Friday, August 07, 2009

A Little Friday Opinion Mongering

Between reading the comments on the Stand Firm Homeschool thread (the lectures by RC Sproul, by the way, are really excellent), the very funny idea that all the men in the Anglican Communion should remain silent for a year, and watching all the amazing clips of people being shut out of Town Hall Meetings (and this one of the AARP people leaving in the middle of the meeting), I've been considering to myself quietly all week the immense cultural divide between conservative and liberal. It doesn't seem, at this point, to be just groups of people leaning slightly further to the right or to the left. There is a profound and every day more bitter divide.

Take this comment on the homeschool thread. The commenter asks, "One question I would like to kick around which has yet to come up—what about the career aspirations of moms who homeschool? Are there any who have managed to maintain their own careers which homeschooling? "

My initial reaction, which I didn't post because I couldn't log in by the grace of God, was, 'What! Being home with your children isn't enough?!!!' and then, 'I have an extra career and ask anyone, I'm always trying to shove my work off on other people because I'd rather be home with my kids' and then, 'well, here I am, I haven't had to choose so I shouldn't be judgmental'. But as I banged my way around my kitchen, reacting and muttering to myself, I discovered that I do not share the fundamental assumption that women are owed an extra career, or that being in anyway 'fulfilled' is a reason to do the job at hand. In fact, my baseline most important priority is to do the will of God. And the will of God, seen most plainly in scripture and then in a lot of other places, almost always involves sacrificing oneself for the sake of others, first Jesus, because he died for me, then for my husband, because he's so wonderful, then for my children because God gave them to me, then for the church because apparently that's my job (hehehe). But there is a real danger to this world view of mine. It puts me on a profound collision course with So Many People.

For example, the Episcopal Church. Every lifestyle is a right. The greatest sin is not living up to be the person you and "God" think you should be rather than, say, offending an all Holy God through blatant and unsorrowful disobedience. This is why dear Ms. Kaeton and I will probably never be good friends, though doubtless we pray for each other occasionally. I don't think she has a right to her way of life. I don't think she should be the rector of a church. I don't think God is waiting out there to affirm her for who she is, any more than he's sitting around waiting to affirm me for who I am. I think he's waiting for both of us to confess our sins and be really sorry and then he will forgive us, and let us do his work for his glory. And if that work involves a fundamental denial of the self, well, that ought to be no surprise to anyone. He laid the model down himself.

Second, the Obama administration on two points. Callous as it seems, I don't think health-care is a right to be dispensed by the government. It ought to be a matter of compassion and mercy dispensed by the church and other charitable organizations (read Non Profit) for those who can't afford it (I realize, as I write this, that this is practically a utopia and is never going to happen) and then paid for by those who can. Anyway, I'm not here to argue about health-care. The other point is that of education. I think its my responsibility to educate my children, not the state's and I'd like as little interference as possible.

And ultimately, I'm on a collision course with all feminists everywhere. Its no surprise to me that the top tier of the Episcopal Church is occupied by a gaggle of women, with a bunch of cowering male bishops underneath, unwilling to stand up and say anything, like 'Stop It'. So far from having all the men be quiet for a whole year, I vote that all the women take a vow of silence and then see what happens. Of course, then I'd probably have to shut down this blog, but my stuff's not that interesting anyway.


ejd said...

I think he's waiting for both of us to confess our sins and be really sorry and then he will forgive us, and let us do his work for his glory. And if that work involves a fundamental denial of the self, well, that ought to be no surprise to anyone. He laid the model down himself.

Wow. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

"And ultimately, I'm on a collision course with all feminists everywhere".

I have been on one for years and am passing my 7oth this September. Love your blog and read it often but do not comment. My daughter homeschools.

Jill C. said...

Here, here! You, me, and plenty of others, Anne. (Sometimes we get it right and I think that it was your turn today. ;)

Portia's Mom said...

But your blog IS interesting and many of us miss it when you go on hiatus. Don't even THINK of stopping it. Unless, of course, you get a clear, direct order from Above.

As far as feminism is concerned, my realization that their ideology was hostile to science was the thin end of the wedge that eventually moved me right politically.

Ann McCarthy said...

Very, very well said. Especially the part about living into who God wants us to be - which involves sacrifice. I'm on the collision course with you.

Sibyl said...

Blessed art thou among women and most blessed art thine opinions.

A woman is a woman is a woman and is only free and content when she is a woman in Jesus Christ.

He alone makes us who we were meant to be.

Anonymous said...

I'm a stay-at-home mom who generally agrees with you. I think we have lost that idea of self-sacrifice as a necessary and good part of Christianity, and that goes for both men and women.

But...I can't agree on not having state provided health care and education. I just don't think that churches could manage or fund trying to care for the sick or educate all children. I think in practical terms, as bad as the government might be in managing such programs, churches would be worse. And I sure don't want those that do not belong to a Church to be denied either an education or health care. And there would be parents who would never educate their children at all without government intervention. I'm not saying that the system is anywhere near perfect. I just can't see how the alternative could ever work...

Geri said...

Excellent post, Anne. Kind of makes you think about your life and choices. Thank you.

You are right about healthcare too. If the medical community banded together and donated their time and talents to staff free clinics for the medically indigent coupled with the medical supply businesses and pharmaceutical companies providing free supplies, the problem would be solved. Of course hospitals would have to cooperate to provide the space, but all of this is possible.

Sarah Boyle Webber said...

My dear, I love your blog, even though reading it reminds me I've only done one post per month for the last 3 months on my own blog. Please don't stop writing. Reading about your life helps me remember that the world does not revolve around my house and my children. It's painful because autism taints everything in our house and I wish it didn't, I wish I could homeschool my children. Instead, I'm counting down the days until Miranda goes to school and looking forward to signing her IEP before Labor Day. But I digress.... Blessings on all the Kennedy's.