I’m referring to this tweet: “Porter Schedules Fetus To Testify in Favor of Heartbeat Billhttp://bit.ly/eWtfu6 BEHOLD: “Bible College” Science.”
Some background. TB is referring to Janet Folger Porter. She’s the president of Faith 2 Action and is in fact crazy. How crazy? Well, aside from being a Tea Party enthusiast (strike one!), a birther (strike 2!) and the president of an anti-gay, anti-choice organization (aaand 3!), she just had two fetuses “testify” in defense of the Heartbeat Bill, a flagrantly unconstitutional piece of legislation designed to forbid all terminations after the detection of a heartbeat. Proposed by Ohio Representative Lynn Wachtmann, the bill is so unlikely to survive a legal challenge that Ohio Right to Life has refused to support it. Yes, dear readers. You read that correctly: Right to Life considers Wachtmann and Porter too extreme.
So, crazy. We can agree here.
What bothers me about TB’s tweet is the dig at Bible colleges. I realize that America’s Christian colleges and universities do leave themselves open for this sort of derision. The majority promote policies that are vehemently discriminatory against the GLBT community. They deny a woman’s right to choose, they severely limit the rights of an individual to, well, be an individual. If you choose to attend one of these schools you’re aware that you’re signing on for this, though the impact of these rules is difficult to anticipate until you’re actually on campus. That was my experience at Cedarville, at least.
But despite those rules, despite the discrimination and the blatant hatred so many of the students and faculty possess for anything they consider “liberal,” Cedarville is where I came into my own as a feminist. It’s where I became pro-choice. It’s where I met my first openly gay man, and my first transman. It’s where I learned to accept the woman I saw in the mirror, and truly love myself, even if my university wanted to deny that I existed. It’s where I exchanged religion for faith.
And I am not as much of an anomaly as you might believe. As I’ve said before on this very blog I did not operate in a void. I have very dear mentors, and dear friends, that consider themselves Christians. And went to Bible colleges, and teach there, too.
I went to Bible college, Tiger Beatdown, and I’m a feminist. I’ve got a minor in Bible and I’ll argue with a Calvinist until one or both of us snaps. And I’m pro-choice. I took those Bible college science classes and you know what? I am not Janet Folger Porter, I am doing just fine. So are my friends.
So don’t erase me, Tiger Beatdown. Show me the same respect you show the rest of the feminist community. People read that blog, they read your tweets. How many of your followers have retweeted your attempt at humor? Feminists of faith are already too often disenfranchised by both their religions and their movement. I’d appreciate it if you didn’t join in the fun. Especially since I actually live in Ohio and will be directly affected by the Heartbeat Bill. My activism will contribute to the activism of others, and by our powers combined I really do believe we can defeat Porter, and Wachtmann, and whoever else tries to strip us of our rights.