican to argue self-defense to overturn their excommunication.

    IMHO, this whole thing is to make a point about abortion. It has nothing to do with the girl (who can’t be excommunicated anyway, since prior to the age of 12, you’re not an adult in the eyes of the Church), nothing to do with the stepfather, nothing to do with these peoples’ lives at all. You’re against abortion, big whoop. Imagine, the Catholic Church being pro-life. *rolls eyes*

    Rape, unfortunately, is not an excommunicable offense. However, if the priest knows a man to be a rapist, and he has not been to confession, he HAS to deny the rapist eucharist, because it is a mortal sin- go to hell, go directly to hell, do not pass “Go”, do not collect $200- and falls under “murder” not “adultery”. Run-of-the-mill premarital sex does not fall under this category, even gay sex, it is just “fornication”.

    As for annulments, the children produced in the marriage are not “bastardized”, since both parties believed that they were entering into a sacramental marriage, or the marriage was sacramental but one or both parties broke their vows. All my mom had to do to get her annulment was to show that my father had already moved on to wife #2 (I think he’s on wife #7 now). Really, all you have to show is that, even if a sacramental marriage existed, it doesn’t now.

  59. Twisty

    Man, is religion ever dumb.

  60. butterflywings

    Yeah, ‘I respectfully disagree’, ‘with all due respect’ etc. etc. definitely mean ‘I have no respect for you at all, in fact, f*^k you’. It’s a kind of subversive pretending to be polite.

    But Twisty’s point is true too. Women are obliged to be nice and polite and reasonable, and the most minor deviation from that is being ‘angry’ and ‘hysterical’ and so on.

    Yes, religion is dumb.

  61. Ismone

    Actually, Hitler was a Catholic. I say that as a former Catholic myself.

    I should like to be excommunicated. I’m going to have to work on that one. Maybe if I write a letter acknowledging I took Plan B?

  62. Inverarity

    And of course, we all know that “I’ll pray for you” is Jesus-speak for “Fuck you.”

  63. tinfoil hattie

    I don’t know, Fat Angie – I’m not sure a priest can really refuse you Communion on hearsay.

  64. Gayle

    “And of course, we all know that “I’ll pray for you” is Jesus-speak for “Fuck you.””

    HA! Damn snappy!

    Wouldn’t it be great if that great leftist hope, La Lulu actually came out for legalizing all abortion in Brazil? Alas, it’s so much more politically expedient to chime in on the most extreme of cases while ignoring all those other bodies, left sick or dying, due to your fucking archaic laws.

  65. The Hedonistic Pleasureseeker

    Meanwhile, people ARE trying to “debaptise” themselves and finding it strangely difficult. Maybe they could try a Sham-Wow?

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/7941817.stm

  66. Fhiona

    The only reason a priest can refuse communion is if to do so would cause “a public scandle”. So if your congregation is A-okay with rapists getting communion, the priest wouldn’t be able to refuse.

  67. Carolyn

    Re being liberated by washing machines…this book:

    http://www.amazon.co.uk/More-Work-Mother-Household-Technology/dp/0465047327

    argues that the domestic labour-saving technologies of the last 100 years or so actually had the effect of giving the wife-and-mother sole responsibility for domestic chores. Before these gadgets were common a lot of these chores generally required more than one person, and other family members as well as male and female servants shared the work (laundry, for example, took an entire day, and was extremely physically demanding, as well as requiring male assistance for things like building the fire for the hot water); thanks to the new household gadgets the men in the family were freed to do their guy things, and there was no excuse for lazy women to employ domestic help. So now there’s even more reason to tie the woman to the house and expect her to do all the chores unaided. This book was required reading for my history of technology class.

  68. butterflywings

    Inverarity – yes indeed.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/somerset/7863699.stm

    and rightly so.

  69. not a dudetiful wife

    I found this today and found it to be inspirational.

    http://www.northlandposter.com/cgi-bin/search.cgi?menu=1&item_no=p811&category=posters&keyword=Hall%20of%20Fame&newproduct=&discountproduct=

    Hope has two daughters
    Their names are Anger and Courage.
    Anger at the way things are and
    Courage to see that they do not remain as they are.

    The “nice and polite” obligation of women leads to a whole bunch of depression, I think. Is it any surprise that Utah has the highest use of antidepressants per capita of any state?

    I don’t know about you, but as a feminist, at times people I know squirm at the word feminist. And some feminists squirm at the word “anger.” I’ve been told by the new age folks, the christian folks and the “secret” folks that experiencing anger attracts bad things to you, is not what the lord wants so you can count on punishment (if it is about feminist issues in particular…republican and Rush supported war is okay), and in general, anger destroys so you should take a pill or otherwise discard the anger as a moral flaw, particularly as a woman. I disagree. I think that both anger and grief are underrated and denied and its the denial creates mental health issues.

    In going through my problems, a friend suggested medication and therapy (which she is doing during her child custody issues). Well, that’s okay. But really, if you are going through crappy times, well….you’re going to be angry, at times depressed, at times have grief. Gee, it is NATURAL to feel angry if you are experiencing an injustice or going through a crappy time. Remarkably, just to admit that often centers you better than a pill or a mantra chanting. I do not deny the help of modern psychological treatments, but to pathologicalize anger and grief routinely just makes us less able to see through the bullshit and ultimately, less healthy. It can postpone the facing the uncomfortable truths.

    Take that energy and do something with it, don’t deny it. Of course, that is unladylike.

    I have been off and on reading this blog and I admire how Twisty did not avoid saying things are crappy and saying that gee, cancer sucks and she had some negative feelings about it. I don’t believe anger and unladylike behavior, particularly of women, should be blamed on some causal spiritual level for every bleeping bad thing that happens to them. This is part of religious tyranny, even if it is a new age religion.

    We have to take anger and put it with courage and get on with it and don’t deny the usefulness of either. This moves society along as well.

  70. Eliza

    My t-shirt will say “Non Serviam” in that same script used in the 70′s classic poster, “Fuck Housework.”

    50 parishes about to close down in Cleveland, due to lack of resources and priests. Good news. It’s beginning. . .

    I am an ex-Catholic too, and find it amazing that you can’t undo your baptism (according to Them) by self-fiat. According to me, however, it’s done.

  71. LCforevah

    50 parishes? Wow, it IS the beginning of the end. Do you know how to find out this info for Southern California?

  72. saltyC

    I’m pretty sure Lula is for legalizing abortion, they have tried to legalize it and it failed in the legislature. Nilcea Freire, the minister for women’s status (a cabinet position) has been doing a lot to legalize abortion, sadly it is quite an uphill battle.

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