Roy Moore, Al Franken, Donald Trump, and Jesus

“…Your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you.” (Gen 3:16 ESV)

Definitely Author of Confusion series worthy

What is it with sex? Obviously, if you are doing it right, it should be pretty awesome. However, the obsession that our culture has with sex is ridiculous. As much as conservatives want to paint liberals with a broad brush of “Hollywood sexualization”, they are not, and have never been immune to this issue. Look no further this past week then Roy Moore, Alabama Christian conservative running for office. What makes this so hard to watch, is the inability of the Republican party to get a handle on this situation. The people have already spoken, with Sean Hannity as their spokesperson that it is the victim that should be demonized and accused, while Roy Moore should be able to keep on running for office. Why not, right? Across this world, sexualization is a reality. Is the god of the bible clear on how we should be with members of the opposite sex? Is the god of the bible our clear moral compass so that we can know what we should do about this problem? I beg to differ. Let us take a look at some of the scriptures available to us:

In Deuteronomy 28 we read about the blessings of following the “LORD your God”. In the next several verses God goes on to decree the punishments for not following the “LORD your God”. One of those punishments were the following, “You will become engaged to a woman, but another man will rape her.” (Deu 28:30 CSB). Over the course of the entire bible there are several instances where women are treated as second class. This verse in Deuteronomy shows that apparently god would choose to use a woman as a form of punishment. It is the man who has done “wrong”, because it is only the man that can make decisions, according to the bible. However, it is the woman that will be apart of the punishment, in the form of being raped. I honestly cringe when I read this verse, and I wonder, “what the hell?”. The reality of the scriptures is that when it comes to issues such as slavery, and women, there is no greater example of this whole book being made up. Here is what I mean, when you think of sexism, who do you usually think of? Men, if I can make an assumption here. I am not saying that in todays world that is the only place it comes from, but definitely during biblical times, sexism was from men. Men, specifically white men ruled all. So, it is, in scripture that you truly see the author(s) for what they truly are. The author of the bible is not a supernatural god, but men. All of the censuses in the bible are only directed at men (Num 1:1-2; Num 3:15, 28). Only men could be priest (Lev. 6:14-18; Lev. 21:9). So on and so forth.

Yea, but this doesn’t mean the god of the bible would support rape, or sexual objectification of women, right?

As I have already mentioned earlier, Deu. 28 not only supports rape, but uses women being raped as a sort of justice token for the wrong that the man does! Wow!?!?! Not only does he support rape, but it is clear that throughout scripture, women are clearly, and outright objectified as pieces of property, or as sleazy men say in modern times “a piece of ass” (1 Sam. 18:27; Ruth 4:5; Deu. 22:28-29; Jer. 8:9-10; Exo. 21:7-9). Here is one for you; a woman’s menstrual cycle is a cursed thing (I am sure most women would not disagree), and it requires a sin offering, and referred to as her “unclean discharge” (Lev. 15:29-30). Like seriously!?!? WTF!?!?! You created the problem “God”! Now, they are required to bring a sin offering because of this? Hang on a second, my head is spinning.

You may say, “Ok, but that was the Old Testament”. That is true, I have only mentioned OT verses, but you do realize that the NT puts women as second class citizens as well, right? In I Timothy 2:11-14, Paul declares to Timothy, “11 A woman should learn in silence with full submission. 12 I do not allow a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; instead, she is to be silent. 13 For Adam was created first, then Eve. 14 And Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived and transgressed.” (1Ti 2:11-14 CSB). Then in 1 Timothy 5:14, Paul states, “Therefore, I want younger women to marry, have children, manage their households, and give the adversary no opportunity to accuse us.” (1Ti 5:14 CSB). Whether we are talking about the OT, or the NT, the god of the bible unfortunately objectifies women.

So, what does this have to do with Roy Moore, Al Franken, and Donald Trump

During the election of our 45th President we witnessed around 14 women come forward with sexual assault allegations towards then, GOP nominee Donald Trump (Source: Video, Chicago Tribune). The response from Donald Trump was threatening a lawsuit, and an immediate comparison to the Democrats support of Bill Clinton during his sex assault allegations brought against him. The response from Christian evangelicals, his biggest base of supporters, was outright demonization of the victims, and full support of Donald Trump. After all, he was chosen by god to lead this country to prosperity. With the allegations against Roy Moore, an Alabama Senate candidate, we have another instance of demonizing the victims, (Source: ABC News) and multiple references to “Satan’s attack” against “God’s children” from several of his ardent supporters. Al Franken, a Democrat senator, and former Comedian is of course being treated completely differently by the right-wing conservatives. Conservatives have wasted little time in painting Al Franken as a typical liberal, godless, immoral man. If only Al Franken was more in tune with “God” then maybe this would not have happened. The reality, of course, is that all of these instances of sexual assault allegations are serious, and beyond a response of simple apologies, which few conservatives have given. Instead, these men do need to step aside.

The connection to god is not seen, and that is because god has nothing to do with this problem. Obviously, my reason for believing this is because I do not believe that god is real, but even for those who do, it must be recognized that god (or lack thereof) is not the common factor. A persons being a theist, a Catholic, an atheist, Methodist, or Southern Baptist simply has zero to do with their morals. I know that this is hard for many to accept because of the connection that Christianity claims to morality, and being the source of morality. Morals has to do with our culture, and our culture, both with god and without is corrupt. Whether you look in the church pews or the bar stools, ethics problems reign. The most common culprit being men. Whether this man is white, black, Hispanic, or other race or ethnicity, if this person is a man, chances are he is the culprit of sexual assault. The Bureau of Justice has a report out that shows that “Female victims accounted for 94% of all completed rapes, 91% of all attempted rapes, and 89% of all completed and attempted sexual assaults, 1992-2000.” (Source: PDF File from BJS). The idea of a woman being second class unfortunately transcends generations, religious beliefs, races, nationalities, and any other category. The recent #metoo campaign on social media has led to many women coming forward with sexual assault claims, and I could not be more proud of these women for being this bold and brave.

“Female victims accounted for 94% of all completed rapes, 91% of all attempted rapes, and 89% of all completed and attempted sexual assaults, 1992-2000.” (BJS, 1992-2000)

It is very personal for me

I am a victim of rape from a family member when I was only around nine years old. This rape was from a home that claimed Christ as their champion, and had plenty of crosses on the wall. I was ashamed, and embarrassed, and unfortunately nothing was done in response to my admission of this when I was very young. I became extremely sexually confused following this event, and have always struggled socially with this weighing on my heart and mind.

Now, while I am a man, I was one of the few male victims of a violent crime. Here is the reality though, violating someone sexually, should be met with extreme punishment. This steals something from a person that can never be given back, no matter what punishment is given. I have a three year old daughter, and two boys, so my wife and I will have to face this problem head on. I believe, that just like males are often the perpetrator of these crimes, males must become the defense against these crimes. We must speak out against this sort of behavior. Across all male cultures like the military, construction, news outlets, comedy, sexual innuendos, derogatory imagery, and language has been accepted. The time for that sort of behavior to end is now. We all must speak up, and speak out against this sort of behavior and make it clear that we stand behind anyone who wants to come forward with this private, and difficult admission. Obviously, these claims need to be investigated, and if found to be false, that person should face a penalty because of the way it ruins it for the truthful claims.

Make no mistake about it, we must be the voice of reason, not a holy book from 2,000 years ago. Instead of looking back, we need to look forward, and change the culture, starting today. No matter our sexual orientation, gender, nationality, race, ethnicity, religious beliefs, we all need to come together under this issue. We should all be able to join hands in denouncing sexual assault in any form, including the “innocent” language and sexist language that our culture uses on a regular basis. I look forward to the dialogue on this, and I hope to continue to see support behind every #metoo person who has the courage to come forward. I would hope that my daughter would have the future freedom to succeed in life without the objectification of her body. I would hope that my sons will have the respect of another person, to honor another persons body, and to always get consent. I can only hope that if I am willing to be apart of the solution. Thank you for your patience through this blog, I know it was kind of all over the place. My thoughts were racing.

The godless Pastor,

Billy Crocker

Featured Image Photo Credit: NBC News


8 thoughts on “Roy Moore, Al Franken, Donald Trump, and Jesus

  1. Pingback: November Blogs – Billy Crocker

  2. Martin Adamson

    Hi Billy,
    After reading this blog as well as your blog on PTSD, let me say I am sorry that you went through all this. Your personal experience when you were 9 and the source of that violation is horrible. And your anxiety and struggle with PTSD is heartbreaking. I am sad to know about a friend who had all of this going on of which I was unaware, not that I could have helped really, being in that circle of “long distance, not much interaction” friendship.
    But, truly I feel sad to hear of your struggle. I am glad you have found some relief, but it does raise all kinds of questions for me, in addition to the many raised by your continuous stream of Facebook posts. This blog post is probably not the right place to ask one, mainly because I agree with some of the latter part of your blog about coming together to speak out against sexual violence. I think that is the heart of what you are saying. But having you share another personal aspect of your life which has played into your deconversion has brought it to my mind.

    Simply put, how do you know that you are thinking rationally and objectively about the concept of god, given your path to deconversion? In other words, it seems perfectly Darwinian to say that based on your history, life experiences, your life in fundamentalism and not finding answers there, your PTSD and anxiety, your finally finding relief in becoming an atheist- that you have not made a rational choice at all, but you have made one simply to avoid the pain and hurt that you have experienced both in the past and at the time you deconverted. As you describe it in your other blog on PTSD, you were in a pretty bad mental and emotional state. Again, I am sad to hear you went through that-sounds like hell. But, as you say, atheism provided the relief. If that is true, in what sense can you know that your beliefs are a reflection of objective, rational reality and are not simply a naturalistic inevitability? People looking from the outside can see your history and say, “Of course at this point in time he is an atheist. He could not be any other based on his life experience and desire to be free from pain.” But if that is the case, have you really made some sort of objective decision that reflects reality outside of yourself? As a creature with your experience, you have made the choice which allows you to avoid pain and hurt, self-survival and preservation.

    At the very least, this self-preservation instinct has caused you to buttress up in every way you can, your new-found system of interpreting the world (atheism) because that is what helped give you peace. To be so dependent on this system means that if someone were to make a rational case for the existence of god, although you say you could make a rational evaluation of it, you would in fact be unable to, because it would open up the possibility of hurt and anxiety and your self-preservation instinct would prevent you from properly evaluating their rational argument. From a materialist’s perspective, and given your path to deconversion, how do you know that your belief in atheism is not simply a Darwinian response to the self-preservation drive you have, instead of a reasoned, objective position about things which are true outside of your subjective experience?

    I have other thoughts, but that is enough for now, I suppose. Blessings! Martin

    1. The godless Pastor

      Hey Martin, thank you for your thorough post. I know, from our previous experiences that you mean well, and are sincere. That being said, I am not sure if you have read everything from me or just picked out the post that fit your preconceived notions of how someone goes from Christian to atheist. I have no doubt that many become an atheist simply because they have been hurt, and there isn’t really any objective reasoning behind it. This simply is not the case for my experience. I love to read, and always have. I love to study various topics, but in general I have always steered clear of any anti-theist message. I would usually be satisfied simply reading the opinions of Christian apologist to answer all of my questions for me, and leave me with that warm fuzzy that everything I have believed is the correct way to believe. There really is very little connection to me completely not believing in god at all and Christian fundamentalism as well. I know this would be easy to think. It simply is an honest, objective look at all the facts. I am not at peace with being an atheist, in the way that you suggest. It is not being an atheist that has brought me peace from the mean god, but I am peace with making my decision of what I believe and why. The skepticism that I had about god was organic, and not based off of any anger, as you assume. That skepticism was not answered by the bible, by writings of C.S. Lewis, William Lane Craig, Loui Gigglio (I probably just murdered his name, but I think you will know who I’m talking about), Francis S. Collins, Rob Bell, and on and on and on. I know you mean well, but it’s truly offensive when you, and others, make the assumption that I could not see this question of god objectively because I have already made up my mind. You were not there the nights I spent pouring over scripture, praying earnestly for god to open my eyes, and my heart. I know that my heart was not, and is not hard towards god. I have no issues personally with someone who does not want to take the bible literally, and find joy in that. However, for me, simply not taking the Bible literally is enough. I do not want, nor do I feel the need to believe in a supernatural power, or to feel like I have a soul that goes somewhere when I die. I am, despite your accusations, still able to, and willing to see the evidence for god. Here’s something though to add to that. If I saw undeniable proof of the god of Abraham, I would be willing to say I believe him, but I absolutely would never worship him. Thank you again for your comments. I hope you and your family are well. Please feel free to reach out to me privately if you would like to carry on this conversation.

      1. Martin Adamson

        Hi Billy, I am not sure how to carry on the conversation privately, but let me at least apologize here to you and others who perhaps read my comments. I re-read my post and I see how you got the wrong perception of my comments. I was trying to ask a philosophical question based on your experience. I was not accusing you of anything, but reading it back, I see how it looked. The whole section from “Simply put” to the end was meant to be a philosophical, epistemological question. I did not mean to say that any of these things was true for you. I was not discounting your experience or thoughts; I was not accusing you of being unable to make a rational argument or evaluation because of your experience; I was not saying you were fortifying a position which kept you from seeing the truth, or that your heart was hard towards god, etc. I certainly was not trying to be offensive. And I did not say you were angry. I see how my comments could be taken that way, however. The limitations of the medium I suppose. I apologize.

        It was meant to be a thought experiment. I was trying to put myself in an atheist’s shoes and ask how one answers the question about how one KNOWS that one is making a rational decision given all the experiences and influences that affect a person, both positively and negatively. Or at least how one would prove that rational decision to others. For instance, could it be interpreted that the reason you continue to bring up fundamentalism and all its wrongs in so many of your posts is not because you disagree with them intellectually, but because you were hurt by that worldview? Again, thought experiment question! Not accusing. I am saying that it could be an interpretation which may or may not be true. But if not true, how could it be proven? Saying it was not the reason might convince a person who would take you at your word and believe you, but another person might look at your past experiences and your actions and still be unconvinced.

        It seems to me that all kinds of things beyond our control affect the way we perceive the world and consequently, the way we act in the world. Some of those things factor into our decision-making processes for everyday things, but also for belief in god or atheism it seems to me. An atheist could look at a theist and explain away their belief because of their life experiences, but a theist could do the same for an atheist. How can the atheist respond was the heart of my question.

        Another attempt at a thought experiment: Say a man said he believed in god. The atheist could write that off for any number of reasons and do. Born in that religion, raised fundamentalist, didn’t take a logic class in high school, ate funky mushrooms, economic advantage, just longs for meaning/hope, doesn’t want to rock the boat, opiate of the people, a desire for eternal life, arrogance, etc. “What proof do you have?” the atheist could say. What if the person says, “I had an experience with God that I can’t really explain. But it makes sense to me and it is very clear that God is the ultimate reality.” The atheist could say, “that is not really proof. That is your experience, but it can be explained by chemicals in the brain, funky mushrooms, your religious upbringing, etc.” What if the person was a down syndrome man? The atheist could say, “you are not really able to think rationally because of your condition.” In other words, all of these things that make up the person- their experience, their intelligence, their bodily handicaps, biology etc.- can be a reasonable explanation of why they believe in god.

        It seems to me that atheists have the same dilemma when it comes to proving how they know what they believe is true and not simply a product of their experiences, intelligence, bodily handicaps, biology, etc. An atheist can say that they have reasoned through the evidence, rationally came to a conclusion, but how do they know that is true? It seems to them to be a rational decision. But what about all these other factors that influenced their decision, even Darwinian factors like self-preservation? Could these have been the real reason they made the decision? And those factors also can explain why they think it was a rational decision. After all, humans are complicated creatures with magnificent brains capable of great things but also great deceit, even of ourselves. And our motivations are complex. How do we really know what motivates us and causes us to think we are making rational choices, but in fact are doing what is simply in our best interest at the time. As you know, humans are very good at rationalization. This seems to be self-evident for peoples’ beliefs and actions, theist or atheist. Our brains cause us to do things that we are not consciously aware of. We do our best to make “objective decisions”, but we can’t ever make completely objective decisions because we are a subject. A human. And in the materialist worldview, that is very, very powerful indeed. In fact, that is all there is. So, isn’t there always the chance that we are not being as rational as we think, but only following the dictates of our DNA and experience?

        That was what was on my mind with my post. I was not trying to attack you. I was just wondering how you would respond to what I meant to be a philosophical question. Again, I apologize that it sounded accusatory. I used the things you mentioned, i.e. negative experiences of the past, PTSD, disappointment with church, etc. because you brought them up and have mentioned them many times in different posts and comments.
        I hope this clarified the intent of my post, not to accuse you, but to raise a question.

        We are doing pretty well overall. Kristi’s has had a tough year health wise, but we might be seeing some improvement as of late. We will see. Tucker is sure getting big. Blessings! Martin

      2. The godless Pastor

        I thought that you were able to private message me on Facebook or something equivalent. No worries. As far as you saying that your intention was not to accuse, but make me think about how I came to my decision of being an atheist, I would just suggest that throughout your entire comment I never saw where you were simply suggesting these things as an idea, but seemed to be stating it as a matter of fact. I do realize that the medium we are using is insufficient compared with face to face conversation, and maybe soon we can have that. I accept your apology. To the point of your question, you kind of proposed the same question for the theist, and so I say that while you make a point worth noting, it becomes somewhat of a mute point. I know that I have already searched these answers in a way in which I tried my hardest to be as objective as possible. I am well aware that I went through multiple sources of information in simple curiosity, not with any attempt to prove anything right or wrong. Now, this may not satisfy my sincerity of my de-conversion for someone else, but I guess that could be said for anyone, so I am not sure where we go from there. You can really only know for your own self whether or not you are satisfied with yourself. I cannot concern myself with someone refusing to believe that I am being sincere. Just the whole idea seems like an awkward road to go down. As far as my numerous post where I have brought up fundamentalism, negative experiences of the past, PTSD, and disappointment with the church, I have only brought these up for the reason of showing my mindset. Additionally, my experiences are naturally, as you have pointed out, apart of what makes me who I am. I do not talk about them because they are why I am an atheist. I am not a scientist, or a biologist, or a chemist, or anything of that sort to speak with authority on issues such as evolution, or the big bang, or other science related topics. I am an individual who grew up in the church, a fundamental baptist church, I have spent years in a theological college and seminary, I have been in the military, and served in Iraq. I have studied marriage and family, and so hopefully soon I will be able to move my blog in that direction. So, this is my lane, and I intend on staying in it for the purpose of this blog. I also am an atheist, and while that is a personal decision, I want people to know that because I am well aware of the negativity that many people cast on anyone who does not believe in god. The bible being one of those places that cast judgment on the non-believer. I am sad to hear about Kristi’s health this year, but also glad to hear that it might be on the mend. We miss you guys, and miss England often. Thank you for the dialogue. If you can reach me on Facebook, I would love to give you my phone number, or maybe Kristi can reach Mollie or something like that. Anyways, I appreciate your comments. Take care, Billy

  3. Martin Adamson

    Thanks for the response. Sounds good- will connect on Facebook. Look forward to talking with you guys, perhaps after Thanksgiving. Martin

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