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The Bible is the most sociologically influencing novel ever introduced to the United States. Although we present ideals such as, freedom of religion and separation of church and state, these stances are never truly fulfilled. The foundation of our country was built by people seeking religious freedom and resisting religious persecution, meaning our country was built by citizens who felt very strongly about religion. So whether religious or not, religion will always play a role in our American society. More particularly, the bible will always play a role.
Various interpretations of the bible have led to socially constructed problems of inequality such as sexism, homophobia, and racism.
The first problem obscure interpretations have built into our society’s foundation are the undertones of sexism. America’s society is still a patriarchal one. Women today have to fight for equal pay. We have to fight for and work twice as hard for managerial positions. Women are slut shamed for “sleeping around,” while many men are in more than one relationship.
Women are still seen as “housewives” and are meant to take care of children more than their husbands do. Problems like this have been around for hundreds of years. In Cassese and Holmon’s “Religious Beliefs, Gender Consciousness, and Women’s Political Participation,” they argue the sexist implications of the bible and the effect these implications have.
In their argument, Holman states “A significant body of literature has explored the relationship between religious beliefs and sexism, particularly through benevolent sexism, where women are viewed stereotypically and in restricted roles, but as subjectively positive,” to give a perspective of how women are expected to act and how they are viewed for their actions.
Furthermore, In the book of peter, it is written, “Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner.” Although it says to be considerate, it refers to the wife as the “weaker partner.” By referring to women restricted roles as subjectively positive, it means that women are forced to be restricted to being “housewives,” taking care of children, doing laundry, etc.
Yet applauded for it and are to be see as good mothers. Also, regarding women as a “weaker partner” restricts them to allow husbands to work and make money for the family, while being never being considered to even want to be the “breadwinner.” Individual’s views on topics as such are what shape how our society works, and the inequalities in this speak to the everlasting patriarchal environment we live in. Various interpretations of the bible have also caused blatant homophobia and inequality for members of the LGBTQ community.
Gay marriage has been a topic in our society for many years. States still use the bible to justify that men and women are not to marry the same sex. (insert bible verse). Along with that, the bible has also been used to in attempts to stop transgenders. Deuteronomy 22:5 does state that “A woman must not wear mean’s clothing, nor a man wear women’s clothing for the Lord your God detests anyone who does this.” Though, people forget that individuals who are transgender truly believe they are a man or a woman in the body of the wrong sex. The quote does clarify if male or female is strictly physical term, so as a society we cannot force it to be such.
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